“Partition of Kosovo” can only be agreed by Pristina and Belgrade, and once Serbia has accepted it, the settlement must be confirmed by the UN Security Council in the form of a new resolution, Russian Ambassador to Belgrade Alexander Botsan Kharcenko has told “Politika” newspaper in Serbia.
Kharcenko was asked in an interview about Russia’s “red lines” in the dialogue, and whether the division of Kosovo is still a relevant idea.
“The relevance of the idea of ”partition of Kosovo”, as well as any other idea, can be assessed only by Belgrade and Pristina. The sustainable outcome of the Kosovo issue is achievable only as a result of taking into account balanced mutual interests, compromises – on the basis of international law, without imposing external schemes or time frames. The main criterion for us is that the solution should be acceptable for Serbia,” he replied.
“The final solution of the Kosovo issue should be determined in the UN Security Council by passing a new resolution that would replace the current Resolution 1244,” he added.
Asked whether Russia would be engaged in mediating a deal alongside the US and EU, Kharcenko said that would depend on Belgrade’s request.
“Now it is too early to consider. I don’t think imitating other players is a reasonable and justified strategy. Moscow has an independent vision of the situation. Our engagement requires, above all, an invitation from Belgrade. At the same time, the negotiation process itself should be conducted in a clear international legal framework [that is] acceptable to us, based on UN Security Council Resolution 1244, and should have an acceptable form and content. Let me add, without any malice, that so far the results of diplomatic activities are not too obvious. For now, on the contrary, there is only more chaos in Kosovo itself,” he said.
The United States and the European Union have appointed special envoys for the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue that is officially mediated by the European Union.
More than two years ago, President Vucic asked Putin to have Russia join the dialogue if the US got involved. Whilst the request was welcomed by Putin back then, Vucic has not been reported to have voiced the same request in public since 2018.
A few months after the request, allegations about a possible land swap deal between Kosovo and Serbia discussed by their presidents under the mediation of the EU chief diplomat Federica Mogherini were admitted by Thaci and Vucic, as well as Mogherini.