Thaçi: US to be directly involved in Belgrade-Pristina agreement

Hashim Thaçi, President of Kosovo Estonian Foreign Ministry

The US will be directly involved in the reaching of the final agreement between Belgrade and Pristina, said Kosovo President Hashim Thaçi after meeting with US Vice President Mike Pence.

Thaçi declared the news on Friday to the Albanian Radio Service of the Voice of America, saying “I can confirm to you that Vice President Pens clearly stated that the United States will be directly involved in reaching the final agreement. Vice-president Pens will be dedicated to this and maximally involved in the process.”

He considered that the readiness of the US administration and Pence personally guarantees the success of the process that, in his words, will “lead Kosovo to the final agreement on normalization and reconciliation with Serbia and open the possibility of Kosovo’s joining UN.”

According to Thaçi, “this will end the frozen and very dangerous status quo in Kosovo and the region.”

“We will try to work on reaching an agreement that will support both Pristina and Belgrade, which will benefit the international community and the whole Western Balkans” Thaçi went on to say.

Furthermore, he informed US Vice President Mike Pence about the process of transforming the Kosovo Security Force into “the Kosovo Army,” considering that this should be done “in full coordination with the United States, as well as  with other strategic partners and NATO” writes on Thaci’s official website.

 “We are working on having a comprehensive process and expanding the consensus on transforming the KSF” concluded Thaçi.

A new report published in September entitled “Implementation Review of the Kosovo-Serbia Dialogue” says that the mediators must take a tougher stance in the ongoing dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, and insists that Serbia will eventually have to recognize Kosovo’s independence.

The report, published by the Program on Peace-Building and Rights at Columbia University’s Institute for the Study of Human Rights, suggests a deadline of 18 months to conclude negotiations.