Commitments to peace and progress need backing of all communities and individuals in Kosovo, SRSG Tanin tells Security Council
New York, 14 Nov 2018 - The need to ensure people throughout Kosovo society are fully engaged in building lasting peace was underscored by the head of the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo today.
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Kosovo, Mr. Zahir Tanin reflected on recent political developments, including fresh opportunities for debate sparked by consideration of a new framework for territorial exchange as proposed by Belgrade and Pristina, during his quarterly address to the UN Security Council in New York.
Speaking on the proposed framework that was announced at the European Forum Alpbach in Austria in August after earlier negotiations, SRSG Tanin said the new dimension had injected both apprehension and a new impetus.
“Regardless of the underlying challenges and concerns, the discussion has opened space for debate and consideration.”
However, SRSG Tanin insisted the core tenets of the EU-led dialogue - including the establishment of the Association/Community of Serb-majority municipalities - remain crucial to progress on the ground.
While the promise of ever-greater European integration remained a powerful motivation for leaders to build accord, with important developments such as the European Commission’s July recommendation to allow visa-free European travel for Kosovo residents, SRSG Tanin said adversarial actions had the potential to derail progress.
“Whether on larger or smaller issues, one-sided actions carry the constant potential to inflame the situation on the ground.”
Regarding the approval of laws to enhance the strength of the Kosovo Security Force by the Assembly of Kosovo, SRSG Tanin stressed: “This matter needs to be handled with utmost care, to ensure that steps taken are the result of a fully inclusive, fully representative political process respecting relevant legal frameworks.”
SRSG Tanin reiterated the commitment of UNMIK to prioritise persistent and steady trust-building in Kosovo, advising of the mission’s ongoing work to implement key recommendations from a pivotal United Nations Kosovo Trust-building Forum held in May.
The cultivation of lasting peace would only be reached with the buy-in from all societies and representatives, he told the Council.
“Top-level commitments that may be reached via political negotiations, no matter the strength of international and regional support, are unlikely to stand unless backed up by full understanding and confidence among communities and individuals across society.”
See the full text of SRSG Tanin’s statement to the Security Council here:
See the Report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo here:
See the Albanian translation of SRSG Tanin’s statement to the Security Council here:
See the Albanian translation of the Report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo here:
See the Serbian translation of SRSG Tanin’s statement to the Security Council here:
See the Serbian translation of the Report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Interim Administration
Mission in Kosovo here: