SRSG Tanin at UN Security Council Session on Kosovo: “There Is No Alternative to Dialogue”

Zahir Tanin, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), briefs the Security Council. Credit: UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

27 Feb 2017

SRSG Tanin at UN Security Council Session on Kosovo: “There Is No Alternative to Dialogue”

27 February, 2017 - The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) in Kosovo, Zahir Tanin, highlighted to Security Council members today that resumption of top-level dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina was an “essential step” in renewed efforts to rebuild trust and confidence. In his regular update on Kosovo, SRSG Tanin welcomed discussions on implementation of the future Community/Association of Serb majority municipalities, central to the April 2013 agreement.

“There is no alternative to dialogue,” SRSG Tanin stressed.

Emphasising the paramount importance that electoral politics should not disrupt vital processes and progress, SRSG Tanin underlined that normalisation of relations, reconciliation and justice extend beyond short-term political objectives – and should serve the objective of “improving the lives of people.” Highlighting that “Courageous leadership and positive actions are important to promote changes in attitudes”, SRSG Tanin expressed appreciation for the steps taken by some leaders and encouraged more sustained efforts to move beyond the past, to focus on the future.

Mindful that work needs to continue in order to improve the social and economic situation in Kosovo, SRSG Tanin underlined that “addressing unemployment, making progress in the rule of law, and fighting corruption remain central for all people in Kosovo.”

Acknowledging the threat of violent extremism and terrorism in Kosovo and throughout the region, SRSG Tanin commended the Kosovo authorities’ holistic approach, which importantly includes educational and developmental components.

“Good neighbourly relations, dedication to a common future within a unified European space, a commitment to human rights and the rule of law, and resolving disputes only through the peaceful means of dialogue and compromise are as essential for Kosovo as they are for the entire region,” SRSG Tanin underlined.

Read the full statement of SRSG Zahir Tanin to the Security Council 27 February 2017 here (PDF)

Watch SRSG Zahir Tanin's briefing on the situation in Kosovo at the Security Council here (UN WEB TV)