Public hearing continues in Kosovo case
Source: B92, Tanjug
THE HAGUE -- The Kosovo debate before the International Court of Justice in The Hague continueD this Wednesday.
On the first day of the proceedings yesterday, Serbia and Kosovo Albanian representatives had a chance to present their arguments.
The case was sent to the highest UN court by the UN General Assembly last year at Serbia's request, with the goal of establishing the legality of the February 2008 unilateral declaration of independence of Kosovo.
Until December 11, 27 more countries, both supporters and opponents of the proclamation, will give their arguments, including China, the United States and Russia. But the judges are expected to deliberate the case for several months before giving their opinion.
Albania, Germany and Saudi Arabia, the countries that recognized the declaration, were the first to present their legal arguments in favor. Each country has 45 minutes for their presentation.
As others who have recognized Kosovo's secession, they were expected to claim that the province's ethnic Albanians have a right to self-determination due to violations of their rights, that UNSCR 1244 did not contain provisions to prevent it, and that some 60 countries have accepted this by recognizing Kosovo.
Belgrade, on the other hand, argued yesterday that the proclamation was an ethnically motivated act of secession that is undermining the foundations of international law, and was in violation of Resolution 1244.
One of the countries in Serbia's corner is Argentina, and its representatives also addressed the court today.
Argentina sent one of the longest written statements to the court during the previous stage of the proceedings, disputing the legality of the unilateral proclamation.
Argentine expert Marcelo Kohen is also in the official Serbian delegation, which is led by Serbia's Ambassador to France Dušan Bataković, and also included FM Vuk Jeremić.
As he spoke on Tuesday, Kohen reminded that the UN General Assembly, Security Council or any other international institution have never before accepted the secession of the territory of a country in the way that those who support Kosovo's independence are advocating.
Find the transcripts from the first day of the hearing here
On December 7, the ICJ will hear the arguments of Cyprus, which not only says that the unilateral declaration was contrary to international law, but also provides a list of all the regions in the world that could be destabilized with separatist demands, in case the court supports the secession of Kosovo.
A day later, both Washington and Moscow will have their representatives address the court.
Argentina: Severe violation of international law
Find the transcript from the second day of the hearing here
The delegation of Argentina supported today Serbia's stand that the secession of Kosovo represents the most severe violation of international law and threatens the established international order, adding that "a bright future of a country cannot be built in that manner".
The head of the delegation, Susana Ruiz Cerutti, said that the advisory opinion of the ICJ will have far-reaching consequences and not only deal with the Kosovo issue.
She pointed out that the unilateral declaration was not in keeping with international law, that it endangered Serbia's territorial integrity and violated UN Security Council Resolution 1244, which proscribes the international administrative and security presence, "and did not, and could not, abolish Serbia's sovereignty over Kosovo".
The very resolution has excluded the right to self-rule which is underscored by the defenders of independence, Cerrutti said, adding that the Kosovo status will be determined through talks and compromise which have to be in line with Resolution 1244.
She stated that the unilateral declaration of independence was the result of a coordinated action of provisional Kosovo institutions and states that supported it.
Albania, Germany, Saudi Arabia: No contradiction
Earlier in the day, Albania, Germany and Saudi Arabia supported the unilateral proclamation by claiming that it was not in contradiction with international law, but that it was "in line with the right of people to self-determination".
The secession of Kosovo "had nothing to do with international law, as the law did not define the issue of secession, therefore, secession is not forbidden", news agencies reported their arguments.
Legal Adviser of the German Federal Foreign Office Susanne Wasum-Rainer suggested that the judges should examine the case of Kosovo by relying on facts, that is, "the situation on the ground".
According to her, one of the principles of international law, the principle of efficiency, is "the only principle that can be applied in the case of Kosovo, since Kosovo fulfills the elements of statehood and its people, territory and government have nation-building qualities".
"Kosovo has become an independent state because it has been recognized by 63 members of the United Nations, as well as by 109 members of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (WB)," Wasum-Rainer concluded.
Speaking on the behalf of the Albanian delegation, Professor Jochen Frowein argued that "secession is not regulated by international law".
"There is nothing international law can say about the declaration of Kosovo's independence," he said, and noted that "a majority of the UN member countries had not expressed a wish to take part in the debate" at the ICJ.
Priština rejects negotiations, warns of "chaos"
A delegation from Kosovo, led by Skender Hiseni, defended the Kosovo Albanian declaration before the ICJ in The Hague on Tuesday by saying that it was "the will of the people" and rejecting any possibility of opening new Kosovo status negotiations.
The head of the delegation, which was referred to by the ICJ not as Kosovo but as "the authors of the independence declaration," said that it had been the realization of the will of "Kosovo's people", reflecting their "desire to decide their political status for themselves".
Hiseni said that "regardless of the past problems and sufferings undergone by Kosovo's people, Kosovo still had a desire to build good relations with Serbia and negotiate practical issues of life in that ethnically mixed community".
He stressed that Kosovo could not enter negotiations that questioned its status as a "sovereign and independent state".
Hiseni remarked that those who wanted to renew the status negotiations were "either unaware of the current situation or were trying to cause chaos in the region", adding that Kosovo had been recognized by all the "neighboring countries", except Serbia.
The delegation also included British international law expert Michael Wood, who gave an unusual summary of the region's history, claiming that Kosovo – which was part of the Serbian medieval empire before it was invaded by Ottoman Turks in the late 14th century – was "forcibly occupied" by Serbs and taken from the Ottomans, to be annexed to Serbia in the 20th century. That is, he said, when violations of the rights of the Albanian population started.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 20:53 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (0) | Send comment
Prokuplje -- President Boris Tadić says Serbia should wait for the decision of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in good faith.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 16:46 | Source: Beta | Comments: (19) | Send comment
ATHENS -- The ICJ opinion on Kosovo will open up the possibility to reach a compromise regarding the future status of the province, according to FM Vuk Jeremić.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 15:11 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Serbian Minister of Finance Diana Dragutinović on Wednesday in Belgrade presented the 2010 budget.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 14:34 | Source: Blic | Comments: (4) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Russian Ambassador Aleksandr Konuzin has confirmed that Russia offered to build a nuclear power plant in Serbia.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 13:24 | Source: Politika | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The Interim Trade Agreement (ITA) between EU and Serbia could be unfrozen at the EU Council of Ministers regular meeting next Monday and Tuesday.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 12:54 | Source: B92 | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- A new Gallup Balkan Monitor public opinion survey shows that as many as 44 pct of the Serbian citizens believe that the current government is performing badly.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 10:55 | Source: B92 | Comments: (12) | Send comment
KOSOVSKA MITROVICA -- Kosovo Serb politician Radmila Trajković has been expelled from the Serb National Council (SNV), it has been announced.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 09:57 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (1) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The European Commission Mission in Serbia has changed its name to EU Delegation in Serbia.
sreda 2.12.2009 | 09:54 | Source: Beta | Comments: (13) | Send comment
WASHINGTON -- Serbian Defense Minister Dragan Šutanovac on Tuesday met with his U.S. counterpart Robert Gates in Washington, Beta reports.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 18:13 | Source: Beta | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The Serbian government has withdrawn the final state budget report from the parliamentary procedure.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 18:09 | Source: Danas | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Justice Ministry State Secretary Slobodan Homen says changes and additions to existing laws will make sanctions for violence at sporting events more severe.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 16:55 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (19) | Send comment
THE HAGUE -- Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremić says Serbia showed wisdom, composure and strength before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Tuesday.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 16:54 | Source: B92, Beta, Tanjug | Comments: (54) | Send comment
THE HAGUE -- The debate on the legality of Kosovo’s unilateral proclamation of independence began today before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 15:21 | Source: Beta | Comments: (5) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- President Boris Tadić says that he expects a positive result to the Kosovo debate before the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
utorak 1.12.2009 | 15:16 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The Ministry of Mining and Energy has made no plans to construct nuclear power plants in Serbia, according to a spokesman.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 12:36 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- European Commission (EC) Director for Western Balkans Pierre Mirel will arrive here on a two-day working visit on Thursday.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 12:17 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (1) | Send comment
BRATISLAVA -- Slovak President Ivan Gašparovič will arrive on a three-day visit to Serbia on Wednesday.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 12:13 | Source: Danas | Comments: (5) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- British Ambassador to Belgrade Stephen Wordsworth said that the visa regime the citizens of Serbia could be abolished in 2011.
utorak 1.12.2009 | 10:24 | Source: B92 | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The Serbian government will hold a meeting on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the 2010 budget, government officials confirmed for B92.
ponedeljak 30.11.2009 | 18:19 | Source: FoNet | Comments: (1) | Send comment
LONDON -- President Boris Tadić said that Serbia will make a decision by the end of the year of whether it will apply for European Union candidate status.
ponedeljak 30.11.2009 | 17:41 | Source: B92, Beta, Tanjug | Comments: (72) | Send comment
BRUSSELS, BELGRADE -- The European Union (EU) has abolished visas for the citizens of Serbia traveling to the Schengen Area countries.
ponedeljak 30.11.2009 | 17:26 | Source: B92, Beta | Comments: (4) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The Serbian parliament today voted with 137 votes in favor and 24 against to adopt the new Vojvodina statute.
ponedeljak 30.11.2009 | 12:19 | Source: Beta | Comments: (24) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The governments of Russia and Serbia are in negotiations to build a nuclear power plant in Serbia, the Russian ambassador to Belgrade says.
ponedeljak 30.11.2009 | 12:17 | Source: B92 | Comments: (10) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Serbia expects that those EU member-states which do not belong to the Schengen Area will also lift their visa requirements for the Serbian citizens.
ponedeljak 30.11.2009 | 10:16 | Source: B92, Beta | Comments: (5) | Send comment
LEPOSAVIĆ -- For the first time since Serbia introduced a multiparty system in the early 1990s, the Democratic Party (DS) has won in a Kosovo municipality.
ponedeljak 30.11.2009 | 09:54 | Source: B92 | Comments: (39) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremić told B92 TV that he expects the ICJ to deem the Kosovo independence proclamation as a secession.
nedelja 29.11.2009 | 16:11 | Source: Beta | Comments: (5) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The EU Council of Interior and Justice Ministers will make a decision on Monday regarding the abolishment of visas for Serbia, Montenegro, and Macedonia.
nedelja 29.11.2009 | 14:33 | Source: Beta | Comments: (34) | Send comment
PRIŠTINA -- Kosovo Albanian Foreign Minister Skender Hyseni says Kosovo’s representation before the ICJ will be presenting very strong evidence to support its independence.
nedelja 29.11.2009 | 13:05 | Source: FoNet, Politika | Comments: (6) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Minister for Kosovo Goran Bogdanović said that Belgrade must do more to make sure that divisions between Kosovo Serbs does not occur.
nedelja 29.11.2009 | 10:19 | Source: Politika, Tanjug | Comments: (10) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- President Boris Tadić said that Serbia needs to focus on its obligations and convince others that the country is making progress in its EU integration.
nedelja 29.11.2009 | 09:44 | Source: FoNet | Comments: (42) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Russian ambassador to Serbia Aleksandr Konuzin said that Russia will continue to help defend the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Serbia.
subota 28.11.2009 | 17:28 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (21) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- State Secretary in the German Foreign Minister Werner Hoyer said that the climate must be created for making it easier for Belgrade to solve the Kosovo problem.
subota 28.11.2009 | 15:42 | Source: FoNet, Politika, Tanjug | Comments: (12) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The International Court of Justice denies that it has already formed its opinion on the legality of Kosovo’s independence, daily Politika reported.
subota 28.11.2009 | 15:08 | Source: Beta | Comments: (4) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Swedish ambassador to Serbia Krister Bringeus said that the Serbian people can expect to hear good news on Monday.
subota 28.11.2009 | 14:41 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (8) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- President Boris Tadić said that Serbia has two central goals currently—preserving its territorial integrity and sovereignty and joining the European Union.
subota 28.11.2009 | 13:09 | Source: B92 | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Serbian President Boris Tadić will meet in Brussels on Monday with European Union senior officials, according to the president’s cabinet.
subota 28.11.2009 | 10:05 | Source: Danas | Comments: (11) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Political analyst Vladimir Goati said that he cannot imagine the opposition parties uniting and being victorious without a united pro-European platform.
subota 28.11.2009 | 09:19 | Source: Večernje novosti | Comments: (4) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Slovak Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajčak said that EU member-states need to make a political decision on Serbia’s further integration.
petak 27.11.2009 | 16:35 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (0) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- President Boris Tadić will hold meetings with European Union officials Monday in Brussels, his office said today.
petak 27.11.2009 | 16:13 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (19) | Send comment
SKOPJE -- Serbian Deputy PM Božidar Đelić said in Skopje on Friday that Belgrade recognizes Macedonia under its constitutional name.
petak 27.11.2009 | 15:12 | Source: FoNet | Comments: (4) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremić says he is satisfied with is week-long visit to several African countries.
petak 27.11.2009 | 13:24 | Source: Beta | Comments: (6) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The Serbian parliament is today continuing the debate on the amendments submitted to the draft law on Vojvodina's jurisdictions.
petak 27.11.2009 | 11:30 | Source: B92 | Comments: (4) | Send comment
GRAČANICA -- Several political parties and associations of Kosovo Serbs who took part in the Nov. 15 local elections have announced that they would stage protests.
petak 27.11.2009 | 11:11 | Source: Politika | Comments: (23) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Defense Minister Dragan Šutanovac stated that defense and security sector cooperation with the United States "is very important".
petak 27.11.2009 | 09:38 | Source: Danas | Comments: (8) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- President Boris Tadić has reportedly ordered state officials not to come up with public prognosis "that would irritate the Netherlands".
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 17:04 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (12) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- President of the Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee Dragoljub Mićunović stated that Serbia and China were on the same side in observing international law.
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 16:25 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (3) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Serbia will apply for EU candidacy after the Interim Trade Agreement (ITA) has been unfrozen, says President Boris Tadić.
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 15:26 | Source: Blic | Comments: (3) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Serbia has managed to come within reach of unfreezing of the Interim Trade Agreement, Belgrade daily Blic writes.
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 15:20 | Source: Beta | Comments: (5) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- Minister for Kosovo and Metohija Goran Bogdanović has meet with the UN mission in Kosovo, UNMIK, chief Lamberto Zannier.
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 14:38 | Source: Beta, Tanjug | Comments: (15) | Send comment
STRASBOURG -- The European parliament (EP) members on Thursday in Strasbourg adopted a resolution on the EU's enlargement strategy.
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 13:44 | Source: B92, Beta | Comments: (16) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The session of the Serbian Parliament was briefly interrupted today after an opposition MP threw both her shoes at the deputy speaker.
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 11:51 | Source: Večernje novosti | Comments: (3) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- The draft statute gives Vojvodina the highest level of autonomy provided by the Constitution, the provincial assembly president says.
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 09:57 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (4) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- A regional ministerial conference on climate change was opened Wednesday in Belgrade.
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 09:57 | Source: Tanjug | Comments: (1) | Send comment
GENEVA -- Serbia's Interior Ministry and police (MUP) have very good cooperation with the Geneva Center for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF).
četvrtak 26.11.2009 | 09:27 | Source: Beta, Tanjug | Comments: (20) | Send comment
BELGRADE -- President Boris Tadić met on Wednesday in Belgrade with Kuwaiti Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser al Mohammed al Ahmed al Sabah.