Serbs in north say no to Kosovo agreement

KOSOVSKA MITROVICA -- Serbs in northern Kosovo gathered at noon on Monday in Kosovska Mitrovica to protest against the Kosovo agreement reached in Brussels.

(Beta/AP)
(Beta/AP)

Beta news agency reported that organizers said some 20,000 citizens took part in the rally held under the slogan, "North of Kosovo and Metohija Remains Part of Serbia".

The protesters made it clear that they would not accept the Brussels agreement and called for a referendum on the tentative agreement which the Serbian and Kosovo prime ministers initialed in Brussels on April 19.

North Kosovo Serbs said that “it is the time for an assembly of the Autonomous Province of Kosovo-Metohija to be formed."

Deputy Head of the Government Office for Kosovo and Metohija Krstimir Pantić said at the protest that north Kosovo Serbs have three ways ahead of them: toward Priština, toward Belgrade and the one toward the establishment of an assembly of the community of Serb municipalities.

"The third one is the way into uncertainty, with a risk, but the only possible one," Pantić said.

Citizens carried the Serbian flags and banners reading "We Do Not Want Kosovo's Seal", "No Surrender", "No to Kosovo's Laws and Constitution", "No to the Brussels Agreement".

As announced, a declaration of the convention of the Serb people would be adopted during the gathering, noting that the tentative agreement that was reached in Brussels and approved by the Serbian government on Monday is not legitimate or valid and that "the people living in Kosovo and Metohija will not allow its implementation, as that would mean coming under the rule of the false state of Kosovo."

During the protest that began at noon with the sounding of the national anthem, cafes, restaurants and shops in the city were closed.

The protest against the Brussels agreement with Priština was staged by the Serb majority municipalities Kosovska Mitrovica, Zubin Potok, Zvečan and Leposavić.

More photos from Kosovska Mitrovica