Koštunica dismisses threats, awards over Kosovo

PM Vojislav Koštunica says Serbia will not be swayed by threats or promises of awards when it comes to Kosovo.

Source: Beta, Tanjug

In an interview with Tanjug news agency Thursday, the prime minister said that Serbia dismissed all threats and possible awards in case that it voluntarily agreed to give up Kosovo.

"Serbia has of lately been exposed to daily pressures of this kind and open threats coming from the outside, which have turned into a violence against Serbia and its people, and we have to find the right answer to that," Koštunica said.

He specified that "the most powerful countries of the West demanded from Serbia to give up Kosovo voluntarily, to be a partner to the West's conspiracy and help it disintegrate the Serbian land and set up a new Albanian state."

"Now it is to be decided whether Serbia will yield to such violence and be the first country in Europe after the humiliating Munich Agreement from which the big powers of the West have snatched part of the territory," Koštunica specified for the national news agency.

"I am convinced," the prime minister pointed out, "that as an old and historical European nation we have no other answer but that to tell the Western powers that we are aware of all the threats and of all of their awards in case that we accept to be their partners to the conspiracy."

"But at the same time, we have to tell them that Serbia, relying on the law and justice, dismisses with just one move both all the threats and all the awards."

Koštunica reminded that "it was not the first time that Serbia was faced with such a choice and that the answer had always been the same-"

"Serbia fights violence with justice, and this means that for the state of Serbia, according to the Serbian Constitution and the UN Charter, Kosovo will always be an integral part of the Serbian territory and that the Serbs in the province will have the same rights as all other Serbian citizens. To be more specific, unilateral independence does not exist and will never exist for Serbia," the prime minister said.

According to the law, Koštunica underlined, "Kosovo belongs only and solely to Serbia and no one can ever take it away from us."

"Since Serbia cannot be deprived of its right by force, because we do not accept that, we want to make it clear to everyone that Kosovo is Serbia and that threats and violence can only intensify the strongly-embedded historical consciousness of the Serbian nation that Kosovo cannot be snatched away from us," the prime minister concluded.

Koštunica: Respect Dayton, 1244

Koštunica was in Banja Luka yesterday, on the 12th anniversary of the Dayton Accords.

He told reporters that the Serbian government supports the government of Republic of Srpska (RS) and all the institutions of this Bosnian Serb entity, "in their attempts to protect their position exactly in the way it was envisaged and guaranteed by the Dayton agreement," Beta news agency said.

"The Serbian government firmly believes that international law exists in order to be respected," said Koštunica, who arrived in Banja Luka to attend the opening of the new building of the RS government.

He pointed out that Serbia insists on respect for Resolution 1244 of the UN Security Council about the status of Kosovo within Serbia, not outside of it, and of the Dayton agreement, of which Serbia is one of the guarantors.

Stating that "it is no small thing" that the RS government has acquired new headquarters, Koštunica said that this was proof "of the progress of RS, the stability of its development and of the further steps that RS will steadily be taking."

RS Premier Milorad Dodik said that Koštunica "has changed relations between RS and Serbia and has given them substance," unlike "empty words they consisted of for years."

"Thanks to the efforts of the Serbian government, under Koštunica's leadership, and that of President Boris Tadić, we've been able to see this day come in RS."

"If it had not been for the privatization of Telekom and other joint business ventures, we would certainly not have been able to celebrate such a significant working victory," Dodik said.


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