PM speaks about "potential interruption of talks"

Belgrade will "interrupt its participation in the talks" in case Priština bans visits to Kosovo to Serbia's officials until the end of the election campaign.

Source: Politika, Tanjug

Prime Minister Ivica Dačić said late on Wednesday this is what he told EU officials.

In a statement for the Belgrade-based daily Politika, Dačić said that he warned Brussels and ambassadors of "the Quint" countries that the decision of the Priština government was "scandalous" and constitutes a blow to the peacekeeping process.

Kosovo Deputy Prime Minister Hajredin Kuci told Tanjug earlier on Wednesday that not a single Serbia's official will be allowed entry in Kosovo as of Thursday, when the campaign for the local elections in Kosovo is due to begin, until November 1, when the campaign will end.

Dačić said that if he himself as the signatory of the Brussels agreement and representatives of the government who backed the document and worked on its implementation are banned from visiting Kosovo and Metohija where they would call on local Serbs to vote in the local elections, then the question arises as to the purpose of his further participation in the dialogue. Dačić intended to visit the municipality of Strpce on Friday but the Priština authorities notified him that the visit was been granted.

Dačić stated that this move by Priština calls into question the credibility of Brussels under whose auspices the dialogue is being conducted.

The prime minister announced that the Serbian authorities will discuss further steps on Thursday and call on the EU to issue its stand on the matter.

"Undermining agreement"

Chairman of the Serbian Parliament Committee on Kosovo and Metohija Milovan Drecun said Wednesday that Priština’s decision to ban Serbian officials from entering the province during the campaign for local elections is one in a series of moves by Priština that is making the Brussels agreement implementation more difficult and an attempt to influence the outcome of the vote.

Drecun said in a statement for Tanjug that Brussels and Washington, and “paying lip service, officials from Priština as well,” expect Belgrade to encourage the Serbian people in KiM to turn out and vote in massive numbers, but the question is how it is to be done if there is a ban on Serbian officials visiting the province.

“One is incompatible with the other. Belgrade officials cannot do what is expected of them,” said Drecun.

He stressed that it is time Priština stopped making “provocations constantly and obstructing the implementation of the Brussels agreement” and things started developing positively, as “otherwise, we will all be in big problems.”

Drecun said that today’s decision is one of a series of moves that Priština is making in attempts to influence the elections’ result and to ensure that the ‘Citizens’ Initiatives Srpska’ list receives the smallest number of votes possible.

Priština’s goal is that certain Serb lists that enjoy its support get more votes, so that Priština could control the Community of Serb municipalities after the elections, Drecun said.

“This renders the elections absolutely irregular and undermines the process of normalization of relations between Belgrade and Priština,” said Drecun.


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