"Constructive" round of Kosovo talks held in Brussels

Prime Minister Aleksandat Vucic has said that Tuesday's round of the Kosovo talks took place "in a constructive atmosphere," and achieved "modest progress."

Source: B92, Tanjug
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He also announced the next round for May.

"This was a good day to talk," said Vucic after nearly the four-hour round held at the office of EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini.

He said that "concrete progress has been made only with regard to the opening of two new crossings on the administrative line."

"One of these crossings will be towards Raska, and second in the municipality of Medvedja," explained Vucic, adding that the opening of one of the crossings was requested by the Belgrade side, and the other by Pristina.

He also said "a great number of issues" was discussed and that positions had moved closer on some of them, while working groups will continue to work on the preparation of the next round of dialogue to be held in May.

"We'll try to find some common ground," said Vucic.

He added that the formation of a community of Serb municipalities was also discussed, but that "unfortunately" there had been no "common language."

Besides, Vucic added, there was discussion about energy, telecommunications and implementation of an agreement on civil protection.

"We have reached an agreement to stop the privatization of companies in the north of Kosovo, as part of the discussions about the return of Serb deputies to the assembly of Kosovo," Vucic said.

Speaking about the issue of energy, he said that the Pristina side "admitted" that Lake Gazivode was mostly located in the territory of central Serbia.

Kosovo Prime Minister Isa Mustafa said after the negotiations that representatives of Serbs in northern Kosovo would now be included in the privatization process.

"It is their wish and it should be made possible, but with full respect for the laws of Kosovo," said Mustafa.

He pointed out that working groups will in the coming days continue the conversation in connection with the formation of a community of Serb municipalities.

Mogherini issued a statement after the meeting to say that the two sides reviewed the progress in implementation of the previously reached agreements, especially on the judiciary and civil protection.

The statement said that the two delegations "exchanged opinions on energy, telecommunications and the establishment of a community of Serb municipalities."

It was agreed that "concrete steps should be taken until the next meeting."

Mogherini assessed this round of the Kosovo talks as "constructive."

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