"Kosovo is reason for withdrawal of Serbian embassy staff"

The Macedonian government has drafted a proposal to support Pristina's new bid to join UNESCO, Sputnik is reporting on Monday.

Source: Beta, RTS, Tanjug, Sputnik

That is "one of the reasons" why the Serbian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has decided to withdraw the staff of the country's embassy in Skopje for urgent consultations, the agency said.

In the meantime, no official reason has been given in Belgrade, where Prime Minister Ana Brnabic described the situation this morning as "no small matter."

Brnabic told reporters that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs would soon issue a statements that is being worked on "jointly."

Entire staff withdrawn

Earlier on Monday, RTS reported that it received confirmation that the entire staff of the Serbian embassy in Skopje has been withdrawn for urgent consultations in Belgrade.

Serbian Ambassador Dusanka Divjak-Tomic and the staff, as stated, arrived last night (Sunday) in Belgrade. A detailed explanation of what is happening will be given during the day today by Minister of Foreign Affairs Ivica Dacic, said RTS.

In the meantime, Macedonian media are reporting that the Macedonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced it had received a note from the embassy of Serbia in Skopje, informing them that the embassy staff had been asked to travel to Belgrade for consultations.

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not familiar with the reasons for this decision and is therefore establishing communication with the MFA of Serbia. In accordance with the relevant provisions of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, the institutions of the Republic of Macedonia are taking measures to protect the security and integrity of the embassy of Serbia in Skopje," a statement said.

The news about the withdrawal of Serbian diplomats was broken last night by Macedonian TV Telma, which referred to sources in the Macedonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

According to the broadcaster, the Serbian embassy, calling on the Geneva Convention, asked the Macedonian authorities to strengthen the security of the embassy.

The reporter of this television said that "all the windows on the embassy were dark" while "nothing is unusual was happening in front of the building, and there was no increased police presence."

Ambassador Divjak-Tomic told Beta that she could not make any comment, and added, in a SMS message sent to the agency's Skopje correspondent, that they should seek more information tomorrow (Monday) from the Serbian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


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