President addresses Serbs in Kosovo in open letter
President of the Republic of Serbia Aleksandar Vucic on Friday sent an open letter to the citizens in Kosovo and Metohija (KiM).Source: RTS, Tanjug
In it, Vucic calls on Serbs in the province not to react to any possible provocations and targeted misinformation, and points out that Serbia is ready today to fulfill its obligations toward them and protect their lives and peace, if necessary.
The full text of the letter:
"Respected citizens of Kosovo and Metohija,
Tomorrow, August 4, is the deadline given by the European Union to the provisional self-government institutions in Pristina to complete the adoption of the Statute of the Community of Serb Municipalities (ZSO), based on the Brussels Agreement.
One day before the expiration of the latest deadline for Pristina's obligations to establish the Community of Serb Municipalities, and 1,930 days after Pristina with its signature took over that obligation, all the warnings and suspicions that I have been expressing the whole time are being confirmed and are coming true. Pristina will not lift a finger this time either to form the Community of Serb Municipalities.
Dear Serbs, please do not undertake anything in this regard that individuals among the Albanians, or in a part of the international community, will use as an excuse to take any action against you.
And that is why, these days in our southern province, but also in the smaller part of the international community, the word is heard loudly and clearly and action is seen by those who, instead of fulfilling their obligations towards Serbia and the Serbs, use this time in order to make daily threats and spread rumors in an organized manner, in order to bring unrest and fear among the Serb people in Kosovo and Metohija, wishing to create panic, with the aim of provoking mistrust in Serbia's state institutions, creating a rift among the political representatives of Serbs in Kosovo, and an overall weakening of our position during a sensitive phase of negotiations.
Dear fellow citizens, for this very reason, peace is our greatest interest. The challenges ahead of us require us to stay above discord, manipulation and targeted disinformation campaigns. Therefore, I urge you and invite you not to fall for any provocations, to react to all possible challenges peacefully, in a civilized and dignified manner, while we will be committed to providing you security and a future in those areas using political methods.
Serbia is ready today to fulfill its commitment to you and to protect your lives and peace, if necessary. While I am at its helm, Serbia will not allow organized violence against the Serbs and their holy places, nor their persecution. There will be no new "Storms" (reference to Croatia's 1995 Operation Storm) in Kosovo and Metohija. Peace for Serbia and the Serb people is the highest value, which besides everything else we are trying to protect, also through the difficult conversations we are having with political representatives of the Albanians and of the international community.
In addition to us, who are sincerely committed to this, the preservation of peace in our southern province is also the primary task of the KFOR mission and NATO, from whom I especially expect and demand that peace be protected by preventing any possible attempt, anyone's and under any pretext, to take over and seize the Gazivode Hydroelectric Power Plant, the Valac power station, or any other key object of infrastructure that your survival depends on.
For your sake and for the future of all of Serbia, we will continue to exclusively peacefully stand for a compromise and a comprehensive solution of relations in Kosovo and Metohija, and we will not stop until we provide for our people in every way more than we have today.
I wish you and your families all the best.
President of the Republic of Serbia."