UN envoy says Kosovo Serbs harmed their cause by not voting

30 October 2002

Kosovo’s Serbs “shot themselves in the foot” with their low turnout in last week’s municipal elections, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Special Representative to the province said today in Belgrade.

Following meetings with senior Yugoslav officials, Michael Steiner told reporters that the low Serb turnout “has diminished their capacity to take part in decision-making in Kosovo.”

Based on that outcome, he said it made no sense to go forward with a meeting he had proposed for Kosovo’s political parties to discuss decentralization, but added “this does not mean that the philosophy of decentralization is off the table.”

During his talks with Yugoslav President Vojislav Kostunica and other senior officials, Mr. Steiner briefed them on the current situation in Kosovo.