Pristina and Belgrade must engage in constructive dialogue, Ban says

21 September 2010

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today stressed the importance of constructive dialogue between Pristina and Belgrade.

In bilateral meetings with three European leaders on the margins of a three-day summit on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) he expressed the readiness of the United Nations to contribute to this effort.

Talks with Serbian President Boris Tadic focused on prospects for a dialogue facilitated by the European Union (EU). Last week the 192-member General Assembly by consensus resolution hailed the EU initiative and acknowledged the advisory opinion issued by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in July on the legality of Kosovo's declaration, which Serbia rejects.

ICJ judges concluded that the declaration does not breach either general international law, a Security Council resolution from 1999 following the end of fighting in Kosovo, or the constitutional framework that was adopted by the Secretary-General's Special Representative on behalf of the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK).

Mr. Ban also discussed the Kosovo issue with Slovenian President Danilo Türk and Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski.

The leaders discussed other issues including the situation in the wider Western Balkans region, Serbia’s participation in UN peacekeeping operations, and the MDGs.

With Mr. Sikorski he also discussed Poland’s engagement in Afghanistan and Kosovo, voicing appreciation for its support to the UN, including for the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF). He expressed his sympathy to Mr. Türk over recent floods in Slovenia.

 

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