Kosovo Neighbours Wary Of Recognition

February 26, 2008   | Lajmet / Vijesti

Branko Crvenkovski&Olli Rehn26 February 2008 Brussels _ Macedonian and Montenegrin Presidents visiting Brussels Tuesday said their countries will not begin the process of recognising Kosovo immediately.

Macedonia’s Branko Crvenkovski said his country as a European Union and NATO candidate has obligations to follow the common foreign policy in both blocs, and consensus there appears to be absent as yet.

He added there are other factors too.

“One of them is that in defining our position towards the independence of Kosovo, we are obliged to take into account our national and state interests,” Crvenkovski said, adding “Macedonia will reveal its view when we find it is most appropriate for Macedonian interests.”

Montenegro’s Filip Vujanovic emphasised that while deciding about Kosovo, Montenegrins should take into account the stability of the country, and relations between ethnic Serbs and Albanians living in Montenegro, and mainitaining the multicultural and multi-rleigious atmosphere in the country.

“There will be no hasty decisions but we will think about it very carefully, and we will announce our decision on Kosovo at the moment when Montenegro evaluates that is appropriate,” Vujanovic pledged.

Analysts say many Balkan countries are concerned about their future ties with Serbia, which is vehemently opposed to Kosovo’s independence and has threatened retaliation against countries who recognise Kosovo’s sovereignty.

Both Presidents were visiting the European Commission, where the EU’s Commissioner for Enlargement appealed to member states to recognise Kosovo’s independence.

“Now, more than dozen EU member states have recognised the independence of Kosovo and we would expect that maturity of other member states will lead them to follow suite at their own pace,” Olli Rehn said.