U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has urged Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti to continue the EU-facilitated dialogue with Serbia.
In a letter sent to the Prime Minister’s office on Tuesday (January 11), Blinken thanked Kosovo for hosting Afghan refugees as they await resettlement in the U.S. and praised the Kosovo Security Force’s 2021 co-deployment with the U.S. Army in Kuwait.
The letter focused on Kosovo’s relation with Serbia, stating that “the unresolved nature of Kosovo-Serbia relations remains a major obstacle to Kosovo’s full membership and integration into European and Euro-Atlantic
Blinken emphasized that the EU-facilitated dialogue remains “the best forum for normalization [of] negotiations between Belgrade and Prishtina.”
In particular, he urged Kurti to reach an agreement on “electricity in northern Kosovo and on advancing shared goals on missing persons.”
“Upholding judicial rulings, particularly those related to minority rights, would have a similar positive effect and is in line with your government’s priorities on strengthening the rule of law.”
The Kosovo-Serbia dialogue has stalled since July 2021. A November meeting was postponed after the parties failed to agree on dialogue topics.
The Kosovo negotiating team demanded to discuss the issue of nearly the 1,600 Albanians who are still missing from the 1998-99 war with Serbia. It refused to have the dialogue focus on Serbia’s demand – the establishment of the Serb-only association of municipalities which would have executive powers.