Statement by Ambassador Sven Jürgenson at the UN Security Council meeting on Kosovo/UNMIK

I would like to thank Mr. Tanin, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for his  comprehensive briefing and for leading the work of UNMIK, as well as the President Osmani and Foreign Minister Selaković  for their statements.

With the COVID-19 pandemic still heavily affecting Kosovo, we appreciate UNMIK’s support for Kosovo’s local authorities and communities in alleviating the challenges caused by pandemic, including delivery of the COVID-19-related humanitarian assistance and medical equipment to meet the needs of persons in vulnerable situations. We also commend UNMIK for its continued support for strengthening Kosovo’s rule of law and democratic institutions.

We welcome Kosovo’s continued strategic commitment to its European path and encourage further progress. This includes taking forward reforms, particularly in the area of the rule of law, the fight against corruption and organised crime, as well as to promote further socio-economic development. We support the work of the Kosovo Specialist Chambers and the Specialist Prosecutor’s Office. Full cooperation with these institutions remains essential as an important demonstration of Kosovo’s commitment to the rule of law. In this regard, we would like to emphasize that European Union Rule of Law Mission continues its monitoring and advising role to the relevant rule of law institutions in Kosovo.

We welcome the agreement reached by parties on September 30, under the facilitation of the EU Special Representative Miroslav Lajčák and following the active engagement by the EU High Representative Josep Borrell and the US special envoy Gabriel Escbobar, to de-escalate the situation in the north of Kosovo. Any further provocations or tensions that endanger the stability are unacceptable and must be avoided. The EU-facilitated Dialogue is the only way forward for Kosovo and Serbia to address and resolve all open issues. In order to make a good progress on normalisation of relations, it is crucial that both countries fully respect and implement all previous agreements reached in the Dialogue.

With regard to the municipal elections on 17 October in Kosovo, we trust the process will be inclusive, credible and transparent and as a result, it would help to take further the necessary future electoral reform efforts.

Finally, I would like to echo the Secretary-General’s words on the International Peace Day that mistrust and division are dividing people apart at a time when solidarity and collaboration are needed more than ever. We must always choose peace. It is the only pathway to a better future. Therefore, we call on Serbia and Kosovo to refrain from any unilateral action or divisive rhetoric that could raise tensions, and engage in good faith, in a spirit of compromise and work on reaching a comprehensive agreement on the normalisation of relations. The agreement would contribute to the stability of the whole region and allows people to work together in order to advance their common regional goals.

Thank you.