The Americans open up the work of the Association after Kurt’s visit to Washington, says Gabriel Escobar
The Special Envoy of the United States for the Western Balkans, Gabriel Escobar, said that the creation of the Association of municipalities with a Serbian majority should not be in conflict with the Constitution of Kosovo, and create a “state within a state”.
During a conversation with journalists, Escobar said that the position of the USA is to implement all the agreements reached within the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue, but said that there should be a discussion on the issue of the Association, so that it does not conflict with the laws .
“We have been clear that the parties agreed earlier on the Association, so it should be discussed. However, the Association should not interfere, should not contradict the Constitution of Kosovo, should not create problems in the functionality of Kosovo and should not be a state within a state”, he declared.
Escobar said that there are many European models, where minorities can protect their cultural heritage and native language, but without violating the constitutional framework of the country where we live.
“We want to find some of these examples, and maybe even use them as a guide to implement the Association. Therefore, I hope we can discuss these in Brussels later this month”, he added.
In 2013, Kosovo and Serbia reached the Association Agreement within the dialogue mediated by the European Union. Two years later, the parties have signed the Agreement on the principles of establishing the Association. But, that same year, the Constitutional Court of Kosovo said that some points of the agreement were not in harmony with the highest legal act, and said that they can be harmonized with the Government’s bylaws.
The Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, opposes an ethnic association, while Serbia insists on its creation.
On August 18, Kurti and the president of Serbia, Aleksandar Vučić, will meet in Brussels to continue the dialogue, and Escobar said he hopes that the Association will also be discussed at this meeting.