BELGRADE – Director of the Serbian government’s Office for Kosovo-Metohija (KiM) Marko Djuric has said that the EU’s negotiation platform for Chapter 35 on Kosovo does not require the recognition of the unilateral independence of the Serbian southern province, but that difficult negotiations lie ahead.

PHOTO: TANJUG/ MARKO DJOKOVIC
PHOTO: TANJUG/ MARKO DJOKOVIC

According to Djuric, this document which contains the EU’s common position calls for implementation of the agreements reached so far, “leaving much room to the EU institutions and states to have their own interpretation concerning the way in which agreements should be implemented.”

“That is why it is important that we increasingly gain support from the international community,” Djuric told RTS, describing Chapter 35 as particularly difficult, as it links, in a way, the normalization of relations with the southern province to Serbia’s EU integration.

The EU’s negotiating position regarding Chapter 35 on Kosovo in Serbia’s accession talks implies a normalisation of Belgrade-Pristina ties and implementation of the Brussels agreements, while tying Serbia’s European integration to progress in this process.

“If progress in the normalisation of relations with Kosovo significantly lags behind progress in the negotiations overall due to Serbia failing to act in good faith, in particular in the implementation of agreements reached between Serbia and Kosovo, the Commission will on its own initiative or on the request of one third of the Member States… propose to withhold its recommendations to open and/or close other negotiating chapters, and adapt the associated preparatory work, as appropriate, until this imbalance is addressed,” states the negotiating position, published on the EU website.