West News Wire: According to Josep Borrell, head of foreign policy for the European Union, an ethnic issue between Serbia and Kosovo over the flow of citizens across their border has been resolved.

In a tweet on Saturday, Borrell declared, “We have an agreement.” “Under the EU-facilitated Dialogue, Kosovo and Serbia both decided to forgo the introduction of entry/exit documents for holders of Serbian IDs.”

All citizens, including Kosovo Serbs, will be able to freely travel between Kosovo and Serbia using their ID cards. PM [Albin] Kurti just gave the EU assurances to that effect,” he wrote.

The two West Balkan nations have been at odds ever since Kosovo announced its intention to stop accepting Serbian identity certificates at the beginning of August. Documents from Kosovo are not recognized by Serbian authorities.

In response, Serb fighters blocked access to two border crossings in northern Kosovo, which is predominantly populated by Serbs. Kosovo’s police reported that unidentified perpetrators fired shots at Kosovan officers. No one was injured.

Tensions eased after Pristina agreed to continue to recognise Serbian-issued number plates and documents for Kosovan citizens for another 30 days.

Kosovan Prime Minister Albin Kurti and Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic last week took part in the talks chaired by Borrell, which aimed at defusing tensions.

Belgrade and Kosovo’s Serb minority concentrated in the country’s north claim entitlement under a 2013 agreement to an association of semi-autonomous majority-Serb municipalities, which Pristina has refused to implement.

Launched in 2011, the EU-led Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue aims to normalise relations between the Western Balkan neighbours.

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Kosovo, which is predominantly inhabited by ethnic Albanians, broke away from Serbia in 1999 and declared independence in 2008.

Serbia has not recognised Kosovo’s independence and continues to lay claim to the territory. Most EU countries recognise Kosovo as a separate state.


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