US says too early for status talks
WASHINGTON D.C., PRISTINA -- Friday – US State Department representative Richard Boucher, said that America and the international community have the same stance regarding Kosovo.
“The stance is that it is too early to discuss Kosovo's status options. The US administration supports resolution 1244 and the United Nations Security Council's plan which demands the carrying out of standards in Kosovo by the middle of 2005. If all goes well, then the international community will begin the process for beginning discussion of Kosovo's status.” Boucher said.
EU High Official Javier Solana said that standards need to be carried out before status talks can commence.
“There is still a lot that needs to be done, especially when the protection of minority communities and the formation of a multi-ethnic community are in question, even though there has already been progress in these areas.” Solana told daily Blic.
Solana said that the EU is encouraging Kosovo Serbs and Belgrade to participate in the process of carrying out standards in Kosovo and to work on promoting security relations, free movement, decentralization and return programs.
The Contact Group has called on Kosovo politicians to reach a consensus on reforms for the local administrations. The call from representatives of the US, Great Britain, Germany, France and Italy to the Kosovo officials is a reaction to the Democratic Party of Kosovo's leader Hashim Taci demand for decentralization talks to be put on top of the Kosovo government's political agenda.
The Contact Group said that the entrance of Slavisa Petkovic as Return Minister of the Kosovo Government is a good move in getting the Serbian community involved in local institutions.