U.S., Great Britain, Moscow, EU, NATO condemn murder of two Kosovo Serbs
WASHINGTON/LONDON/MOSCOW/BRUSSELS, Aug. 30, 2005 (BETA) - The United States, Great Britain, Russia, NATO and the European Union condemned in the strongest terms on Aug. 29 the Aug. 27 killing of two Serbs, near the village of Strpce.
U.S. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said Washington was "shocked by the news that two Kosovo Serbs were killed," noting that the ability of Kosovo institutions to solve that kind of murder and prevent it in the future will be a critical test of their ability to govern the province.
Having denounced the two murders, Great Britain warned that Kosovo's final status would not be resolved by violence.
The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the crimes "pointed again to a bad situation in ensuring the safety of non-Albanians in Kosovo." The ministry also cautioned that claims by KFOR, UNMIK and provisional institutions in Kosovo that irreversible progress had been made in that respect clashed with reality.
EU High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy Javier Solana demanded from the Kosovo interim authorities on Aug. 29 that they should do everything they possibly could to clarify the circumstances surrounding the killings.
NATO is waiting for the outcome of UNMIK's investigation and "information about the motives of the attackers." The Alliance argued that "if ethnic reasons were behind the attack, it would be a very bad development, which could in no way lead to the implementation of one of the key standards -- a multiethnic Kosovo."