Serbia sends navy commander to Kosovo border as tensions rise

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic despatched the military chief on Sunday night time to the border with Kosovo, as Normal Milan Mojcilovic himself introduced, because the strained relations between the 2 international locations have been exacerbated by the current blockade.

Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, however Belgrade refuses to acknowledge the transfer and encourages the remaining 120,000 Serbs to problem Pristina’s authority.

Tons of of Serbs, indignant on the arrest of a former police officer, arrange roadblocks on December 10 in northern Serb-majority Kosovo, paralyzing visitors at two border crossings.

“The scenario there’s complicated and sophisticated,” mentioned the Serbian military chief, in an interview with native information channel Pink TV on Sunday.

“This requires within the coming interval the presence of the Serbian military alongside the executive line,” he mentioned, utilizing the time period Belgrade makes use of to explain the border with Kosovo.

The overall added that he was on his method to Rasca, a city about 10 kilometers (six miles) from the border with Kosovo after assembly with Vucic in Belgrade.

“The duties completed by the Serbian military… are exact, clear, and they are going to be absolutely applied,” Mojcelovic mentioned.

The most recent wave of tensions got here after Kosovo was scheduled to carry native elections in Serb-majority municipalities on December 18, which the principle Serbian political celebration mentioned it will boycott.

A former policeman suspected of involvement in assaults in opposition to ethnic Albanian law enforcement officials was arrested, angering Serbs who had erected barricades.

Shortly earlier than Mojcelovic left for the border space, a number of Serbian media retailers broadcast a video shared on social networks during which gunfire could be heard.

The sources mentioned that the “combating” occurred within the early night of Sunday, when the Kosovar forces tried to dismantle a roadblock.

The Kosovo Police rejected this account, and mentioned on its Fb web page that its personnel weren’t concerned in any clashes.

Pristina-based media mentioned a patrol of NATO-led KFOR peacekeepers was within the firing space, however there have been no experiences of casualties or injury.

The Worldwide Safety Power in Kosovo, which has strengthened its presence within the north just lately, didn’t touch upon the incident.

In November, tons of of Serbian Kosovo Cops – in addition to judges, prosecutors and different officers – give up their jobs in protest of the controversial determination to ban Serbs dwelling in Kosovo from utilizing Serbian license plates.

This coverage was suspended by Pristina out of anger, however the mass departures created a safety vacuum in Kosovo.

Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic mentioned final week that the scenario with Kosovo was “on the point of armed battle”.


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