Thursday, April 27, 2006

Kosovo prime minister plays down border dispute

By Neil MacDonald in Pristina
>Published: April 27 2006 16:19 | Last updated: April 27 2006 16:19
Agim Ceku, prime minister of Kosovo, played down a border dispute with neighbouring Macedonia on Thursday, saying that the current border would not change after the breakaway Serbian province gains formal independence.

In an interview with the Financial Times, Mr Ceku said that the line agreed by Macedonia and Serbia in 2001 would be respected in practice, even if Belgrade had no authority to speak for Kosovo. The 90 per cent ethnic-Albanian province has been under United Nations administration since the expulsion of Serb-led Yugoslav forces in 1999.

“There will be no change of borders,” Mr Ceku said.

However, the demarcation of the boundary through the mountainous Debelde area – a step Macedonia has pushed for repeatedly since Mr Ceku took office March 9 – can only proceed when Kosovo becomes a sovereign state.

“This, for us, is a very technical issue, not a political issue and not a source of political destabilisation,” Mr Ceku insisted.

The day before, he had rankled Macedonia’s government by visiting Debelde and rejecting Serbia’s right to make sovereign decisions there. According to Reuters newswires, Prime Minister Ceku said that the line through the area’s rugged pastoral lands should be renegotiated.

Vlado Buckovski, Macedonia’s prime minister, has demanded closure on this “open border question” as a pre-condition for Kosovo’s independence. The UN Security Council endorsed the Serbian-Macedonian border deal in 2001 over the objections of Kosovo Albanian leaders.

Both prime ministers have come under domestic pressure lately to beat their drums over Debelde. In the absence of an outright territorial disagreement, Mr Ceku and Mr Buckovski have ratcheted up their respective positions on when demarcation should happen.

Macedonia’s forthcoming parliamentary elections, scheduled for July 5, are the reason the issue has come up now, according to Mr Ceku. But he, too, had to placate angry villagers, some of whose properties were divided by the new boundary, officials in Kosovo’s government said.

Under the 2001 agreement, Serbia transferred 2,500 hectares to Macedonia, which had seceded from the Yugoslav federation ten years before. The current misunderstanding shows why Kosovo needs sovereignty as soon as possible, Mr Ceku said.


Anonymous said...

Ceku is making a big mistake which will result in the delay of kosovos independance.

Anonymous said...

i don't thinks so. Like the diplomat said in skopje today, borders cannot change.

Justme said...

I think the media in Macedonia and Kosovo are making this a much bigger deal than it really is! No politician in Kosovo has a mandate to worsen the relations with Macedonia over what is all but a done deal. UN, US and EU have all "blessed" the border changes and our side must respect that but technical issues remain and they have to be negotiated. Of course, the Macedonian side has to show a bit more flexibility and not take the in-your-face stand that it has taken ever since that infameous agreement with Serbia.

Independence for Kosova said...

I think a lot of bloggers here don't understand the value of the borders. I respect the borders of Macedonia but those 2500 hectars have to be returned immediately. On those 2500 there are Albanian villages, it's not just land. The people on those lands have clearly stated that they want no part with Macedonia but want to reunite back with Kosova. If Ceku cannot or will not regain this land I say he is a weaker general than we thought.

My recommendation to Ceku is respect the Macedonian border but you have to reunite that 2500 hectar with its own motherland.

If Macedonia keeps this in-you-face stand or I'm a country so I make the rules they are looking at some very bad tensions. Don't forgett 25% of Macedonian population is Albanian I'm sure they don't want to cause an unrest--especially by threatning Kosova.

Anonymous said...

Kosovo is threatening Macedonia. If these Albanian villages go to Kosovo so will all of Albanian Macedonia eventually.

heku said...

We allready said that this transfer is totally illegal coz there was no plebiscite!!! No need to get angry, government officials have already told their opposition to this transfer so ICJ is already aware of the problem. Now we have other priorities ;-)

Kosovo premier is strictly not threatening Macedonia and how situation is evolving now in Macedonia I don't think there will be any willingness of albanians (even if I hope the contrary) to join any hypothetical future union between Albania and Dardania.

Why are we allways supposed to be a threat to Serbia or Macedonia? I just let you know that Macedonia and Serbia have already their little problems with religion and the serb participation to some todgy religious financing in orthodox churches.

Start changing your mind otherwise you'll break your teeth on bornagain albanian spirit.

Anonymous said...

The thing is heku that the deal is NOT illegal. If it was the UN and the EU would have told Macedonia to back off immediately. But no one is saying anything because the deal is a legit one.

NYoutlawyer said...

albanians will want more and more and more land, just you watch. They multiply at a subhuman rate. These shitpars are not true albanians, they are a nomadic sect that has no home, they just know to leech off of host countries. They are like that tick on a dog's ass, that makes him eventually so uncomfortable, that he would rather die than live with him.

WARchild said...

This deal, which I doubt will go through, is a sad testament to the inclination of Balkan countries to gang up against the weaker ones in times of trouble.
I was hoping that Kosova and Montenegro would be able to join Albania, Macedonia, and Croatia in the the very special Adriatic Club(?). The five countries would be a great counterweight to the big Balkan bullies.

Just to clarify, are you implying that you are the dog's ass? If that's the case, I would have to disagree with your conclusion. It's just the opposite, it's us that don't want anything to do with you.

Anonymous said...

No need to argue about a border between the Serbian province of Kosovo and Macedonia. Albanians have other things to worry about. To try to get a job etc. When they realize that Kosovo wont get independence, they will start rioting again. Then the world will once again see what kind of people they are and Nato and Kfor will intervene very hard this time as stated in the Nato meeting. We will see what happens, but not many internationals believe in independence anymore.

NYoutlawyer said...

No warchild, I got it right. shitpars are the ticks on Serbian asses. They attached themselves there years ago and have been sucking our behinds for decades. We tried to rid ourselves of this horrible malady, only to have NATO prolong the misery. History will tell us why.

NYoutlawyer said...

Independence for Kosovo albanians, you got to be kidding. These nomads don't even use toilets, and they want independence. What a joke. Learn to use indoor plumbing first, and maybe then you can ease into the modern era. You have to take baby steps, you can't go from a cave to a palace overnight.

Independence for Kosova said...

Administrator, në çofse ke kontroll në kit faqe elektronike atëhere ju lutna ta gjuani shkaun nga nju jorku.

heku said...

Edhe unë po shkoj në drejtimin e epermëm. Just ban NYout bla bla bla... His comments are no constructive at all and he only insults when there's no need for it. Ban that insane nationalist.

Anonymous said...

NY will you please shut up, you insult all of human kind--especially the Serbs. I don't have to insult you, you do it yourself, like it says in your profile "Serbian Nightmare" haha.

Anonymous said...

NY if the dog is willing to die, then why don't you just die. You have balls talking about nations, and yet your self live in new york. Are you the tick in New yorks ass as well. Quit being stupid, and use the brain that god gave to human beings. You know we all insult each other, but you discrease your self.

Ahmet N Murati said...

NYoutlawyer can you revise you language and you brain because it seems that you are so brainwashed about the history and about our knowledge

You come from NY and speak bullshit so you problably are living in Bronx (hihi) with hippies and drugs.

So be wise and don't spill words like they were snowball because one of them might hurt just yourself.

I never lived in USA or England and I do speak enlish as I lived for a long time over there.

Je peut aussie ecrit en français
Auch ich kann schrieben auf Deutsch
Io posso parlare en italiano
Yo puedo hablar en espagnol

Ja takodjer mogu da govorim hrvatski
Al nikada necu pricat srpski iako znam taj jezik al mi je jezivo da govori od ono sto ste radili svugda u balkanu.

And now you can say who are wiser albanians or serbians and what's more important you serbians miss some letters on your ABC so you can't pronounce Çeku as it should of better case Thaçi hehe

Anonymous said...

They also can't say SH. Like Hashi.

Balkan Update said...

People, People People. You have to ignore dickheads who don't have the decency to speak like adults. The world knows who is the genocidal nation in the Balkans, and no amount of ranting in this page, or any other, is going to change that.

You have to ignore people who are proud to be the rightful owners of the following reserved inventions:

"This genocide was brought to you by the Serbian nation"(RT-Reserved Trademark) and "Ethnic cleansing is our invention" (T-Reserved Trademark).

Now, let's continue this conversation in an intelligent way.

bg anon said...

These comments are very sad I have to say. Thankfully I think most people who are posting arent either in Serbia proper or Kosovo.

Personally I dont feel any affiliation with Americans who claim to be Serbs and the insults say as much about anglo saxon culture as it does about Balkan culture.

Balkan Update I hope you are not serious in your contention that an ethnic group (not even a country but an ethnic group) invented ethnic cleansing in the 1990's.

Ethnic cleansing has been committed throughout history and not just in the former Yugoslavia.

No country or people has the monopoly on ethnic cleansing.

I understand if you want intelligent conversation but your last comments were not intelligent.

However, I do agree with you (to a degree) that there shouldnt be censorship.

On the real issue I dont understand why Ceku wont recongnise the borders with Macedonia and I dont see what the problem is with 2500 hectres.

Nor do I understand why people want ethnic states - ie that village is majority Albanian so it should belong to Kosovo. Why should it if the Albanians there have proper rights?

As we all know there are majority Serbian areas in Kosovo as well so by the same principle anybody who supports ethnic states should also support the rights of other ethnic groups to have ethnic states.

Unless of course there is one rule or standard for one nationality and another rule for another. That is basically primative nationalism that I have no time for.

Anonymous said...

Its getting more and more obvious that the independence for Kosovo/a is a dead end. More and more countries are opposing. I matters not what some think or wish, the reality matters.

"Sofia 28 Apr. The problem in Kosovo is a result of the provocative actions of former Yugoslavian President Slobodan Milosevic, Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Boris Tarasyuk stated at the conference “NATO’s Transformation – New Borders of Security” which is taking place in Boyana residence in Sofia.
According to him the solution for Kosovo will be sought on the basis of UN Security Council’s resolution 1244. The disentangling of Kosovo issue must not be used as an example for solving other conflicts, as that would open Pandora’s box on issues such as Moldova, Georgia and Nagorny Karabakh. Many of the delegates from different countries agreed."

Balkan Update said...

Last poster,
There is nothing new here- Slavic nations will naturally support Serbia, but this is how it has been for a long time. Ukraine Foreign Minister wants a say on how the Kosovo issue is resolved???
Should everybody in this world be pleased with the future status of Kosovo? This is insane. It always amazes me how countries with major social and economic issues in their territories want to have a say on everything. I say to Ukraine: Fix you problems first.

In the end, it matters little what any country’s Foreign Minister says about Kosovo. There are only a few countries that matter (U.S.A, UK, Germany and perhaps France) when it comes to resolution of the status of Kosovo, and that does not include Ukraine or Russia for that matter.

bg anon,
I still stand by my comments. Serbs did indeed invent ethnic cleansing. On genocide, Serbs didn't invent it but they certainly practiced and attempted to practice it.
Were all Serbs guilty of this?
Absolutely not!

Were the majority of Serbs supportive of the policies that lead to ethnic cleansing and genocide?


Did other ethnic groups commit crimes against Serbs?
No doubt about it, but in a scale incomparable with what Serbs did!

So in end, I do leave room for Serbs to say that they were not part of the killing machine, and bg anon, perhaps, was one of them.
But please, don't kid yourself into thinking that the majority of Serbs did not support the policies of the various Serbian governments during 90’s.

In any case, it’s up to Serbs to reconcile their pasts and build their future. Based on what is been happening in the last 6-7 years, I have to say I am not an optimist. I hope I get proven wrong!

Back to what you were talking about ethnic groups and how the rights should be reciprocated. This is actually a very good idea to shut everybody up. Albanians in Serbia, Serbs in Kosovo, Albanians in Montenegro, Serbs in Croatia, and Hungarians in Vojvodina should have all the same rights. In addition to that, Albanian’s in Macedonia should have the same rights as Serbs in Bosnia. The rights should be based in numbers, in other words all minorities that constitute 5% or less should have certain rights, 5-10% more rights, 10-20 even more, and so on. Now this may seem ridicules, but it’s probably the only way to make everybody shut up.

Somehow I am inclined to believe that Serbs will not take this deal. A few weeks ago, Albanian parties in Presevo Valley ballooned the idea that they will ask for the same rights as Kosovo Serbs. You know what happen? Serbian government was quick to denounce them.

It’s interesting to note that Kosovo Serbs have the most Constitutionally Guaranteed privileges of all minorities in the Balkans but they refuse to exercise them. Whose fault is that?

WARchild said...

Balkan Update has a few good points there.

bg anon said...

Well you seem more balanced in your comments but you are still making factual mistakes balkan update.

Ethnic cleansing did not begin in the 1990's. Just because our generation (Im assuming we are of a similar age) witnessed it doesnt mean it hadnt happened before.

In fact you must know that ethnic cleansing was used as a tool of war in second world war Croatia (as was genocide) against Serbs.

But hey that doesnt somehow in my opinion make Croats the inventors of ethnic cleansing and even if did screaming about the fact says more about my own agenda (to discredit them) more than it does about reality. So I choose not to make these kinds of statements.

Ethnic cleansing was also used as a tool of war by nazi Germany and Russia too. Those are the facts so you what you are saying is wrong. Its not a matter of opinion where one can choose to believe something, its a matter of historical fact.

Serbs and genocide - as you probably know there is one only Hague judgement concerning Krstic and war conduct in Bosnia the charge was complicity to committ genocide. No Serbs (or Milosevic) were indicted for genocide in Kosovo, Croatia, Slovenia etc. I say indicted not charged, dont misunderstand this point by saying he died before he could be charged. He was not charged with genocide in Kosovo, Croatia etc.

Again this is the way the Hague sees it - not necesarily my opinion. You may believe that Serbs comitted more genocide but thats at this stage a belief. We shall also see what happens at the ICJ with Serbia vs Bosnia.

I do agree with you about applying one common standard. Maybe it wont shut them all up but it will make them calm down a bit.

But this will prove unworkable. The Bosnian Muslums would not accept the implications because if we apply the same standard for Kosovo and Bosnia it will mean that those in Republika Srpska will choose either their own state or to become part of SCG / Serbia.

I mean should we accept that part of Serbia proper where there are Albanian majorities (not talking about Kosovo here) should have the right to join with Kosovo if they call a referendum and should we agree to a land swap when the Serbs of Kosovo in N Mitrovica and other enclaves where they are a majority to chose the same thing?

These are effectively ethnic states - the implication is that people cant live together as normal human beings. I believe that people are basically the same and find artificial creations of states and so on just a barrier between peoples.

Ahmet N Murati said...

Well my dear bg anon

Do you know that ethnical cleansing on south serbia took place aroung 1875. All albanians that were living in south serbia up to Shumadija were either expelled or killed and masacred.

So, who commited ethnical cleansing first in balkan?

bg anon said...

Ok Ahmet so we move from maybe the Serbs werent the ones who created ethnic cleansing as Balkan Update claims to moving to the first who committed ethnic cleansing in the Balkans - fine.

Not that Im at interested in these ridiculous arguments about who did what first (like in a school playground) but ok if you insist.

Sources please.

Ahmet N Murati said...

BG anon
What kind of source do you want when my own familly suffered from that ethnic cleansing that took place in southern Serbia during 1874-75

bg anon said...

Ahmet with all respect part of the reason why ethnic intolerance continues through generations is because of what parents tell their children.

One myth in my family (or who knows maybe its true) is that Turks killed half my family hundreds of years back.

That doesnt make me hate Turks though. And it doesnt necessarily mean the myth is true - unless I can substantiate it with documented evidence.

Needless to say Im not interested in proving what a bunch of killers Turks are. They are no better or no worse than other peoples.