The U.S., British, German, French and Italian representatives of the Contact Group for Kosovo have voiced support to the Kosovo settlement plan of Special Representative of the UN Secretary General for Kosovo Marti Ahtisaari.
Russia did not take part in the Contact Group meeting in Paris.
There is no alternative to the Ahtisaari plan, said U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns.
He said the Paris meeting was bound to confirm the European and U.S. support to the Ahtisaari plan. Europe and the United States should also be united in the drafting of a UN Security Council resolution, which will prepare the independence of Kosovo, and convince Russia that this is the only possible way, the diplomat said.
In the words of Burns, Serbia lost Kosovo in 1999, and there is no way back.
``We wholly support the Ahtisaari proposals,'' a representative of the French Foreign Ministry said after the meeting. ``Yet, it is important for us to make this decision at the UN Security Council. It is necessary to ensure international presence in Kosovo, and that must be affirmed by a UN Security Council resolution.''
``We wished to find a solution at the Security Council from the very start, as we think that will meet the interests of the sides,'' the source said.
``We want to maintain close contact with Russia [in that process],'' the official added.
Ahtisaari called for the immediate definition of the Kosovo status at the Italian Parliament's Foreign Affairs Commission in Rome.
Time is running out, and more intensive efforts should be taken to evaluate all the positions and opinions and present them to the UN Security Council, he said. There is no alternative to the recognized independence of the southern province of Serbia, he said.
At the same time, Ahtisaari said that the position of Kosovo Serbs, who firmly support the irreconcilable Belgrade, complicates the negotiations.
It is possible to reach consent only if Russia agrees not to use the veto right in Kosovo debates at the UN Security Council, the envoy said. The only way out is Russia telling Belgrade that the question is closed and the independence of Kosovo is inevitable, while all the rights of the Serbian minority in Kosovo will be preserved, he said.
Italian Foreign Minister Massimo D'Alema reaffirmed support to the Ahtisaari plan on Monday.
Meanwhile, President Vladimir Putin told a press conference following the G-8 summit in Heiligendamm that the Russian attitude to the Kosovo problem is based on international law and earlier decisions of the UN Security Council. The international law affirms the territorial integrity of states, while no one has repealed resolution 1244 of the UN Security Council, which clearly says that Kosovo is an inseparable part of Serbia, Putin said.
``They are trying to persuade us that it is possible to resolve the problem without concord of the conflicting sides, the Serbs,'' he said. ``This is wrong, as this fails to meet moral and legal norms.''
``We should be patient and cooperate with Kosovo Albanians and Serbs. We should stick to international legal principles and abstain from thrusting our will on other countries and peoples or humiliating them,'' Putin said.