Serbia scores victory as Interpol rejects Kosovo membership    

Objavljeno : 21.11.2018. Štampa El. pošta bookmark
 

Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić said today that the rejection of Kosovo's Interpol membership application was a success of 'a small, defiant and proud country', but that one should not be euphoric over it and put Pristina down. Vučić urged the Kosovo Albanians 'not to perceive the outcome of voting at the Interpol General Assembly as a debacle or a great defeat', but rather as a sobering event.

 

There were two rounds of voting on Kosovo's admission and after round two even fewer members were in favour of admission than after round one - 68 voted in favour, 51 against and 16 abstained from voting, meaning that Kosovo failed to get the required two-third support of the member states.

 

In 2008 Kosovo declared independence, which Serbia does not recognise. Kosovo's independence is not recognised by five EU member states either - Spain, Romania, Greece, Cyprus, and Slovakia.

 

At a press conference with Foreign Minister Ivica Dačić, organised after news came in from Dubai that Kosovo would not become a member of Interpol, Vučić said that Serbia had been hoping for a good result, but that the results exceeded expectations.

 

'I'm proud of my country's struggle, that a small country, without a lot of money and power in the world, has managed to hold its own against the most powerful forces of the world and demonstrate how valuable it is to preserve one's freedom, integrity and independence', Vučić said.

 

The Serbian president also said that Belgrade would continue to insist on a compromise with Pristina.

 

The reaching of a comprehensive agreement between Belgrade and Pristina is one of the conditions for Serbia's progress en route to the EU. Serbia is a candidate country and has so far opened 14 negotiating chapters.

 

Vučić also called on the Kosovo Albanians to 'understand that the world is no longer unipolar and that the solution lies in an agreement with Belgrade, rather than in anyone imposing solutions on Serbia'.

 

At the same time, Foreign Minister Ivica Dačić called the rejection of Kosovo's application a great victory for Serbia and the Serbian people and proof that nothing could be solved by force and without an agreement with Belgrade.

 

'They lacked 36 votes. Not even (Austrian Chancellor Sebastian) Kurz helped them. Kurz and Thaci had celebrated! Well, see how it all ended for them. Who they wanted to get into Interpol through, so they fared. And I told Kurz: 'You're a smart man. What fool would be on the losing side?', Dačić said.

 

He said that the position of the chancellor of Austria, the country currently presiding over the EU, was inconsistent because he did not accept visa liberalization for Kosovo citizens but wanted Kosovo to join Interpol.

 

Dačić also said that the decision of the Interpol General Assembly was a victory of international law and showed that Pristina had to go back to dialogue and solve mutual problems together with Belgrade.

 

'Everyone says it's a police organisation. If it's a police organisation, why are they so persistent to enter it when they've already done that, when they're all on wanted lists', said Dačić.

 

Kosovo President Hashim Thaci said that the failure of Kosovo's admission to Interpol was a victory for organised crime and that Kosovo and Serbia were the losers.

 

'The vote was secret, but the possibility that the states which had recognised Kosovo voted against its membership is bad news, on the other hand the states that do not recognise Kosovo's independence voted in favour of the membership', said Thaci.

 

Belgrade and Pristina are engaged in dialogue on the normalisation of relations in Brussels, with the EU foreign minister, Federica Mogherini, as the mediator. The dialogue is currently at an impasse and, according to Vučić, will not resume until Kosovo has lifted the trade barriers it has imposed on goods from Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, contrary to CEFTA rules.

 

President of the Centre for Foreign Policy Dragan Đukanović said that the rejection of Kosovo's application for membership of Interpol would help bring Pristina back to the negotiating table with Belgrade in Brussels.

 

He told the Beta News Agency that Pristina could be seen as 'a long-term loser' where its applications for membership of UNESCO and the U.N. were concerned.

 

'Apparently the number of those voting for Kosovo's membership in certain international organisations does not correspond to the number of recognitions they have', he added.

 

Prior to the vote in Interpol, the delegates were addressed by Serbian Minister of Interior Nebojša Stefanović, who reacted to the violation of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1244.

 

Then a debate ensued during which, as the Serbian Broadcasting Corporation reports, Spain, Morocco, Cyprus, China, Belarus, and Russia asked to speak in Serbia's favour. Prior to that, representatives of Namibia, Romania, Venezuela, and Suriname also voiced support to Serbia.

 

Kosovo has so far applied for membership of the global police organisation three times - in 2010, 2015 and 2017, when Kosovo Premier Ramush Haradinaj withdrew the application a week before the General Assembly due to insufficient support.

 

The Interpol General Assembly comprises delegates appointed by the governments of the member states, it convenes once a year and takes all the important decisions pertaining to general policy, the resources needed for international cooperation, working methods, financing, and activity programme, as well as to the admission of new members.

 

Interpol has 192 members, and of the internationally recognised states North Korea and several Pacific states are not members. Certain territories with controversial statehood, such as Northern Cyprus, Taiwan, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, and Transnistria, are not members either.

 

Source: EURACTIV.rs

Photo: Beta

 

 
 
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