Kosovo and Serbia have reached a deal to end a dispute over car plates, following EU dialogue, thereby preventing a dangerous escalation.
end a dangerous dispute over car licence plates in northern Kosovo, which the West had warned could trigger ethnic violence.
EU high representative Josep Borrell announced on Twitter:
“We have a deal”, adding “Serbia will stop issuing licence plates with Kosovo cities’ denominations and Kosovo will cease further actions related to re-registration of vehicles.”
We have a deal!
Very pleased to announce that Chief Negotiators of #Kosovo & #Serbia under EU-facilitation have agreed on measures to avoid further escalation and to fully concentrate on the proposal on normalisation of their relations.
— Josep Borrell Fontelles (@JosepBorrellF) November 23, 2022
Kosovo’s President has thanked Washington “for their active engagement in reaching today’s deal in Brussels”, calling it “indispensable”.
Earlier this month, Kosovo’s Prime Minister Albin Kurti and Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vučić were not able to find common ground.
Kosovo was intending to start fining 10,000 Serb drivers that are still using Serbian-issued car licence plates from before 1999 from Thursday on, but ultimately backed down. A whole number of police officers, judges, prosecutors, and other state workers had issued a protest.
In two weeks, there will be an EU-Western Balkans summit in Tirana, Albania