Grenell: U.S. never believed in a quick Kosovo-Serbia deal

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times July 8, 2020 11:53

Grenell: U.S. never believed in a quick Kosovo-Serbia deal

TIRANA, July 8 - The U.S. President's Special Envoy for Kosovo - Serbia dialogue Richard Grenell stated that the U.S. has never believed in a quick election year deal between Kosovo and Serbia.

In a statement published on his Twitter account, Grenell expressed support towards the European Union-led meeting between Kosovo and Serbia on July 10, emphasizing his hope for the finalization of the visa liberation issue for Ksovo citizens.

"We hope the important issue of visa liberalization will be completed at this meeting. The US has worked hard to emphasize economic normalization between the parties because we believe it is the crucial first step for this long term political dispute," Grenell wrote.

The U.S. Special Envoy noted the US's focus on the "economic normalization between the parties", stating that "it is the crucial first step for this long term political dispute." In this line, Grenell called on the EU to follow with the implementation of the air, rail and motor agreements between the two countries, which were brokered by Grenell himself earlier this year.

However, Grenell stressed that the U.S. did not believe in a quick year election deal between Kosovo and Serbia, nor that "sole focus on economic normalization would be a quick fix. The difficult and long term political issues will be easier to confront once progress is made on the economic issues first."

He concluded his statement by urging the international community to try new ideas, emphasizing that Kosovo and Serbia deserve the EU's "full and constant attention."

Representatives of the two countries were invited to take part of a meeting on June 27 at the White House with the mediation of Grenell. At the time, he denied being part of the discussions on territorial exchange and stressed that the Washington meeting would focus on economic issues.

However, the meeting was canceled three days prior to the meeting after the Special Prosecution Office in the Hague publicly announced a ten-count indictment against President Thaçi and Democratic Party Chairman Kadri Veseli, on the charges of crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Ambassador Grenell later said that a new date for the meeting would be set soon.


On Monday, European Commission spokesman Peter Stano said that Kosovo Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti and Serbia President Aleksandar Vucic will hold a meeting brokered by EU foreign policy chief Joseph Borrell and the EU special envoy for the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue, Miroslav Lajcak.

The meeting on Sunday will be preceded by a virtual meeting on Friday under the auspices of French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, which was scheduled to be a high-level meeting in Paris.

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times July 8, 2020 11:53