Kosovo Serbs Win Time against KFOR

World | October 18, 2011, Tuesday // 14:34|  views

Kosovo Serbs wave flags while sitting on the road in the village of Rudare near Zvecan, Serbia, on 29 July 2011. EPA/BGNES

The KFOR army column headed to overtake the Brnjak checkpoint on the Kosovo-Serbia border that was blocked by local ethnic Serbs has turned back to its base.

The NATO peacekeeping soldiers have acted as part of a campaign by KFOR to ensure control of the border in Northern Kosovo and to impose the authority of Kosovar government in the area.

The region is populated by an ethnic Serb majority who do not recognize the independence of Kosovo from Serbia and have attempted to prevent Kosovar authorities of taking up the border and imposing an embargo on trade with Serbia.

To that end, local Serbs have constructed a number of barricades to block the roads to the two crossing points of Brnjak and Jarinje, which last week KFOR vowed to lift in order to gain access to the border.

Tuesday the KFOR unit decided to turn back to its base and not destroy the barricade after being blocked for some time.

The decision was taken following negotiations with Slavisa Ristic, the mayor of one of the four Serbian communities in the areas, who convinced NATO forces to wait for the outcome of a meeting among representatives of all four communities to be held Wednesday.

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Tags: ethnic, Serbs, kosovo, Serbia, KFOR, NATO, blockade, border


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