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Call against the division of Kosovo

forumZFD supports Open Letter of civil society from Serbia and Kosovo

More than 50 organisations and experts on the Balkans have signed an open letter urging Europe and the US not to agree to any territorial swaps between Kosovo and Serbia.

Brücke von Mitrovica im Kosovo
© forumZFD

Citizens and Friends of the Balkans against Partition / Land Swap

Just weeks ago a large assembly of civic organizations from Kosovo and Serbia ​wrote an open letter ​ to EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, calling on her to reject an effort launched by Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić, and since embraced by Kosovo President Hashim Thaçi, to resolve their inter-state dispute through a border "correction."

In the intervening weeks, only German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated clearly that ​ ​ border changes in the Balkans should be off limits ​ . The rest of the EU, as well as the US, has supported the Vučić-Thaçi effort either affirmatively, or indicated their consent through silence.

The effect of border changes in the direction of ethnic homogeneity will have a damaging impact within Kosovo, its immediate neighborhood, and the wider region.

Furthermore, it will be seen as giving international license to a brand of "big man" politics that should have long since been banished from the region. The citizens of the entire region will suffer the impact of such a deal, whatever its modalities.

Therefore, we the undersigned wish to express our solidarity with our civil society colleagues in Kosovo and Serbia, some of whom have already suffered severe public criticism for opposing an arrangement made over their heads and without their input or consent.

We implore the EU, its member states, and the United States to reconsider - including through their legislative bodies – their position on such a return to ethnification of polities and frontiers.“

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