Kosovar Serbs cut two border crossings with Serbia

Kosovar Serbs cut two border crossings with Serbia

Serbs from northern Kosovo They have cut two border crossings connecting the region with Serbia in protest at the entry into force this Monday of new Kosovar regulations on identity documents and license plates.

Starting August 1 those entering the country from Serbia they will have to surrender their Serbian identity documents for identity documents issued by Pristina valid for three months in reciprocity to the measure applied by Serbia to Kosovo citizens visiting Serbia, according to Radio Free Europe.

In addition, the compulsory nature of official Kosovar license plates replaces those used by Serbo-Kosovar organizations since the effective separation of Kosovo from Serbia after the 1999 war.

So far Kosova has considered illegal license plates with the initials of the cities of Kosovska Mitrovica (KM), Pristina (PR) or Urosevac (UR), but has tolerated its use in the four Serbian-majority municipalities. Now license plates will have to bear the acronym for the Republic of Kosovo (RKS). The deadline for the change ends on September 30.

On July 31, the Kosovo Police announced the closure of the Jarinje and Brnjak border crossings due to the blockade of roads by Serb protesters. “All citizens are asked to use other border crossings to circulate,” said the Kosovar Police.

The dispute began in September 2021, when Kosovo mandated that all drivers entering Kosovo from Serbia use temporary license plates valid for 60 daysa measure that was already in place for drivers entering Serbia from Kosovo since 2008.

Five EU countries, including Spain, they do not recognize the 2008 Kosovar unilateral declaration of independence. The EU, however, acts as a mediator in the negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina, on which the general normalization of relations and the possibilities of joining the community bloc would depend.

The EU diplomatic initiative, which reactivated the dialogue process in 2020, seeks that the two parties normalize their relations in binding terms and according to international standards, something that he considers a ‘sine qua non’ condition for the European path.

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