The President of Kosovo refused to participate in negotiations with Serbia mediated by the EU special representative

Hashim Thaci said that only the US could contribute to the real progress of the dialogue.

Kosovo President Hashim Thaci has said he will not participate in talks to normalize relations with Serbia mediated by the EU special representative, calling instead for an increased role for the US in the dialogue.

Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, almost a decade after an ethnic Albanian majority revolt, and in 2013 agreed to hold an EU-mediated dialogue with Belgrade to resolve outstanding issues.

Normalization is one of the critical conditions for Kosovo’s accession to the EU, as well as for removing the Russian veto on Kosovo’s admission to the UN.

In March, the head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell, appointed Slovak diplomat Miroslav Lajcak as a special representative for Kosovo.

Slovakia is one of five countries that have not yet recognized Kosovo’s independence. This position is also held by Cyprus, Greece, Romania, and Spain.

“We will have two negotiators in front of us from countries that do not recognize Kosovo’s independence,” Thaci told reporters in Pristina, referring to Lajcak and Borrell, a former Spanish Foreign Minister.

Thaci added that he is ready to participate in any meetings organized by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron.

“But I am not inclined to participate in the negotiation process under the leadership of Lajcak,” he stressed.

According to Thaci, only the US can advance the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia.

More than 110 countries have recognized Kosovo’s statehood, including its most significant political and financial ally, the United States. President Donald Trump has appointed a representative for Kosovo, Richard Grenell, who previously served as the US Ambassador to Germany. Through the mediation of Grenell, an agreement was reached to resume direct commercial flights between Kosovo and Serbia.