Monday, September 28th | 10 Tishri 5781

Subscribe
September 4, 2020 12:24 pm

Serbia, Kosovo Agree to Normalize Economic Ties, Trump Says

avatar by Reuters and Algemeiner Staff

US President Donald Trump waves after returning from travel to Wilmington, North Carolina, at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, Sept. 2, 2020. Photo: Reuters / Leah Millis.

Serbia and Kosovo have agreed to normalize economic ties, US President Donald Trump said on Friday, hailing what he called a “major breakthrough” more than a decade after Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008.

Trump, speaking in the Oval Office with the leaders of both countries, said Serbia had also committed to moving its embassy to Jerusalem, and Kosovo and Israel had agreed to normalize ties and establish diplomatic relations.

Serbian President Aleksander Vucic told reporters there were still many differences between Serbia and the breakaway province, but said Friday’s agreement marked a huge step forward.

Kosovo Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti said the agreement should lead to mutual recognition between the two countries.

Related coverage

September 27, 2020 11:53 am
0

Google Pledges to Return ‘More Helpful’ Results After Search for ‘Jewish Baby Strollers’ Is Found to Produce Antisemitic Images

Tech giant Google responded delicately over the weekend after outrage erupted following the revelation that a search on the platform...

“Serbia and Kosovo have each committed to economic normalization,” Trump said. “By focusing on job creation and economic growth, the two countries were able to reach a major breakthrough.”

The announcement came after two days of high-level talks among the leaders and senior Trump aides, and follows close on the heels of last month’s historic agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates to normalize ties.

Ethnic Albanian-majority Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, a decade after a NATO-led bombing campaign to curtail ethnic warfare. Serbia, backed by its large Slavic and Orthodox Christian ally Russia, does not recognize Kosovo’s independence, a precondition for Belgrade’s future membership in the European Union.

National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien, who participated in the meetings, said the agreement on expanding economic ties could pave the way for political solutions in the future.

A top EU official on Monday said EU-led negotiations, which broke down in 2018 but resumed in July, could lead to a deal within months.

The US talks were previously set for June but delayed after Kosovo President Hashim Thaci was indicted for alleged war crimes during the 1998-99 guerrilla uprising against Serbian rule and its aftermath. He has denied the charges.

Share this Story: Share On Facebook Share On Twitter

Let your voice be heard!

Join the Algemeiner

Algemeiner.com

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.