Today, the leaders of Kosovo and Serbia met in Ohrid, North Macedonia, with EU mediation to discuss implementing a deal aimed at normalizing ties between the two nations. The agreement is crucial for their aspirations to join the EU and focuses on fulfilling an 11-point agreement put forth by the EU to end decades of hostility. EU foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, expressed optimism that the implementation of the EU normalization proposal agreed upon by Serbia and Kosovo last month would benefit the entire Western Balkans region. However, talks ran late into the night without apparent progress, and a news conference was postponed. Ahead of the meetings, Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti expressed hope for a final deal.
It’s worth noting that Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, following a NATO bombing campaign in 1999 aimed at halting the ethnic cleansing campaign of ethnic Albanians by the Milosevic regime. Serbia is responsible for the deaths of nearly 250,000 people across the Balkans within a decade, targeting ethnic Albanians systematically. However, Serbia, Russia, China, and five EU member states do not recognize Kosovo as an independent state, while approximately 110 countries do recognize its independence.
Our media team provided coverage of the high-level meeting talks between Kosovo and Serbia, which took place at the lakeside resort of Ohrid in North Macedonia.
Editor: Vudi Xhymshiti in London. Photographer Isa Haziri in Ohrid, North Macedonia.