28. decembar 2022 18:27

Petkovic: We have guarantees, Vucic to speak with Kosovo-Metohija Serbs


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Petkovic: We have guarantees, Vucic to speak with Kosovo-Metohija Serbs


BELGRADE - The head of the Serbian government Office for Kosovo-Metohija Petar Petkovic said on Wednesday Belgrade had received the strongest US-EU guarantees to date that the demands of Serb protesters in the province would be met, and added that President Aleksandar Vucic would fly by helicopter to the administrative line this evening to speak with Kosovo-Metohija Serbs about a removal of barricades.

At a press conference, Petkovic said that, in a conversation earlier in the day, Vucic had asked the Serbs to withdraw from the barricades, to which they responded that he was the only person they trusted and that his guarantees were the only ones they accepted.

"They asked to return to Kosovo-Metohija to speak with Serbs and they will then head to central Serbia, where they will meet with President Vucic, and after that we will see what their decision is," he said.

Petkovic said the fact that Serb Dejan Pantic - a former Kosovo Police officer arrested by Pristina on December 10 - had been released to house arrest was the best news of the day and showed that Pantic was not guilty of terrorism.

"After 19 days in captivity, he will be with his family this evening, as confirmed by EULEX," Petkovic said, noting that Pristina PM Albin Kurti was now threatening prosecutors and judges who had made the decision to transfer Pantic to house arrest.

Petkovic also said a joint US-EU statement confirming there were no lists of Serb protesters to be arrested or prosecuted provided guarantees that met another demand set by the Kosovo-Metohija Serbs.

"We know that the Serbs do not trust Kurti. With that statement, our people at barricades are now protected," he said.

Petkovic said a third element included guarantees by KFOR.

They have said and confirmed in a clear manner that the "Kosovo Security Force" cannot go to the north of Kosovo-Metohija without an agreement with KFOR and the mayors of the four municipalities in the north of Kosovo-Metohija, Petkovic said.

He said Belgrade would continue to fight for the meeting of other demands set by Kosovo-Metohija Serbs for a return to Pristina's institutions, including, above all, the establishment of a Community of Serb Municipalities.