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NATO ready to send even more troops after the unrest in northern Kosovo

NATO ready to send even more troops after the unrest in northern Kosovo

The Secretary General of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg, said that the alliance is ready to send more troops to Kosovo to prevent violence in the north of the country inhabited by a Serbian majority, emphasizing that already the first 700 troops are on their way. above.

" But of course this does not mean that we are giving up on a political solution. Our message to both Belgrade and Pristina is that they must engage in good faith in dialogue facilitated by the European Union as the only path to peace ," said Secretary Stoltenberg.

NATO decided to increase the presence in its mission of about 4,000 after 30 KFOR peacekeepers and 52 Serbian protesters were injured in Monday's clashes in northern Kosovo.

Condemning the violence against NATO troops as "totally unacceptable," Secretary Stoltenberg said Thursday in Oslo that " NATO will remain vigilant." We will be there to ensure a safe environment as well as to reduce tensions ."

The head of foreign policy of the European Union, Josep Borrell, called on Thursday for the extension of the situation.

" We must insist that violence is not the right way, violence must be punished and the perpetrators of this violence must be brought to justice. Everyone should avoid any form of escalation and uncoordinated movements ," he said at the start of the high-level meeting of the European Political Community in Chisinau, Moldova.

Tensions in the north of Kosovo remain high and Serbian protesters gathered again on Thursday to demand the removal from the municipal buildings of the Albanian mayors who emerged from the April 23 elections, which were boycotted by the Serbs, as well as the removal of special police units that accompanied the presidents to their workplaces.

The action by Kosovo authorities prompted sharp criticism from the United States and other Western allies, who demanded that mayors work in other offices and that special police units leave municipal buildings.

The Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, said on Wednesday that he will not remove the mayors of the northern municipalities from their offices, but left open the possibility of new elections in the area.

The President of Kosovo, Vjosa Osmani, said on Thursday that the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic, should end his support for "criminal gangs" in the north of Kosovo.

" The situation is tense, but we must make sure that we restore the rule of law in Kosovo, and understand that the threat comes from Serbia's denial of Kosovo's existence as a sovereign state," said President Osmani, who is in Moldova for the meeting of the European Political Community.

Before the start of the meeting, Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić called on the Kosovo authorities to arrest what he called " alleged mayors of municipalities ". Such a step, he said, would be the "most powerful movement" that could solve the crisis./ VOA

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