Tuesday, June 19, 2007

More Delays???

Will there be more delays in finalizing the status of Kosovo?  Reports that emerged yesterday that Western countries have drafted a resolution calling for more talks has not yet been confirmed as more than rumor.  However, in response to the rumors, the Kosovo government has indicated that it is not willing to engage in any further negotiations with Belgrade and PM Agim Ceku stated that "there is not going to be a delay over status". 
Former SRSG Bernard Kouchner, the new foreign minister of France, is planning to push forward with a plan to postpone resolution of the status for six months in an effort to win international consensus.  The French proposal at the G8 summit was rejected as it suggested acceptance of the Ahtisaari plan if the six months of negotiations failed to produce any results.

The chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia (ICTY) Carla del Ponte has stated that it is preferable to the court if a decision on Kosovo is delayed as Serbia has been cooperating by arresting those accussed of war crimes.  The two biggest suspects, Karadzic and Mladic, are still at large and believed to be in Serbia or within Serbia's reach.  de Ponte believes that if a decision on Kosovo comes out that is not favorable to Serbia, the country will end its cooperation with the court.  ICTY has a mandate to finish its court cases by 2008 and the appeals process by 2010 and is under pressure to wrap up the court cases.