‘Neutral customs regulation is northern Kosovo’s option’

RT spoke to Borislav Stefanovic, Serbia's chief negotiator on how to end what is being called a test of nerves in northern Kosovo. He believes it is impossible to resolve the situation the way Pristina intends to.

­“There’s an attempt to create a border between Serbia and Kosovo. There cannot be a border, especially in an area in which we have a majority of Serbs living. There cannot be a border because it is an administrative line,” he said.

“The second thing is that once you put customs officers, then you put a flag, then you will put a coat of arms, then you will put so-called ‘Kosovo laws,’ and then people who live here will be circled by something that looks like the Kosovo state,” Stefanovic went on to explain.

Serbs cannot accept such a scenario, the diplomat says, and therefore a different solution has to be found.

“We hope for an outcome where we will have a regulation of the flow of goods in the north, but that regulation is status neutral, without Kosovan customs, and then we can move on on finding and managing the revenue share and what laws will be implied,” Borislav Stefanovic proposed.

Trouble flared in July when Kosovan police tried to take over two northern border crossings – a move which was resisted by local Serbs who blockaded access roads. NATO and EU forces then moved in to try and establish control. Late last month, some barricades were bulldozed, resulting in violence, with peacekeepers using rubber bullets and tear gas against the Serbs.