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Kosovo promised independence ASAP

The leader of the Democratic Party of Kosovo, former rebel Hashim Thaci, has promised the province would break away from Serbia soon after December 10, the deadline for internationally-mediated talks to resolve the dispute over the status of the region.

His comments come as a new mediation effort is scheduled for November 26.

The U.S. and most of the EU support the province's independence, while Russia opposes it.

Meanwhile, an ethnic Serb boycott has helped cast doubt over the legitimacy of the Kosovo election. But it didn't prevent the ethnic Albanian Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) from celebrating their preliminary victory. The official results are to follow in the next few days.

Voting is unlikely to help resolve the independence issue of Serbia's breakaway republic. Not with little more than a third of the population turned out to vote. This is the lowest figure since elections began back in 2001.