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2 Apr, 2008 12:42

Moscow may block Kosovo’s entry to UN – Lavrov

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has warned that Russia may stop Kosovo from joining the United Nations. Addressing the State Duma, Lavrov said that as a permanent member of the Security Council, Russia had a right to prevent Kosovo from becoming a member o

The Foreign Minister made the announcement in a speech on overseas policy to Duma Deputies in Moscow.

Lavrov once again laid out the country's view on Kosovo's declaration of independence.

“A part of a European nation, of Serbia, violently ripped off, and the artificially created new entity – Kosovo. All of this was carried out in violation of international law,” he said.

“Russia as a permanent UN Security Council member is capable of preventing Kosovo from becoming a legal UN member,” he added.

Speaking about the current state of Russian foreign policy, he said Kosovo’s declaration violated international law and set a dangerous precedent for similar conflicts around the world.

“We are going to insist firmly that the Hague Tribunal completes all its cases on Kosovo no later than 2010, as stated in a Security Council resolution which we insisted on passing.”

“In order to speed up the work of the Tribunal we will need to bring in a new resolution, and given the positions of our western colleagues including those who have the right to veto, this is somewhat unrealistic,” the Russian FM added.

Lavrov told the State Duma that Russia will now re-examine the status of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, both breakaway parts of Georgia.

“I assure you this question will be approached, taking into account all factors and with the greatest attention. Among these factors are undoubtedly Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence, which created a precedent, and the unacceptability of double standards,” he said.

To watch Russian FM's address to the State Duma followthe link.