UN special envoy Martti Ahtisaari who is mediating talks on the future of Kosovo said it would take “a miracle” to persuade both sides to agree.
Belgrade strongly opposes independence for the breakaway province, which is still officially part of Serbia.
“Their cooperation is needed,” said Ahtisaari. “Nothing will work even in the best of circumstances if the different communities don’t stretch their hand and start dealing with each other in a more civilized manner that they have done.”
Ahtisaari has warned that security in Kosovo could deteriorate if a decision is delayed.
It is also hoped a solution could help lift the province out of poverty – despite possessing rich mineral resources, the region remains one of Europe’s poorest.