Ethnic Albanian leaders in Kosovo have put their case for independence to a UN delegation assessing the viability of a plan for the province’s future status. The envoys will report back to the Security Council ahead of a vote on a blueprint on independence under EU supervision.
Kosovan President Fatmir Sejdiu said Albanians wanted an independent democratic state for both Albanian and Serb communities.
America’s UN ambassador said all views on diplomat Martti Ahtisaari’s plan would be considered.
“Mr. Ahtisaari has made a proposal and we have to decide with regard to that plan in the coming weeks. So with this visit here, by listening to the various communities and their perspective, will help us decide.”
Serbia is deeply opposed to independence for what is part of its territory, proposing enhanced autonomy instead.
Serbs, some of whom were displaced by the war which led to Kosovo’s current status, made their feelings clear. The UN panel is to visit Serbian and Albanian communities affected by the conflict over the weekend.
Serbia’s ally Russia, says it will veto any vote for independence at the Security Council. But western powers will not accept major changes to the Ahtisaari plan.