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Russia says Serbia must have say in Kosovo status

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Russia says Serbia must have say in Kosovo status

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Russia has repeated its warning that it will block the UN’s plan for Kosovo if Serbia disagrees. It comes after Kosovo appealed to the United States to set a date for the province’s independence from Serbia. But Russia’s foreign minister, Segei Lavrov, has poured cold water on the idea if talks between Belgrade and Pristina fail: “Our position is well known and it’s based on reality, on international law – it’s not based on any artificial schemes. A decision on Kosovo is only possible if both parties agree,” he said.

Kosovo’s 2 million Albanians, 90 percent of the population, are growing increasingly impatient after the West promised them a decision by the middle of this year. Kosovo’s leaders have threatened to declare independence unilaterally. Prime Minister Agim Ceku has called for a “new approach.”

Meanwhile, veterans of Kosovo’s guerrilla war have warned they are prepared to take up arms again if the deadlock continues.