Serbia’s Parliament has approved a government resolution rejecting any attempt to secure independence for Kosovo. The motion was carried by a huge majority of 217 to 12, a rare show of unity by Serbian deputies. The vote took place ahead of today’s renewed talks on Kosovo by major powers in Vienna. Kosovo is a UN protectorate but legally part of Serbia.
The majority ethnic Albanian population want independence from Belgrade, but the Serbian minority, who regard the region as their spiritual homeland, want to maintain the ties.
A UN-brokered resolution proposing qualified autonomy for Kosovo was shelved last week after objections from Russia, Serbia’s traditional ally.
Envoys of the so-called Contact Group on Kosovo (the US, Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Russia) are due to discuss launching another round of shuttle diplomacy between Belgrade and Pristina.