Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has promised never to recognise Kosovo as independent. During a two-day first state visit by Serbian President Boris Tadic, Madrid also firmly backed the Balkan country’s aspiration to join the European Union.
Twenty-two EU states have formally recognised Kosovo Albanians’ unilateral independence declaration. With Cyprus, Greece, Romania and Slovakia, Spain, with its own separatist considerations, has not. Serbia is prevented by the Netherlands from knitting closer ties with the EU, pending further cooperation over war crimes. This did not stop Spain from signing a military agreement with the Serbs, covering joint exercises, training exchanges and modernising equipment. Spain takes up the EU’s rotating presidency in the first half of next year.