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Albania and Serbia leaders clash over Kosovo comments

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Albania and Serbia leaders clash over Kosovo comments


What was supposed to be a historic meeting between the Albanian and Serbian leaders in Belgrade will perhaps be remembered for the wrong reasons.

The get-together descended into a televised row over the independence of the former Serbian province of Kosovo.

More than 100 countries recognise Kosovo’s independence, but Serbia does not.

“We have two entirely different positions on Kosovo, but the reality is one and unchangeable,” said Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama at a news conference.

“Kosovo has been recognised now by more than 108 countries. Its independence was also recognised by the International Court of Justice and it is a European regional reality.”

The Serbian leader was visibly angered and was quick to respond to what he said was a “provocation.”

“First of all I want to say, I did not expect any provocation from Prime Minister Rama, and did not expect he would talk about Kosovo,” said Serbian Minister Aleksandar Vucic.

“I have no idea what he has to do with Kosovo, but I must answer to him, because my job is to prevent anybody from humiliating Serbia in Belgrade. According to the constitution, Kosovo is part of Serbia. It did not have and will not have any relation to Albania,” Vucic added.

Kosovo declared its independence from Serbia in 2008.

Most of its nearly two million people are ethnic Albanians who broke away with the blessing of the European Union.

Also read: Why is there tension between Serbia and Albania?

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