The United Nations Security Council has backed recommendations to launch talks on the future of Kosovo.
Negotiations will likely prove difficult as Serbs want to retain sovereignty over the province but Kosovars want independence. Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica said he would work to find a solution. “My country is committed to making every effort to reach a negotiated resolution based on compromise together with the Security Council and in a way compatible with the norms of international law,” he said. Kosovo has been by run by the UN since NATO drove out Serb forces waging a bloody crackdown against ethnic Albanian separatists. However, the province formally remains part of Serbia and Montenegro. Over 90 percent of the population in Kosovo is Muslim Albanian. Many claim that after the violent repression Serbs lost their moral authority over the province. The negotiations are expected to last about a year and analysts say they will likely result in some form of independence. They add, though, that foreign forces will probably remain in Kosovo for some time to keep a lid on ethnic tension between ethnic Albanians and minority Serbs.