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Merkel urges Serbia and Kosovo to normalise relations

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Merkel urges Serbia and Kosovo to normalise relations
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The German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called on Serbia and Kosovo to do more to sort out their differences.

She was speaking during a short visit to Kosovo where she also met German peacekeepers who have been caught up in recent clashes.

She urged Kosovo to do more to fulfil its EU obligations and fight crime and corruption, and said Serbia should stop supporting ethnic Serbs who resist Pristina’s authority.

Calling on both sides to respect a recent accord, she said: “It’s important to implement joint border controls and we are not interested in having parallel Serb structures in Kosovo. I think it’s always best to look for direct talks with the respective partners of dialogue.”

Serbia does not recognise Kosovo’s declaration of independence from Belgrade. Recent clashes in Mitrovica have fuelled the ongoing row with Pristina, costing Serbia candidate status for EU membership.

Thirty German and Austrian NATO peacekeepers were injured recently when Serbs resisted an attempt to remove roadblocks they had put up in northern Kosovo.

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