Talks on Kosovo's future fruitless
By Assocaited Press
Published December 7, 2007
WASHINGTON - Three days ahead of a deadline, the United States, the European Union and Russia plan to inform the U.N. secretary-general formally that negotiations on the status of Kosovo have failed.
The U.S. envoy in the negotiations, Frank Wisner, said a report on the failure of the talks between Serbia and Kosovo, now a Serbian province, is expected to be delivered to Ban Ki Moon as early as today.
"The conclusions will be pretty self-evident: We did not find a solution," Wisner said.
The report is expected to outline the opposing views expressed by the rival sides and to detail proposals they rejected.
"The conclusion that the United States draws from this is that there will be no negotiated solution," Wisner said.
Kosovo formally remains part of Serbia but has been under U.N. administration since 1999, when NATO airstrikes ended former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic's crackdown on ethnic Albanian separatists.
Serbia has offered Kosovo broad autonomy but insists it remain Serbian territory. Leaders of Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority demand full independence.
Russia, an ally of Serbia, blocked U.N. Security Council approval this year of a plan drawn up by U.N. envoy Martti Ahtisaari that proposed internationally supervised statehood. The United States and some European countries now plan to push for implementation of the Ahtisaari plan without approval by the U.N.
Kosovo's leaders have said they soon will declare their independence.
Also Thursday, NATO foreign ministers agreed to maintain the strength of the alliance's peacekeeping mission in Kosovo despite differences over how to respond if the territory does declares independence.