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EU to host high level Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue meeting

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EU to host high level Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue meeting

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Photo: European Western Balkans

The EU will host an official summit between Serbian President Aleksander Vucic and Kosovo’s Prime Minister Albin Kurti.

Discussion will center on the current state of relations between Belgrade and Pristina and further steps toward improving Serbia-Kosovo relations. Serbia and Kosovo normalized diplomatic relations in 2013 after Kosovo’s 2008 unilateral declaration of independence. Further, the two parties signed a US-brokered economic normalization agreement in 2020, but subsequent dialogue broke down as the parties traded accusations of hostility.

Expect the Kosovan government’s recent decision to reinstate reciprocity measures against Serbia to substantially impact this dialogue. The measures—originally imposed in 2018—banned Serbian products from entering Kosovo unless they were registered as being shipped to the “Republic of Kosovo” and were placed under Kosovan control at the border.

Reciprocity measures were scrapped in 2020 after the US and EU harshly criticized the measures as detrimental to the normalization of relations. Despite this, in a bid to gain support during his election campaign, Kurti promised reimposition of the measures due to their relatively small economic impact but great symbolic value. If Kurti continues to insist on the imposition of reciprocity measures, they will likely hamper any future Serbia-Kosovo normalization talks.

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