Crossfire War – PRISTINA – TIRANA – SARAJEVO WATCH – Southeast Europe Theatre: Pristina – Sarajevo – Ankara – Tehran – Tirana/(Vienna – Brussels – Warsaw)/Kosvoska Mitrovica – Belgrade – Athens – Tehran – Moscow; Conflicting Diplomatic Battle Lines Over Kosovo – Moscow Warns Washington – Pristina to Declare Independence Late May Early June – Expects Recognition
Night Watch: PRISTINA – Diplomatic disputes over the issue of Kosovo’s independence from Serbia is becoming more severe, in obvious anticipation of renewed fighting, which may have already begun with ethnic Albanian attacks against Serbian churches and property and with the arrests and firefights between Serbian police and Islamic extremists in south Serbia. Russia Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has openly stated, after meeting Serbia’s government in Belgrade, “…just as the plan proposed (for Cyprus) by former UN Secretary – General Kofi Annan has failed, so has Mr. Ahtisaari’s plan” for Kosovo. [SERBIANNA]
Moscow and Lavrov are obviously no longer taking the UN seriously and the Foreign Minister has openly stated any attempt to impose UN Security-Council recognition of Kosovo’s independence would split the Security Council. In accordance with the Kremlin’s view, Russia Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin has warned, “I’ll conceive unilateral decisions would send a wave across the world.” [SERBIANNA]
But that is exactly what Pristina, the seat of Kosovo’s ethnic Albanian government is intending to do either in late May or by early June, right after the Security-Council vote, either for or against independence and so far only 4 of the 15 Security Council members support Ahtisaari’s plan. Hashim Thaci, the leader of Kosovo’s second largest party, expects neighboring countries to recognize their independence. “With or without a resolution, Kosovo will become independent.” [SERBIANNA]
U.S. Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns has stated, “Washington is prepared to recognize Kosovo. We expect that Kosovo’s leaders will subsequently declare their independence. The U.S. and other countries will then recognize the new state.” Belgrade officials responded on the condition of anonymity by saying, “Moscow is suggesting to them Belgrade position 200 police and military staff into northern Kosovo, which is predominately Serbian, in an attempt by Serbia to retain control over the province.” A senior Western diplomat then said, “You know what that would trigger?” NATO-EU troops in Kosovo would have no choice but to respond, with force, to Serbia’s incursion. [SERBIANNA]
That is precisely what Belgrade – Tehran-Moscow-Athens-Ankara want. The fuse for this theatre of war was lit in 1991-92 with the recognition of the division of Yugoslavia by Germany – NATO and in the name of the New World Order and European Unity.