Crossfire War – Negotiations in Vienna over Kosovo Lead Nowhere – War

Crossfire War – Belgrade – Tehran – Athens Watch – Southeast Europe Theatre: Belgrade – Tehran – Moscow – Athens – Gracanica/Pristina – Tirana – Vienna – Brussels – Warsaw; 10 Day Negotiations in Vienna over Kosovo Lead Nowhere – Rival Demonstrations Planned – Saturday – Sunday

Night Watch: VIENNA – “No agreement was reached and it was expected.” That was the extremely frank quote from Leon Kojen, one of the representatives of Belgrade at the United Nations negotiations in Vienna, which have just ended after 10 days and have resulted in no agreement concerning the province of Kosovo and it remaining part of Serbia.

Ninety percent of the province is populated by ethnic Albanians who are primarily Muslims and have been fighting for independence since 1997, as one of the many conflicts and wars which were spawned by the European Union’s suspicious decision to recognize the twisted boundary of Croatia as an independent country that cut off Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina from the Adriatic Sea. Germany instituted and led the recognition process in December 1991 in the name of the New World Order, but it has resulted in a series of new wars and instability, chaos has been the rule ever since. [AKI]

UN representative Martti Ahtisaari stated after the talks broke up, “We must be honest. The stands of the two parties on the status remained diametrically opposed. There has been no progress on the issue of constitutional principles.” Realistically speaking there was never any reason to expect anything else as regular readers of are aware. The only question now is when will the shooting really get started again. The United Nations Security Council may do exactly what Serbian leaders have been warning them not to do; impose independence on Kosovo, something Belgrade has repeatedly stated they would never tolerate.

AKI reports two diametrically opposed demonstrations are being planned for Saturday and Sunday. Saturday the militant ethnic Albanian group Vetevendosjc (Self-Determination) will hold a rally in the provincial capital Pristina and demand the Kosovo Parliament declare unilateral independence from Serbia whether they receive international recognition or not. The Albanians know Washington and Brussels support Kosovo independence as do Paris-London-Berlin and most European capitals, but definitely not Athens or Moscow. Athens signed a security agreement with Belgrade in November as did Tehran in January last year and recently a Greek military delegation arrived in Moscow. When fighting resumes it is quite possible the government of Albania, in Tirana, sends military support for the Albanians in Kosovo. Ankara also wants to see fighting resume and the defeat of NATO, which Turkey is not really cooperating with anymore.

But on Sunday the Serbian community in Kosovo will hold a gathering in the monastery complex in Gracanica in order to lay the foundation for their own Parliament in the province. Some of the Serb demonstrators in Belgrade earlier this week were actually calling for the Serbian Army to be sent to Kosovo. Last year Belgrade held its first military parade in 30 years and officially renewed their contact with the Bosnian Serb community in Banja Luka. Support from Moscow-Tehran has probably enabled Belgrade to re-equip its forces and with these security agreements, when the shooting gets started again, Belgrade will not be facing the enemy by itself as it did for 78 days in 1999 under Brussels-NATO’s air campaign.

Willard Payne is an international affairs analyst who specializes in International Relations. A graduate of Western Illinois University with a concentration in East-West Trade and East-West Industrial Cooperation, he has been providing incisive analysis to NewsBlaze. He is the author of Imagery: The Day Before.