No frontier safe if UN court backs Kosovo: Serbia

Serbia does not recognise independence of Kosovo which was declared in 2008.

Updated: Jul 22, 2010, 16:21 PM IST

Belgrade: Serbia`s foreign minister warned on Thursday that if the top UN court gives a verdict in favour of Kosovo`s independence then all frontiers around the world will be at risk.

Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic spoke in The Hague just a few hours ahead of the advisory opinion to be given by the International Court of Justice on the legality of Kosovo`s 2008 declaration of independence from Serbia.

If the court supports Kosovo`s "secession" then "no frontier in the world and in the region would be safe”, the state Tanjug news agency quoted Jeremic as saying.

"We expect the opinion to confirm to international law which is extremely clear in regards to sovereignty and the territorial integrity of countries," Jeremic said.

But he added that the court opinion, to be released at 1300 GMT and which is not binding on any state, would be studied carefully before any conclusion is made.

"It will be a long and sophisticated text. We must not draw any conclusions before a careful analysis," Jeremic said.

Serbia does not recognise the independence of Kosovo which was declared on February 17, 2008 and sought the court`s opinion on the move.

Kosovo is recognised by most European Union countries and the United States. But several countries with separatist tensions at home, including Spain, have not recognised the move by the ethnic-Albanian majority ruled Kosovo.

Jeremic highlighted that the UN General Assembly would give a final verdict on the court`s opinion.

"We remain ready for negotiations. We hope that we will get there as soon as possible and that the route we have taken will lead to a compromise acceptable to all sides," the Serbian minister said.

"Our policy is not changing and remains set on a peaceful, diplomatic and political struggle to maintain the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country," he declared.

Bureau Report