UN court ruling removes doubt over independence: Kosovo
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Last Updated: Friday, July 23, 2010, 00:12
Pristina: Kosovo President Fatmir Sejdiu said a UN court ruling today removed "all doubts" about Kosovo's independence from Serbia, and called for more international recognition of the territory.

The International Court of Justice's backing of Kosovo independence was greeted with joy in the Kosovo capital, Pristina, with drivers blowing their vehicles' horns and people waving the Kosovo flag.

"The decision finally removes all doubts that countries which still do not recognise the republic of Kosovo could have," Sejdiu said.

"So again, we call upon these countries to take a decision as soon as possible to recognise the republic of Kosovo as an independent and sovereign state," he said.

Sixty-nine countries have so far recognised Kosovo as independent, including the United States and all but five of the 27 EU member states. Russia, Serbia's most powerful ally on the world stage, has not.

Sediju immediately called for Belgrade to give up its opposition to the independence of its former province.

"We call on ... President (Boris) Tadic and his government to give up their current approach. The joint path of the both countries and of other countries in the region is the European Union and NATO," he said.

Kosovo's Prime Minister Hashim Thaci hailed the ICJ ruling as an "historic victory".

"From now on Kosovo will function forever as a state," he said in an address broadcast on Kosovo television from Washington where he was visiting.


First Published: Friday, July 23, 2010, 00:12

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