Serbia U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Tuesday urged Serbia and its former province of Kosovo to settle their differences, more than a decade after NATO launched airstrikes on Serbia to halt violence against Kosovo’s ethnic Albanians.
Clinton made the call in the Serbian capital of Belgrade, the second stop on a three-nation tour of the Balkans aimed at pressing for reconciliation and reform in the region still politically splintered following the breakup of Yugoslavia in the 1990s and the bloody civil wars that followed.
Clinton said rapprochement between Serbia and Kosovo, combined with Serbian political reform, would put Serbia on the path to European Union membership, a role that it could use to anchor stability in southeastern Europe.
“That dialogue can and will benefit people in Kosovo and Serbia by addressing practical, day-to-day issues and the long-term relationship between you,” she said after meeting with Serbian President Boris Tadic. “It will also have a positive impact on the relationship between Serbia, your neighbors, Europe and the United States.”