French President Emmanuel Macron said that Kosovo gave its word and failed to keep it – as explanation for his decision to block the long awaited visa liberalisaton for the country. The Kosovan Government badly deteriorated its relations with its key Western allies, after nationalist Prime Minister Kurti refused to allow the already agreed creation of a union of Serbian municipalities in the country’s north.
I say this with great clarity, we have made a gesture of confidence on the issue of visas. As far as France is concerned, it is suspended from respecting the word given, and the word today is not kept. I am waiting for a real commitment from these two authorities to move forward in the coming weeks. This is the very condition for peace throughout the region, Macron said during the Balkan conference in Tirana.
Macron added that Kosovo should organize local elections in the northern municipalities, in agreement with Serbia and with full participation of the Serbian citizens, and then allow the creation of the association of municipalities. He also called on Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic to clearly condemn the attack of a group of Serbian paramilitaries in Banjska.
It’s expected that the visa decision will apply only on France, and not on the rest of the EU, but the issue remains unclear.