By Dragutin Nenezić
The session of the Security Council, which was vociferously announced to our public, has been held. Since not even a formal announcement was made after, which can be seen on the official website of the SC, its effects can be assessed as limited to the diplomatic-rhetorical sphere. As always, let’s go in order.
It appears as if the UNMIK representative’s presentation was the most comprehensive one, covering the core of the problem due to which the session was convened – the fact that the dinar is both a de facto and legal means of payment in Kosovo, which I have already written about, and which UNMIK knows best since it is based on its regulation.
The address of the Serbian president seems somewhat toned down compared to the announcements. There was no express reference to e.g. to the Convention on Genocide, which can be interpreted in different ways – as a diplomatic concession, or a tactical move – and the weeks and months ahead will tell. If that is set aside, everything that could be heard has already been mentioned several times and is well known, and it is worth mentioning that it was announced in diplomatic language that delaying the implementation of the CBK decision is not enough, although there was no concrete proposal on how to stop the implementation of that decision.
Kurti’s address was so generic that one can already reasonably suspect that artificial intelligence is involved in writing it. All the common things were there, reinforced by references to obscure characters and appearances from the fringes of decency.
Of course, this time as well, the preparation was done in the public through the marketing of the research of „European Stability Initiative ESI“, both directly and via spokesperson like Michael Martens, and supported by an army of bots. Of course, there is no place for an answer to this kind of phenomenon at the session of the SC, even though the Serbian president devoted his time to some of those obscure characters, but it is certainly worth wondering why no adequate response has been found so far to such an organized action that Kosovo is carrying out in the public sphere, assisted by who knows who.
As far as the ESI report is concerned, I would like to point out that it amounts to listing official statistical data without providing any context. For example, the number of health insurance beneficiaries in Kosovo does not indicate whether they live in Kosovo, since health insurance is not linked to the territory, but to the basis of insurance.
For example, an individual employed in a municipality or hospital in Kosovo is insured as such, even if he or she may have had to leave for a number of reasons, but this does not necessarily affect his or her insurance basis. The actual number of Serbs, who first lived in Kosovo and then left in the previous period, we will probably never know, since the Kosovo census in 2011 was boycotted in the north of Kosovo. For the upcoming census, it is uncertain whether or when it will be held, especially in Serbian areas.
The presentations of the other participants, although they mostly criticized the actions of the Kosovo authorities, must be taken with multiple reservations. First, the criticism concerns, as already said, first of all, the delays in the implementation of the decision of the CBK, and immediately afterward, they refer to finding the solution to this problem within the framework of the Brussels dialogue.
This is where we reach the key problem in the public perception of this session – this session did not return anything to the UN, as it can be heard in some places, but it was only confirmed that the Brussels process is currently the only framework in which issues between Belgrade and Pristina are resolved. In this sense, bearing in mind the result of that process so far, which is obviously to the detriment of the Serbs, if the problem of the decision of the CBK is included in the agenda of the dialogue, nothing good can be expected.
The decision of the CBK itself remains in force, since so far, for another in a series of unclear reasons, no one has overturned it in the constitutional court (and there is a good basis to do so).
Some kind of postponement of the implementation until the end of February, which the Kosovo authorities mention, is plain stupidity, firstly because formally there is no decision on that postponement (which is certainly not a problem for them, as on the basis of the same non-existent decision they are banning the import of Serbian goods), and secondly because in a short period of time, it was applied several times, both to areas outside the borders of the future ASM, and to the entry of money into Kosovo.
Instead of further (ostensible) delay, the Kosovo authorities opened a telephone line for Serbs. If, however, they succumb to pressure (although in my opinion, these pressures are only of a verbal nature, since there are no indications of any sanctions), such false (or, as our journalists and politicians like to say, so-called) postponement of implementation will be extended, which will certainly is no obstacle to further confiscations or prohibition of entry of money.
What scares me is what follows after those so-called delays – because if the money is confiscated, or its entry is prohibited during the delayed implementation, when that implementation finally starts, then things can only get worse than that.
Diplomatically speaking, I am not certain that this kind of SC session can be the only response to that.
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