Thursday, August 30, 2007

Continuing Shift in European Positions on Kosovo

Dutch Foreign Minister Maxim Verhagen said on Tuesday on his tour to Belgrade and Pristina that his government will accept any negotiated solution to the Kosovo issue, including a partition of the province. "Should both parties be willing to accept a solution that is both sustainable and possible to implement, the Netherlands government would find it acceptable," Verhagen was reported as saying.

This is certainly a shift away from talk about "imposing" a solution and also carries with it some interesting conditional points: "both parties" need to agree, and any solution has to be both "sustainable" and "possible to implement."

Hidden criticism of Washington in this statement, that U.S. advocates for a unilateral recognition of self-declared independence would then have to be willing to sustain and implement this solution using American resources, rather than making commitments we would then expect Europeans to carry out?

Independent Kosovo is not sustainable - just like Puerto Rico.
Independent Kosovo is not sustainable - just like Puerto Rico.
Nick, and interesting from today's roundtable the comment that Harlan Ullman made about the Netherlands revisiting their whole commitment to Afghanistan--so there's something more going under the surface than we think.
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