The U.S. will supports the dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina under the leadership of the European Union and will continue to be a partner to Kosovo and Serbia in the hope that in the coming days they will be able to peacefully resolve the dispute over license plates, said State Department spokesman Ned Price at a press briefing in Washington.
When it comes to the message to Pristina and Belgrade on the eve of 31 October, when the deadline for replacing license plates expires, Price specified that the message from the US is “consistent”, and then reminded that Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Gabriel Escobar was in Pristina and Belgrade to support that process, and that State Secretary Anthony Blinken conveyed the same message to Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić and Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti, with whom he spoke on 11 October.
“Blinken emphasized our support for the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia with the mediation of the EU. He called for continued constructive engagement to ensure peace and stability throughout the region. We will continue to support that EU dialogue. We will continue to be a partner to both Kosovo and Serbia in the hope that they will be able to resolve this dispute peacefully in the coming days,” Price said.
The Kosovo Ministry of the Interior announced last week that since 1 September, only 15 Serbs had registered cars with RKS plates and stated that it was determined to complete the process on 31 October.
The Ministry’s announcement states that after that date, vehicles with “illegal license plates” will not be able to drive on the territory of Kosovo, reports Kosovo Online.
On the other hand, official Belgrade insists that the decision to abolish status-neutral KS license plates a year before the deadline is illegal, and that the current KM plates are legal license plates issued by Serbian authorities in accordance with all regulations.