NATO says it is ready to intervene in Kosovo if stability is threatened

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NATO-led forces are ready to intervene in northern Kosovo if stability in the region is threatened.

NATO said in a statement on Sunday that tensions were rising in northern Kosovo municipalities and that the Kosovo Force in Pristina (KFOR) was closely monitoring the situation.

FILE – A view from the road leading to the Yaringi and Brncak border crossings after Kosovo Serbs dismantled their barricades in Yaringi, Kosovo, on October 2, 2021.
(Erkin Keci/Anadolu Agency)

The Kosovo Force, the NATO-led peacekeeping force, was established in 1999 with the adoption of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244, which came in response to the deepening humanitarian crisis.

Tensions are rising again amid a new government regulation that will force people entering Kosovo with Serbian ID cards to replace them with a temporary document while they live there.

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On Sunday, ethnic Serbs in northern Kosovo – a partially recognized country bordering Serbia in the Balkans – closed two main border crossings with Serbia in protest of the new rule.

NATO said that the International Security Force in Kosovo is closely monitoring the situation and “is ready to intervene if stability is threatened.”

“KFOR maintains a visible and agile position on the ground, and its commander is in contact with all of his main interlocutors, including representatives of Kosovo’s security organizations and Serbs of defense,” NATO said in a statement.

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The new regulation was due to go into effect on August 1, but Kosovo announced later on Sunday that it would postpone the decision on Serbian license plates and ID cards until September 1.

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