Russia warns against unilateral solution of Kosovo issue

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Moscow, Dec 9 (UNI) Russia today warned that a ''unilateral solution'' to the issue of the future status of Serbia's breakaway province of Kosovo could provoke further inter-ethnic violence in the region.

''The implementation of this scenario could provoke further inter-ethnic contradictions and new violence in the region,'' Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

''Against the background of Kosovo developments, the situation is seen to aggravate considerably in other countries of the region, first of all, in Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina,'' he added.

A unilateral solution would inevitably set a precedent for other similar conflicts,'' RIA Novosti quoted him as saying.

During the latest round of negotiations held in Austria last week, Serbia reiterated offers for the province's broad autonomy, while Kosovo, a UN protectorate since 1999, continued to insist on full independence.

Kosovo had earlier threatened to unilaterally declare independence, if no agreement was reached with Serbia.

Mr Lavrov said Moscow was especially concerned over the threat that international law as the foundation for stability of interstate relations could be undermined.

On December 7, a group of international mediators in talks on Kosovo submitted to the UN Security Council a report saying the parties had failed to reach an agreement.

Russia continues to insist that the talks on the status of Serbia's predominantly-Albanian province should continue.

UNI

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