The Collapse of the German-French Dialogue Initiative

DPC is sharing threads posted on Twitter/X for readers not on that platform.

1/ The inconclusive outcome of an entire day of high-level meetings of the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue in Brussels has made very public what has been clear for months: the German-French initiative has failed.

2/ @albinkurti accepted the new proposal for an ASM statute while @avucic refused to recommit to alleged commitments he already made on the Basic & Ohrid Agreement.

3/ The German-French initiative failed because it was ill-designed, hence doomed to fail from the outset, as we pointed out here:

4/ When @avucic last night publicly refused Serbia’s side of the commitments from the two prior agreements related to de facto recognition of Kosovo, he put on the record that there never was any agreement, just…

5/…a fake declaration of success by @JosepBorrellF, @MiroslavLajcak, and Western capitals. Furthermore, Vucic made clear that he and his govt oppose Kosovo’s entry into international organizations – an integral part of the “Ohrid Agreement” (sic).

6/ Belgrade demonstrated this stance in April – without any repercussions from the West:

7/ Yesterday has also demonstrated that the backers of the G-F initiative will continue to drag the dialogue along since they are unwilling to admit failure and accept responsibility.

8/ Unfortunately, this failed initiative did unprecedented damage, undoing the little progress achieved in the dialogue over the last decade, by allowing @avucic last November to order K Serbs in the north to leave Kosovo institutions, particularly police and judiciary…

9/…without any international push-back. Not even once was there public criticism of @avucic for the move.

10/ This set into motion a disintegrative, escalatory spiral in the north, all the way to the violence in Zvecan on May 29 and the September 24 Banjska terrorist attack.

11/ While the Zvecan attackers and Radoicic are @avucic’s creatures, it is the West that owns these dramatic developments.

12/ It’s high time for the West to shift course:

Leading capitals, need to admit failure NOW.  

13/ An urgent return to what should have followed the collapse of the land-swap episode is needed – a fundamental reset of negotiations on a true, final and comprehensive agreement including Serbian recognition of Kosovo.

14/ A reset dialogue is the only framework within which the issue of the ASM can be resolved.

15/ But a reset of the dialogue can only happen after a strategic U-turn of the West on Serbia, dropping its cynical support for the @avucic regime. The West needs to stop trading democracy for the dialogue (& more recently, for geopolitics) since this trade has failed.

16/ Meanwhile, the West urgently needs to repair the damage to its regional standing inflicted through the mismanaged dialogue. This includes to the situation in northern Kosovo and to interethnic relations in Kosovo, which are lower than they were in 2013.

17/ We @DPC_global have called for this policy reset for years, based on the values the West so loudly trumpets but seems committed not to observe in the #Western Balkans.

18/ Citizens regionwide have been the losers; only unaccountable power in the region & geopolitical adversaries have benefitted from such protracted #PolicyMalpractice.