Top German lawmaker warns of Kosovo independence

Published on February 17, 2008, Irna

Category: Growing International Opposition to Imposed Solution

A leading lawmaker of the co-governing Social Democratic Party (SPD) warned of the global implications of the anticipated independence declaration of the Serbian breakaway province of Kosovo, the daily Frankfurter Rundschau reported Saturday .

"I have doubts about the legitimacy of such a step, in terms of the international law. It is difficult to justify such a secession," said the deputy chairman of the foreign affairs committee in the German Parliament, Hans-Ulrich Klose.

If this was the basis for the self-determination right of an ethnic group, we would "open the pandora's box," he added.

Other ethnic groups may feel encouraged to follow the model of Kosovo, the MP pointed out.

Ethnic Albanian leaders from Kosovo were expected to announce their independence from Serbia this weekend.

While most of the 27 EU countries have signalled green light for such a plan, the bloc is also interested in helping Serbia save face by speeding up Belgrade's accession process.

Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica, a nationalist, warned earlier that the EU would have to choose between closer relations with Serbia and supporting an independent Kosovo.

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