Kosovo’s Foreign Minister, Behgjet Pacolli, cancelled his participation at the informal meeting of the South-East European Cooperation Process – SEECP, which is is currently chaired by Bosnia and Herzegovina (2018-2019). SEECP participants meet at the level of Heads of State/Government, Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Political Directors of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, under the chairmanship of the participant that holds the one year rotating presidency.
The particular meeting in which Pacolli was scheduled to participate is scheduled for Wednesday, September 5, in Banja Luka.
The Kosovar FM via a Twitter post said he will not come to Banja Luka “Because of the threats & obstacles created by RS/BiH President Milorad Dodik towards me & my delegation despite the invitation by BiHFM Crnadak”. He added that “Dodik is a concern for all in WB!” (Western Balkans).
Pacolli’s decision broke the Serb-Serb conflict between RS president Milorad Dodik and BiH Foreign Minister, Igor Crnadak, triggered by the media announcement that Kosovo’s FM will participate at the SEECP Foreign ministers meeting. Dodik accused Crnadak of recognising the independence of Kosovo because he had invited Pacolli to the meeting. BiH has never recognised Kosovo because Serbs are against that and in clear support of Serbia in this conflict.
“Republika Srpska has not given its consent to BiH to recognise the self-proclaimed Kosovo, nor can the minister of that fake state be welcome to Republika Srpska. We experience Minister Crnadak’s invitation to Pacolli to visit Banja Luka as provocation towards Republika Srpska, which his international and his party mentor, Mladen Ivanić, said him to do. Perhaps Behgjet Pacolli is the best measure of his mandate as a minister and the best indicator for whose interest Crnadak has been serving for four years”, Dodik told to media in RS, adding that “the doors of no institution in this BiH entity will be open to Pacolli”.
The BiH FM stated that Dodik met Pacolli in Banja Luka, but did not clarify when.
“The last time Behgjet Pacolli was in Banja Luka, his host was Milorad Dodik; he welcomed him at the airport, held meetings with him and continued to hang out with him in one of the local cafes… Unlike Dodik, I have not had any meetings with Pacolli outside some regional meetings. Pristina representatives are taking part in regional meetings in accordance with the Belgrade-Pristina agreement. If Dodik was serious – he has the police and the judiciary so he can prevent him from coming to Banja Luka”, Foreign Minister Igor Crnadak said.
Earlier, he had stated that Pacolli will participate at the meeting in accordance with the “consent of Belgrade and the other Serbian institutions”, but the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Serbia denied the claim, explaining that “Serbian institutions are not responsible for Republika Srpska”.
Dodik used the Serbian answer to accuse Crnadak for lying.
“Never in my life have I met with that man (Pacolli). Everything Crnadak said is nothing more than a notorious lie, which is expected of Igor Crnadak”, Dodik said.
He added that BiH has never recognised Kosovo’s independence because RS, with his Alliance of Independent Social Democrats as ruling party, never gave his consent to joint BiH institutions. Crnadak answered that the recognition process was halted due to the fact that he and the Serbian member of the BiH Presidency, Mladen Ivanić, are against it. However, he added that Dodik supported them and thanked him for his contribution.
Crnadak invited Pacolli to participate at the SEECP. As he explained, the Foreign minister of Kosovo is supposed to represent “the temporary institutions of Pristina”. The Tuesday afternoon trilateral meeting of the BiH-Serbia-Turkey FMs’ was also cancelled since the Turkish Foreign Affairs Minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu, would not be able to participate…. / IBNA