PRISTINA (Reuters) - Kosovo’s parliament elected a new government on Wednesday with a prime minister promising to reach a deal on normalising ties with Serbia that would enable it to get a United Nations seat.
The new government of Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti, of the centre-right Democratic League of Kosovo, was voted for by 61 deputies in the Balkan country’s 120-seat parliament after weeks of legal wrangling.
“The final deal between Kosovo and Serbia will be based on reciprocity recognition between the two states,” Hoti told MPs. “We will not allow any change of the borders or exchange of territories (with Serbia).”
Hoti has promised to remove all trade barriers for goods coming from Serbia, as urged by both the United States and the European Union, to resume a Brussels-sponsored dialogue which was interrupted in 2018.
Serbia, together with its traditional ally Russia, has been blocking Kosovo’s membership of international organisations including the United Nations.
A deal on mutual recognition between Kosovo and Serbia is a pre-condition for Belgrade to join the EU.
Hoti was deputy PM in the previous government of Albin Kurti, from leftist party Vetevendosje, which was dismissed in a no confidence vote in March after disputes over its handling of the coronavirus crisis and lifting tariffs on Serbian goods.
Reporting by Fatos Bytyci; Editing by Alexander Smith
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