The 2 Cs: territory for equality
by Liberal Democratic Party
Basic principles for solving the final status of Kosovo
Serbia lost sovereignty over Kosovo in 1999. After Serbia’s defeat in the war with NATO, the government of Slobodan Milošević and Vojislav Š ešelj withdrew its state officials and surrendered Kosovo to the UN administration.
At the start of negotiations on the final status of Kosovo, the arguments of the current Serbian government are the same as all the past positions that widened - rather than minimised - the differences between Serbs and Albanians. Official Belgrade has committed too many grave errors, from its inability to define achievable aims to its insistence on the traditional policy that caused the Kosovo problem in the first place. The result has been the continuation of an irresponsible national and state policy, thereby amnestying the policy of Milošević and Š ešelj that led to the present situation while at the same time sacrificing the Kosovo Serbs in the same manner as the Serbs of Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina.
The Liberal-Democratic Party believes that it is necessary to formulate a new strategy that would enable Serbs and Albanians to live together in Kosovo. The Serbian parliament has neither the will nor the strength for this, just like Slobodan Milošević’s policy at Rambouillet in 1999.
The LDP plan - ‘The 2 Cs: Territory for Equality’ - offers a solution that is in harmony with the needs of both peoples, who need to develop rather than to war with each other. Serbia must surrender to the citizens of Kosovo the right to govern the territory that they inhabit, while the Kosovo government must enable Serbs to exercise this right in the same measure as Albanians.
This right is realised through ‘Constituent status’: i.e. constitutionally guaranteed equality of Serbs and Albanians in the future community. As the starting model for realisation of this principle, one should apply the mechanism of the Ohrid Agreement which has solved the Macedonian crisis.
Consensuality must be the basic form guaranteeing that any agreement reached by Belgrade and Prishtina during the negotiations on final status will - under the indispensable supervision of the international community - prevent all possibility of imposition of the will of the majority; what must be involved is a specific obligation to seek mutual consensus, as a precondition for any eventual future organisation of Kosovo society.
In addition to all the general standards of the international community that need to be fulfilled - as well as a broad and essential decentralisation, an absolute guarantee of private property, and extra-territorial status for our religious and historico-cultural monuments - the interests of Kosovo citizens can be realised only by applying the principle of the two Cs (Constituent status and Consensuality). For the LDP, this is the only worthwhile aim. Serbia must be a guarantor of this aim, alongside the Security Council and the EU.
We need to find agreement with everyone, and in the first instance with the citizens of Serbia and the citizens of Kosovo. This is the last opportunity to reach a historic agreement on the creation of a normal Kosovo society, in which Serbs should be equal partners with the Albanians.