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Russian Foreign Ministry says Kosovo operation in Serbian-populated areas is provocation

November 24, 2018, 3:19 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The foreign ministry condemned "the incursion of the Kosovar Albaninan special forces into the Serbian-populated part of Kosovska Mitrovica in the morning of November 23"

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The Russian Foreign Ministry

The Russian Foreign Ministry

© Valery Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, November 23. /TASS/. Russia considers as a provocation Kosovo special forces' incursion into the Serbian-populated areas of the territory, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a commentary released on Friday.

"We consider as another Pristina's provocation the incursion of the Kosovar Albaninan special forces into the Serbian-populated part of Kosovska Mitrovica in the morning of November 23, the detention of four local residents," the foreign ministry said. "Pristina's course for ethnic cleansing and unleashing a trade war in the Balkans is apparent, in line with the Kosovo 'government' decision on November 22 to impose 100% tariffs on Serbian goods, including food, medicine, printed products, and so on."

"Such measures mostly affected Serbs in the area. The aim was to create unbearable living conditions for them," the foreign ministry noted.

Moscow strongly condemns Pristina's escalation of the conflict, the ministry said. "We are surprised by lack of response from international security forces in Kosovo that are operating on the basis of a UN mandate and are supposed to not only appropriately react to provocations, but also to act preventively to avoid escalation," the foreign ministry stressed. "One gets an impression that the European Union and the USA, after favoring Kosovars for many years, are either unable to rein in their mentees or support their aggressive course."

The Russian Foreign Ministry noted "the Serbian leadership's responsible position as they make attempts to ease tensions.".

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