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Belgrade suspends dialogue with Kosovo in EU due to Serbian politician's murder

January 16, 12:57 UTC+3

Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic convened an emergency meeting of the country’s Security Council

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Serbian politician Oliver Ivanovic

Serbian politician Oliver Ivanovic

© AP Photo/Bojan Slavkovic

BELGRADE, January 16. /TASS/. The Serbian delegation has suspended a dialogue with Pristina in Brussels and is returning to Belgrade in the wake of the news on the murder of Serbian politician Oliver Ivanovic in Kosovo, Director of the Office for Kosovo and Metohija Marko Djuric told the Tanjug news agency on Tuesday.

"The murder of Oliver Ivanovic is an act of terror aimed at destabilizing the situation in Kosovo and Metohijan and an attack over all Serbian people. We are terminating the negotiations and immediately returning to Belgrade due to the murder of Oliver Ivanovic," the agency cited Djuric’s statement made in Brussels.

Oliver Ivanovic is one of the Kosovo Serb leaders and former State Secretary of the Ministry for Kosovo and Metohija in the Serbian government. In January 2014, Ivanovic and four more Serbs were imprisoned on charges of military crimes against the Albanian civil population in Kosovo and Metohija committed in 1999 and 2000. In August 2015 Ivanovic went on a hunger strike and was transferred from prison to hospital due to deterioration of health. Still, on January 21, 2016, Oliver Ivanovic was sentenced to a nine-year imprisonment for military crimes committed against Kosovo Albanians in 1999.

In February 2017, the sentence made by the court of first instance was overturned and a new trial started. Ivanovic has been under house arrest since then. In April 2017 he was allowed to protect himself in court while staying at liberty.

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