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Albania urges NATO to stay in Kosovo
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13:59, May 03, 2008

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Albania Foreign Minister Lulzim Basha said on Friday that NATO should continue its mission in Kosovo to maintain stability there.

"NATO should continue its own mission there to maintain security and stability, the free movement, protection of minorities and religious activities," Basha told a conference in Tirana.

NATO has been responsible for the security of Kosovo, since Serb forces were driven out after the 1998-1999 war, and the territory was put under United Nations administration.

After Kosovo's ethnic Albanian leaders declared independence from Serbia on February 17, a European Union law and order mission called EULEX started deployment in order to take over the main international supervisory role in Kosovo, where ethnic majority Albanians account for 90 percent of its population.

"However, UN mission alone cannot be successful in meeting the tasks, " Basha said. "Therefore, the international organizations should work together with the local government and act responsively."

Basha stated that the UN and EU should keep on playing a very vigorous and stabilizing role in Kosovo and the UN mission presence should gradually shift its powers to the EU-led mission.

Source:Xinhua



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