How to Relaunch the Kosovo-Serbia Dialogue
How to Relaunch the Kosovo-Serbia Dialogue
Report 218 / Europe & Central Asia

Kosovo na slobodi: preostali izazovi

Izvršni izveštaj

Kosovo je implementiralo veći deo Ahtisarijevog plana – pečata demokratije, obezbeđujući suštinska prava za Srbe i ostale manjine – i zaslužuje da bude potpuno nezavisno, ali ne bi smelo biti “klizanja” i ostali delovi plana trebalo bi da budu ispoštovani. Vlada u Prištini ga se uglavnom pridržava i mnogi Srbi južno od Ibra sada prihvataju njenu vlast, poštuju njene zakone i učestvuju u političkom životu na način koji je bio nezamisliv pre četiri godine. Ova dostignuća su, ipak, ugrožena zategnutim odnosom Kosova i Srbije, opadanjem broja Srba i frustracijom Prištine sopstvenom nemogućnošću da proširi suverenitet na većinsko srpska severna područja i postigne puno međunarodno priznanje. Talas etnički motivisanih napada pokazuje da je mir krhk. Vlada treba da ostane posvećena Ahtisarijevim zahtevima za manjnine. Ali plan nije osmišljen da dela u izolaciji i ne može se odvojiti od sveukupnog odnosa Kosova i Srbije. Beograd treba da zasluži poverenje Prištine i pomiri se sa njenim trajnim angažovanjem na teritoriji Kosova, posebno na jugu.

Rane godine nezavisnosti Kosova nadzirane su od strane Međunarodne Civilne Kancelarije (MCK) koju je stvroio Ahtisarijev plan. 10. Septembra 2012. okončani su MCK i međonarodni “nadzor” ostavljajući vladu u Prištini sa punom odgovornošću za mladu zemlju. Ovo je presudno vreme za odnos Kosova sa njegovom srpskom populacijom i sa Srbijom; Ahtisarijev plan i dalje daje najbolji model za garanciju mirne koegzistencije.

Mnogi Srbi na Kosovu sarađuju sa državnim institucijama kako bi zaštitili sopstvena prava I interese, ali oni na severu ostaju beskompromisni.. Vlada je upisala veći deo Ahtisarijevog plana u svoj ustav i zakone uz izdašne ustupke za kosovske Srbe, mada je implementacija ponekad nezadovoljavajuća. Razvila je vlast u opštinama koji dopušta ne samo Srbima već i većini Albanaca važniji glas u vođenju lokalnih poslova. Ipak, mnogi u Prištini počinju da dovode u pitanje ono što vide kao povlašćeni tretman Srba. Komunikacija je sve teža jer malo mladih govori jezik druge strane. Posle godina sa malim brojem međuetničkih incidenata napadi na Srbe postaju učestaliji.

Srbija se ne oseća vezana Ahrisarijevim planom i tako zadržava značajno prisustvo na Kosovu koje je pojačano posle nezavisnosti 2008. kada je Beograd namerio da pokaže da je zadržao nešto kontrole nad svojim sunarodnicima. Na severnom Kosovu kontrola Beograda nad lokalnom administracijom skoro je potpuna. Na jugu, Beograd uglavnom plaća plate i penzije mnogim Srbima i rukovodi obrazovnim i zdravstvenim sistemima bez obaveštavanja Prištine. Vlada Kosova ovo toleriše, ali mogla bi da pokuša da zatvori institucije na jugu sa bazom u Beogradu. Takav obračun verovatno bi izazvao brzo napuštanje Kosova od strane mnogih Srba. Kada je prihvatilo Ahtisarijev plan Kosovo je prihvatilo da će Srbija ostati na njegovoj teritoriji ali kooperativno i transparentno. Beograd je, ipak, odbio ovu saradnju i Kosovo pokazujke znake nestrpljenja. Ukoliko ne prihvati povelju Ahtisarijevog plana Beograd mora da postupa u njegovom duhu ili rizikuje da izgubi preostali uticaj na jugu.

Pre jedne decenije dve trećine kosovskih Srba živelo je južno od Ibra raštrkano među većinskim albanskim stanovništvom, a jedna trećina na većinski srpskom severu. Balans Srba sever-jug došao je to pariteta, a južna srpska populacija je ruralna, sve starija i politički pasivna. Trust obrazovanih, politički razumnih pojedinaca mali je i u disproporciji sa velikom ulogom koju mu je dodelio Ahtisarijev plan, a posebno jer Srbi u severnim opštinama odbijaju saradnju. Oni i ostale manjine potpuno zavise od povlastica uključujući i kvote; nemaju dovoljno glasova da osvoje zakonodavna mesta u otvorenom nadmetanju. Njihovi manjinski delegati u skupštini retko se odupriu albanskim političkim preferencama. Srpski delegati dozvolili su vladi da ukloni Ahtisarijevo obećanje o “nezavisnom televizjskom kanalu na srpskom jeziku”, na primer, zamenjujući ga srpskim kanalom koji kontroliše državni servis. Ipak, stvaranje šest većinsko srpskih opština južno od Ibra uglavnom je uspelo; preuzeli su veći deo vladajuće role od paralelnih struktura koje finansira Srbija iako obrazovanje i zdravstvena zaštita ostaje pod kontrolom Beograda. Veće opštine, kao Gračanioca i Štrpce, imaju aktivne skupštine i implemetiraju razvoj projekata infrastrukture uz inostrano i finansiranje vlade Kosova i preuzimaju odgovornost u velikom broju oblasti. Ostale nove opštine su male, nedostaje im kompetentnog osoblja i teško dobijaju sredstva koja su im potrebna. Ali sve kosovske opštine takmiče se za ograničene javne i private fondove. Centralne vlasti sklone su mikromenadžerisanju njihovim troškovima i lišavaju ih sredstava za podizanje novca. Nekoliko opštinskih vlada,i srpskih i albanskih, imaju obučeno osoblje potrebno da se efikasno ostvaraju dobijena ovlašćenja i međusobno retko sarađuju čak i u oblastima zajedničkih interesaPriština i njeni međunarodni partneri skoro nimalo nisu uspeli da prevaziđu snažan otpor povratku izbeglica i interno raseljenih osoba (IRO). Mnogi se zadovolje prodavanjem imovine i preseljenjem na drugo mesto, ali osujećeni korupcijom, pretnjama i sudovima bez sluzbenih prostorija sa srpskim jezikom ne mogu da postignu ni taj skromni cilj. Čak se i Srpska Pravoslavna Crkva muči da ostvari svojinska prava koja ima po Ahtisarijevom planu. Srbi koji žive u enklavama unutar većinsko albanskih opština sve su ranjiviji i sve potrebnija im je zaštita. Neka sela u većinsko srpskim opštinama su, takođe, izložena napadima od strane većih susednih albanskih naselja, obično motivisanim konfliktom oko zemlje. Njihova bezbednost je odgovornost Prištine i vlada mora preduzeti efikasne mere kako bi zaštitila ranjive manjine i njihov povratak.

Najveća prepreka s kojom se suočava srpska zajednica, i ozbiljna pretnja Ahtisarijevom planu, može biti sama teškoća stvaranja bezbednog i održivog života u manjinskim oblastima.. Nepoverenje, nedostatak ispravne registracije i otvoreno neprijateljstvo čine teškim za poslove u vlasništvu manjina da prodaju robu i usluge većini. Kako u većini srpskih opština malo toga ima da se radi sem farmerskog rada, mnogi Srbi zavise od plata iz Beograda. Ako ih obustave mnogi obrazovani Srbi doći će u iskušenje da odu. Obrazovanje je joše jedna osetljiva oblast i roditelji koji ne veruju lokalnim školama neće ostati. Srpskim školama i bolnicama trebalo bi se dozvoliti da nastave, ali Beograd i Priština treba da pregovaraju o mehanizmu za njihovu regitraciju i nadzor. Priština i Beograd imaju interes da sarađuju i izbegnu egzodus Srba sa Kosova koji bi Kosovo ostavio sa multietničkom konstitucijom zlo spojenom sa monoetničkom realnošću stvarajući nove tenzije u regiji i podrivajući njenu sliku među međunarodnim činiocima koji je podržavaju. Srbija bi teško mogla da priušti još jedan talas migranata u teškom ekonomskom okruženju. Priština se suočava sa teškom borbom za proširenje svoje vlasti severno od Ibra i, ako želi to da uradi, mora da pokaže da Srbi mogu imati dobar život na nezavisnom Kosovu. Ukoliko Priština i Srbija žele, kao što bi trebalo – čak i iz različitih motiva – da Kosovo zaista bude multietničko, moraju sarađivati na podršci srpskoj zajednici.

Priština/Istanbul/Brisel, 10. Septembar 2012

Executive Summary

Kosovo has implemented much of the Ahtisaari plan – the blueprint for its democracy, providing substantial rights for Serbs and other minorities – and deserves to be fully independent, but there should be no slippage, and remaining parts of the plan should be honoured. The Pristina government mostly abides by it, and many Serbs south of the Ibar River now accept its authority, obey its laws and take part in political life in a way unimaginable four years ago. These achievements are threatened, however, by the tense Kosovo-Serbia relationship, declining Serb numbers and Pristina’s frustration at its inability to extend its sovereignty to the Serb-majority northern areas and to achieve full international recognition. A surge in ethnically-motivated attacks shows peace is fragile. The government should remain committed to the Ahtisaari requirement for minorities. But the plan was not meant to work in isolation and cannot be separated from the overall Kosovo-Serbia relationship. Belgrade needs to earn Pristina’s trust and acquiescence for its continued involvement on Kosovo territory, especially the south.

The early years of Kosovo’s independence were supervised by an International Civilian Office (ICO) created by the Ahtisaari plan. On 10 September 2012, the ICO and international “supervision” end, leaving the Pristina government with full responsibility for the young country. This is a crucial time for Kosovo’s relations with its Serb population and Serbia; the Ahtisaari plan still provides the best model to guarantee peaceful co-existence.

Many Serbs in Kosovo cooperate with state institutions in order to protect their rights and interests, but those in the North remain intransigent. The government has written most of the Ahtisaari plan into its constitution and laws, with generous provisions for Kosovo Serbs, though implementation is sometimes unsatisfactory. It has devolved powers to municipalities, allowing not only Serbs but also the majority Albanians greater say in how they run local affairs. Nevertheless, many in Pristina are starting to question what they see as the preferential treatment given to Serbs. Communication is getting harder, as few young people speak the other’s language. After years with only a small number of inter-ethnic incidents, attacks on Serbs are becoming more frequent.

Serbia does not feel bound by the Ahtisaari plan and thus maintains a significant presence in Kosovo that increased after independence in 2008, when Belgrade was intent on showing that it retained some control over its co-nation­als. In northern Kosovo, Belgrade’s control over local administration is almost complete. In the south, it mainly pays many Serbs’ salaries and pensions and runs education and health systems without informing Pristina. The Kosovo government tolerates this but could attempt to close the Belgrade-based institutions in the south. Such a crackdown would probably cause many Serbs to leave quickly. When it agreed to the Ahtisaari plan, Kosovo accepted that Serbia would stay involved on its territory, though in a cooperative and transparent way. Belgrade has rejected this cooperation, however, and Kosovo is showing signs of impatience. If it will not accept the letter of the Ahtisaari plan, Belgrade needs to act in its spirit or risk losing what influence it still has in the south.

A decade ago, two thirds of Kosovo’s Serbs lived south of the Ibar, scattered among an overwhelmingly Albanian population, one third in the heavily Serb North. That north-south Serb balance has shifted toward parity, and the southern Serb population is rural, aging and politically passive. Its pool of educated, politically savvy individuals is tiny and out of proportion to the large role assigned the community in the Ahtisaari plan, especially as the Serbs in northern municipalities refuse to participate. They and other minorities depend wholly on privileges, including quotas; they do not have enough votes to win legislative seats in open competition. Their minority delegates in the Assembly seldom resist Albanian policy preferences. Serb delegates allowed the government to gut the Ahtisaari promise of an “independent Serbian language television channel”, for example, replacing it with a Serbian channel controlled by the state broadcaster.

The creation of six Serb-majority municipalities south of the Ibar has, nevertheless, largely succeeded; they have taken over most of the governing role from parallel structures financed by Serbia, even though education and health care remains under Belgrade’s control. The bigger municipalities like Gračanica and Štrpce have active assemblies, are implementing infrastructure development projects with foreign and Kosovo government funding and are taking on responsibilities in a wide range of areas. Other new municipalities are small, lack competent staff and struggle to raise the resources they need. But all municipalities in Kosovo are competing for limited public and private funds. Central authorities have a tendency to micromanage their spending and deprive them of means to raise money. Few municipal governments, Serb and Albanian alike, have the trained staff needed to exercise their devolved powers effectively, and they seldom cooperate with each other even in areas of mutual interest.

Pristina and its international partners have failed almost completely to overcome still strong resistance to the return of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs). Many of these are content to sell their property and resettle elsewhere, but stymied by corruption, intimidation and courts without Serbian language facilities cannot achieve even that modest goal. Even the Serbian Orthodox Church struggles to realise the property rights it has under the Ahtisaari plan. Serbs living in enclaves within Albanian-majority municipalities are increasingly vulnerable and in need of protection. Some villages in Serb-majority municipalities are also exposed to attacks from larger neighbouring Albanian settlements, usually motivated by conflict over land. Their security is Pristina’s responsibility, and the government must take effective measures to protect vulnerable minorities and their return.

The greatest obstacle facing the Serb community, and the serious threat to the Ahtisaari plan, may be the sheer difficulty of making a safe and sustainable living in minority areas. Mistrust, lack of proper registration and outright hostility all make it hard for minority-owned businesses to market goods and services to the majority. As there is little to do beyond farming in most Serb-majority municipalities, many Serbs depend on salaries from Belgrade. If these end, many educated Serbs will be tempted to leave. Education is another sensitive area, and parents who do not trust the local schools will not stay. The Serbian schools and hospitals should be allowed to continue, but Belgrade and Pristina need to negotiate a mechanism for their registration and oversight.

Pristina and Belgrade have an interest to cooperate and avoid an exodus of Kosovo’s Serbs that would leave Kosovo with a multi-ethnic constitution ill-matched to a mono-ethnic reality, creating fresh tensions for the region and undermining its image among its international supporters. Serbia could ill afford another wave of migrants in a difficult economic environment. Pristina faces a hard struggle extending its authority north of the Ibar and must show that Serbs can have a good life in independent Kosovo if it is to do so. If Pristina and Belgrade wish, as they should – even out of different motivations – that Kosovo be genuinely multi-ethnic, they must cooperate in support of its Serb community.

Pristina/Istanbul/Brussels, 10 September 2012

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