NATO says it is ready to intervene in Kosovo if “stability is threatened”

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NATO-led forces are ready to intervene in northern Kosovo if the stability of the region is threatened.

nato said in a press release Sunday that tensions were rising in the municipalities of northern Kosovo and that the Kosovo Force Pristina (KFOR) was monitoring the situation closely.

FILE - A view of the road leading to the Jarinje and Bernjak border crossing points, after Kosovo Serbs removed the barricades they had erected, in Jarinje, Kosovo on October 1.  2, 2021.

FILE – A view of the road leading to the Jarinje and Bernjak border crossing points, after Kosovo Serbs removed the barricades they had erected, in Jarinje, Kosovo on October 1. 2, 2021.
(Erkin Keci/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

KFOR, the NATO-led peacekeeping force, was created in 1999 with the adoption of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244, which came about in response to the worsening humanitarian crisis.

Tensions are on the rise again under a new government regulation that will require people entering Kosovo with Serbian identity cards to replace them with a temporary document while there.

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On Sunday, ethnic Serbs in northern Kosovo – a partially recognized state bordered by Serbia in the Balkans – blocked two keys border crossings with Serbia to protest the new rule.

NATO said KFOR was monitoring the situation closely “and stands ready to intervene if stability is threatened”.

“KFOR maintains a visible and agile posture on the ground, and the KFOR Commander is in contact with all his main interlocutors, including representatives of Kosovo security organizations and the Serbian Defense Ministry,” the official said. NATO in a statement.

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The new regulations were to come into effect on August 1. 1, but Kosovo announced later on Sunday that it would postpone the decision on Serbian-issued license plates and IDs until September 1. 1.