Moscow Opposes Albanian Leaders' Unilateral Decision On Kosovo Status

Moscow feels it important that the leaders of the Albanian community should not make unilateral decisions on the eventual status of Kosovo, said Alexander Yakovenko, an official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, in his interview to RIA Novosti on Thursday. In his comments on the results of recent regional elections in Kosovo, the Russian diplomat stressed that it was crucially important to commit to sovereignty and territorial integrity of Yugoslavia in the search for the fair settlement of the Kosovo problem. According to Mr. Yakovenko, the elections are only a start of the lengthy process, whose outcome will depend on whether the government succeeds in providing for equality for every ethnic community in the region and in creating a mechanism for effective and fair participation of the entire population, regardless of ethnicity. The Russian diplomat believes that in this context a special responsibility lies with international institutions. The most important one, the UN mission in Kosovo, is yet to meet its obligations under Resolution 1244 of the UN Security Council. The full text of the interview with Russian Foreign Ministry Official Representative Alexander Yakovenko in Russian is available free of charge at RIA Novosti's site under section Politics.