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(RFE/RL) January 29, 2007 -- The United Nations special envoy for Kosovo will visit Serbia this week to lay out his proposal for the breakaway province's future, despite pleas from Serbia's outgoing government to wait until a new cabinet is in place.


Martti Ahtisaari's office said he will formally present his plan in Belgrade on February 2. His trip will include a stop in Kosovo.


Serbia held elections on January 21 and talks on a new cabinet are expected to get under way today.



(Reuters)

Universal Principles?

President Putin at a Kremlin meeting in April (epa)

PUTIN SPEAKS OUT: During a January press conference, Russian President Vladimir Putin said there is a need for "universal principles" to settle "frozen" conflicts in the CIS. His comments came against the background of impending talks on the future status of Kosovo, which many predict will grant it a form of "conditional independence" from Serbia and Montenegro. As an ally of Serbia, Moscow has consistently opposed the idea of Kosovar independence. Putin's remarks suggest he may be shifting his position, but only if the principles applied to Kosovo are also applied to frozen conflicts in the former Soviet Union. If Kosovo can be granted full independence, he asked, why should we deny the same to Abkhazia and South Ossetia? (more)


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