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Belgrade Urges Serbs To Accept EU-Brokered Kosovo Deal

Serbian Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic
MITROVICA -- Serbia's Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic has urged Serbs living in northern Kosovo to accept an EU-brokered agreement on normalizing relations between Belgrade and Pristina.

Speaking during a visit to northern Kosovo on May 12, Vucic admitted the deal is not ideal, but he told Serb leaders in Kosovska Mitrovica that it was "the only way for Serbia to survive, to exist, and remain united in the search for a path to a better future."

Serbs in northern Kosovo refuse to recognize the authority of the ethnic Albanian leadership of Kosovo, which declared independence from Serbia in 2008.

The EU-brokered agreement negotiated last month in Brussels gives some autonomy to ethnic Serbs in the north of Kosovo but concedes that Pristina has legal authority over the whole territory.

Based on reporting by AFP, RFE/RL's Balkan Service, and the BBC