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Kosovo Serbs Defy NATO Deadline On Roadblocks

A French KFOR soldier patrols at the Serbia-Kosovo border crossing of Brnjak
Serbs in northern Kosovo are defying a demand by NATO-led peacekeepers to remove more than a dozen roadblocks in a months-long standoff over control of two disputed crossings on the border with Serbia.

The NATO-led Kosovo peacekeeping force (KFOR) have demanded that Serbs remove the 16 roadblocks consisting of rocks, mud and logs by October 18.

Local Serbs have been blocking main roads leading to the border crossings since July to prevent the authorities of majority ethnic Albanian Kosovo from stretching their control over the Serb-dominated North.

Serbs reject the independence Kosovo unilaterally declared in 2008.

Serbs came out in larger numbers to man the roadblocks on October 18.

However, leaders in the northern Serb enclave, while refusing to order the barriers removed, also urged local Serbs to pull back if KFOR moves to dismantle them.

compiled from agency reports

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