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NATO To Send Extra Troops To Kosovo

A burned-out Kosovo police border post, which was attacked by members of the region's Serbian minority last week.
NATO will deploy additional troops in Kosovo following an escalation of violence in the disputed region.

The alliance, however, said on August 2 that the deployment was intended to relieve NATO forces currently engaged in maintaining security and was not tied to last week's clashes, sparked by a Kosovo police operation to seize two border crossings with Serbia.

One Kosovo police officer died in the clashes with members of Kosovo's Serbian minority.

"Our message is very clear: violence is unacceptable," NATO deputy spokeswoman Carmen Romero said in Brussels. "We welcome the fact that the situation has calmed down and dialogue is the only solution to the current situation."

Romero added that the NATO-led peacekeeping mission in Kosovo, KFOR, "will continue to take the necessary measures within its mandate to maintain the safe and secure environment in close coordination with EULEX," the European Union's rule-of-law mission in Kosovo.

NATO, which still has nearly 6,000 troops based in Kosovo, did not specify the size of the new reserve force.

compiled from agency reports