Ahtisaari: Not my fault Serbia lost Kosovo

Martti Ahtisaari, former special envoy of the UN Secretary General in talks on the future status of Kosovo, has said he feels no guilt about Belgrade's rights and that his plan is not to blame for the fact Serbia has lost the right to govern Kosovo.

(KosovoCompromiseStuff) Monday, September 17, 2012

I do not feel any guilt. Why would I? Your question is like asking if Russia should have influence in Finland. No. Both countries are independent and they should treat each other accordingly. History and what happened in the Balkans should not be forgotten. When certain things happened, Serbia lost the right to govern Kosovo. This was stated clearly, and my plan is clear on this point, Ahtisaari explained in an interview for the Frankfurt-based daily .

Ahtisaari noted that there was nothing wrong with his plan - the Comprehensive Proposal for the Kosovo Status Settlement, and that everyone knew in early 2006 what he would propose.

After the meeting in London on January 31, 2006, I asked the members of the Contact Group to relay messages to Belgrade, Pristina and the Kosovo Serbs. The first item in these eight private messages was very clear: in light of what had happened in Kosovo, due to Serbia's actions, Kosovo's return inside Serbia was not a sustainable option, said Ahtisaari.

According to Ahtissari, everyone knew this and the negotiations were academic in a way, because Serbia did not want to cooperate.

But the message was clear and I am glad I made a plan which reminded everyone in the world that if certain bad things happen, those in power will lose their right to rule, said Ahtisaari.

He said that he had always believed that a deterioration in U.S.-Russian relations led to Russia blocking the process in the UN Security Council, and that this was not really related to Kosovo, but to the relations between these two countries.

During the negotiations, while the plan was being prepared, there was no cooperation with Serbia, Serbian professionals were threatened they would lose their jobs if they cooperated. My colleagues and I wanted to have the best possible protection for minorities, especially for the Serb community, and I do not think you will find better protection mechanisms than those in the plan, said Ahtisaari.