Kosovo Calls for NATO Intervention as Border Tensions With Serbia Rise
Kosovo is calling for NATO intervention on its behalf following a weekend of border tensions with Serbia that eventually turned hot. Shots were fired at the border after Serbians started to erect barricades on the main roads along the Kosovo-Serbia border.
For the past few months, there have been intermittent clashes between Kosovar law enforcement and Serbian “criminal gangs” who are allegedly trying to restrict “freedom of movement”. As Tyler Durden of ZeroHedge reported, “Central to the conflict is Kosovo’s enforcement of a hugely controversial law banning Serbian license plates on vehicles.”
The BBC reported on the ongoing tensions between Kosovar police and Serbian groups: “Kosovo police said they had come under fire in different locations close to a lake bordering Serbia late on Saturday, with officers returning fire in self-defense.”
“Kosovo deployed police to majority-Serb areas – which do not recognize the Kosovo government in the capital Pristina – at the end of last week,” the BBC report added.
When Kosovar authorities arrested renowned Serbian policeman Dejan Pantic, tensions began to rise.
After tensions flared up during the weekend, an individual threw a stun grenade at a EULEX car (the European Union mission in Kosovo). This attack didn’t result in any injuries.
Pantic is now in detention and has been accused by Kosovar authorities “of committing terrorist acts and attacking the constitutional order.”
During a press conference on December 11, Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti called on the Kosovo Force (KFOR), a NATO-led international peacekeeping force, to intervene by deploying peacekeeping troops to curtail the violence. Roughly 6% of Kosovo’s population of 1.8 million is of Serbian extraction.
Serbia remains a major hotspot for geopolitical conflicts. As one of Russia’s oldest allies, Serbia is often viewed as a proxy for Russia. Anti-Russia hawks use it as a punching bag whenever they can’t sufficiently stabilize Russia.
The Yugoslav Wars of the 1990s demonstrated the Collective West’s brutality towards Serbia, and even to this day, Western actors want nothing more than to completely pummel it into submission.
Serbia is one place where geopolitical observers should keep their eyes on because World War III could easily kick off in that region, in the same way the Balkans were the flashpoint that led to the outbreak of World War I over a century ago.