BELGRADE (TASS): Serbian Defense Minister Nebojsa Stefanovic, together with Russian Amba-ssador Aleksandr Botan-Kharchenko and Military Attaché Major General Aleksandr Zinchenko, visited the line of demarcation with the Autonomous Territory of Kosovo and Metohija on Sunday. This was reported by the press service of the Ministry of Defense of Serbia.
“Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Nebojsa Stefanovic and Chief of the General Staff of the Serbian Army, General Milan Moisilovic, have begun examining the forces in a state of high alert and involved in the tactical groups located in the Raska garrison, the Rudnica military base and in the direction of the Yarine administrative transition.” , – said in the message of the press service. It notes that Botan-Kharchenko and Zinchenko also visited the demarcation line, “to personally verify the current situation.”
During the inspection of the troops, Stefanovich said that “the trip to the administrative crossing of Yarine was organized to get acquainted with the situation.” “We want to familiarize our friends with the situation, what is happening, and convince them that Serbia complies with international agreements and acts within the framework of its rights,” Tanjug quotes the minister .
Stefanovic stressed that in order to defuse the situation, Pristina must withdraw its troops from the line of demarcation. “Until then, it is impossible to negotiate with those who do not respect any treaty and lead to destabilization in order to expel Serbs from the north of Kosovo,” he said. The minister also called on the Serbian prosecutor’s office to initiate proceedings against the Kosovar police and to find out whether acts of terror have been carried out against the Serb population in recent days.
The Rudnica military ba-se and the Yarine checkpoint are located within the boundary line between Ce-ntral Serbia and the Auto-nomous Territory of Kos-ovo and Metohija, entering the Terrestrial Security Z-one, which is defined by th-e agreement of June 9, 1-999 in Kumanova. The zo-ne is a five-kilometer strip. The garrison in the village of Raska is 10 km away fr-om the administrative line.
Earlier, Serbian troops near Kosovo in the garrisons of Raska and Novi P-azar were put on high alert. According to Serbian me-dia, Serbian MiG-29 fighters are patrolling the dem-arcation line. The newspaper “Vecherne novosti” , referring to a photo in soc-ial networks, reported abo-ut the transfer of armored vehicles to the administrative line with Kosovo.
The situation on the administrative line between Kosovo and Central Serbia escalated on Monday, when hundreds of Kosovar police officers, including snipers, occupied the Yarine and Brnjak checkpoints. At the same time, the Serbs, outraged by the actions of the Kosovars, moved to the crossings in more than 400 vehicles and began a peaceful protest that continues to this day. Kosovars forcibly remove license plates from Serbian cars, replacing them with plates of unrecognized education and charging a “fee” of € 5.
On Thursday, Kosovo police attacked three Serbs. One of the victims was admitted to the hospital in the village of Zubin-Potok.
The Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija declared independence unilaterally in February 2008, and has recently been actively trying to join international organizations, including UNESCO and Interpol. More than 60 countries, including Russia, India and China, as well as five member states of the European Union, oppose the recognition of Kosovo.