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Wednesday, March 21, 2018, 

Tough battle ahead in UNESCO over Pristina's bid, says Serbia's FM

Tough battle ahead in UNESCO over Pristina

Belgrade, 28 September 2015 (MIA) - Serbia's Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic says a tough diplomatic battle in UNESCO is ahead to prevent the admission of Kosovo to the international organization, Tanjug reports.

Dacic on Sunday evening took part in a meeting of foreign ministers of member countries of UNESCO, and told Serbia's state broadcaster RTS that he informed them about the difficult situation concerning the Serb cultural heritage in Kosovo.

"I particularly pointed out the danger that our cultural heritage in Kosovo is in, presented the facts, pointed out there are four structures in Kosovo under the protection of UNESCO. Of course, apart from this physical destruction, I pointed out to the fact that almost all of them have been sprayed with the graffiti of Islamic State, against which the whole world is currently fighting," said Dacic.

The minister "admitted that a tough diplomatic battle is ahead to prevent the admission of Kosovo to UNESCO."

"Most countries realize how complicated this issue is, however, their states have made a decision to recognize the unilaterally proclaimed independence of Kosovo, so that we will have a tough battle in the Executive Board and the General Conference of UNESCO which are scheduled for October and November this year," he added.

"Serbia is pointing out that putting these issues on the agenda before they have been discussed in the dialogue conducted in Brussels is counterproductive and would represent a difficulty in our future dialogue," said the minister.

Dacic also said that "everything possible is being done to point out to the harmful effects of such decisions and the politicization of UNESCO."

"Will we succeed? Sometimes it does not matter whether you are right, but what the numbers are. Currently they are not on our side, but we are pointing out that we are talking about a specific approach to religious and cultural heritage, its destruction, and that it makes no difference whether that is done by Islamic State or anyone else, including in Kosovo," Dacic said. ik/11:57


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