Montenegro 'intends to join KFOR'

(MENAFN- The Journal Of Turkish Weekly) Montenegro is waiting for NATO approval to contribute troops to KFOR forces in Kosovo after it "expressed [the] intention" to join BIRN has learned. Several sources from Montenegro’s defence and foreign affairs ministries have confirmed the government submitted a request to NATO to send soldiers to Kosovo beforePodgorica received its invitation to join the alliance last week. "The Western military alliance's decision is expected soon" a senior official from the foreign Ministry told BIRN. Montenegro plans to deploy a few soldiers a defence ministry official said in accordance with the capacity of its 2000-strong armed forces. Although Montenegro's army has participated in several international missions including NATO-led International Security Assistance Force operations in Afghanistan it has never deployed military units in Kosovo because of the complicated internal political situation. A large proportion of Montenegrins about a third of the population declare themselves as ethnic Serbs andstill strongly oppose Kosovo’s independence which was recognised by Podgorica in 2008. Ethnic Serbs in Montenegro maintain that Kosovo is a province of Serbia. Kosovo and Montenegro established diplomatic relations in 2010 but Podgorica still has only a chargé d’affaires in Pristina and not an ambassador. NATO has been leading peace-keeping operations in Kosovo since June 1999 in support of wider international efforts to build peace and stability in the area. KFOR was established following NATO’s 78-day air strikes campaign against former Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic’s regime which was aimed at putting an end to violence in Kosovo. KFOR’s original objectives were to deter renewed hostilities establish a secure environment and ensure public safety and order demilitarize the Kosovo Liberation Army support the international humanitarian effort and coordinate with the international civil society presence. So far Croatia is the only ex-Yugoslav republic to have contributed soldiers to KFOR forces. Zagreb deployed its first unit in 2009.

The Journal Of Turkish Weekly

Legal Disclaimer:
MENAFN provides the information “as is” without warranty of any kind. We do not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, images, videos, licenses, completeness, legality, or reliability of the information contained in this article. If you have any complaints or copyright issues related to this article, kindly contact the provider above.