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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russia Criticizes UN Plan for Solving Kosovo Crisis

Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko, Russia's special envoy for Kosovo, said Thursday that the United Nations' plan for Kosovo would fail to protect the interests of Serbs.

Botsan-Kharchenko said UN envoy Martti Ahtisaari's plan for the breakaway Serbian province needed more work.

"We have serious doubts about the plan's ability to become a good foundation of the negotiations if it contains provisions leading to Kosovo's sovereignty and the independence of Kosovo," he told Itar-Tass.

Serbia's new parliament on Wednesday overwhelmingly rejected Ahtisaari's plan, which involves internationally supervised self-rule for Kosovo, including a flag, anthem, army, constitution and the right to join international organizations. The plan would also give minority Serbs more control over their own local governance.

Ahtisaari's proposal must be approved by the UN Security Council to take effect.

Asked whether Russia could veto Ahtisaari's plan at the council, he said Moscow was trying to encourage further talks.

Using "the veto right wasn't a goal in itself," he was quoted as saying. "We must help create favorable conditions for talks."

Botsan-Kharchenko said Ahtisaari's plan could lead to the division of Kosovo. "Kosovo's Serbs won't accept such decision, they will isolate themselves," he said.