Serbia orders its ambassador to leave US

Updated on Feb 19, 2008 02:44 AM IST

Serbian order is a counter measure to US recognition of Kosovo independence, PM Vojislav Kostunica says.

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AFP | By, Belgrade

Serbia ordered its ambassador in Washington to leave the United States as a counter measure to US recognition of Kosovo independence, Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica told parliament on Monday.

"The government of Serbia ordered that the ambassador of Serbia in Washington urgently withdraw to Belgrade," Kostunica said.

"That is the first urgent measure of the government which will be implemented in all countries that recognise unilateral independence" of Kosovo, he added.

The US decision to formally recognise an independent Kosovo "cannot make the fake state real, but it showed to the entire world the real face of the US policy of forcing" a solution, Kostunica said at an emergency session of the parliament.

Late Monday, the Beta news agency reported that Serbia had also ordered its ambassadors to withdraw from other countries that recognised the new state.

"Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic ordered urgent withdrawal of ambassadors from all countries that had recognised the unilateral proclamation of independence of Kosovo," the agency said, quoting a foreign ministry statement.

The instruction on the withdrawals was sent to Serbia's ambassadors in the United States, France and Turkey, it added.
The ambassadors should leave a hosting country within 48 hours since handing in a Serbian Foreign Ministry demarche and come back to Serbia for "consultations until further notice," the statement said.

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