NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg met with Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić in Belgrade to discuss the escalation of tensions on the border between Serbia and Kosovo. Stoltenberg expressed concern over the build-up of Serbian army forces, stating that it could further exacerbate the situation and calling the violence in the north unacceptable. He welcomed Serbia’s intention to prosecute those responsible for the attack in Banjska.
During a joint press conference, Stoltenberg announced that NATO had deployed an additional 1,000 soldiers and heavy weapons to Kosovo after a recent conflict. He emphasized NATO’s commitment to maintaining peace and called on both Kosovo and Serbia to reduce tensions and refrain from actions that could contribute to further escalation.
Stoltenberg also voiced support for the formation of the Union of Serbian Municipalities (ZSO) and encouraged dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina under the auspices of the European Union for lasting peace and stability. Discussions were also held regarding the possibility of joint exercises between Serbia and NATO. Vučić highlighted the importance of cooperation with NATO, expressing hope that NATO could provide security for Serbian people in Kosovo. Stoltenberg reiterated NATO’s respect for Serbia’s military neutrality while emphasizing long-term partnership between Serbia and Alliance.
After visiting Sarajevo and Pristina, Stoltenberg will continue his Balkan tour in North Macedonia to meet with leaders of NATO members from the region. During his visit, he praised cooperation between Serbia and NATO in various areas such as Science for Peace, energy security, environmental security, cyber defense.