Minister snubs conference over Kosovo representation

BELGRADE -- Serbian cabinet minister Milan Marković on Monday did not attend the opening of a gay rights conference in Budva, Montenegro.

Milan Marković (Tanjug, file)
Milan Marković (Tanjug, file)

The reason was that a delegation of the Kosovo authorities also participated, but was not represented according to the agreement reached last month during the EU-sponsored Kosovo dialogue.

This is the third such incident since the agreement was announced.

Marković's Ministry for Human and Minority Rights, State Governance and Local Self-Government said in a statement issued in Belgrade that the minister and another official did not take part in the conference dedicated to rights of sexual minorities, organized by the Montenegrin government.

Marković was also to deliver the speech to open the conference.

The Montenegrin government website in the meantime said that the conference was opened by Montenegrin Prime Minister Igor Lukšić, while opening addresses were also given by a Croatian deputy prime minister and a deputy prime minister of the Kosovo Albanian government in Priština.

The agreement that aimed to allow Priština to take part in regional gatherings along with Serbian representatives states that the word Kosovo should be accompanied by an asterisk pointing to a footnote, which reads, "This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSC 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence".