Updated: 24-Jul-2001 NATO Press Releases

(2001) 110

24 July 2001

Press statement by the Secretary General

Maintaining the ceasefire in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia(1) is of prime importance. I urge both parties to stick to their commitments of 5 July. Provocations and encroachments are unacceptable and must stop. In particular, I call on the so-called NLA to revert to their positions at the time of their ceasefire undertakings. They must show respect for the safety of the civil population, intimidation and kidnapping must end, and the Jazince-Tetovo road must be free from road-blocks.

The local allegations over the weekend that KFOR was resupplying the ethnic Albanian armed groups are entirely and totally false: NATO has not given, and would not give, material or moral support to these groups. NATO has made plain that there can only be a political solution to this crisis. It cannot be resolved militarily. The EU and NATO, with the US, are engaged in seeking an urgent political resolution which preserves the sovereignty, territorial integrity and democratic institutions of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

The political dialogue must be taken forward to a conclusion speedily. An opportunity for a solution exists - and must be grasped.

  1. Turkey recognises the Republic of Macedonia with its constitutional name.
+32 (0)2 707 50 41
+32 (0)2 707 50 57
B-1110 Brussels/Bruxelles

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