Denmark to recognize Kosovo

Other News Materials 21 February 2008 19:55 (UTC +04:00)

(dpa ) - Denmark on Thursday said it would recognize Kosovo as an independent state, the day after neighbouring Norway made a similar announcement.

Danish Foreign Minister Per Stig Moller said it was "crucial" that the leaders in Pristina were "committed to establishing a democratic, secular and multi-ethnic country that protects minorities," he was quoted as telling Danish news agency Ritzau.

In a related development, the Serbian ambassador to Norway, Vladislav Mladenovic, told Norwegian news agency NTB he would be summoned to Belgrade "for consultations" as soon as Norway's recognition of Kosovo was official.

Mladenovic said he was "surprised" that Norway was one of the first countries to recognize the breakaway Serb province despite not being a member of the 27-nation European Union.

The formal Norwegian decision was expected next week since the cabinet was not slated to meet Friday for its regular session.

Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Store said Wednesday the decision was "very difficult" and underlined that it was made since it was unlikely Serbia and Kosovo would agree on Kosovo's status.