Kosovo Serbs are expected to turn out in force this week for a referendum in the north of the disputed enclave, with the question of whether or not to accept the NATO-backed Kosovo government on the agenda.
The likely result is no real mystery. The ethnic Serbs have overwhelmingly rejected being part of the Albanian-dominated Kosovo, and seek to rejoin Serbia. Pointing this out yet again, however, doesn’t sit well with the international community.
The United Nations operation in Kosovo is rejecting the vote entirely, insisting that it is “contrary to current law” and that they will not allow the vote to have any effect on the continued rule of the ethnic Serbian north.
German General Erhard Drews, the head of NATO’s occupation force, which has repeatedly clashed with Serb protesters, took the threats up another step, insisting that even holding the vote could lead to attacks against ethnic Serbs in southern Kosovo.