Kosovo, Pristina, June 13th, 2014
The Commander of KFOR, Major General Salvatore Farina, accompanied by a delegation of KFOR HQ Staff has been received by Chief of the Defence Staff of the Serbian Armed Forces General Ljubisa DIKOVIC at a military base in the south of Serbia.
This meeting was part of the agenda of the High-Level Talks conducted in line with the Military Technical Agreement (MTA), known as the Kumanovo Treaty. It is the fourth time that Major General met with General DIKOVIC since September of last year.
Throughout the meeting important themes were discussed such as the security situation in Kosovo and the role of KFOR units during the general elections engaged as "third responders" in support of the Kosovo Police and EULEX.
In this perspective, the Commander of KFOR emphasized that for the first time Kosovo Serbs from the north participated in the general election: a positive and encouraging outcome of the fruitful dialogue between Pristina and Belgrade started in April of 2013 that NATO and KFOR in particular supports and fosters.
General Farina updated General Dikovic about the broad KFOR activity in Kosovo: the trend is very positive throughout all the territory including the north that is the area where KFOR continues to maintain a permanent presence aimed at ensuring a safe and secure environment and freedom of movement for all the citizens and organizations operating in that part of the territory.
During the meeting the important issue of monitoring of the ABL in line with what is indicated by the MTA was also addressed.
In particular COM KFOR confirmed that the situation is calm and stable all along the approximately 350 kilometers of the Administrative Boundary Line.
In brief, no significant incidents, events or violations which have jeopardized the security and freedom of movement has been reported recently: the constant monitoring activity conducted by KFOR forces, the excellent relations between the NATO Joint Military Commission members and the SAF counterparts as well as the mutual activities carried out on a daily base along the ABL (synchronized patrols) help to maintain a peaceful, cooperative and positive atmosphere.
The two senior officers have confirmed that this productive cooperation is going to continue in the future.
During the working lunch the two generals similarly discussed the important mutual cooperation between KFOR, SAF and other prominent regional counterparts and international stakeholders in order to enhance the security situation in the wide Balkan area.
In this regard General Farina recalled that just on Wednesday 11th June a very important conference named "A-5", attended by the Chiefs of Defence of Albania, Bosnia Herzegovina, Croatia, FYROM and Montenegro, took place.
During this year's meeting the discussion focused on issues related to the management of crises arising from natural disasters and possible contribution to overseas operations.
At the "A-5" meeting was also invited as guest Lieutenant General KadriKastrati Kosovo Security Force (KSF) Commander who addressed issues related to the KSF Core Capabilities (Engineering, Search & Rescue, Explosive Ordnance Disposal – EOD, medical, etc.) aimed to face disaster relief/humanitarian support crisis.
In the late morning, on the sidelines of the High Level Talks meeting, a friendly football match between KFOR and SAF teams was played. It ended 3 to 1 in favor of the SAFteam.
It has been an informal occasion strongly favored by the two high generals to increase mutual understanding and trust. The "return match" will be hosted by KFOR next month.
COM KFOR meets on a regular basis with the CHOD's of the four countries bordering the KFOR Area of Responsibility, namely Albania, FYROM, Montenegro and Serbia.
Major General Salvatore Farina over the last six months has visited Belgrade, Tirana, Skopje and Podgorica and he has also hosted the Chief of the General Staff of the Serbian Armed Forces in January and the Chief of the General Staff of the Albanian Armed Forces in KFOR HQ in Camp Film City at PRISTINA in March.