Kosovo fails to become a member of Interpol for the third timeAdriatic Journal 20 November 2018
After two rounds of voting at Interpol’s general assembly at a session in Dubai, Kosovo was not admitted as a member in the international police organisation. This is Kosovo’s third attempt to become the organsiation’s member, after failed attempts in 2015 and 2016. Voting in support of Kosovo’s membership were 68 countries, while 51 voted against, with 16 abstaining. To join the organisation, Kosovo needed a support of two thirds of member states. Kosovo government said it was disappointed in the result, saying in a statement that “voting against Kosovo’s accession in this international organisation only serves…criminals and no one should rejoice”. The U.S. embassy in Priština described it as a missed chance to close “a critical security gap in the Balkans.” The embassy’s statement added that approving Kosovo as a member of Interpol “was never about recognition of Kosovo’s independence, but about strengthening global law enforcement cooperation and closing a critical security gap in the Balkans.” It said Kosovo’s police force is a “fully integrated and capable institution” with a tarck record of its ability to fight international terrorism, cybercriminals, as well as narcotics, arms, and human smuggling networks. “With this outcome, we all lose,” the U.S. statement concluded. Serbia, however, views the outcome as a major victory. Hailing the result, president Aleksandar Vučić said: “I am proud of our country’s struggle. I want to believe that this will be a clear, undoubted message to Europe and the world to understand that things cannot be solved with one-sided pressure. If Kosovo became a member of Interpol, it would allow it to distribute “red notices” (arrest requests), amongst other things, for Serbian officials that Kosovo considers to be war criminals for their actions during the war in 1998-99.