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UN SG not commenting on legality of Kosovo independence declaration

[JURIST] UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon [official website] Monday refused to comment on the legality of Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence [text; JURIST report] from Serbia, instead calling on all parties to "exercise maximum restraint" [transcript] in response to the declaration. Ban also reiterated that "the recognition of states" is a decision for other states and not the UN Secretariat. He did not specifically address whether the UN will dissolve the Kosovo Parliament pursuant to a request from Serbia, which is seeking to annul Kosovo's action.

On Monday, the United States and several key European Union powers formally recognized Kosovo as a sovereign state [JURIST report]. The United Kingdom, France, and Germany have endorsed Kosovo's independence, while Spain, Slovakia, Greece, Cyprus, and Romania have refused to do so. The Serbian government, which immediately denounced the unilateral declaration as illegal [press release], said Monday it would never recognize Kosovo as an independent entity. The Serbian Interior Ministry has filed treason charges [JURIST report] against Kosovo's prime minister, president and speaker of parliament for their roles in organizing the declaration of independence. The Indian Express has more.

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