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Kosovo not backing out of trade war with Serbia

PRISTINA, Kosovo (AP) — Kosovo’s prime minister says a new 100 percent tariff on Serbian imports will remain until Serbia recognizes his country’s sovereignty and stops preventing it from joining international organizations.

Ramush Haradinaj said Thursday his government had to impose the tariffs because it “was left without other options” and needed to send a “message”.

The European Union previously warned Kosovo that the customs tax was a violation of the Central European Free Trade agreement.

However, Haradinaj said the tax was likely to stay in force “for a very long time” because Kosovo is no longer willing to accept being “denied a place at the (negotiating) table”.

Kosovo seceded from Serbia in 2008 but is not recognized by Serbia. Serbia campaigned against allowing Kosovo to join Interpol, and Kosovo’s bid failed this month.

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