Turkish troops sent to the north of Kosovo to bolster a NATO-led peacekeeping mission in the territory, the Kosovo Force (KFOR), are going back home on Sept. 6, the Turkish defense ministry reported.
“Turkey continues to contribute to regional and global peace and stability in the framework of assignments within the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, as well as in the context of bilateral relations, monitoring closely the developments in the Balkans, where common historic and cultural values exist,” the Turkish ministry was quoted as saying by Anadolu Ajansi news agency.
Turkey’s reinforcements were requested by the NATO as tensions had been growing in the north of Kosovo. “After they arrived in Kosovo on June 6, 2023, our troops contributed considerably to securing peace in Kosovo from June 10 to August 31, accomplishing their mission,” the ministry went on to say in the release.
The tensions in the Serb-dominated north of Kosovo started on May 26, when new Albanian mayors of Zvecan, Zubin Potok and Leposavic entered their offices in the municipal buildings, escorted by police. The local Serbs protested, insisting that the new mayors be withdrawn together with the special police of Kosovo, in which they enjoyed Belgrade’s support.