Kosovo wants EU, NATO to warn Serbia against escalation

Kosovo's president has called on the European Union and NATO to warn Serbia against inciting a new conflict in Kosovo and the region.

President Hashim Thaci's request followed a Brussels meeting with Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic and their prime ministers convened by EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini.

In a statement Thursday, Thaci accused Belgrade of inciting inter-ethnic hatred in northern Kosovo. Tensions started to build there in December when ethnic Serbs erected a wall at a bridge, saying it was to prevent landslides. The barrier was seen as a provocation by the ethnic Albanian majority.

Mogherini has urged the countries to normalize ties "both to preserve peace and advance towards the European Union."

Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, but Serbia has not recognized it as a separate country.