Punk will never die: Indonesian youth

Punk will never die: Indonesian youth

SEULAWAH, Indonesia - The Associated Press
Punk will never die: Indonesian youth

In this photo, Indonesian punk rock fans, their heads shaved clean, stand in lines before prayer at a police school where they are detained in Aceh province, Indonesia. AFP photo

German Chancellor Angela Merkel urged Kosovo and Serbia Dec. 19 to reach a peace deal to ease tensions in the Serb-run part of Kosovo, warning that they won’t get into the European Union if they don’t.

During her one-day visit to Kosovo, Merkel said Serbia cannot be a candidate for membership without finding a solution to free trade and border cooperation issues. “We made clear in direct talks with Serbia what we want, the need to come to a regulation of the traffic of goods which is currently not possible because of the barricades,” Merkel said. Kosovo Serbs have been maintaining around 15 roadblocks on roads leading to two disputed crossings to Serbia in northern Kosovo. They are protesting against the presence of ethnic Albanian customs and police officials there.

“(In northern Kosovo) we need to find smart ways of dealing with each other, joint border controls can be such a way,” Merkel said during a snap visit to the territory to meet prime minister Hashim Thaci and German troops serving with the NATO-led KFOR force there. “It is important that the joint border controls are implemented,” she said, urging the majority ethnic Albanian government in Pristina also to fulfill its obligations under the deal. Two weeks ago EU leaders delayed a decision on whether to grant Serbia candidacy status until March. Germany especially stressed that Belgrade needs to improve its relations with Kosovo before it can become a candidate to join the bloc.

 Merkel also repeated that Berlin wants Serbia’s parallel structures in the north of Kosovo-- like municipalities, courts and schools -- gone. “We need to step by step reach a point where there are no more parallel structures,” the chancellor said. “I believe that the independence of Kosovo was a huge step forward and now it is important that (Pristina) acts responsibly, does not stir up emotions but contributes to a peaceful solution of all conflicts,” Merkel urged. Kosovo premier Thaci told the joint press conference that continuing the dialogue with Belgrade “is the only option.” “At the same time this dialogue will only have real value when the agreements we have already reached are implemented. We hope that Serbia will move to do that,” Thaci said.

Compiled from AP and AFP stories by the Daily News Staff.