India not to recognize Kosovo

Last Updated: Mon, Aug 09, 2010 15:10 hrs

A month after the International Court of Justice said that Kosovo's declaration of independence was legal, India has reacted saying it will continue to not recognize the east European state.

On July 22, ICJ had given an advisory opinion on the declaration by Kosovo, a breakaway region of Serbia, saying it had not violated any international law in its declaration of Independence on Feb 17, 2008.

In its first response since the ruling, the external affairs ministry spokesperson, Vishnu Prakash said that India was studying the ICJ's opinion on Kosovo issue. 'Our position on Kosovo's UDI (Unilateral Declaration of Independence) has not changed,' he said.

India had explained its refusal to recognize Kosovo's declaration of independence in 2008, saying that 'recognition is normally accorded on the basis of a country having a defined territory, a duly constituted government in charge which is accepted by the people and which has effective control over an area of governance.'

'It has been India's consistent position that the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries should be fully respected by all states,' the Indian government had said.

According to officials, India is concerned that the Kosovo matter could set a 'dangerous precedent' for other cases around the world. India also grapples with internal secessionist issues in certain provinces.

So far, over 65 nations have recognized Kosovo's independence from Serbia.

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