Lavrov wants end of "prejudged outcome" approach.

Contact Group foreign policy chiefs met in New York Thursday to discuss Kosovo.

The U.S., British, French, Russian, German and Italian foreign ministers, Condoleezza Rice, Bernard Kouchner,Sergei Lavrov, David Miliband Walter Steinmeier and Massimo D'Alema met for just over an hour.

During the meeting, Lavrov has openly demanded from his colleagues that they stop prejudging the outcome of the negotiations and claiming that Kosovo's independence was inevitable, the BBC reported on Friday, referring to diplomatic sources.

The European representatives have been, allegedly, encouraged by Washington's consent to restrain from any unilateral movements after December 10, BBC said.

Russia's representative to the mediating Troika, Aleksandr Botsan-Kharchenko, told the television that setting any deadlines for the talks "would be frivolous.

"A lot of them [deadlines] have been set up to now and a lot have expired," Kharchenko was quoted.

An official statement from the meeting yesterday expressed the Contact Group adherence to "a harmonized solution to Kosovo status, which would be approved by the UN Security Council," Tanjug reported.

The ministers said they were "determined that such a solution be reached, which would be sought through negotiations and which would be adopted by the UN Security Council," a joint statement issued after the meeting specified.

The foreign ministers of the Contact Group member states reiterated that "a speedy resolution of Kosovo status was crucial for the stability and security of the West Balkans and the whole of Europe," and backed the assessment of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon that the "status quo" in the province was "unsustainable."

Status quo has harmful consequences for the political, social and economic development of Kosovo and the stability of the region, the statement said.

This is why a solution has to be found with no further delay, it is specified.

At the meeting, full support was expressed for the process led by the negotiating Troika, which would be concluded by a report to be presented to the UN secretary general by December 10.

The foreign ministers concluded at their late Thursday meeting that the principles of the Contact Group from November 2005 should continue to represent the framework for the process of the Kosovo status settlement, which, as specified, was based on UN Security Council Resolution 1244.

The Troika diplomats, the EU's Wolfgang Ischinger, Frank Wisner of the United States and Russia's Aleksandr Botsan-Kharchenko, presented a progress report on the negotiations so far.

The meeting was also attended by EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy Javier Solana, Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn and NATO Secretary General Jaap De Hoop Scheffer.

[Source: By Tanjug News Agency, B92, New York, 28Sep07]

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