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Serbian Nationalist MPs Seek Resolution Freezing Push Toward Ties with EU


Nationalists in the Serbian parliament, angered by European backing for Kosovo's independence, have introduced a resolution that would freeze Belgrade's movement towards membership in the European Union.

The draft from Serbia's Radical Party requires Belgrade to freeze preliminary accession talks with the European Union, unless the union recognizes Serbia's sovereignty over Kosovo - Serbia's breakaway province that declared independence last month.

It also demands the withdrawal of an EU mission now in Kosovo, and that EU countries that have recognized an independent Kosovo reverse their decisions.

Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica and his followers do not want ties with the EU without Kosovo.

The draft resolution shows signs of splitting the coalition government - a tenuous alliance between Mr. Kostunica and the pro-Western party of President Boris Tadic.

In Brussels Wednesday, EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn appealed to Serbia to heed the will of what he called the country's "silent majority" and reaffirm its commitment to building ties with the union.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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