Optimism that a “good decade” will succeed years of misfortune for Kosovo was expressed on Friday by Kosovo politician and journalist Veton Surroi, who spoke in Athens in a panel discussion sponsored by the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP).

Surroi, who addressed the panel as the foreign policy board chairman in Pristina, stressed that the international court’s decision, namely, that Kosovo’s declaration of independence is not in violation of international law brought the issue from the UN to Brussels.

Referring to dialogue suggested by the international court between Serbia and Kosovo leaders, Surroi stated that Kosovo’s position will be that its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity are non-negotiable.

Defining the dialogue, he said it should be a binding negotiating process and not exploratory in nature. He stressed that it should concern Belgrade-Pristina relations and their Euro-Atlantic future, adding that Brussels should assume the role of a negotiator and not be just a mediator.

Addressing the discussion on the topic of “the Future of Kosovo after The Hague”, retired Greek diplomat and special ELIAMEP advisor Alexandros Mallias said dialogue on the definitive status of Kosovo should be called an “initiative for the next generation”, stressing that it concerns Serbs and the Kosovars, who will live side-by-side as European citizens.

He also referred to the “Agenda 2014” initiative being promoted by the Greek government as a follow up to the “Thessaloniki Agenda”, through which the EU accession prospect for the Balkan states was launched.