US says Kosovo tax on Serb goods hurting its interests

PRISTINA, Kosovo (AP) — The United States has strongly advised Kosovo to revoke a 100 percent tariff on Serb and Bosnian goods, saying the duty runs counter to U.S. strategic interests.

Kosovo’s government imposed the measure last year and says it won’t be lifted until Belgrade recognizes its sovereignty and stops preventing it from joining international organizations. Serbia has said it won’t take part in dialogue to normalize ties until the tax is revoked, saying it has caused serious damage to its businesses.

A statement from the U.S. embassy in Pristina Friday demanded the tariff be revoked.

“We caution against assuming that Kosovo or any other friend of the United States can take actions that run counter to our strategic interests without facing consequences to our bilateral relationship,” it said.

Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj repeated Friday that the tariff won’t be lifted unless Serbia recognizes Kosovo

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