The two Balkan neighbours had been at loggerheads for more than 10 days after Kosovo banned vehicles with Serbian registration plates from entering its territory reciprocating Belgrade's years-long practice.
Serbia and Kosovo have reached an agreement to end the tense standoff at their border.
"We have a deal! After two days of intense negotiations, an agreement on de-escalation and the way forward has just been reached", EU envoy Miroslav Lajcak tweeted on Thursday.
The two neighbours were at loggerheads for more than 10 days after Kosovo banned vehicles with Serbian registration plates from entering its territory — the same practice Serbia has been doing for vehicles travelling the other way for years.
After Kosovo dispatched special police units to oversee the ban's implementation, local Serbs rebelled and blocked the roads leading to the border. Serbia then responded by deploying armoured vehicles close to the border.
According to an European Union-brokered deal struck in Brussels, Kosovo agreed to remove the special police units by Saturday and the local Serbs agreed to dismantle the barricades. NATO-led peacekeepers from the KFOR mission will also be deployed at the border for two weeks.
Both sides also agreed to a provisional solution for the number of licence plates until a permanent compromise is reached.
We have a deal! After two days of intense negotiations, an agreement on de-escalation and the way forward has just been reached. I thank Besnik Bislimi and Petar Petkovic for their readiness to negotiate and agree for the good of the people. pic.twitter.com/OuhuUWvuG0— Miroslav Lajčák (@MiroslavLajcak) September 30, 2021
Serbia's EU future
This comes as the European Union's chief executive said on Thursday she supported Serbia's future membership of the bloc, adding that she wanted to see progress in negotiating rounds but that Belgrade needed to deliver on reforms.
During a visit to Serbia, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said she was worried about the border dispute with Kosovo and urged both countries to intensify their talks aimed at broader reconciliation.
"I am a strong advocate for bringing Serbia into the European Union," von der Leyen said in a speech to open a railway.
"We support Serbia's ambition to open as soon as possible new accession clusters," she said, referring to negotiating chapters.