In January 2008, the editors of this site conducted an interview with Mr Shahzad Bangash, Head of Office of Communities, Returns and Minority Affairs (OCRM), UNMIK on the transfer of competencies in the field of refugee returns and readmission to the PISG. At the margins of this interview, the question of the eventual impact of the readmission agreement concluded between the EU and Serbian was also raised:

Do you expect that the readmission agreement which was signed between the EU and Serbia and which just entered into force will also have an impact on refugee returns to Kosovo? What is the relevance of the UNHCR’s position on the continued need for international protection in this context?

UNMIK (OCRM): UNMIK / PISG have a Readmission Policy for Kosovo, which applies to all Readmission Requests to Kosovo from host countries. With relation to repatriation to Kosovo, the UNHCR Recommendations are still applicable and followed by the Kosovo Readmission Policy. It also remains the obligation of host countries to take UNHCR recommendations under consideration, when examining the possibility of repatriation of persons originating from Kosovo. The Readmission Agreement between EU and Serbia is a matter on which we cannot comment and clarifications should be sought through the EU/Serbian authorities.

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