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Thaçi: Kosovo and the region still need the U.S.

Washington, February 4 2015 - The First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kosovo, Hashim Thaçi, in the framework of his official visit to the United States, today held a lecture at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University in Washington, DC to an audience made up of students, professors and former U.S. government officials.

During his lecture, Thaçi spoke about the achievements and challenges of Kosovo and its aspiration to join NATO and the EU, but always maintain the special relationship with the U.S.

According to him, the U.S. continued support remains important to both Kosovo and the region. Thaçi stressed that the EU and NATO are delayed in bringing Kosovo and the region closer and this allows for the negative influence of Russia and ISIS in the region.

"The delay in bringing Kosovo and the region closer to the EU and NATO gives way to the negative impact of Russia and ISIS in the region," Thaçi said.

He added that the U.S. have their political and military presence in Kosovo, including the economic presence in the form of investments. "Kosovo is proud to be the most pro-American country in the world and will remain a strategic partner of the U.S. and a promoter of common values," Thaçi said.

Participants at the lecture were interested in the ways that the U.S. should remain active in the region, the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia and the consolidation of Kosovo.

Professor Daniel Serwer from SAIS, the host of the lecture, stated that Kosovo today is much better than it was 15 years ago despite the challenges of transition and integration in the EU, and that things in Kosovo will continue to improve and that Kosovo will look even better in the future.