24 January 2006

Secretary-General Offers Condolences on Death of Kosovo's President Rugova 

NEW YORK, 23 January (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued on 21 January by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

The Secretary-General has learned with great sadness of the death of Kosovo's President Ibrahim Rugova. He shares the grief of the people of Kosovo and extends his sincere condolences to President Rugova's family.

Throughout his life Mr. Rugova demonstrated true leadership and advocated a peaceful solution for Kosovo.

Mr. Rugova passed away at a crucial moment of final preparations for the talks on Kosovo's future status. The Secretary-General trusts in the maturity of Kosovo's institutions and believes that the loss of Kosovo's President will not disrupt this process.

The Secretary-General calls upon the Kosovo political leaders to maintain their unity and continue extending their full cooperation to the Secretary-General's Special Envoy, Martti Ahtisaari, and his Special Representative, Søren Jessen-Petersen.

* *** *