Serbs protesting Kosovo's independence for a fifth straight day Friday attacked U.N. police guarding a key bridge in northern Kosovo with stones, glass bottles and firecrackers on Friday.
Serbia's prime minister appealed for calm as the European Union condemned rioting in the capital Belgrade overnight when demonstrators attacked the U.S. embassy and other Western mission. The United States and EU heavyweights Britain, France and Germany have formally recognized Kosovo.
Serbian President Boris Tadic called an emergency meeting of the national security council, saying the riots that engulfed the capital overnight must "never happen again."
In Serb-dominated northern Kosovo, demonstrators waved Serbian flags and chanted "Kosovo is ours!" Police tried to keep protesters off the Kosovska Mitrovica bridge over the Ibar River. The bridge, which divides Kosovo Serbs from ethnic Albanians, has long been a flashpoint of tensions in Kosovo's restive north
Kosovo's ethnic Albanian leaders declared independence from Serbia on Sunday. The province, which is 90 percent ethnic Albanian, has not been under Serbia's control since 1999, when NATO launched airstrikes to halt a Serbian crackdown on ethnic Albanian separatists. A U.N. mission has governed Kosovo since.
Prime Minister Hashim Thaci said Friday the violence was reminiscent of former Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic's bloody crackdown on ethnic Albanian separatists in Kosovo.