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UNMIK Headlines 14 January

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• Thaçi to initiate reciprocity (Zëri)
• Autonomy for the north, dangerous for the region (Koha Ditore)
• Serbia’s resolution, (un)serious offer for the north (Koha Ditore)
• EU does not comment on Serb resolution on Kosovo (Koha Ditore)
• ANA: We will enter war with Serbia (Zëri)
• Lost Kosovo (Express)
• Vucic: We will remove the monument in Presevo (Koha Ditore)
• Drecun: Veseli indoctrinated Albanians in Presevo Valley (Zëri)
• Bedri Hamza resigns from minister’s post (Zëri)
• ‘Two Germanys’ model does not work (Express)

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Headlines – 14.01.2013

Thaçi to initiate reciprocity (Zëri)

Approving Serbia’s resolution for Kosovo, which insists that there is no alternative to autonomy for the north, is a clear indication that the north will be addressed in the upcoming meeting on 17 January between Prime Ministers Hashim Thaçi and Ivica Dacic.

According to analysts, if the north is put on the table for discussions, a reciprocal solution should then be demanded for Presevo Valley. Experts say that the ball is now in Kosovo’s court and that PM Thaçi should assume political responsibility for presenting the Presevo Valley problem in talks with Serbia. 

Autonomy for the north, dangerous for the region (Koha Ditore)

Opposition parties LDK and Vetëvendosje are rejecting any kind of autonomy for the north as a condition for establishing the northern municipality of Mitrovica and organizing elections in four northern municipalities.

For LDK, autonomy for the north would be “unconstitutional”, while for Vetëvendosje it would mean “giving up any kind of central government authority”. However, civil society considers any kind of autonomy for the north “dangerous for the region”. 

Serbia’s resolution, (un)serious offer for the north (Koha Ditore)

According to Serb politicians in northern Kosovo and political experts, the Serbian Assembly approved the resolution for Kosovo on 12 January, which defines policies that the Government in Belgrade will address and focuses on the dialogue with Kosovo, which is expected to continue with EU facilitation.

Oliver Ivanovic, former Serbian government official, told Radio Free Europe that the approval of this resolution has confirmed strong feeling of Serbia for the problem of Kosovo but also the readiness of Serb state that the problems in Kosovo should be resolved peacefully.   

EU does not comment on Serb resolution on Kosovo (Koha Ditore)

EU authorities in Brussels did not wish to comment on the Serbian Assembly-approved resolution on Kosovo, however insist on the importance of the Pristina-Belgrade dialogue.

“We don’t have any comment on the platform or the resolution,” spokesperson for EU High Representative Catherine Ashton, Maja Kocijancic, told Serb news agency Tanjug. She added that Lady Ashton believes it is more important that both parties remain committed to the dialogue. 

ANA: We will enter war with Serbia (Zëri)

The Albanian National Army reappeared, this time in Vushtrri, where it announced that it would mobilize its members to defend “against Serb threats to secede a part of the Kosovo territory and threats to forcibly remove the UÇPMB monument in Presevo”.

In a meeting in Vushtrri, ANA said: “We will most definitely enter a war with Serbia. It still refuses to see that Presevo, Medvegja and Bujanovc are Albanian lands and no one should dare touch them. Albanians are not orphans,” said colonel Kaçak, an ANA commander. 

Lost Kosovo (Express)

Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dacic said Serbia practically lost sovereignty over Kosovo and that autonomy for Serbs who live in Kosovo is the most that Belgrade can hope to rescue. According to RFE, Dacic stated at The Parliament on Saturday that Serbia cannot “keep its head under the sand”, regarding Kosovo. Addressing the deputies who were debating on the resolution that appeals for autonomy for Serbs living in Kosovo, Dacic said that “Serbian sovereignty” over Kosovo is “practically nonexistent.” 

Vucic: We will remove the monument in Presevo (Koha Ditore)

The Serbian Defence Minister Aleksandar Vucic said that the state of Serbia will soon react on the monument in Presevo. Though he did not explicitly say that the monument will be taken down, he did stress that no one can behave illegally and hide behind ethnicity. “There is a hot head somewhere that thinks politicians should threaten the state,” Vucic told RFE.

Drecun: Veseli indoctrinated Albanians in Presevo Valley (Zëri)

Milovan Drecun, chairman of the Serbian Parliament’s Council for Kosovo, and a trusted associate of the Yugoslav military intelligence, said on Saturday that authorities in Tirana and Pristina are behind the “extremely tough position” of Albanian representatives in southern Serbia regarding the UCPMB monument. Drecun claims that Tirana, in agreement with Pristina, wants to destabilize southern Serbia. He also added that Kadri Veseli, Thaçi’s right hand and former head of the Kosovo Intelligence Service, had intensive talks yesterday with several Albanian political leaders from southern Serbia.

Bedri Hamza resigns from minister’s post (Zëri)

Sources told the paper that Finance Minister Bedri Hamza resigned and the Government approved it. According to sources, following his resignation, Hamza could be offered other senior government positions: he could either be appointed Kosovo’s representative to the International Monetary Fund in Washington or governor of the Kosovo Central Bank. 

‘Two Germanys’ model does not work (Express)

Former adviser to the U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden, Mitchel Hartzel, told Jeta në Kosovë newspaper that the ‘two Germanys’ model would not work for Kosovo and Serbia. “Albanians and Serbs are not the same nation,” said Haltzel. He added that Serbia can’t be compared with Germany after World War II.

“There are distinctions. First of all,Serbiahas not been occupied,” said Haltzel. “We had hundreds of thousands of troops in Germany and we lead the country with a military governor,” said Hertzel. “I do not think that there are people inBelgradewho call themselves Albanians of Kosovo. Of course, there are people that have mixed feelings, but the majority think differently.”

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