- U.S. wants KSF transformation through Constitution (Koha Ditore)
- Veseli: We are days away from having an army (Klan Kosova)
- “Army unites Kosovo political spectrum” (Zeri)
- Serbs afraid of Thaci’s Plan B (Lajmi)
- Serbian List against creation of Kosovo army (Kosova Sot/Zeri)
- Kosovo government pledges to submit border demarcation in March (Koha)
- Delawie: Extremism and terrorism, present in every country (Epoka)
Kosovo Media Highlights
U.S. wants KSF transformation through Constitution (Koha Ditore)
Although President of Kosovo Hashim Thaci announced he plans to initiate changes to the Kosovo Security Force (KSF) law in order to advance it into an armed force, the U.S. Embassy in Pristina insists KSF transformation should be done through constitutional changes which would also require the consent of the Serbian List MPs. “The U.S. policy is that transformation of the Kosovo Security Force into Kosovo Armed Force should be carried out in line with the Constitution of Kosovo and through a politically comprehensive process,” the Embassy said in a response to the paper. At the same time, KFOR said that they would have to “review engagement level” in Kosovo if the mandate of the KSF changes.
Veseli: We are days away from having an army (Klan Kosova)
Kosovo Assembly President and leader of the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK), Kadri Veseli, said yesterday in an event marking the “KLA Epopee” that Kosovo is only days away from having an armed force. “Very soon, in a matter of days, the Kosovo Army will be formed to serve the country’s security, peace and regional and global stability,” Veseli said.
“Army unites Kosovo political spectrum” (Zeri)
The paper reports on the front page that President of Kosovo Hashim Thaci’s initiative to change the Kosovo Security Force (KSF) law and broaden its competencies is expected to be supported by opposition parties. Rexhep Hoti from the ruling Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) said the bill would soon be sent to the Assembly for approval and that while KSF’s name would not change, it would have all the competencies of an armed force. Vetevendosje’s Rexhep Selimi said they would support any legal initiative that goes towards creation of a Kosovo army but warned against any attempts to manipulate the issue. The head of the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK) parliamentary group, Pal Lekaj, also said his party would support the initiative for creation of a Kosovo armed force.
Serbs afraid of Thaci’s Plan B (Lajmi)
The President of Kosovo, Hashim Thaci, has announced future changes on the law on the Kosovo Security Force. He believes that with this change, KSF can transform into Armed Forces without constitutional changes and the vote of the Serbian List MPs who object the transformation. Serbian media report that the Serbian List is not participating in the works of the Assembly of Kosovo, and add that their vote will not be required for the change of the law, i.e. Thaci’s Plan B. The leader of the Serbian List, Slavko Simic, said that MPs from this list are against the creation of the Army of Kosovo and claimed that endorsement of the change of the law requires votes of the Serbs. “We carry responsibility for the Serbs in Kosovo institutions, and they are not able to change the Constitution of Kosovo, KFOR is present in official military formations here, Kosovo citizens need economic growth, not military force,” Simic said.
Serbian List against creation of Kosovo army (Kosova Sot/Zeri)
Kosovo Serb representatives do not support creation of a Kosovo armed force saying this is not necessary as long as KFOR continues to provide security. Kosovo Deputy Prime Minister from the Serbian List, Branimir Stojanovic, told Serbian media that they would not support constitutional changes necessary for Kosovo Security Force (KSF) transformation. “There is no serious argument as to why this should happen,” Stojanovic said.
Kosovo government pledges to submit border demarcation in March (Koha)
Kosovo government spokesperson, Faton Abdullahu, told KTV that the border demarcation issue would be finalized this month. He said the work of the commission for measuring Kosovo territory has fully convinced the government that the border demarcation agreement with Montenegro is satisfactory and that the arguments presented by the opposition against the agreement are groundless. “I believe everything will end quite soon, in fact even in March,” Abdullahu said.
Delawie: Extremism and terrorism, present in every country (Epoka)
The U.S. Ambassador to Kosovo, Greg Delawie, participated on Monday at the works of the conference Strong Cities Countering Violent Extremism in Kosovo, which is being held in Peja. “Kosovo’s commitment to tackling this issue head on is clear – through your national strategy and action plan, by engaging with civil society and NGOs, and of course through Strong Cities, in which, by the way, Kosovo has the highest number of participating cities in the Balkans. And I truly commend you for this regional leadership. Of course no single program can tackle this problem alone. Nor can we see into the heart of every individual whose disappointments and desires have set him on a violent path. Radicalization uses violent ideologies that prey upon individuals at their most vulnerable, isolated, and disillusioned, searching for those to blame,” Delawie said.