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UNMIK Headlines 6 March

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No demarcation session without securing 80 votes (Koha Ditore)
Delawie: Ratification of border agreement, closer than ever (Zeri)
Pacolli: Border demarcation to be concluded this week (Zeri)
Civil society appeals to MP s to ratify demarcation (RTK)
Çollaku: President Thaci will lead dialogue with Serbia (RFE, RTK)
Government to pay energy in the north with taxpayers’ money (Koha)
EULEX gave up 20 cases in three years (Koha Ditore)
Construction works on River Iber bridge resume (Kallxo/RTV21)
Kosovo and Germany sign agreement for construction of innovative park (Zeri)
“No EU for Serbia without agreement with Kosovo (RTK)
Kosovo Islamic Community rebuts Belgrade Mufti’s statement (Epoka)
Bosnian Serb official “secretly” visits Kosovo (Koha)
An Albanian teenager attacked in Mitrovica north (RTK, KosovaPress)

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Headlines – 06.03.2018

  • No demarcation session without securing 80 votes (Koha Ditore)
  • Delawie: Ratification of border agreement, closer than ever (Zeri)
  • Pacolli: Border demarcation to be concluded this week (Zeri)
  • Civil society appeals to MP s to ratify demarcation (RTK)
  • Çollaku: President Thaci will lead dialogue with Serbia (RFE, RTK)
  • Government to pay energy in the north with taxpayers’ money (Koha)
  • EULEX gave up 20 cases in three years (Koha Ditore)
  • Construction works on River Iber bridge resume (Kallxo/RTV21)
  • Kosovo and Germany sign agreement for construction of innovative park (Zeri)
  • “No EU for Serbia without agreement with Kosovo (RTK)
  • Kosovo Islamic Community rebuts Belgrade Mufti’s statement (Epoka)
  • Bosnian Serb official “secretly” visits Kosovo (Koha)
  • An Albanian teenager attacked in Mitrovica north (RTK, KosovaPress)

 Kosovo Media Highlights

No demarcation session without securing 80 votes (Koha Ditore)

The paper reports on the front page that Assembly President Kadri Veseli has not ruled out the possibility of the border demarcation vote not taking place this week saying “we are working with other parties to avoid a minor misunderstanding that became an issue last week”. “We will call the session in the coming days and this issue will be finished. It is possible we convene next week, it is important not to make the mistakes we did last week,” Veseli said. However, the paper writes that the main reason for possible delays is the Serbian List which it seems has not been convinced to support the demarcation agreement with Montenegro.

Delawie: Ratification of border agreement, closer than ever (Zeri)

The U.S. Ambassador to Kosovo, Greg Delawie, said that the ratification of the border demarcation agreement with Montenegro is closer than ever thanks to the “hard work across party lines”. “It is time to bring it across the finish line this week,” Delawie told Kosovo MPs through Twitter.

Pacolli: Border demarcation to be concluded this week (Zeri)

Kosovo’s Foreign Minister, Behgjet Pacolli, said in an interview to the paper that he believed the issue of border demarcation with Montenegro will be concluded this week. “We are strongly committed in securing the necessary votes although it would be ideal for this Agreement to be voted with full unanimity and not speak of the required 80 votes,” Pacolli said. “I am convinced ratification of agreement is a matter of days,” Pacolli added. He said once Kosovo Assembly ratifies the agreement, he would undertake a tour to decision-making capitals to ensure support for visa liberalisation.

Civil society appeals to MP s to ratify demarcation (RTK)

Ten civil society organisations appealed to the MPs of the Assembly of Kosovo to ratify the agreement for ratification of the demarcation of the border with Montenegro. “During the last three years, demarcation issue with Montenegro, has almost paralyzed Kosovo’s institutional life and any further delay will harm further the citizens and the process of European integration of our country,” is written in the call of civil society. They consider that debate on demarcation is consumed and that it is time to act concretely in order to unblock the situation.

Çollaku: President Thaci will lead dialogue with Serbia (RFE, RTK)

Bekim Collaku, chief of cabinet of the President Hashim Thaci, told RFE that President’s leading with foreign affairs, including dialogue, derives from the Constitution of Kosovo and laws in power. “The dialogue for normalization of the relations between the Republic of Kosovo and that of Serbia is a matter of foreign policy, with which the President is dealing continuously, for all these years,” Collaku said. The issue of Thaci’s legitimacy for the political dialogue with Serbia was raised by the Kosovo Assembly MP from the Democratic League of Kosovo, Vjosa Osmani, who said the president is leading the dialogue without being mandated by the Assembly of Kosovo.

Government to pay energy in the north with taxpayers’ money (Koha)

The Government of Kosovo decided to allocate 1 million euros for the Kosovo Transmission, System and Market Operator (KOSTT) to cover expenses for energy supply. Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj, said the move was necessary as KOSTT faced the possibility of being excluded from the European Network of Transmission System Operators (ENTSO). Meanwhile, the paper says the funds will go for covering unpaid electricity bills by the residents in the north of Kosovo, a practice while until recently was charged to the rest of Kosovo energy consumers.

EULEX gave up 20 cases in three years (Koha Ditore)

The EU rule of law mission has handed over to local authorities twenty cases over the last three years, the paper reports on its cover. This figure includes high-profile cases involving Sami Lushtaku, Uke Rugova, Azem Syla, and Enver Sekiraca. EULEX officials said the move is part of the transfer of cases that began in 2014 and that EULEX judges and prosecutors will no longer be involved in Kosovo’s judiciary as of 15 June. Representatives of the Kosovo Justice Institute (IKD) think tank consider that the transfer of cases shows EULEX has faced serious challenges in administering cases efficiently and independently.

Construction works on River Iber bridge resume (Kallxo/RTV21)

Construction works have resumed on the River Iber bridge in Mitrovica, RTV 21 reported. The U.S. Ambassador Greg Delawie hailed the move saying he was happy to see work resuming on Mitrovica bridge. “There is no alternative to the Brussels dialogue and success depends on implementing each agreement,” Delawie wrote on Twitter.

Kosovo and Germany sign agreement for construction of innovative park (Zeri)

Prime Minister of Kosovo, Ramush Haradinaj, signed an agreement with German Ambassador, Christian Heldt, for the construction of an innovative and training park in Prizren. Haradinaj hailed the decision as a new stage in Kosovo-Germany relations and said the park will improve the lives of the people of Kosovo.

“No EU for Serbia without agreement with Kosovo (RTK)

Slovakia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and European Matters, Ivan Korcok, stressed that there is no EU membership for Serbia without wilfillment of two conditions.

“For Serbia the EU membership is certainly possible and doable under two crucial conditions: 1) strong political will to implement necessary reforms; 2) legally binding agreement with Kosovo. There is simply no way around this,” wrote Korcok on his Twitter account after his meeting in Belgrade with Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic.

Kosovo Islamic Community rebuts Belgrade Mufti’s statement (Epoka)

The leadership of the Kosovo Islamic Community rebutted Belgrade Mufti, Jusuf Spahic, who said that “Kosovo is cradle of Serbia.” “We inform the so-called Belgrade Mufti that Kosovo has never been part of Serbia, and even less cradle of Serbia. The truth is, Kosovo was for not a short period of time occupied by Serbia, but Kosovo’s population and leadership never agreed with Serbian occupation and continuously engaged for the freedom and independence of the country,” is written in the press release issued by the Islamic Community.

Bosnian Serb official “secretly” visits Kosovo (Koha/Kallxo)

Koha Ditore reports that the Serb member of the Bosnia and Herzegovina presidency, Mladen Ivanic, made an unannounced trip to Kosovo, visiting Hoca e Madhe/Velika Hoca, as well as Orthodox monasteries in Zoqishte, Prizren and Gracanica. Meanwhile, Kallxo reports that Ivanic has taken permission from Kosovo authorities for the visit and has also been issued with relevant visa.

An Albanian teenager attacked in Mitrovica north (RTK, KosovaPress)

An Albanian teenager was beaten on Monday evening by a group of Serb youth in Mitrovica north, respectively at Kralj Petar square. The case was confirmed by Kosovo Police deputy commander in Mitrovica, Besim Hoti, who said that the case was reported at police at 18:20 hours. “The victim was walking with a friend, when a group of Serbs attacked him physically. The same was sent to Mitrovica south for medical care. He has a cut on one arm,” Hoti said. According to KosovaPress sources, he was attacked by a group called “KM-Forte.”

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