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Belgrade Media Report 23 April 2021

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United Nations Office in Belgrade

Daily Media Highlights

Friday 23 April 2021

LOCAL PRESS

Vucic: We will do our best to boost friendship with US (Tanjug)
Vucic: We are ready to continue dialogue, compromise a goal (Tanjug/RTS)
Maas: Right time for results in Belgrade-Pristina dialogue (Beta)
Selakovic: Scandalous political audacity of Vjosa Osmani (RTS)
Petkovic: Any kind of revision impermissible (RTS)
Porfirije: Consent reached on Agreement with Prime Minister Krivokapic (Tanjug)
Jansa’s extras in Balkans’ (Politika)

REGIONAL PRESS

Bosnia & Herzegovina

Leadership of Serbia visits Banja Luka (RTRS)
Serbian and RS officials condemn warmongering rhetoric following alleged non-paper and calls for peaceful dissolution of B&H (RTRS)
Turkovic comments visit of Serbian delegation and Dodik statements; Calls for ending of obstructions (Hayat)
Vucic awarded Key to City of Banja Luka; Mayor Stanivukovic causes scandal with hidden microphone (ATV)
US Ambassador Nelson comments on inflammatory rhetoric in B&H (FTV)
Sattler meets Dzaferovic: EU supports B&H sovereignty and territorial integrity (FTV)
Zvizdic: There cannot be dissolution of B&H without conflict, B&H needs stronger internal dialogue (Oslobodjenje)
Ivanic: I believe neither Serbia nor Croatia are interested in break-up of B&H (FTV)
Zunic says time is right for dialogue of RS and FB&H on future of B&H (EuroBlic)
Sattler, Nelson meet with Izetbegovic, Covic to discuss necessary reforms (Oslobodjenje)
OHR: RS authorities should offer public and transparent explanation about procurement of weapons for the RS MoI; Salkic said that many police officers in RS participated in genocide against Bosniaks (Dnevni list/Fena)
Croatia

Plenkovic: NDH is one of most tragic periods in Croatian history (Hina)
Israeli Ambassador: Jasenovac commemoration must be above daily politics (Vecernji list)
Connecting economies of Croatia, Israel and B&H cantons (Hina)
Brkic underlines importance of dialogue and consensus for NATO path: It is important that reform program stays aside from internal political outwitting (Vecernji list)
Montenegro

Abolition of term Orthodox Church contrary to SPC Council document of 2006 (Pobjeda)
Abazovic doesn’t know when government will discuss Fundamental Agreement with SPC (CdM)
Republic of North Macedonia

Durlovski calls on public to turn out for protest on Sunday (Republika)
Albania

US Senate Foreign Relations Committee: We expect all candidates to act in accordance with democratic norms (Tirana Times)
US and EU ambassadors call for a peaceful and orderly electoral process (Tirana Times)
Ambassadors in Albania video message to citizens: Do not sell the vote. Vote for a better future! (Radio Tirana)

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UNMIK Media Observer, Afternoon Edition, April 23, 2021

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UNMIK Media Observer, Afternoon Edition, April 23, 2021

Albanian Language Media:

• COVID-19: 356 new cases, eight deaths (media)
• PM Kurti meets North Macedonian FM Osmani (media)
• Osmani: We reject ideas that affect our borders (media)
• Kosovo FM Gervalla against redrawing of Balkans borders (media)
• North Macedonia’s FM pledges support to Kosovo (media)
• Austria opposes border changes (Koha)
• Szunyog commends minister for publishing list of recovery aid recipients (media)
• Ministry launches disciplinary procedures against correctional service chief (media)

Serbian Language Media:

• Vucic travels to Brussels on Sunday (Kosovo-online)
• Vucic: Pristina will have to respect Brussels agreement (Kosovo-online)
• Maas: The right time to continue the dialogue; no need to reset (media)
• Mojsilovic: Construction of the base in northern Kosovo causes concern, we monitor the situation (Danas, Beta, Politika)
• Selakovic and Petkovic: Scandalous political audacity of Vjosa Osmani (RTS)
• Selakovic with Maas: Germany one of the most important Serbian economic partners (Kosovo-online)
• Vucic says Belgrade not interested in creating Greater Serbia (N1)
• Commemoration for 16 killed during 1999 NATO bombing of Serbia’s state TV (Beta, N1)
• Rakocevic: KFOR must open its eyes; lies being told nowadays only encourage extremists (Kosovo-online)
• Bishop Irinej writes to Blinken about violence against Serbs in Kosovo (Radio KIM)

Opinion:

• Organic networking: a Balkan awakening (KoSSev)
• A ‘Greying’ Western Balkans Must Look to Robots (Balkan Insight)

International:

• German diplomat says time is right for Serbia-Kosovo talks (AP)
• Germany rejects idea of redrawing Western Balkans borders – minister (Reuters)
• Serbian Leader Talks Up Ties To Biden, Says ‘No Interest’ In ‘Greater Serbia’ (RFE)
• Disputed memo on partitioning Bosnia sparks fears of violence (Al Jazeera)
• Serbian Court Tries Kosovo Albanian for Wartime Killings (Balkan Insight)
• Vučić: Serbia wants stronger relations with Bosniaks and Croats in Bosnia (euractive.com)
• Suspicions Persist About NATO’s Deadly Bombing of Serbian TV (Balkan Insight)

Humanitarian/Development:

• We want to breathe (EWB)

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UNMIK Media Observer, Morning Edition, April 23, 2021

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• COVID-19: 408 new cases, five deaths (media)
• Maas: Ideas for border changes, unrealistic and dangerous (media)
• Government to announce topics of Kurti-Vucic meeting, when date is set (KTV)
• Hoxhaj won’t accept Kurti’s invitation to dialogue with Serbia (media)
• Kurti’s backing down on reciprocity with Serbia (Koha)
• Environment Ministry implies reviewing permits for hydropower plants (Koha)
• North Macedonia Foreign Minister to visit Kosovo today (media)
• Selakovic: Osmani’s statements show Prishtina doesn’t want dialogue (media)

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Belgrade Media Report 22 April

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LOCAL PRESS

Vucic: Peace, working together is future (Tanjug/RTS)
Session of Coordination Body for Serbia’s EU accession held (RTV/Tanjug)
Bujanovac joins “Community of Albanian Municipalities in the Region” (Juzne vesti/RTS)
Vucic with Kurti in Brussels in mid-May (Politika)
Dacic calls inter-party dialogue meeting for 28 April (FoNet)
Patriarch tells OSCE mission chief church ready to discuss problems (Beta)

REGIONAL PRESS

Bosnia & Herzegovina

Dacic’s message to Bosniak politicians in B&H: Do not support independent Kosovo (Dnevni list)
Roth: Fantasies about changing borders belong to failed past (Nezavisne/DW)
US, UK Embassies, EUD condemn negative rhetoric; OHR is silent regarding Izetbegovic’s statements (Dnevni list/RTRS)
Turkovic sends instructions to B&H embassies in regards to non-paper (BHT1)
Reactions to Turkovic’s instruction sent to B&H diplomatic offices regarding non-paper (ATV)
Idea of peaceful dissolution and mentioning of war stir controversy on political scene in B&H (N1)
SDA calls on PIC SB to sanction Dodik due to secessionist threats (Hayat)
Cvijanovic: SDA has undermined all that could have been undermined in already weak B&H and now they want to wage war again and impose sanctions on politicians in RS; RS will not wage war (Srna/RTRS)
RS parties, officials comment Izetbegovic statement, idea of peaceful dissolution; Borenovic calls on Dodik to end political cooperation with SDA (N1)
Leaders of opposition parties in RS meet on Mt Jahorina, discuss preparations for 2022 general elections in B&H, refuse to reveal names of their candidates for Serb member of Presidency, President and PM of RS (N1)
Croatia

Grlic Radman and Logar claim that disputable non-paper does not exist (HRT1)
Montenegro

Djukanovic: Vucic’s self-pitying whining; he puts himself in role of promoter of Greater Serbia politics, redrawing borders would cause war (CdM)
Abazovic promises public debate and VC’s opinion (Dan)
Injac meets with President Pahor (Gov.PR Service)
Albania

Elections, one killed and four wounded in Elbasan (Tirana Times/VoA)
President seeks return to normalcy as murders, wounding’s engulf Albania (ADN)
EU Delegation: We call for restraint and avoidance of violence (Tirana Times)
Soreca: 50 EU teams to monitor polling stations and the counting process (Radio Tirana)

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UNMIK Media Observer, Afternoon Edition, April 22, 2021

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Albanian Language Media:

• COVID-19: 408 new cases, five deaths (media)
• Maas: Tensions between Kosovo and Serbia hinder their progress (Klan)
• Osmani thanks Szunyog for EU-donated vaccines (media)
• Opposition slams government’s decision affecting pensions (media)
• KFOR: No significant security incident was recorded in the last 10 years against Decan Monastery (Express)

Serbian Language Media:

• Covid-19 in Serbian communities: 26 new cases (KoSSev)
• EP’s Fajon: Ideas about new borders extremely dangerous, especially for Bosnia (NIN, N1)
• Patriarch Porfirije: I appreciate the efforts of Bishop Teodosije, who is falsely accused by those who want to bring unrest (KoSSev)
• Aliferi: Greece doesn’t recognize Kosovo; its stance remains unchanged (Radio KIM)
• Dejan Dimitrijevic from Gracanica fined with EU 2300 over protest gathering (Vecernje Novosti)
• Serbian minister says intergovernmental conference with EU in June (N1)

Opinion:

• Can Kurti use the moment to start genuine inter-ethnic cooperation? (K2.0)

International:

• Disputed Non-Paper is Stirring Dangerous Dreams in the Balkans (Balkan Insight)
• EU action awaited as phantom paper further unhinges Western Balkans (euractive.com)

Humanitarian/Development:

• Vucic discusses new arrangement with IMF (N1)

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UNMIK Media Observer, Morning Edition, April 22, 2021

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• COVID-19: 506 new cases, five deaths (media)
• Majority of COVID-19 patients infected with British variant (BIRN)
• Immunisation before the recovery plan (Koha)
• Kurti will visit Brussels, but not to meet with Vucic (Koha)
• Kosovo, Serbia leaders won’t meet on visits to Brussels (BIRN)
• Hajdari on reciprocity measures: We will first exhaust CEFTA tools (Koha)
• German Foreign Minister to visit Kosovo today (media)
• Kurti: People of Kosovo and Israel share a historical tie (media)
• Lajcak speaks with OSCE Head of Mission in Kosovo (media)
• Agron Llugaliu appointed General Director of Kosovo Customs (media)
• Press Council, AJK criticise call for state regulation of online content (BIRN)

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Belgrade Media Report 21 April 2021

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United Nations Office in Belgrade

Daily Media Highlights

Wednesday 21 April 2021

LOCAL PRESS

Petkovic: Resolution for issue of Kosovo and Metohija through dialogue (RTV)
Nabhan: OIS members could withdraw recognition of Kosovo (Tanjug/Politika/Novosti)
Slovak Embassy: We are not changing position on so-called independence of Kosovo (B92/Tanjug/RTV)
Dacic: I am signing first invitation for dialogue with opposition on 21 April (TV Happy/Beta)

REGIONAL PRESS

Bosnia & Herzegovina

RS ruling coalition announces initiative for forming RS’ team for negotiating with FB&H on peaceful dissolution (N1)
Reactions to SNSD’s launching of initiative on talks on possibility of peaceful separation in B&H (N1)
Dodik informs Israeli Ambassador conditions for talks on future of B&H are met (RTRS)
Izetbegovic: War is not likely to happen in B&H; I do not believe that Slovenian non-paper does not exist (O kanal)
RS reactions to Izetbegovic’s statement that Serbs are genocidal people: This is dangerous, insulting, warmongering rhetoric, RS advocates peace, it will not wage wars (RTRS)
Turkovic sends instruction to all diplomatic and consular representative offices on activities after occurrence of ‘non-paper’ for Western Balkans (ATV)
EUFOR: We are competent for implementation of military aspects of DPA (BN TV)
Vucic: Serbia will not recognize independent Kosovo in order to get RS (Dnevni list)
Croatia

No joint ceremony to pay tribute to Jasenovac victims (Hina)
Montenegro

Does Krivokapic know what he will sign? (Pobjeda)
Status of religious communities under scrutiny of Council of Europe (Dan)
Albania

The political climate becomes tenser after the shooting in Kavaja (Tirana Times)
Will opposition succeed in overthrowing rule of Rama? (ADN)

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UNMIK Media Observer, Afternoon Edition, April 21, 2021

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UNMIK Media Observer, Afternoon Edition, April 21, 2021

Albanian Language Media:

• COVID-19: 506 new cases, five deaths (media)
• PM Kurti to visit Brussels next week, meet EU officials (media)
• German FM Maas to visit Kosovo and Serbia (RFE)
• Britain’s PM Johnson congratulates Kurti on election, pledges support to Kosovo (media)
• Roth: No one in Europe can support border changes phantasies (DW)
• Hoxhaj accuses government of ‘abstaining from responsibility’ (media)
• State prosecutor and police: Avoid investigations against media and reporters (media)
• Musliu reacts after sexist graffiti: This is not in the culture of PDK (media)

Serbian Language Media:

• Antonijevic: The situation more favorable, but there is no room for relaxation (Kosovo Online, RTK)
• Kosovo media: Vucic, Kurti to go to Brussels and Paris (N1, KoSSev)
• Vaccination with Pfizer without registration available in Serbia as of Wednesday (Kontakt plus radio)
• Embassy of Slovakia: We are not changing our position on Kosovo (Politika, Blic, B92)
• Selakovic: Gratitude to Iran for not recognizing Pristina’s separatism (Kosovo-online)
• Selakovic: Serbia plans to start producing Sinopharm vaccine as of October (N1)
• Vucic meets with WHO Europe Director Kluge (Tanjug)
• Petkovic: With budget rebalance we have earmarked 4 billion dinars for assistance in KiM (Kosovo-online)

International:

• Media Freedom Deteriorated In Europe Amid Pandemic, Report Warns (Balkan Insight)
• North Macedonia to Upgrade Army Despite Economic Concerns (Balkan Insight)

Humanitarian/Development:

• Belgrade Mayor: Herd immunity soon to be reached in capital (N1)

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UNMIK Media Observer, Morning Edition, April 21, 2021

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• COVID-19: 478 new cases, 16 deaths (media)
• Government silent over “difficult compromises” with Serbia (RFE)
• Tahiri: Government must not make compromises in dialogue (media)
• Koha publishes 2015 draft statute of Association of Serb-majority municipalities
• Collaku: Kurti deserves everyone’s respect if he can reject Association (media)
• Gorani: Kurti government will be forced to accept compromise (media)
• Kurti: Cultural differences must unite us, not divide us (media)
• Albanians from Presevo Valley expect Kurti to include them in dialogue (media)
• Rama: Mini-Schengen aimed to dissolve border with Kosovo (Euronews Albania)
• PDK denies it is behind offensive graffiti against its former MP (media)
• Editor: Brussels confirmed they received document from Jansha (media)
• Bosnian Serbs urge talks on Country’s potential ‘disintegration’ (BIRN)

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Belgrade Media Report 20 April

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LOCAL PRESS

Petkovic: Brussels agreement important, we insist on its implementation (RTS/Tanjug)
Cooperation between Serbia and Kosovo chambers of commerce and regional initiatives (Beta)
Loud silence of West to announcement on “Great Albania” (Politika)
Serbian and British Armies together in UN Mission in Cyprus (Politika)
Vulin: Serbs should live in one state, Serb national issue should be solved by uniting all Serbs in one state (TV Pink)
Inzko: Do not open Pandora’s box with ‘non-paper (Politika/Tanjug)
Logar: Discussion on alleged ‘non-paper’ is of use to nobody (Politika)

REGIONAL PRESS

Bosnia & Herzegovina

Kovacevic: RS ruling coalition to discuss information that possibility of peaceful disintegration of B&H is being discussed at numerous important addresses within the EU (Srna/RTRS)
SNSD RS MPs submit initiative for dialogue with FB&H on future of B&H; SNSD members believe that either the ultimatums in B&H will stop or process of peaceful dissolution will begin (N1)
Jansa condemns protest in Sarajevo as extremist (RTRS)
Bogovic: I never heard anything about change of borders in Western Balkans (Dnevni avaz)
Covic: Fabricated documents aimed at diverting attention from fundamental political issues (Dnevni list)
Djokic: Law on Elections should be changed to eradicate political anomalies (Dnevni list)
Organizing Committee for Marking 26th Anniversary of Srebrenica Genocide requests from OHR to impose law banning denial of genocide (FTV)
B&H’s Commission for Cooperation with NATO unanimously adopts draft document ‘Program of Reforms 2021’ (Hayat)
B&H lacks any progress in implementation of GRECO recommendations referring to judiciary officials and parliamentarians (Oslobodjenje)
Montenegro

Only Krivokapic and Leposavic got acquainted with content of agreement with SPC (Pobjeda)
Republic of North Macedonia

Mickoski: Bulgaria has no right to demand any additional concessions from us (TV Klan)
Albania

DP secretary for Kavaja wounded by a firearm inside electoral office (Tirana Times/VoA)
Basha accuses PM of assassination attempt (ADN)

INTERNATIONAL MEDIA SOURCES

Serbia’s Marko Đurić urges ‘just solution’ to bitter Kosovo dispute (The Washington Diplomat)

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UNMIK Media Observer, Afternoon Edition, April 20, 2021

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Albanian Language Media:

• COVID-19: 442 new cases, 14 deaths (media)
• EU to send 95,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine to Kosovo (media)
• Vitia signs administrative instruction paving way for vaccine purchase (media)
• President Biden writes to Osmani: Our partnership is rooted in common values (media)
• Aliferi: Greece supports Kosovo’s European integration path (RFE)
• Kusari-Lila: Government to soon present position on dialogue with Serbia (Telegrafi)
• LVV calls for end to government paying electricity bills for the north (Koha)
• Haxhiu: Vetting of judiciary, biggest challenge for Ministry of Justice (media)

Serbian Language Media:

• Covid-19 in Serbian communities: Two people died, 36 new cases (KoSSev)
• Vucic: Serbia will not recognize Kosovo to get Republika Srpska (N1)
• Brnabic meets WHO Europe Director Klugge (Tanjug)
• Palestine requests Islamic states to cease relations with Pristina (RTS)
• Kosovo dropped eight places on media freedom list (RTV Puls)
• Journalism, a high-risk profession in Kosovo (Kosovo Online, RTS)
• Serbia’s ranking unchanged on World Press Freedom Index (N1)
• Varhelyi: 651.000 vaccines for Western Balkans, Serbia was first to extend help to the region (Kosovo-online)
• Gracanica: Performance ”Contribution to the tax” (Kosovo Online)

International:

• Biden urges to Kosovo continue ‘essential’ talks with Serbia (AP)
• Serbia’s Marko Đurić urges ‘just solution’ to bitter Kosovo dispute (washdiplomat.com)
• Balkans rocked as leaked memo explores redrawing Bosnia’s borders along ethnic lines (euronews.com)

Humanitarian/Development:

• Kosovar biologist calls newly found insect after coronavirus (AP)
• Mediation as a form of reconciliation in schools (UNICEF, social media)
• Brain drain? In Serbia, Montenegro, and North Macedonia there are signs of ‘brain gain’ (Emerging Europe)

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UNMIK Media Observer, Morning Edition, April 20, 2021

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• COVID-19: 277 new cases, 14 deaths (media)
• Poll respondents: Government to be more transparent about vaccines (media)
• “Dialogue has so far been treated with priority but not seriousness” (Telegrafi)
• Kurti, Wigemark stress need to fight crime and corruption (media)
• Macron to Osmani: France will support you in essential reforms (media)
• 8 years later, first Kosovo-Serbia agreement partly implemented (Koha)
• Kosovo Foreign Minister to visit Greece (media)
• Tahiri: Vjosa Osmani is a marionette of Albin Kurti (media)
• Kosovo Ex-Guerrilla Pleads Not Guilty to War Crimes (Balkan Insight)
• Kosovo spent €4 million in first year of pandemic for salaries of MPs (Koha)
• Kosovo falls eight places lower in Reporters Without Borders’ report (RFE)
• Weller: Cultural Heritage in Kosovo: Why do international organisations fail to adhere to their own policies? (Prishtina Insight)

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