- Daka: No legal ground for total recount, commissioners ruining the process (RTK)
- Osmani and Palmer discuss relations between Kosovo and U.S. (Most monitored broadcasters, Klan Kosova)
- Kurti meets Demiri from Vakat coalition (RTKLive)
- Kosovo Security Force was not part of police operation in the north (GazetaExpress)
- Two years since the video „Dishonest People“, 21 months since the murder of Ivanovic (Kossev)
- Veseli: U.S. not in favour of territory exchange, but it supports any agreement we reach with Serbia (Summary of KTV Rubicon show)
Daka: No legal ground for total recount, commissioners ruining the process
The Central Elections Commission (CEC) chairwoman Valdete Daka stated that October 6 was a fantastic day in terms of voting and administration of the process, but according to her, the commissioners are the ones who are ruining the process now.
In an exclusive interview with RTK “Imazh” show, she said that what some commissioners have done is dirty work, because due to their tendency to distort the vote, there will be a recount of many ballot boxes.
“The struggle between them for party candidates is dirty, because it was tried to do different kinds of manipulations,” Daka said.
She said that when the process is over, it will be known exactly who tried to distort the will of citizens, and there will be criminal charges for those commissioners who have tried to do such things.
“There are many commissioners who have been sentenced in the past, and many more will likely be investigated,” Daka said.
The CEC chairwoman said that this institution did not recount ballot boxes at the request of any political entity, but because the Count and Results Centre noticed a mistake in the form.
According to her, the CEC has no reason to decide on a total recount, as there is no legal ground for that.
Regarding the votes coming from Serbia, she said that bodies that are investigating the case will decide on their legality, while qualifying the diaspora voting process easy to compromise. According to the CEC chairwoman, most likely, completion of this process will happen sometime at the end of this month or at the beginning of November.
Osmani and Palmer discuss relations between Kosovo and U.S.
(Most monitored broadcasters, Klan Kosova)
The Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) nominee for Prime Minister Vjosa Osmani is paying an official visit to the United States of America.
On Wednesday she met with Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Mathew Palmer, who is also Special Representative for the Western Balkans.
Osmani and Palmer discussed relations between Kosovo and the U.S., as well as the tasks that lie ahead of Kosovo.
Kurti meets Demiri from Vakat coalition
Vetëvendosje leader Albin Kurti met today Rasim Demiri from VAKAT, a coalition of Kosovo Bosniak political parties, and commended him on the election result saying the party stands to get two seats at the Kosovo Assembly.
“Met Mr. Rasim Demiri today and congratulated one another on the success. We spoke about the election process, the position of the Bosniak community and socio-economic and political-institutional challenges of the state of Kosovo and our new government,” Kurti said.
Kosovo Security Force was not part of police operation in the north
Among the Kosovo Police vehicles, who early on Wednesday launched an operation in Serb-controlled northern part of the country, was seen also a truck of the Kosovo Security Force (KSF), Gazeta Express reports.
The Press Office of the KSF said that its troops were not engaged during today’s operation in the north. The Kosovo Police have arrested two men, one of them police officer of Serbian nationality, suspected of hiding evidence in an ongoing investigation on the killing of the Kosovo Serb politician, Oliver Ivanovic, who was shot dead in Mitrovica North in January 2018.
“The KSF was not engaged during the Kosovo Police operation in Mitrovica North,” the KSF’s press office briefly commented.
During today’s operation the police have arrested one of their investigators, after the Special Prosecution of Kosovo got hold of evidence confirming that the police officer has acted upon orders of a criminal group operating in northern Kosovo, headed by Milan Radoicic. The latter is wanted by Kosovo authorities suspected of his involvement in killing Kosovo Serb opposition leader, Oliver Ivanovic. Radoicic who is considered one of the dark figures of the underground in northern Kosovo has found safe shelter in Serbia and was even seen attending public events.
Another police officer is wanted suspected of being involved in killing of Ivanovic. During today’s operation was arrested another person who after questioning in Pristina was released pending further procedures.
Two years since the video „Dishonest People“, 21 months since the murder of Ivanovic
Twenty-one months have passed since the murder of Oliver Ivanovic and on this day, exactly two years ago, a video was broadcast on TV Pink and TV Most, which labeled Ivanovic as a „dishonest man“ and a „traitor“ who „cares more about his car than the lives of his fellow citizens.“ Ivanovic’s murder has still not been solved and the creator of this video has never been revealed.
The video was first broadcast on October 16, 2017 – exactly three months before Ivanovic’s assassination, during prime time on TV Most and TV Pink.
The choice of words of the ‘pre-election’ video were read at prime time during the news on TV Pink and TV Most. The video aired during the national news at 11.26h on October 16th, 2017, it was preceded by statements by the Director of the Kosovo Office, Marko Djuric and the Mayor of North Mitrovica, Goran Rakic talking about an “anti-Serbian” coalition.
“Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija remember quite well that Tadic, Jeremic and Oliver Ivanovic cut the salaries of Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija by 50%, and bragged about it. We remember that they never had the support of Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija because we were aware of the hurt they caused to the Serbian people. But Oliver Ivanovic was a self-proclaimed leader of Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija, not because the people elected him,” the North Mitrovica Mayor and Srpska Lista chief, Goran Rakic said at the time.
A day later, Oliver Ivanovic and Dragisa Milovic, who were running for mayors of North Mitrovica and Zvecan, told the media that they will be filing criminal charges against the then editor-in-chief of TV Most, Ljiljana Jankovic, as well as against the instigators of the video. The court, they said at the time, would „determine whether it (the instigator) was the Serbian Progressive Party from Belgrade or Srpska Lista“.
TV Most said at the time that by announcing the lawsuit, Ivanovic and Milovic „placed inappropriate pressure on the media“ simply because they were „dissatisfied with the content of the pre-election video of the opposing Srpska Lista which was broadcast under commercial conditions during the paid-for time“.
They demanded that professional and broadcasting associations „strongly and clearly condemn this attempt to intimidate the media“.
While the fate of Oliver Ivanovic is known, the instigator of the video is still unknown, and so is the fate of the lawsuit.
Lawsuit dismissed, the video aired during a campaign?
Ivanovic’s colleague from that period, Dragisa Milovic told KoSSev that the lawsuit was then filed with courts in both Serbian and Kosovo systems. Two years later, he only received a response from the court within the Kosovo court, which read that the lawsuit was „dismissed“ because it was „a video aired during the pre-election campaign“.
„I still haven’t received an answer from the Serbian court, although it all went through the lawyers, so I cannot speak about the details. I’d have to look at the case,“ said Milovic, who retired from public life once again after the murder.
Oliver Ivanovic’s nephew, Aleksandar Ivanovic, a lawyer by profession, told KoSSev that he does not know the status of the lawsuit, reminding that „it is always possible to initiate a new process.“ Ivanovic, however, refused to specify whether the family would do so.
„The Ivanovic family will not miss the opportunity to remind the public of the media satanization of Oliver, first and foremost, of the video which shows blood being spilled and a sniper scope,“ he added.
GI SDP: New government in Kosovo to find the instigators and killers of Ivanovic
The GI SDP „Oliver Ivanovic“ also reminded that twenty-one months have passed since the murder.
“The new government in Kosovo indicates that the fight against crime and corruption will be their priority, then all communities in Kosovo should expect them to fulfill this promise, and the GI SDP expects them to find the instigators and prosecute Oliver Ivanovic’s killers,“ they wrote in a statement.
GI SDP also stated that the investigative bodies are „occasionally reacting“, thus „giving the citizens an impression that their statements were used only for individual political actions“.
Oliver Ivanovic was the most exposed leader of Kosovo Serbs since 1999. He played a key role in defending the city from attempts of a violent entry of extreme Albanians from the south in the first half of the 2000s – as it was seen by the Serbian public. Ivanovic was regarded as a brave but moderate and pragmatic politician, who advocated dialogue, cooperation and democratic values. He was hit with six bullets in the back, at around 8:15am, on this day twenty-one months ago, in front of his office premises where he went to work for almost 20 years, in the centre of northern Kosovska Mitrovica.
Ivanovic was buried in the Alley of Distinguished Citizens in Belgrade. The murder passed without a commemoration in the municipality of North Mitrovica, where he was a councillor, a large crowd of people escorted him through the streets – behind his coffin and along the side.
Veseli: U.S. not in favour of territory exchange, but it supports any agreement we reach with Serbia
(Summary of KTV Rubicon show)
The Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) chairman Kadri Veseli spoke for the first time since they lost power after 12 years in office.
Veseli told KTV’s Rubicon show that it was the will of people that made his party declare itself for opposition.
Veseli said that the electoral processes in Kosovo are usually an example for others, with the exception of some minor problems, but says they may not have had much impact on the results.
Speaking of the votes taken in October 6th elections and comparing them to the 2017 results when the PDK was in pre-election coalition with the AAK and Nisma, as well as over 20 other small parties, Veseli said that such parallels cannot be drawn.
“In the end we will have 177-180 thousand votes. As PAN coalition, we have far more votes than in previous elections. Giving away of Prime Minister’s in the past two terms hasn’t served PDK much,” Veseli highlighted.
Kadri Veseli said that in no option and at any price will the PDK be in power after the October 6th elections.
He said that PDK is determined to be in opposition and play its opposition role.
“There will be no such moment when we will attack our state, or harm the future of our youth. It is not the success of an opposition when it sinks its state, only because it is not in power. We have responsibilities both as ruling and as opposition parties.”
This is what the former Assembly Speaker Veseli told KTV Rubicon show, when he spoke about the opposition in this mandate.
He also talked about the fact that PDK has lost elections since Veseli took over the party. But he did not accept the result of 2017 elections as a loss, when they were in PAN coalition, saying that he lost only the recent ones.
The PDK leader refused to tell if he will resign after the October 6th election results.
“I took over the mandate of party chairman a few months before elections. Early elections caught us unprepared. I will continue reforms even deeper. These reforms will strengthen PDK and restore the confidence of citizens very soon,” Veseli said when asked if he would resign.
PDK leader Kadri Veseli criticized former Prime Ministers Isa Mustafa and Ramush Haradinaj as well as the opposition that was until now for damaging Kosovo’s relations with its international friends.
“Since 2014 we have had a decline in relations. We are at the lowest level because of aggressiveness within us, forgetting that we have Serbia against us. Vucic is very perfidious. He has also managed to infiltrate in our partners’ circles. We also bear our share of responsibility. I bear a great deal of responsibility for the last two years, because I would never believe that in my government there would come to such a moment where Kosovo is put in such a situation in relation to the U.S. and EU. Government that comes forward must deal directly with the challenges that Kosovo has. These are real challenges. People want to live better, they want jobs,” Veseli underlined.
According to him, while PDK was in charge of government, Kosovo had good partnership and success.
Former Kosovo Assembly Speaker said that he will ask concrete actions from the new government in terms of integration of the state.
He said he wants economic development and fight against corruption, but at the same time even closer relations with the U.S. and EU “because moving forward is associated to these relations.”
“I do not expect these (the new government) to fail, but I want this country to move forward, no matter who is in power. Citizens do not deserve failure,” said Veseli.
“I wish them success, but I can only say this: I hope we will not have greater isolation and poverty of citizens,” he continued.
He laughed when asked if he fears Vetëvendosje Movement, which threatened to bring the corrupt to prison. But, he says they will give 100 days to the new Government to prove itself.
“We’ll give it 100 days. It is not fair to prejudge someone early. We will express our reservations and remarks, but we will wait for the steps they will take,” said Veseli.
He said he will cooperate with all opposition parties in the Assembly.
Kadri Veseli said that the process of appointing new notaries should be frozen until the new government comes to power.
He came out against his party minister, Abelard Tahiri, who said days earlier that he will continue the process even though the government was outgoing.
According to PDK chairman Kadri Veseli, the U.S. is not in favour of exchange territories as a solution to the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue.
After meeting with the U.S. President Donald Trump’s special envoy for Kosovo-Serbia negotiations Richard Grenell, Veseli said he reiterated the U.S. stance that they are in favour of any agreement that Kosovo and Serbia reach.
“Everything that comes from America is positive. Ambassador Grenell is among President Trump’s most trusted people. He was accredited by him as an envoy. The United States, the most special investor in peace, stability, sees Kosovo as part of their project on Balkan stability. It doesn’t matter who was ruling or who was in opposition. Kosovo must go through that process. Macedonia closed it with Greece, Albania is closing it with Greece, and Kosovo with Macedonia… we are at a stage where Russian influence is intended to be passed. Most of Russia’s influence may come from Serbia. May the new ruling parties assess it differently because we are tired of that manipulation. Grenell has mentioned deadlines that U.S. officials have always mentioned. I had several meetings. There is an American stance that supports Kosovo. Kosovo must preserve statehood, sovereignty. We have hit ourselves with manipulations that the U.S. is supposedly in favour of exchanges. The U.S. does not endorse any options from the beginning to the end in which the parties agree. Exchange of territory can never happen. We must preserve Kosovo as a territorial, but also an institutional integrity,” he said.
According to Veseli, Grenell has conveyed the message that the sooner the dialogue resumes and the agreement is reached it is better for Kosovo.