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UNMIK Observer, Morning Edition, November 8

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• LVV-LDK teams end meetings, agreement in the hands of leaders (media)
• LVV doesn’t offer additional ministry to LDK over PM post (Koha)
• LDK leader Mustafa to assembly party’s chairmanship today (media)
• LDK’s Vjosa Osmani interview with T7
• Kosovo’s Election Commission announces final election results (media)
• Pacolli: Inclusion of votes from Serbia is scandalous and a grave mistake (media)
• Shala: CEC has fabricated the votes – we will appeal today (media)
• Kadri Veseli summoned for interview by specialist chambers (media)
• Reactions to Veseli’s call by Specialist Chambers (media)
• Hahn: Kosovo-Serbia agreement viable only if followed by EU perspective (media)
• Kosovo journalist attacked for writing a story on casino’s activities (Klan Kosova)
• Serbian Government continues to fund parallel structures in Kosovo (RFE)

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  • LVV-LDK teams end meetings, agreement in the hands of leaders (media)
  • LVV doesn’t offer additional ministry to LDK over PM post (Koha)
  • LDK leader Mustafa to assembly party’s chairmanship today (media)
  • LDK’s Vjosa Osmani interview with T7
  • Kosovo’s Election Commission announces final election results (media)
  • Pacolli: Inclusion of votes from Serbia is scandalous and a grave mistake (media)
  • Shala: CEC has fabricated the votes – we will appeal today (media)
  • Kadri Veseli summoned for interview by specialist chambers (media)
  • Reactions to Veseli’s call by Specialist Chambers (media)
  • Hahn: Kosovo-Serbia agreement viable only if followed by EU perspective (media)
  • Kosovo journalist attacked for writing a story on casino’s activities (Klan Kosova)
  • Serbian Government continues to fund parallel structures in Kosovo (RFE)

LVV-LDK teams end meetings, agreement in the hands of leaders (media)

Working teams from the Vetevendosje Movement (LVV) and the Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) have concluded their meetings aimed at getting the parties’ programmes harmonized for a future joint governance. The leaders of the parties, Albin Kurti and Isa Mustafa, are now expected to meet and finalize a coalition deal.

LDK’s Avdullah Hoti said the meeting with LVV representatives was successful. “I am pleased to say we have managed to conclude almost all programming issues including economic development, education, healthcare, social policies, culture, sports, diaspora, energy. As far as the working groups are concerned, we have concluded our talks ate the professional aspect,” Hoti told reporters after the meeting.

He said that the outcome of the talks will be submitted to parties’ leaders for further action. “We are ready to submit this agreement in written form very soon, in two-three days, to the parties’ leaders who will sit down I believe immediately after certification of results to particularize and formalize it.”

Hoti also said that the working teams did not discuss division of posts or that of Kosovo president.

LVV doesn’t offer additional ministry to LDK over PM post (Koha)

Representatives of the Vetevendosje Movement (LVV) said on Thursday that they will not offer an additional ministry to the Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) over the Prime Minister’s post in an eventual coalition government, the paper reports on its front page. LVV deputy leader, Besnik Bislimi, said: “the post of Prime Minister will not be part of negotiations under any circumstance. This post cannot be negotiated because it was determined by the people’s vote. As a result, it cannot be traded or balanced with something else”. The paper notes that the LDK asked for an additional two ministries as a balance for the PM post.

Political commentators meanwhile argue that the balance between the two parties can be reached with the division of the posts of Prime Minister and Assembly President, and not necessarily by giving more ministries to the smaller partner in the coalition government. Analysts also argue that more important than deals for posts should be the efforts to change the governing mindset and the appointment in executive positions of people that work seriously to bring about change.

LDK leader Mustafa to assembly party’s chairmanship today (media)

Several news outlets report Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) leader, Isa Mustafa, will assemble the party’s chairmanship today, one day after working groups of the LDK and the Vetevendosje Movement concluded their work in harmonising a government program. The meeting will be held at LDK headquarters at 13:00 and Mustafa is expected to address the media after the meeting.

LDK’s Vjosa Osmani interview with T7

Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) candidate for Prime Minister, Vjosa Osmani, said in an interview with T7 on Thursday evening that, a coalition agreement between the LDK and the Vetevendosje Movement will be reached this month. She said that the LDK will not enter talks with any other political party. “We don’t have a plan B. We will not negotiate with anyone else for a coalition. I have gone before the people and pledged that we would form a coalition only with the Vetevendosje Movement … The agreement could fail only if Vetevendosje does not want a coalition,” she said.

Osmani said they have agreed with Vetevendosje that the new government should have only 12 ministries as promised by the two parties during their election campaigns. She said that minority communities would get two ministries in the new government. “But we haven’t decided yet which ministries will go to them,” she added.

Osmani said she agrees with LDK deputy leader Lutfi Haziri’s earlier remarks that the post of Prime Minister needs to go through the LDK. “I am not in favor of statements that can damage the good spirit we have built … But it is wrong to believe that a deputy leader of the LDK cannot express his opinion … There is not a single person in the LDK that works against a potential coalition,” she said.

Osmani argued that Kosovo does not need the import tariff on Serbian products to protect its state integrity. Osmani said that in addition to reciprocity with Serbia, Kosovo should also prepare a package that takes into account the dialogue and the CEFTA regulations.

“We will under no circumstance allow for the issue of borders to be brought to the table of talks with Serbia,” she said.

Asked if she will run for the post of LDK leader in the future, Osmani said: “I will do what the membership of the LDK requires of me. I have no problem with asking and if they say that I have their support for party leader, then I will run for the post. For the time being, however, we are not focused on that issue”.

Kosovo’s Election Commission announces final election results (media)

Kosovo’s Central Election Commission (CEC) President Valdete Daka announced the final results of the October 6 parliamentary elections at a press conference yesterday. “This announcement comes after the conclusion of all procedures,” Daka told reporters. She also said that political parties and individual candidates have a 24-hour deadline to appeal the results.

The Vetevendosje Movement (LVV) wins the elections with 26.15 percent of votes (220,811 votes) and it will have 32 MPs in the new Assembly. The Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) has won 24.458 percent (206,458 votes) and will have 29 MPs. The Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) has won 21.163 percent (178,645 votes) and will have 25 MPs. The AAK-PSD coalition has won 11.477 percent (96,883 votes) and will have 14 MPs. The Serbian List has won 6.754 percent of votes (57,015 votes) and will have 10 MPs in the new Assembly of Kosovo. Most news outlets highlight in their coverage that NISMA has failed to pass the election threshold as it won 4.984 percent of votes (43,072 votes). Vetevendosje’s Albin Kurti has won 183,868 votes, followed by LDK’s Vjosa Osmani with 176,188. PDK leader Kadri Veseli has won 146,763 votes and AAK leader Ramush Haradinaj 75,917 votes.

Pacolli: Inclusion of votes from Serbia is scandalous and a grave mistake (media)

New Kosovo Alliance (AKR) leader, Behgjet Pacolli, took to Facebook to comment on the announcement of the final results of the October 6 parliamentary elections. Pacolli, whose party was in a coalition with NISMA and PD and failed to cross the election threshold, claims that the results are manipulated and that they don’t represent the will of the people. “The inclusion of votes from Serbia, which were delivered in opposition to the law and filled by a person that represents Vucic and Dacic in Kosovo, is a scandal and a grave mistake. We will use all legal means to prevent this error for democracy and the rule of law in Kosovo,” Pacolli writes.

Shala: CEC has fabricated the votes – we will appeal today (media)

NISMA senior official Endrit Shala has opposed the final election results announced by Kosovo’s Central Election Commission (CEC) yesterday. He told Klan Kosova that the CEC has not announced the results but “fabricated them, because they are trying to turn some ballots that came illegally from Serbia into votes”. “For the Social Democratic Initiative [NISMA], the CEC has fabricated the results today. Based on the results of valid and legitimate votes, the Social Democratic Initiative has crossed the threshold. We will follow all legal procedures to oppose this fabrication. We will file an appeal with the ECAP today and then we will address the Supreme Court and the Constitutional Court if necessary,” Shala said.

Kadri Veseli summoned for interview by specialist chambers (media)

Most news outlets report that Kadri Veseli, leader of the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK), said yesterday that he has received an invitation for an interview from the Specialist Chambers for December 4. Below is Veseli’s full address to the reporters:

“As one of the leaders of the Kosovo Liberation Army, I have received an invitation from the Specialist Chambers for an interview at the Hague on December 4. As I have pledged, I made public the invitation the moment I received it. My generation, as many other generations, went through a serious oppression against our nation. We did not agree with that situation and I am proud to have answered my country’s call for the freedom of the nation. All my life I was engaged for the good of Kosovo and I have done this on a voluntary basis and with the highest commitment. I started as a child, as a pupil at an elementary school in Mitrovica, with the 1981 protests, as a participant, and then as an organiser and leader in the majority of protests. In the mid-1980s, I joined patriotic and anti-Yugoslav organisations to oppose slavery and to work for our freedom. The time of the Kosovo Liberation Army is the proudest part of my life. I was blessed to have been one of the originators and founders, a freedom fighter until the liberation of the country. From April 1999 until June 2008, I led the Kosovo Intelligence Service. I have carried out these engagements with honour and full responsibility and with exceptional pride. Honourable citizens, the efforts of our nation for freedom – were our life. We achieved freedom together and the Kosovo Liberation Army is its symbol. However, we need to acknowledge one fact: the righteous fight of our people for freedom was under continuous attack. Since the end of the war, this is the fifth judicial process. Starting with UNMIK, then The Hague tribunal, EULEX, local judiciary, and now the Special Court. I don’t believe there has been another similar case in the history of movements for liberation. This process too must have an epilogue, based on the truth, facts and justice, and one that does not damage the state of Kosovo indefinitely. I am confident that this Court will confirm the righteous fight of the Kosovo Liberation Army and that it will put an end to attacks against the truth of our people and the Kosovo Liberation Army. I will respond to this invitation, on December 4.”

Reactions to Veseli’s call by Specialist Chambers (media)

Officials in Kosovo and Albania have reacted to the news that the leader of the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) Kadri Veseli has been summoned by the Specialist Chambers in the Hague.

President of Kosovo Hashim Thaci said that there is no court that can stain the figure of Kadri Veseli and his fight for liberation. “Our fight for freedom is the purest, righteous and noble cause that one people can have in its history,” Thaci wrote. “There is no doubt that Mr. Veseli, as tens of former KLA fighters that have so far been invited by the Specialist Chambers, had the highest patriotic, political and military morale.”

Leader of the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK) and outgoing Prime Minister of Kosovo, Ramush Haradinaj, said that as any freedom fighter, Veseli will manage to defend the purity of Kosovo’s liberation war. “Kadri Veseli, as one of the leaders of the Kosovo Liberation Army that fought against Serbia’s oppression and cruelty on the people of Kosovo,” he wrote adding: “Convinced that the truth and our right will once again triumph.”

Leader of the Social Democratic Initiative (NISMA) Fatmir Limaj said the invitation for Veseli is unjust. “KLA leaders as they succeeded several times in defending the purity of the Kosovo Liberation Army’s just war so will Mr. Kadri Veseli know to defend the just war of KLA,” he wrote on social media.

New Kosovo Alliance (AKR) leader and Kosovo’s outgoing Foreign Minister, Behgjet Pacolli, reacted to the invitation saying that the fight of the people of Kosovo for freedom was pure, fair and with high humane motives. “Kadri Veseli will emerge triumphant from this challenge along with other former KLA combatants and prove to the civilised world once again that we were the only victims of war,” Pacolli wrote in a Facebook post.

Prime Minister of Albania Edi Rama also said the Specialist Chambers invitation is unjust. “As unjust as Special Court’s invitations for KLA fighters may be, there is no other way but to prove the truth about the right won by war by a people that without the Liberation Army would still be denied their rights,” Rama said.

Albania’s opposition leader Lulzim Basha said that no one will can undermine the sacrifice of the people of Kosovo for freedom and independence. “Kadri Veseli and all his fellow fighters called in The Hague will prove yet again to the world the just cause of freedom from occupation and inhumane oppression,” Basha wrote.

At the same time, publicist and director of Klan Kosova, Baton Haxhiu, said he believed Veseli’s invitation is among the last ones before the first indictments are filed. “All the others have either already been interviewed or wait to be interviewed. There is no KLA leader that has not been invited. There are some that have not made it public, 2 or 3. Only Hashim Thaci has not been called. All others have,” he said. “What I know is that Kadri Veseli is the next to last among political leaders to be called,” Haxhiu added.

Hahn: Kosovo-Serbia agreement viable only if followed by EU perspective (media)

European commissioner for enlargement Johannes Hahn said that European Union integration perspective is the greatest incentive for Western Balkans countries in pushing forward reforms and processes. He said that when it comes to Serbia, the idea of an agreement with Kosovo would make sense only if there is an EU membership perspective.

Hahn made the remarks in his last appearance in the current capacity before the European Parliament Committee on Foreign Affairs.

Kosovo journalist attacked for writing a story on casino’s activities (Klan Kosova)

A journalist from Klan Kosova working on a story covering alleged illegal activities of casinos in the village of Karaceva, Kamenica municipality, has been physically assaulted by a local person. She was slapped by a man that came out of the improvised casinos in the village. The case was reported to the police.

The journalist was reporting how several makeshift casinos are operating in the village although prohibited by law. Kamenica Mayor Qendron Kastrati said there was a legal gap in the Kumanovo peace agreement leaving part of Karaceva village without legal control and in order for the Kosovo Police to operate in the area, it needs to firt get permission from KFOR.

Serbian Government continues to fund parallel structures in Kosovo (RFE)

The news website reports that the Serbian Government plans to spend around €63.7 million for the Office for Kosovo and the biggest share of funds will be spent “to support the functioning of institutions and organisations in the territory of Kosovo” primarily for parallel structures or the “provisional bodies” of the Serbian state in Kosovo. RFE notes that the government in Pristina does not recognise the parallel structures and that according to agreements between Kosovo and Serbia in Brussels they should have integrated in Kosovo’s institutions.

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