- Citizens angry that VV and LDK do not agree on forming government (KTV)
- VV to amend its statute, in order to allow Kurti hold both chairman’s and PM’s post (KTV)
- VV doesn’t accept President from LDK, seeks a consensual candidate (RTKLive)
- Bajrami: No one can condition LDK for the President (KTV)
- Kosovo ‘enslaved from within’ by corruption, says incoming PM (Financial Times)
- Vucic responds to Haradinaj and Kurti: I don’t want to insult them, I want peace (RTK)
- Dardan Molliqaj elected as PSD chairman (RTK)
Citizens angry that VV and LDK do not agree on forming government
Since 7th November, when the Central Election Commission (CEC) announced preliminary results, representatives and leaders of Vetëvendosje Movement and LDK have proceeded with meetings in order to form a government coalition.
However, even about two months after elections, the two parties still have not reached a co-governing agreement.
Such a meeting was announced also on Sunday, but it did not happen.
The stagnation in discussions and the President’s position asked by LDK, in the last weeks have made Facebook social network to be filled with reactions by many persons.
Persons holding positions at institutions, as well as citizens, have expressed their stances regarding the discussions.
Moreover, meetings of the two party leaders were turned to humour by persons and by various satiric pages.
Although citizens say that LDK should not be so persistent, they expect an agreement between VV and LDK. According to citizens, President’s post should not be part of the discussions, since the candidate should not belong to any party.
Given that even after many meetings, Vetëvendosje and LDK did not reach a final agreement; the President of Kosovo has convened the constitutive meeting of the Assembly on 26th December.
VV to amend its statute, in order to allow Kurti hold both chairman’s and PM’s post
Albin Kurti will be leading both Vetëvendosje Movement and the Government, after his appointment as Prime Minister of Kosovo.
Vetëvendosje’s statute does not allow this, but it is expected that the article that specifies it, will be amended soon.
Article 73 of the statute of Vetëvendosje stipulates that if chairperson of Vetëvendosje Movement is elected Prime Minister, he/she shall resign the position as chairperson of Vetëvendosje Movement’s chairperson.
For two weeks, Kohavision has been trying to contact officials of Vetëvendosje Movement about the future amendments to the statute, but it has not received any response so far.
Arton Demhasaj considers unreasonable amending of the article, in order for Kurti to hold both positions.
According to him, chairperson of Vetëvendosje should be focussed on leading the government.
VV doesn’t accept President from LDK, seeks a consensual candidate
Vetëvendosje Movement is seeking a consensual, worthy candidate, who represents the unity of the people.
VV MP Arbërie Nagavci said that as soon as they agree with the LDK on the new Government, they will seek a worthy candidate for Head of State.
“We can talk about the President; furthermore, we are interested in working seriously in identifying a worthy, consensual candidate who represents the unity of the people, as the Constitution requires. So, once we have fully agreed on the government, we can seriously engage regarding the country leader’s post,” Nagavci said in a Facebook post.
Bajrami: No one can condition LDK for the President
LDK member Hykmete Bajrami said that no one can condition LDK not to propose the President.
She says that Vetëvendosje should stop the propaganda and special war, if it has truly decided to build a coalition with the Democratic League of Kosovo.
“LDK is working to build a Government that will provide solutions to every problem of the citizens. Not a government that collapses after a year. A Government that does not end its mandate,” she said.
Bajrami qualified Vetëvendosje’s conditionality not to accept the LDK-proposed President as unacceptable.
“Let’s leave aside the statements and agree before any cooperation bridge breaks down. Vetëvendosje conditionality that we do not accept the President from LDK is unacceptable. Such conditions cannot be imposed by parties that have not won 51 percent of the vote,” she said.
Kosovo ‘enslaved from within’ by corruption, says incoming PM
Albin Kurti tells FT he is willing to put aside demand to unify with Albania to boost economy.
Albin Kurti has set off tear gas in parliament, spent years in prison and derided the flag and national anthem of his young country, Kosovo. Now, after more than 22 years fighting the system, he is preparing to take charge of it.
Mr Kurti is expected soon to become Kosovo’s prime minister after a narrow victory in elections last month for his Vetevendosje party, ending a period of political domination by former leaders of the guerrilla Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), many of whom have been dogged by allegations of war crimes and corruption.
In an interview, Mr Kurti said his win was “an electoral revolution” for Kosovo, which — 11 years after declaring independence from Serbia — remains one of Europe’s poorest countries. His anti-establishment party plans to use its first spell in national government to prioritise economic development and the fight against corruption.
“We proved that there is enormous democratic potential in Kosovo,” he said. “Of course there will be challenges . . . a challenge is a chance.”
Those challenges include fraught international relations, with Serbia campaigning to get countries to revoke recognition of its former province and block Kosovan membership in international organisations such as Interpol and the Council of Europe. Meanwhile, Kosovo’s ambitions for EU membership are blocked because five member states do not recognise the Balkan nation.
“We have to stand up first. Our state is quite weak, but that is due to internal capture” Albin Kurti, Kosovo’s premier-designate
Vetevendosje, whose name translates as “Self-determination”, was long viewed by foreign diplomats as a threat to regional stability. The party has called for Kosovo, which has a majority ethnic-Albanian population, to unify with neighbouring Albania.
But premier-designate Mr Kurti suggested that building Kosovo’s state was more of a priority than moving to join Albania, though his organisation has established a chapter in Tirana.
“We have to stand up first. Our state is quite weak, but that is due to internal capture after external liberation from Serbia,” he said. The country was “enslaved from within”, he said.
He said his coalition with the centre-right Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) would improve living standards and halt emigration by improving the judiciary and creating jobs.
Agon Maliqi, an independent analyst, said Mr Kurti “was the right man at the right time” for voters fed up with the postwar ruling elite. “It does feel like a new era,” he said.
Coalition talks have dragged over LDK’s insistence on having the right to pick a president in two years’ time.
Mr Kurti’s rise to prominence dovetails with Kosovo’s recent history. He was a long-haired leader of student protests against the regime of Slobodan Milosevic in 1997 when Kosovo was still a province of Serbia. When war broke out, he helped the KLA’s political wing with media outreach but did not fight or take part in peace talks. He was imprisoned by the Milosevic regime as Nato bombed Serbian forces into retreat in 1999.
After the war, Kosovo became a UN protectorate, with its institutions overseen by a foreign “special representative” until 2012 and its courts run by EU judges and prosecutors until 2015.
Mr Kurti and his Self-Determination Movement protested against these external powers as attacks on Kosovo’s sovereignty. Most recently, Mr Kurti has protested against his own government’s approach to negotiations with Belgrade to “normalise” relations, which stalled last year after his predecessor imposed a 100 per cent tariff on Serbian goods.
Mr Kurti said he had a different take on talks from Kosovo’s president Hashim Thaci. One of his principles is “no dialogue with maps”, an allusion to a plan for a territory swap or partition mooted with tentative support from Brussels and Washington. Advocates of the plan say it will end Kosovo’s decades of limbo and marginalisation and help it win a seat at the UN. Mr Kurti said he disliked the message that drawing borders along ethnic lines would send.
“We should shift from [debating] control over territory towards the rights of the citizens and the needs of the communities . . . because maps are racist for sure,” he said.
He will face pressure from allies including the US, which has appointed two envoys, to make a deal with Serbia. But he said he opposed “quick fixes”.
In any talks between the two countries, Mr Kurti will probably face Serbian president Aleksandar Vucic, who was Slobodan Milosevic’s information minister in 1999 when he was sentenced to 15 years in prison.
“We were always on different sides: he a minister, me a protester; he a minister, me a political prisoner. He a minister, me a protester again,” Mr Kurti said.
Among a clutch of Balkan countries with ambitions to join the EU, Kosovo is considered the most distant prospect. Its 1.8m people do not have access to Europe’s Schengen passport-free travel area.
Mr Kurti said he was disappointed that the EU failed to open accession talks with North Macedonia and Albania — “an expression of the crisis which exists within the EU rather than the state of affairs in these two countries”.
“The real crisis is . . . the lack of a vision [on] how to move on further,” he added. “We need welfare states, we need to build solidarity against fascists, and we need the security of the continent from the Russian Federation, which used to be kept away by Nato.”
Vucic responds to Haradinaj and Kurti: I don’t want to insult them, I want peace
Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic responded to the statement of the Kosovo’s Acting Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj.
Haradinaj, at a commemoration event, which was held on Saturday on 21st anniversary of falling of the Brigade 113 commander Mujë Krasniqi and 40 martyrs of the nation, had said that Aleksandar Vucic and his colleagues cannot deny that it was the KLA guys that expelled them from Kosovo.
In his reaction, Vucic said he had understood Haradinaj’s message, who said that the KLA expelled the Serbian Army from Kosovo, as well as Albin Kurti, when he said that he would not give any territory to Serbia as a comfort for its lost Kosovo.
“Those are serious people and serious messages; we have received and understood them. They know what the interests of their people are, and we know the interests of our people. Our primary interest is peace and peacekeeping,” Vucic said, Lajmi.net reported.
Vucic said that Albanians think they are very strong and Serbians weak, adding that it is better for Serbs to be responsible and serious, because they know what their national and state interests are.
“I do not even think of insulting them. Our job is to keep peace and to help our people stay, to have fewer judgments on verbal offences. It is better to judge me than our people. I am always interested in actions rather than in words,” the Serbian President said.
Dardan Molliqaj elected as PSD chairman
The Executive Committee of Social Democratic Party (PSD) has elected Dardan Molliqaj as the leader of the party, who got 83.7% of the vote.
The Social Democratic Party says it held its Convention meeting on Sunday, where they voted to call extraordinary elections.
“Initially it was voted to increase the number of members of the Executive Committee to 156, and then new members of this party body were proposed and voted on. The gender quota previously voted 50:50 was also fully applied in this body. ON the next item on the agenda, delegates voted for the election of the chairman. The nominee Dardan Molliqaj, through secrecy vote, won 83.7% of the vote, thus becoming the PSD chairman,” the PSD statement reads, announcing that that election of other party structures will take place in the coming days.