- Haradinaj: Edi Rama was engaged on idea of Kosovo partition (RTK)
- Rama about Prishtinë/Pristina-Belgrade airline: Peace is not achieved by means of war (RTK)
- British Embassy calls for rapid progress in negotiations (Most monitored broadcasters, TV21)
- LDK appoints Avdullah Hoti as caucus chair, VV still without any proposal (RTK)
- ECAP: Minority political entities have paid fines, Albanian ones have not (KTV)
- Serbia’s President expects “exchange of arguments” with Kosovo’s counterpart in Davos (Gazeta Express)
- Witnesses identify Djokic for crime in ‘Kristal’ neighbourhood of Pejë/Pec (KTV)
- Serb policemen plead not guilty to Kosovo war crimes (BalkanInsight)
- Kosovo Woman Repatriated From Syria Accused of Terror (NYT)
Haradinaj: Edi Rama was engaged on idea of Kosovo partition
Incumbent Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj said that Edi Rama was involved in the Kosovo partition project.
“Prime Minister Rama was engaged in the option of the Kosovo-Serbia agreement, known as the exchange of territories, but which would result in partition of Kosovo,” Haradinaj told Insajderi news portal.
Haradinaj said that since the moment Rama attended meetings and visits with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, that is when the idea of Kosovo partitioning began.
“Mr. Rama was involved in initiating this manner of agreement, not only Kosovo-Serbia, but also an Albanian-Serbian peace agreement,” Haradinaj said.
The price of this agreement would be partition of Kosovo, Haradinaj said, adding that the idea was opposed by him as the Prime Minister, but also by powerful countries in the world.
Rama about Prishtinë/Pristina-Belgrade airline: Peace is not achieved by means of war
The Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama said he was happy about the Prishtinë/Pristina-Belgrade airline. He chose to mention his counterpart, Ramush Haradinaj, against whom he filed a lawsuit a few days earlier, telling him that peace is not achieved by means of war nor by the popularity that these means bring.
Rama says that the agreement on Prishtinë/Pristina-Belgrade flight agreement has made him happy and sees this as a positive step for movement of people and goods in the Balkans, RTK portal quotes GazetaExpress as reporting.
“I gladly welcome today’s agreement on Prishtinë/Pristina-Belgrade flights, which, as the NATO Secretary-General said, is ‘an important step for easier movement of people and goods in the Western Balkans’,” Albanian PM Rama stated.
RTK also quoted Ramush Haradinaj’s Twitter post welcoming the agreement on air flights between Kosovo and Serbia:
“The initiative to open Kosovo’s third civilian air route for commercial flights with Serbia, after Albania and Macedonia, is a giant step forward in advancing good neighbourly relations and consolidating Kosovo’s sovereignty.”
British Embassy calls for rapid progress in negotiations
(Most monitored broadcasters, TV21)
The British Embassy in Kosovo welcomes the decision of President Hashim Thaçi to appoint Albin Kurti as a candidate for Prime Minister.
In a statement, the Embassy called for sooner formation of the Government.
We welcome President Thaçi’s appointment of Albin Kurti as candidate for Prime Minister, to form a new government. Kosovan voters have waited three and a half months for this moment. Their hope and desire for change, expressed so clearly on 6 October, deserve to be respected. Kosovo’s elected politicians and their parties now need to show courage and creativity in forming a government that reflects the wishes of the electorate. We call for rapid progress in negotiations, in a spirit of tolerance and partnership,” reads a statement of British Embassy.
LDK appoints Avdullah Hoti as caucus chair, VV still without any proposal
The political party, which is intending to form new government, still has not appointed its caucus chair.
LV has not nominated anyone as caucus chair in seventh legislature of the Kosovo Assembly.
In the previous mandate, chair of the LV caucus was Glauk Konjufca, who now has been appointed as the Assembly Speaker.
On the other hand, it has been announced that LDK has appointed Avdullah Hoti as its caucus chair.
Meanwhile, PDK has appointed Bedri Hamza as caucus chair, and Srpska List has appointed Igor Simic.
The multi-ethnic caucus is chaired by MP Albert Kinolli.
ECAP: Minority political entities have paid fines, Albanian ones have not
Those political entities that were fined during the election campaign for the early, October 6 parliamentary elections are not keen to pay their debts to the Elections Complaints and Appeals Panel (ECAP). For this reason, ECAP has set deadline for them to pay fines until 31st January, otherwise, ECAP will impose them extra fines or send the case to private law enforcement agent.
Up to now, political entities belonging to minorities have paid their debts, whereas the Albanian ones have not.
Srpska List has completely paid its fine of 36,000 euro, and so has done the Egyptian Liberal Party and the Gorani Party.
PDK, which has been fined the most by ECAP, so far has paid only 45,000 euro out of over 100,000 euro of the total fine.
This was stated to KosovaPress by Chair of the ECAP Secretariat, Mulë Desku, who said that out of over 360,000 euro fines imposed, presently about 85,000 euro has been paid.
There is around 275,000 euro that has remained unpaid.
Desku said that LDK, the AAK-PSD coalition, and Vetëvendosje Movement still have not paid their debts to ECAP.
From the 2017 local elections, Alternativa political entity still has not paid one part of its fine, whilst KTAP still has not paid its fine of 2,200 euro.
Serbia’s President expects “exchange of arguments” with Kosovo’s counterpart in Davos
Kosovo president Hashim Thaci, has traveled to Switzerland when he is expected to attend the World Economic Forum 2020 in Davos.
Thaci will be part of the panel “Diplomatic Dialogue on the Western Balkans,” and expected to meet world leaders attending the Forum.
Also Serbian president Aleksandar Vucic is in Davos and expected to be in the same panel with Thaci. Talking to media from Davos, Vucic said he expects “exchange of arguments,” with his Kosovo counterpart Thaci.
Vucic said he and Thaci would have a “civilized” debate during the international meeting, where they will meet at a panel.
“There will be many leaders from Europe and the world on that panel. I expect an exchange of arguments that will not be quite simple and easy, but I believe we will be able to do it in a civilized tone. It will be one of the most visited sessions, certainly the most important for Eastern Europe, there will be about 20 participants,” Vucic told Belgrade-based TV Pink.
Witnesses identify Djokic for crime in ‘Kristal’ neighbourhood of Pejë/Pec
Shaban Kaliqani continued his testimony on Monday against the war crime accused Zoran Djokic.
Kaliqani, a survivor of the attack on Kristal neighbourhood of Pejë/Pec, which happened on 29th March 1999, said in his testimony that Djokic was the person who killed two Albanian civilians on that day.
A few minutes later, the judge decided that the media should be banned to record the rest of the hearing, while Kaliqani continued his testimony for more than two hours.
However, when Kaliqani was asked by defence representatives of the accused if the person he identified on the photograph in 2000 was the same as Djokic, he was not sure, highlighting that the time of 20 years has elapsed.
He added that since that event, he has been unable to work and that even today, it is difficult for him to testify.
Murat Xhemajli gave his testimony also.
The next hearing in this case will be held on February 21, where Bernadika Marku and Fatmir Shala are expected to testify.
Zoran Djokic was arrested last year. He is accused by the Special Prosecution Office of caused suffering, intimidation of civilians, murders, looting and ordering for displacement during March-April 1999, in the Kristal neighbourhood of Pejë/Pec, together with a group of Serb nationality persons, wearing police, paramilitary and military uniforms.
Serb policemen plead not guilty to Kosovo war crimes
Former police officer Zlatan Krstic and former inspector Destan Shabanaj said they were innocent of crimes related to a deadly attack on Kosovo Albanian civilians in the village of Nerodime e Eperme/Donje Nerodimlje in March 1999.
Former policemen Zlatan Krstic and Destan Shabanaj pleaded not guilty at Pristina Basic Court on Monday, insisting that they were not guilty of committing war crimes against civilians in March 1999.
Kosovo’s Special Prosecution has alleged that the two men “grossly violated the rules of international humanitarian law against civilians and property”.
It alleges that Krstic was directly involved in an attack on ethnic Albanians in the village of Nerodime e Eperme/Donje Nerodimlje in the Ferizaj/Urosevac municipality on March 26, 1999.
The attack was followed by torture, destruction of property, expulsions and abductions of 19 members of a local ethnic Albanian family, according to the charges. Four members of the family were killed.
The prosecution also alleges that on April 1, 1999, while on duty as a police inspector and armed with automatic weapons, Shabanaj ordered the bodies of the four victims, plus a fifth person, to be buried in violation of international humanitarian law.
It claims that Shabanaj gave the order with “the intent of desecrating, humiliating and subjecting the lifeless bodies to demeaning treatment”.
Kosovo Woman Repatriated From Syria Accused of Terror
Kosovo prosecutors on Monday filed terrorism charges against an Albanian woman who allegedly joined a terror group in Syria, New York Times reports.
A statement said the defendant woman identified as V.B. left Kosovo in September 2014 together with her husband and two children. They went to neighbouring Skopje, North Macedonia, and then to Turkey where they crossed the Syrian border to join the Islamic State group, authorities said.
Her husband, identified as E.H., was killed in April 2015 in Syria.
The defendant was there until April 2019 when they were part of a group of 110 Kosovo citizens repatriated from Syria.
She is charged with organization and participation in a terror group. If convicted, she faces up to 10 years in prison.
About 30 ethnic Albanians from Kosovo are still believed to be with terror groups in Syria and Iraq.