Albanian Language Media:
- Ambasador Grenell visits Pristina and Belgrade this week (Koha)
- In Davos, Thaci meets president of World Economic Forum (media)
- Finnish ambassador: There is hope for coalition agreement (Klan Kosova)
- Haradinaj and Apostolova meet to discuss latest developments in Kosovo (media)
- Haradinaj nominates Lulzim Rafuna for the Minister of Finance (RTK)
- The U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary Jorgen Andrews to visit Kosovo tomorrow (RTK)
- Haradinaj: Belgrade line is not related to tariff (media)
Serbian Language Media:
- Borrell to visit Belgrade on January 30 (Tanjug)
- Vucic spoke to O’Brien in Davos (Tanjug, B92)
- Reactions from Belgrade and Srpska Lista on BG-PR flight deal (KoSSev, Radio KIM, BETA)
- Djuric on Belgrade-Pristina flight: We will inform KFOR and UNMIK (KoSSev)
- Vucic: Tariffs unsustainable, problem to be resolved after Kosovo government is formed (BETA)
- Grenell: This is just the beginning of a bright future we predict for Serbia and Kosovo (N1, Blic)
- Serbia president Vučić ‘fed up of being lectured’ over ties with Russia and China (Euronews)
- Discrimination in the name of neutrality (Prishtina Insight)
Albanian Language Media
Ambasador Grenell visits Pristina and Belgrade this week (Koha)
The U.S. Ambassador and Special Envoy for Kosovo-Serbia negotiations, Richard Grenell, will visit Pristina and Belgrade this week, officials from the U.S. Embassy in Germany confirmed for Radio Free Europe.
At present, Grenell is scheduled to meet President of Kosovo Hashim Thaci on Thursday in Pristina while a meeting with President of Serbia Aleksandar Vucic will take place the next day in Belgrade.
In Davos, Thaci meets president of World Economic Forum (media)
President of Kosovo Hashim Thaci met in Davos President of World Economic Forum Borge Brende.
Thaci said he thanked Brende for continuous engagement to keep Western Balkans on top of the international agenda of discussions, aiming to provide solutions and support for the economic development of the region.
Finnish ambassador: There is hope for coalition agreement (Klan Kosova)
Finnish Ambassador to Kosovo Pia Stjemvall met officials from the Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) at the party headquarters in Pristina.
She said the meeting was fruitful and focused on the current political situation. Stjemvall is quoted as saying that the main outcome of the meeting is that there is hope for a coalition agreement to be reached with the Vetevendosje Movement.
Haradinaj and Apostolova meet to discuss latest developments in Kosovo (media)
Acting Prime Minister of Kosovo Ramush Haradinaj met today head of EU Office in Kosovo Nataliya Apostolova.
In a Facebook post Haradinaj said they discussed the latest political development and partnership between Kosovo and the EU.
“I underlined that country’s institutions are committed to continuing contractual obligations stemming from SAA in all stages of our functioning and that Kosovo has fulfilled all visa liberalisation criteria,” he wrote, adding that it is up to the EU to now grant visa-free travel.
Haradinaj nominates Lulzim Rafuna for the Minister of Finance (RTK)
Acting Prime Minister of Kosovo Ramush Haradinaj nominated today Lulzim Rafuna as acting Minister of Finance.
Rafuna has so far exercised the duty of the adviser to the Minister of Finance Bedri Hamza.
Hamza resigned from the post of the Minister the moment he signed his post of the Kosovo Assembly member of parliament.
The U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary Jorgen Andrews to visit Kosovo tomorrow (RTK)
The U.S. Embassy in Kosovo informed that the U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Jorgen Andrews will be visiting Kosovo tomorrow.
The U.S. Embassy also informed through a press release that Andrews will meet representatives of the government and those of civil society who deal with the issues of the rule of law.
It was also informed that he will participate in the ceremony of the donation of $100,000.00 for the Pristina Detention Center.
Haradinaj: Belgrade line is not related to tariff (media)
Acting Prime Minister of Kosovo Ramush Haradinaj denied at a press conference after the meeting of the government the news reported in the media that he is communicating with representatives of Vetevendosje Movement to reach agreement for co-government.
He further added that the project presented by Albin Kurti is a deceit and stressed that he would not reject a meeting with Isa Mustafa.
Haradinaj said it would be painful if Kosovo had to repeat elections.
He however added that he respects Kurti and his decision to reduce the number of the ministries.
Haradinaj said the agreement for Pristina-Belgrade flights is not related to the 100 percent tariff on Serbian goods.
“The letter of intent tells that Kosovo party does not set additional tariffs from those that already exist at the airport and this has nothing to do with the 100 percent tariff,” he said.
‘It is a business discourse used for flights from one country to another, it does not undo Kosovo’s independence. This airline implies more. Kosovo’s passport might be recognized, but it is too early to talk about this. From what I can see, I openly see opportunity for advance,” he said.
Serbian Language Media
Borrell to visit Belgrade on January 30 (Tanjug)
EU foreign policy and security chief Josep Borrell is due to visit Belgrade on January 30, Belgrade based news agency Tanjug learns in Brussels.
Borrell is planned to visit Pristina first and travel to Belgrade the following day.
Borrell’s meetings with officials in Belgrade and Pristina are expected to focus on a resumption of the Brussels dialogue on comprehensive normalisation of relations.
Vucic spoke to O’Brien in Davos (Tanjug, B92)
Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic met with US Presidential Security Advisor Robert O’Brien in Davos.
“An open and friendly conversation with National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien, with a mutual desire to further improve Serbia-US relations”, Serbian President announced on an Instagram profile of ‘buducnostsrbijeav,’ with photos.
President Vucic thanked O’Brien yesterday on Twitter for having a critical role along with the US Presidential Special Envoy for the Dialogue of Belgrade and Pristina, Richard Grenell, in helping to establish direct flights between Belgrade and Pristina.
See at: https://bit.ly/2txcOH8
Reactions from Belgrade and Srpska Lista on BG-PR flight deal (KoSSev, Radio KIM, BETA)
The Serbian Ministry of Economy, Kosovo Civil Aviation Authority and Lufthansa Airlines suddenly signed a letter of intent to create a Belgrade-Pristina flight route, KoSSev portal reports.
There were some reactions to this news yesterday, besides mutual congratulations of the participants in this process – which the public did not know was even taking place. Today, however, this news has caused controversy in the Serbian National Assembly within the opposition ranks.
During the Serbian National Assembly session, an independent MP, Djordje Vukadinovic posed the question of whether the announcement that Belgrade-Pristina airline would be created contains elements of a violation of the Serbian Constitution. Vukadinovic also wondered what the reason was for NATO to welcome a letter of intent to open a single airline route is, Beta news agency reports.
On the other hand, MP Aleksandar Seselj linked this news with “mini-Schengen“ initiative. He then proceeded to call for the withdrawal from this initiative because, in his words, this agreement is a way for Serbia to eventually recognize Kosovo.
Meanwhile, Serbian List welcomed the initiative to establish an airline between Belgrade and Pristina. SL said that “the Serb people in Kosovo will only benefit from this initiative“.
“We are grateful to President Aleksandar Vucic, Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic and the head of the Office for Kosovo and Metohija, Marko Djuric for having the wisdom and strength to show once again, in a time characterized by political uncertainty and the deterioration of the position of the Serbian people in Kosovo and Metohija, that Serbia and the Serbian people are the axes of stability of the region,“ SL said in a statement, RTV Kim reported.
See at: https://bit.ly/36bFDpG
Djuric on Belgrade-Pristina flight: We will inform KFOR and UNMIK (KoSSev)
Serbian Government Office for Kosovo and Metohija Director Marko Djuric said Serbia will send an official letter to UNMIK and KFOR on the intent to reinstate the Belgrade-Pristina airline after two decades, KoSSev portal reports.
“Serbia will send the official letter to UNMIK and KFOR about intent to reinstate the air line between its two cities – Belgrade and Pristina, after two decades,” Djuric said.
Djuric also said the airline between Belgrade and Pristina would be beneficial to the people of all ethnicities and business community.
Vucic: Tariffs unsustainable, problem to be resolved after Kosovo government is formed (BETA)
Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said he believes the tariffs on goods from central Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, imposed by Pristina, are unsustainable and part of this problem would be resolved after the new Kosovo government is formed, BETA news agency reports.
“I believe it is unsustainable and by establishing the government in Pristina part of the problem would be resolved. Regardless of who forms the government. It is clear without Serbian List it won’t go, and it would be one of the crucial requests of the Serbian List,” Vucic said in Davos.
He also added it makes no sense to reinstate the airline between Belgrade and Pristina and talk about introduction of railway lines, if there is no possibility for the free flow of goods.
Grenell: This is just the beginning of a bright future we predict for Serbia and Kosovo (N1, Blic)
The US Special Envoy for Belgrade-Pristina dialogue and Ambassador in Berlin, Richard Grenell told Belgrade-based daily Blic on Wednesday that the agreement to resume Belgrade-Pristina flights will help business community to open new employment opportunities and expand market. He added that economic development is key to move the process forward.
Representatives of Belgrade and Pristina signed a letter of intent with the German Lufthansa airlines to resume the flights after a break of more than 20 years. The letter was signed in the US Embassy in Berlin in the presence of Grenell and US National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien.
The historic signing of an agreement to establish direct flights between Belgrade and Pristina will help the business community open new jobs and expand markets, the US President’s special envoy for Kosovo is quoted as saying. He added that private individuals and business people will be able to replace six hours of driving with a direct flight of about 20 minutes.
Grenell, Washington’s ambassador in Berlin, said that economic development is the key to moving the process between Belgrade and Pristina forward. “When President (Donald) Trump asked me to be the special envoy for the Serbia-Kosovo peace talks, he said clearly that economic development is the key to getting the process moving. Economic growth is and always will be the greatest creator of wealth for the people of the region and the world,” he said.
“President Trump and his team have worked hard to reach this agreement which is just the beginning of the bright future that we predict for our friends in Serbia and Kosovo,” the ambassador said.
Serbia president Vučić ‘fed up of being lectured’ over ties with Russia and China (Euronews)
Serbia’s president has said he is “fed up of being lectured” by European leaders about close ties with Russia and China, insisting Belgrade remains committed to EU membership despite unprecedented delays to accession.
Aleksandar Vučić, a right-winger who has been in power since 2017, told Euronews that Serbia was still on the path to joining the EU despite disillusion with the project.
In an interview in Davos, he took aim at critics who say Serbia is too close to Moscow and Beijing, blaming the stalled membership process on “geopolitics.”
“Serbia is not very enthusiastic, but we are still committed towards an EU path because we don’t see a real alternative.” he told Isabelle Kumar. “We have been on that path for 20 years already. I think, apart from Turkey, not a single country has been waiting for so many years.”
See at: https://bit.ly/2Rg23Sj
Discrimination in the name of neutrality (Prishtina Insight)
With dreams of becoming a soldier, a teacher or a graphic designer, women in Kosovo have spoken out against the discrimination they have faced pursuing their careers while wearing a hijab, and the policies and social stigmas that continue to stand in their way.
See at: https://bit.ly/38tnSUo