- Kurti says he’ll replace tariff on Serbia with full reciprocity (media)
- Osmani: Tax to be replaced with reciprocity measures (media)
- Haradinaj: Tariff defended us from Serbia’s aggressive policy (Koha)
- Kurti vows to review all govt decisions following Haradinaj’s resignation (Koha)
- Kusari-Lila: Reciprocity with Serbia would benefit Kosovo (Klan Kosova)
- Putin seeks Kosovo-Serbia agreement to be in line with Resolution 1244 (Koha)
- Varhelyi: EU ready to work with Kosovo (Koha)
- Rama meets Pompeo, Kosovo-Serbia dialogue also discussed (media)
- Griep: No action required for extension of Specialist Chambers mandate (Zeri)
Kosovo Media Highlights
Kurti says he’ll replace tariff on Serbia with full reciprocity (media)
Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti said on Wednesday that the 100 percent import tariff on Serbian products will be replaced with full reciprocity with Serbia. He made this statement after meeting EU Head of Office Nataliya Apostolova.
“We consider we are where we are as a new government also because of our pledge to have political, economic and trade reciprocity with Serbia as a replacement for the 100-percent tariff. We are not saying we will return to asymmetrical relations with Serbia but on the contrary, we will advance by turning our subjectivity into an issue of integrity,” Kurti said.
“I believe that even those in the opposition, who may disagree with me on different things, are fully on board in regards to reciprocity,” Kurti added.
Apostolova said she looks forward to cooperate with Kurti and that she expects new ideas from him with regards to resuming the dialogue with Serbia.
“We believe the tariff violated international cooperation and other agreements, such as CEFTA, where Kosovo is a member. We are expecting the new government to come up with new proposals and ideas on this issue. We don’t want to preempt a solution. We only want the talks to resume … for dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia to begin,” she said.
Osmani: Tax to be replaced with reciprocity measures (media)
Kosovo Assembly Speaker Vjosa Osmani spoke about the import tariff on Serbia saying it should be replaced by reciprocity measures.
“As you know the coalition programme has been presented by Prime Minister Albin Kurti at the Assembly on 3 February and it clearly states that the tariff will be replaced by reciprocity measures,” said Osmani adding that relations between Kosovo and Serbia should be based on the principle of reciprocity which she said it applied by all democratic countries.
“For the tariff to be removed, as U.S. Ambassador Grenell pointed out, Serbia needs to stop derecognition campaign which it is conducting through unlawful means and which has undermined the importance of dialogue.
“We have not been an obstacle to dialogue, we will work with opposition MPs to ensure full transparency in this process, and only then can we expect success,” said Osmani yesterday after meeting German Ambassador Christian Heldt.
Haradinaj: Tariff defended us from Serbia’s aggressive policy (Koha)
Former Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj met U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Matthew Palmer during his visit to the U.S.
Haradinaj said Kosovo showed maturity in functioning democracy by holding free elections and a democratic transfer of power. “We have consolidated our democracy and we need must continue doing this every day,” he said.
Haradinaj said a comprehensive agreement between Kosovo and Serbia must include mutual recognition.
“Kosovo’s sovereign decisions such as the 100 percent tariff against Serbia was introduced to defend us from the aggressive policy of our neighbor and it should be lifted in exchange for recognition,” he said.
Kurti vows to review all govt decisions following Haradinaj’s resignation (Koha)
Prime Minister of Kosovo Albin Kurti announced that all decisions taken by the Government of Kosovo following the resignation of Ramush Haradinaj will be reviewed.
“Decisions taken after 19 July 2019 cannot have the same status as those taken before this date,” said Kurti.
“Resignation is a moral act and we don’t think that further decisions and appointments have a likable status if we are to respect democratic state-building and lawfulness in our Republic,” Kurti added.
The paper reports that the caretaker government has taken numerous decisions following Haradinaj’s resignation and also awarded tenders worth hundreds of millions of euros.
Kusari-Lila: Reciprocity with Serbia would benefit Kosovo (Klan Kosova)
Leader of Alternativa and MP Mimoza Kusari-Lila said that introducing reciprocity measures towards Serbia would eliminate many obstacles Kosovo is facing.
“Reciprocity includes resolving the problem with trade exchange, verification of goods. Serbia has imposed additional conditions for goods coming from Kosovo so that it didn’t accept any reference to the Republic of Kosovo. Reciprocity also involves free movement, problems that Kosovo has for entering Serbia such as the issue with license plates. Those that wish to enter should be issued with provisional license plates. Then there is the issue of diploma recognition whereby students that have completed studies in Kosovo cannot find job with those diplomas in Serbia. So, there are a number of things involved,” Kusari-Lila said.
Putin seeks Kosovo-Serbia agreement to be in line with Resolution 1244 (Koha)
Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke about Kosovo-Serbia relations during a ceremony where new ambassadors presented credential letters.
“Russia is doing a great deal to help maintaining stability and security in the Balkans. We want Belgrade and Pristina to achieve an acceptable solution for both sides on the basis of the UN Security Council resolution 1244,” Putin said.
Varhelyi: EU ready to work with Kosovo (Koha)
EU Enlargement Commissioner Oliver Varhelyi reconfirmed Kosovo’s European perspective and hailed the formation of the new government.
“If Kosovo is ready to get engaged in getting the EU candidate status, we are ready to work with it,” Varhelyi said at a press conference in Brussels as he presented European Commission’s new enlargement methodology.
Rama meets Pompeo, Kosovo-Serbia dialogue also discussed (media)
Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama met in Washington D.C. the U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
A statement issued by the State Department notes that Secretary Pompeo and Prime Minister Rama discussed shared priorities during Albania’s 2020 Chairmanship of the OSCE and the U.S. support for Albania’s bid to join the EU and for on-going judicial and electoral reform efforts. “The Secretary also commended the Prime Minister for his government’s steadfast commitment to NATO burden sharing, for pushing back against malign Iranian activity, and for undertaking a regional leadership role in protecting next-generation communications networks,” the statement reads.
Posting on the meeting with Pompeo, Rama wrote that the two also discussed the regional Schengen initiative and the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia.
Griep: No action required for extension of Specialist Chambers mandate (Zeri)
The paper reports on the front page that the five-year mandate for the Specialist Chambers is set to expire in August of this year and while legal analysts think that the Assembly of Kosovo would have to vote to extend the mandate, officials from the Chambers say no action can stop the work of the court.
“The law approved by the Assembly of Kosovo stipulates that the mandate of the Specialist Court and Specialist Chambers will continue until Kosovo is notified by the European Union Council that investigations have concluded as has any procedure of the Specialist Chambers,” said spokesperson Angela Griep who added that no specific action is required for the mandate of the court to continue.