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UNMIK Media Observer, Morning Edition, May 12

By   /  12/05/2020  /  Comments Off on UNMIK Media Observer, Morning Edition, May 12

• Health Institute: 11 new confirmed cases (media)
• A Kosovo government official infected with COVID-19 (media)
• Ahmeti: No indication Prishtina can be placed under quarantine (Indeksonline)
• Grenell’s spokesman: All are welcome to contribute with ideas (media)
• EU Special Representative Lajcak firmly against land swap idea (media)
• Hoxhaj: PDK is against territorial exchange and border changes (media)
• Haradinaj: EU silence over border changes idea creates insecurity (media)
• Osmani: Serbia silently carrying out ethnic cleansing in Presevo Valley (media)
• Shala: Vetevendosje was quite soft compared to the circumstances (media)
• LDK’s Bajrami: Kurti responsible for government’s fall (Koha)
• Haxhiu calls on authorities to ‘seriously’ treat two rapes in Mitrovica (media)

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  • Health Institute: 11 new confirmed cases (media)
  • A Kosovo government official infected with COVID-19 (media)
  • Ahmeti: No indication Prishtina can be placed under quarantine (Indeksonline)
  • Grenell’s spokesman: All are welcome to contribute with ideas (media)
  • EU Special Representative Lajcak firmly against land swap idea (media)
  • Hoxhaj: PDK is against territorial exchange and border changes (media)
  • Haradinaj: EU silence over border changes idea creates insecurity (media)
  • Osmani: Serbia silently carrying out ethnic cleansing in Presevo Valley (media)
  • Shala: Vetevendosje was quite soft compared to the circumstances (media)
  • LDK’s Bajrami: Kurti responsible for government’s fall (Koha)
  • Haxhiu calls on authorities to ‘seriously’ treat two rapes in Mitrovica (media)

Kosovo Media Highlights

Health Institute: 11 new confirmed cases (media)

Kosovo’s National Institute for Public Health confirmed 11 new cases with COVID -19 on Monday. The new cases are from the municipalities of Prizren, Prishtina, Vushtrri and Ferizaj.

Kosovo has currently 188 active cases of the total of 900.

A Kosovo government official infected with COVID-19 (media)

Kosovo’s Ministry of Justice said in a statement on Monday that one of its officials has tested positive for coronavirus. The said official was quarantined.

“The case of the official is a contact case. All other officials that had contacts with the infected official have gone into quarantine and will be tested by the National Institute for Public Health in the coming days,” the statement added.

Media meanwhile report that the official working for the Ministry of European Integration that was exposed to Covid-19, tested negative yesterday. Acting Prime Minister Albin Kurti and his staff went into self-isolation yesterday after having had contact with this official.

Ahmeti: No indication Prishtina can be placed under quarantine (Indeksonline)

Prishtina Mayor Shpend Ahmeti said in an interview with Radio Prishtina that an eventual decision to return Prishtina under quarantine is up to the Ministry of Health.

“If the number of infected cases continues to rise, the decision is then made by the Ministry of Health following a recommendation by the National Institute for Public Health. So far, we have no information or indication that Prishtina will be returned under quarantine or that additional restrictive measures could be taken. With that being said, we need to be careful,” Ahmeti said.

Grenell’s spokesman: All are welcome to contribute with ideas (media)

Dick Custin, a spokesman for the US Presidential Envoy for the Kosovo – Serbia talks, Richard Grenell, said on Monday “all are welcome to contribute with ideas that will help stability, peace and prosperity of Serbia and Kosovo”.

Custin was asked if a new resolution needs to be adopted by the United Nations Security Council and if there is room for Russia to engage in the dialogue for the normalisation of relations between Kosovo and Serbia.

His remarks come after a statement by the Russian Ambassador to Belgrade, Aleksandar Botsan Kharchenko, who said that a final solution for Kosovo must be approved at the United Nations Security Council, by adopting a new resolution that would replace Resolution 1244.

EU Special Representative Lajcak firmly against land swap idea (media)

The European Union Special Representative for the Belgrade – Prishtina Dialogue, Miroslav Lajcak, said on Monday that an eventual border correction between Kosovo and Serbia would not bring stability and peace to the Balkans.

“Last week, I spoke to APA about the EU – facilitated Dialogue, which aims at achieving a legally binding normalisation agreement between Kosovo & Serbia. This must be in line with international law and contribute to stability in the region. The idea of land swaps does the opposite,” Lajcak tweeted.

Lajcak also said: “We have seen a very strong reaction against the idea for territorial exchange in Kosovo, other countries in the region and in EU countries. This leads me to the conclusion that the issue is not and should not be on the agenda.”

Hoxhaj: PDK is against territorial exchange and border changes (media)

Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) MP and former Foreign Minister, Enver Hoxhaj, said on Monday that his party is firmly against an eventual land swap between Kosovo and Serbia. In an interview with RTV Ora, Hoxhaj denied allegations that a land swap was in the agenda of Kosovo President and former PDK leader, Hashim Thaci. He said Vetevendosje leader Albin Kurti and AAK leader Ramush Haradinaj made the unfounded claims “because they wanted to avoid the dialogue with Serbia and dodge any responsibility”.

“The PDK has made its position very clear: a territorial exchange is not the solution. In 2020, this is not in the agenda of President Thaci or anyone else in Kosovo … Our approach is that we need to dialogue with Serbia, we need to negotiate a best possible solution for Kosovo. We need to see what the final outcome of the agreement is and then it is up to the Kosovo Assembly to say yes or no to such an agreement,” Hoxhaj said.

Haradinaj: EU silence over border changes idea creates insecurity (media)

Alliance for the Future of Kosovo and former Prime Minister, Ramush Haradinaj said that the silence and tolerance of EU capitals over the idea of border changes in the Balkans creates confusion and insecurity.

“There will never be a final agreement between Kosovo and Serbia without a framework of principles,” Haradinaj wrote in a Twitter post.

Haradinaj’s reaction comes in response to remarks by EU High Representative Josep Borrell not ruling out an eventual land swap between Kosovo and Serbia if the two sides were to agree to this.

Osmani: Serbia silently carrying out ethnic cleansing in Presevo Valley (media)

Kosovo Assembly Speaker Vjosa Osmani accused the Serbian government of carrying out what she said was a silent ethnic cleansing of the Presevo Valley from Albanian population living there.

Comparing the number of Albanian residents between 2011 and now in the Municipality of Medvedja, Osmani said that of 7,438 there are estimated to be only 600 Albanians. “This systematic reduction of the Albanian population in Medvedja is not coincidental. Denial of education and employment, violation of rights to language and representation as well as the continuous oppression of the Serb regime against Albanians in those settlements has led to migration of the Albanian population in search of better conditions for their families,” Osmani wrote on Facebook.

Osmani also said that Serbian authorities have been erasing all civilian records of Albanians that lived in the area. “By disabling the residence addresses, the Serbian state makes a final expulsion of Albanians from Serbia’s civil records by making it impossible for them to obtain new documents, access medical services or social assistance, and even removing them from voters’ lists.”

“The Republic of Kosovo cannot remain silent any longer! Addressing the issue of human rights and freedoms of Albanians in the Presevo Valley should be done in all instances, inside and outside the country. This is not simply an isolated problem,” Osmani said.

Shala: Vetevendosje was quite soft compared to the circumstances (media)

Political commentator Krenar Shala said in a debate in Klan Kosova on Monday that the Kurti-led Vetevendosje Movement “was quite soft compared to the circumstances it operated in”. He said acting Prime Minister Albin Kurti “is faced with very low attacks by political parties that have lost the people’s trust”.

“Kurti is at least trying to communicate with decision-making centers in the world and trying to explain the situation here to them … Corruption and organised crime have damaged Kosovo the most, so has Thaci’s insistence to lead with Kosovo’s foreign policy. However, I have seen a dose of good will – especially in some EU member states – to defned Kosovo. They have seen that on October 6, the people voted for change,” Shala said.

LDK’s Bajrami: Kurti responsible for government’s fall (Koha)

Kosovo’s acting Minister of Education, Hikmete Bajrami, said in an interview to KTV on Monday that Prime Minister Albin Kurti is responsible for the fall of the government.

“I don’t think our party was responsible for this because the actions of our coalition partner led to us initiating the no-confidence motion. The Prime Minister is responsible in this case, not the LDK. One of the reasons were relations with the United States, but the tipping point was the unilateral decision to dismiss Mr. Veliu [Interior Minister] over an allegedly uncoordinated statement,” Bajrami said.

Haxhiu calls on authorities to ‘seriously’ treat two rapes in Mitrovica (media)

Acting Minister of Justice Albulena Haxhiu has expressed concern over two recent reported cases of rape in Mitrovica.

“I call on judicial institutions to treat such cases with seriousness. Detention measure should not be replace with softer measures or release through regular procedure because this serves as encouragement for the assaulter and motivates them to repeat the criminal act,” Haxhiu wrote on social media.

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