- Nine new cases of coronavirus confirmed (media)
- Kosovo President rejects EU mediator for talks with Serbia (Reuters)
- EU: Lajcak speaks on behalf of all member states (Lajmi)
- Kurti: We shouldn’t worry that protests will be violent (media)
- Kurti speaks to Djukanovic about Covid-19, dialogue with Serbia (media)
- Osmani: Dialogue with Serbia to be well-structured (media)
- Abbott: Constitutional Court decision to be respected by all (media)
- VV supporters with “performance” in Prishtina on Thursday (Indeksonline)
- Selimi: We will not remain silent to unfair decisions (Telegrafi)
- Haradinaj: Court will support Hoti government (media)
- LVV submits to CEC request for local elections in Podujeve (media)
Kosovo Media Highlights
Nine new cases of coronavirus confirmed (media)
Kosovo’s National Institute for Public Health confirmed nine new cases of coronavirus on Tuesday.
The new cases are from the municipalities of Vushtrri and Gjilan. Media report that three health workers are among the new cases in Vushtrri and that the municipality has currently 31 active cases of Covid-19.
Kosovo President rejects EU mediator for talks with Serbia (Reuters)
Kosovo President Hashim Thaci said on Tuesday he would not take part in talks on normalising ties with Serbia led by an European Union special mediator, calling instead for an increased U.S. role in the dialogue.
Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, almost a decade after a guerrilla uprising by its ethnic Albanian majority, and agreed to an EU-sponsored dialogue with Belgrade in 2013 to resolve all outstanding issues.
Normalisation is among key conditions the EU has set for admitting Kosovo as a member state, and by Russia, a traditional ally of Serbia, to lift its veto on Kosovo joining the United Nations.
In March, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell appointed Slovak diplomat Miroslav Lajcak as special mediator for Kosovo.
Read the article: https://reut.rs/2yF9FYi
EU: Lajcak speaks on behalf of all member states (Lajmi)
The news website contacted EU officials on Tuesday for comments on why EU Special Representative for the Kosovo – Serbia Dialogue, Miroslav Lajcak, has not yet contacted Kosovo President Hashim Thaci.
Asked if Lajcak’s appointment can have consequences for the dialogue process, EU officials said they will continue to do their job as they did from the beginning of the process and now through Lajcak and High Representative Josip Borrell. They also said Lajcak speaks on behalf of all EU member states.
“The EU has assisted the Prishtina – Belgrade dialogue since its beginning in 2011. We are working on a successful conclusion of the dialogue – to achieve the comprehensive normalisation and a final settlement that resolves all outstanding issues between the parties. We have reiterated for a long time how important it is to resume the dialogue in order to give a clear European perspective to the region. The EU will continue to assist the process through High Representative Josep Borrell and EU Special Envoy Miroslav Lajcak,” the EU said in a written reply.
“The recent appointment of the EU Special Representative for the region reflects the importance that EU member states pay to the dialogue. The new envoy is in constant communication with all supporting partners to listen to their perspectives, expectations and concerns in order to prepare the basis for dialogue to resume without delay. Nevertheless, the time, agenda and pace of the dialogue do not depend solely on the EU but must be formed together with the parties and their ability to agree.”
Kurti: We shouldn’t worry that protests will be violent (media)
Kosovo acting Prime Minister Albin Kurti said on Tuesday that there can be protests about many things in Kosovo but that “I dont believe we should worry that such protests are going to be violent”. Kurti said he engages in the peaceful resolution of problems.
Kurti did not say if his party – the Vetevendosje Movement – would organise protests after the upcoming ruling of the Constitutional Court. “The citizens organise protests. So do our activists. I dont know what will be the reactions of the people and the Vetevendosje. We need to read the decision of the Constitutional Court. I am ready to accept any decision by the court which is an interpretation of Constitution but I am not ready to accept a writing of the Constitution … I can say that I am always engaged in peaceful solutions and that our methods are peaceful, our methods are not violent. I dont believe there will be any need for any tensions or instability because I believe in the professionalism and impartiality of the judges of the Constitutional Court. I believe they will make a right and merited decision. There can be protests about many things but I dont think we should worry that they are going to be violent,” he said.
Kurti said the Vetevendosje Movement has doubled its support among the people and that according to a poll conducted in mid-March they stand at a 52 percent quota.
Kurti said that Kosovo’s relations with the United States or the European Union cannot be either servilism or animosity.
“I am not among those that say we can have either relations of servilism or animosity with the US, EU or other Western factors. I think partnerships and alliances are the only way forward. I dont share the same opinion with all U.S. officials that work with the Balkans. I am not in office to win the sympathy of others but rather to protect the interests of the people of Kosovo,” Kurti said.
Asked about relations with US Ambassador Richard Grenell, Kurti said: “Grenell had the role of a vaccine. Why? He initially said Kosovo must lift the 100 percent on Serbian goods and that Serbia must stop its campaign against Kosovo recognitions. Then he later only said lift the tariff. We then lifted the tariff in line with our program and we replaced it with reciprocity with Serbia and he told us lift to lift that too. I cannot do that. I can give the U.S. any concession that they ask from Kosovo but not for Serbia. I know Serbia better than Ambassador Grenell does.”
Kurti speaks to Djukanovic about Covid-19, dialogue with Serbia (media)
Acting Prime Minister of Kosovo Albin Kurti had a telephone conversation with President of Montenegro Milo Djukanovic and spoke about the situation with the Covid-19 pandemic as well as dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia.
According to a press release issued by the Government of Kosovo, Kurti said that he supports a dialogue which is well-prepared and with principles and not a quick fix. He said the process should be led by the EU and the U.S. which, he underlined, cannot replace or exclude one another.
Djukanovic on his part is said to have stressed that the dialogue with Serbia is one of the key factors for stability in the region and its EU integration.
Osmani: Dialogue with Serbia to be well-structured (media)
Kosovo Assembly Speaker Vjosa Osmani said that the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia needs to end in mutual recognition and guarantees for respect of Kosovo’s territorial integrity.
“We want normalisation of inter-state relations and we are ready to continue dialogue but we want it to be well-structured and based on clear principles. Dialogue should respect the context of relations between our two countries,” Osmani said in a meeting with the Finnish Ambassador to Kosovo, Pia Stjernvall.
Abbott: Constitutional Court decision to be respected by all (media)
British Ambassador to Kosovo, Nicholas Abbott, said that ahead of the Constitutional Court’s ruling it is important that its decision is respected by all.
“Whatever the decision, it will lead to change, which may be to new elections or to a new government. Some people will be pleased, others will be disappointed, some may be overjoyed, others may be angry,” he wrote on Facebook adding that whatever the reaction, it is in Kosovo’s interest for such a change to happen peacefully.
“All political leaders, in state institutions or political parties, should act to ensure that Kosovo’s political stability and security, as well as its international standing, are not undermined,” he said.
VV supporters with “performance” in Prishtina on Thursday (Indeksonline)
The news website claims to have secured a document which says that supporters of the Kurti-led Vetevendosje Movement (VV) will hold a “performance” in three squares in downtown Prishtina on Thursday.
The document, which was reportedly sent by the party to the police, notes that around 3,500 supporters of VV will stay in one place for two hours, maintaining the required distance and wearing masks and gloves. 200 Vetevendosje activists will reportedly manage the performance to avoid any possible incidents.
Selimi: We will not remain silent to unfair decisions (Telegrafi)
Head of the Vetevendosje Movement (LVV) parliamentary group Rexhep Selimi said that the party was not behind plans to stage protests but added that the citizens have the right to protest.
Speaking to RTV Dukagjini, Selimi said that the Constitutional Court should take a fair decision noting: “If we see unfair decisions in violation of the Constitution, Vetevendosje will not be silent in face of such injustices.”
Haradinaj: Court will support Hoti government (media)
Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK) leader Ramush Haradinaj said on Tuesday that he believes the Constitutional Court will rule in favor of President Thaci’s decree for a government formed by LDK’s Avdullah Hoti.
According to Haradinaj, the Kurti-led Vetevendosje is losing popular support. He also argued that Kosovo doesn’t have the luxury that to go to new elections every time that the winning party does not form the government.
LVV submits to CEC request for local elections in Podujeve (media)
Representatives of the Vetevendosje Movement (LVV) submitted yesterday to the Central Election Commission (CEC) request to hold mayoral elections in Podujeve after they were suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Head of LVV branch in Podujeve, Bajram Ajeti, submitted the request calling for elections to take place on 14 June 2020.