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UNMIK Media Observer, Morning Edition, June 22

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• 96 new cases of coronavirus in last 24 hours in Kosovo (media)
• Hoti to report to MPs on Washington visit and reciprocity on Tuesday (media)
• Several senior LDK members voted against Osmani’s dismissal (Koha)
• Kurti: Allowing Serbian elections, cancelling local ones, unacceptable (media)
• Braathu: Only ballot collection for Serbian elections conducted in Kosovo (Klan)
• Serbia President’s Party Scores Landslide in Election Boycotted by Opposition (BIRN)
• Veseli: Kosovo Army, best argument for those that deny success (media)
• North Macedonia President: Kosovo-Serbia deal would help the region (media)
• Pushing for Serbia-Kosovo Peace Deal, U.S. Roils Allies (NYT)

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  • 96 new cases of coronavirus in last 24 hours in Kosovo (media)
  • Hoti to report to MPs on Washington visit and reciprocity on Tuesday (media)
  • Several senior LDK members voted against Osmani’s dismissal (Koha)
  • Kurti: Allowing Serbian elections, cancelling local ones, unacceptable (media)
  • Braathu: Only ballot collection for Serbian elections conducted in Kosovo (Klan)
  • Serbia President’s Party Scores Landslide in Election Boycotted by Opposition (BIRN)
  • Veseli: Kosovo Army, best argument for those that deny success (media)
  • North Macedonia President: Kosovo-Serbia deal would help the region (media)
  • Pushing for Serbia-Kosovo Peace Deal, U.S. Roils Allies (NYT)

Kosovo Media Highlights

96 new cases of coronavirus in last 24 hours in Kosovo (media)

All news outlets reported on Sunday evening that 96 new cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in the last 24 hours.

Kosovo’s National Institute for Public Health said in a statement that citizens must respect the measures aimed preventing the spread of the virus and that wearing masks is mandatory.

There have been three new fatalities from the virus during the weekend and 29 recoveries.

The current number of active cases in Kosovo is 1,088.

Hoti to report to MPs on Washington visit and reciprocity on Tuesday (media)

Several media reported on Sunday that Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti will report to the Kosovo Assembly on Tuesday on the upcoming visit to Washington and on the lifting of reciprocity measures toward Serbia. MPs are also scheduled to discuss on the ratification of international agreements and the selection of candidates for committees and boards.

Several senior LDK members voted against Osmani’s dismissal (Koha)

Citing sources in the Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK), the news website reported that senior party members and MPs, Lutfi Haziri, Anton Quni, Ardian Shala, Fatmir Rexhepi, Valentina Bunjaku and Faton Bislimi, voted against Vjosa Osmani’s dismissal from the post of LDK deputy leader and from the party’s chairmanship.

On Saturday evening, the LDK general council voted in support of dismissing Osmani from the post of party deputy leader and member of its chairmanship.

Kurti: Allowing Serbian elections, cancelling local ones, unacceptable (media)

Vetevendosje Movement (VV) leader and former Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti, wrote in a Twitter post on Sunday: “Allowing Serbian elections in #Kosova while local elections in two municipalities are cancelled for months due to #Covid19 is unacceptable. Citizens will not stand idly by while this President & this illegitimate gov. threaten our democracy & violate our country’s sovereignty.”

Braathu: Only ballot collection for Serbian elections conducted in Kosovo (Klan)

The head of the OSCE Mission in Kosovo, Jan Braathu, visited Gracanica yesterday as Serbian elections were underway and said for the news outlet that there is only ballot collection happening in the territory of Kosovo.

“We don’t call them elections,” he said adding that the same practice has been applied in previous years.

Serbia President’s Party Scores Landslide in Election Boycotted by Opposition (BIRN)

Aleksandar Vucic’s party romped home in Serbia’s general elections on Sunday, winning about two-thirds of the votes, early results show – although opposition parties boycotting the polls said less than half the electorate turned out, BIRN reports.

It adds that Vucic’s Serbian Progressive Party won 63.5 percent of the votes and that only two other political entities managed to pass the 3 percent parliament threshold.

Veseli: Kosovo Army, best argument for those that deny success (media)

Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) leader Kadri Veseli said in a Facebook post on Sunday that 21 years ago began the transformation of the Kosovo Liberation Army into the Kosovo Protection Corps in full coordination with NATO.

Veseli said today the Kosovo Army is the coronation of a joint institutional and societal engagement. “Despite all challenges, this Army, is the best argument for all those that deny the successes of our state twenty years after the war,” he said.

Read more: https://bit.ly/37NzOB8

North Macedonia President: Kosovo-Serbia deal would help the region (media)

North Macedonia President Stevo Pendarovski said in an interview to Radio Free Europe that an eventual agreement between Kosovo and Serbia will have an impact on countries of the whole region.

Pendarovski also said North Macedonia will ask for international guarantees that if a deal between the two countries involves border changes, this would not have a domino effect in other countries of the region.

Pushing for Serbia-Kosovo Peace Deal, U.S. Roils Allies (NYT)

Upending American policy, the Trump Administration is sidelining the E.U., pressuring Kosovo and ignoring Serbia’s erosion of democracy.

Last October, with the Balkans unsettled and the old tethers of American diplomacy coming apart, the Trump administration dispatched a new envoy to try to solve one of Europe’s longest-running territorial disputes: the two-decade standoff between Serbia and Kosovo.

The move was unconventional. The State Department already had a special envoy to the region, and President Trump’s new emissary, Richard Grenell, was also ambassador to Germany, where his brash style and embrace of right-wing figures broke with diplomatic norms.

Before long, Mr. Grenell offended and alienated European diplomats who had worked hard on Kosovo for years. They accused him of ignoring their own, more evolved peace initiatives, of undermining democracy in Kosovo and of turning a blind eye to budding authoritarianism in Serbia, a Russian ally.

“I’m doubtful that in this way you can really resolve a situation like Kosovo, the way it’s being tried by Grenell,” said Wolfgang Petritsch, a former European Union envoy to Kosovo.

Read full article at: https://nyti.ms/312pRyz

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