Albanian Language Media:
- COVID-19 report: 250 new cases, seven deaths (media)
- Hoti: Fighting pandemic, economic recovery key government priorities (media)
- Hoti responds to criticism over COVID-19 test (Prishtina Insight)
- Kosovo receives PPE donation from Germany (media)
Serbian Language Media:
- Seven new coronavirus cases in Serbian communities in Kosovo (Kontakt plus radio)
- Serwer: Vucic is not ready to enable Kosovo’s membership in the UN (Danas)
- Serbian parliament meets in constitutive session (Beta, N1)
- Dacic: Enough with lies that Serbian government is ready to recognize Kosovo (Beta, N1)
- Partition was an option for Serbia because of the lack of trust in the other side (KoSSev)
- WHO: The “black” record of those infected in one day has been broken again (B92, Tanjug)
Albanian Language Media
COVID-19 report: 250 new cases, seven deaths (media)
250 new cases of coronavirus and seven deaths have been recorded in the last 24 hours in Kosovo, National Institute for Public Health said in a statement.
It added that there have been 126 recoveries during the same time period.
The highest number of new cases are from the municipality of Prishtina (65), followed by Mitrovica (26) and Peja (19).
According to the Institute for Public Health there are currently 3,804 active cases of COVID-19 in Kosovo.
Hoti: Fighting pandemic, economic recovery key government priorities (media)
After testing positive for COVID-19 and going into quarantine, Prime Minister of Kosovo Avdullah Hoti took to social media to announce that the two priorities of the Kosovo Government include fight against the coronavirus pandemic and economic recovery.
He said that the dynamic of the government’s work will not be affected by the latest developments.
Hoti said that the COVID-19 committee is set to meet today and discuss tasks of each institution as part of the National Response Plan and noted that the relevant ministries are making preparations to implement measures to help citizens and businesses cope with effects of the pandemic.
“We also expect the Assembly to adopt this week the law on economic recovery in order to pave the way for implementation of the entire economic recovery package,” Hoti wrote on Facebook.
Hoti responds to criticism over COVID-19 test (Prishtina Insight)
The prime minister insists he self-isolated immediately after being tested for coronavirus on Sunday following MP Mimoza Kusari-Lila’s accusations that he ignored protocol and endangered citizens.
Sunday night, Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti announced via his Facebook account that he had tested positive for coronavirus. “From tonight I am in isolation for the next two weeks,” Hoti stated, adding that he had no symptoms except for a mild cough.
Responding to the news, MP Mimoza Kusari-Lila, who leads the Alternativa party, stated that Hoti’s failure to self-isolate prior to the test was yet another reason for his removal as prime minister.
“Since he did not feel well and had reason to be tested, why was not Mr. Hoti not isolated?” she stated. “Why did he do the opposite of the protocol which suggests that people should self-isolate between testing and getting the result?”
Kusari-Lila pointed to the dozens of people that Hoti has met in recent days, claiming that the prime minister exposed these citizens to risk of infection. She added that the prime minister has “done nothing to alleviate this pandemic in Kosovo” and that he had “physically endangered businesses and people’s lives.”
In response, Hoti argued that he was tested at 16:00 on Sunday and went into self-isolation immediately. “Although I did not have any serious concerns, with the appearance of a mild cough on Sunday, my co-workers recommended that I be tested,” he stated.
“I did the test on Sunday around 4 p.m. At the moment I was tested, I was isolated in anticipation of the result, as this is the protocol recommended by doctors,” Hoti added.
Read more: https://bit.ly/33iGW8w
Kosovo receives PPE donation from Germany (media)
Germany has made today a donation of medical Protective Equipment to Kosovo health authorities.
The donation on behalf of the German Government was delivered by Ambassador Jorn Rohde to Kosovo Minister of Health Armend Zemaj and the Director of the Institute for Public Health Naser Ramadani.
The donation includes 17,000 face masks, 3,700 liters of hand disinfectant substance and 275,000 pairs of gloves.
Serbian Language Media
Seven new coronavirus cases in Serbian communities in Kosovo (Kontakt plus radio)
Epidemiologist of the Institute of Public Health in North Mitrovica, Dr. Aleksandar Antonijevic, announced at today’s press conference that ,in the last 24 hours, seven new cases were registered in Serbian communities in Kosovo, 19 people were cured, and two deceased, reported Kontakt plus radio.
In the north of Kosovo, five new cases of infection were recorded, and in Serbian areas south of the river Ibar, two cases were recorded.
New cases in municipalities in northern Kosovo: North Mitrovica (1), Leposavic (1) and Zvecan (3).
When it comes to Serbian communities south of the Ibar, one positive case each was recorded in Gracanica and Strpce.
In the last 24 hours, 19 patients were cured – five each from North Mitrovica and Leposavic, three from Zvecan, two from Zubin Potok, three from Gracanica and one from Strpce.
So far, a total of 30 people have died in Serb communities in Kosovo.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, a total of 3,525 people have been tested, of which 825 people have been confirmed to have the coronavirus.
Out of that, in North Mitrovica 252, in Leposavic 165, in Zvecan 133, and in Zubin Potok 86.
A total of 189 patients have been registered in central Kosovo.
The total number of active cases is 521.
Dr. Antonijevic stated that 433 patients are in home isolation, 88 are being treated in the Hospital in North Mitrovica, one in the Clinical Hospital of Serbia in Belgrade, two patients are placed in the Dragisa Misovic hospital in Belgrade, two in the Kragujevac Hospital and three in the Nis Hospital.
Serwer: Vucic is not ready to enable Kosovo’s membership in the UN (Danas)
Foreign experts on the Western Balkans, Daniel Serwer and Johanna Deimel, assessed for Belgrade based daily Danas that it is extremely important that the Brussels negotiations on the normalization of relations between Belgrade and Pristina were renewed after a long stalemate, especially having in mind the topics “on the table” at this stage.
However, interlocutors of Danas do not share the optimism of EU officials that it is possible to reach a comprehensive agreement at the beginning of next year.
– It is good that they are trying to talk about the missing and other issues that serve to build the trust, but I am skeptical that it is possible to reach an agreement that will really normalize relations at the beginning of next year. That is certainly possible, and it could be achieved in a few minutes, but it would require Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic to enable Kosovo’s membership in the United Nations and appoint an ambassador to Pristina. The impression is that he is not ready for that at all, says Daniel Serwer, a professor at the Johns Hopkins University in Washington.
According to independent German analyst Johanna Deimel, the continuation of negotiations under the auspices of the EU “is really impressive”. As he points out, “the fact that German Chancellor Merkel, French President Macron and EU leaders in Brussels are involved in this new beginning shows how great the political will is, and how great political strength Europe would like to show by pulling the strings in the negotiations again, after it found itself in danger of losing that role in favor of the United States. “
– In that context, cautious optimism is advised. But I think we are still talking about “interrogative” negotiations, and as an outside observer, I cannot see that a quick solution can be found. Nor would it be desirable to negotiate in a hurry. Also, we must not forget the great consequences of the Covid pandemic, which will certainly continue and will greatly affect the conditions in this region, Europe and the world for a while, Deimel points out.
Interlocutors of Danas note that after the parliamentary elections in Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic can “rule without restrictions”, as well as that the only thing he has to fear at home is the “opposition on the streets”.
– Recently, we saw that Vucic resorted to “questionable” measures in order to stifle the dissatisfaction of the population. But he has the parliament under his control, so he can “push” the agreement in the parliament. The situation in Kosovo is different. The government has a “thin” majority and Prime Minister Hoti’s mandate to negotiate is constantly being called into question. In Kosovo, in particular, a cross-party consensus is needed, including among the Serb population, on the content of the agreement, and there is a long way to go to achieve this. Finally, at the beginning of next year, the second term of the Trump administration will begin in the United States, or Joe Biden will take power. This will be of great importance for the Balkans, Europe and the world. So, to conclude, an agreement between Belgrade and Pristina, that is, a binding promise on the recognition of Kosovo at the beginning of next year, would be desirable, but it is not probable from today’s point of view, states Deimel.
Serbian parliament meets in constitutive session (Beta, N1)
The Serbian parliament held its constitutive session on Monday to confirm the mandates of the MPs who won seats at the June 21 elections.
The session closed once the administrative proceedings were completed. It was chaired by the oldest MP Smilja Tisma of the Socialist Party of Serbia (SPS). The Serbian parliament’s first session is traditionally chaired by the oldest MP. MPs observed pandemic precautionary measures, wearing masks and keeping a distance.
Outside the parliament building, a crowd headed by defrocked monk Antonije Davidovic protested, throwing eggs and tomatoes at the steps leading up to the entrance to the building once they saw MPs leaving. Security closed the main entrance and police officers were reported to have led one of the protesters away.
Parliament will meet again next week, according to MPs from the Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) which holds a majority of seats. The next session of parliament should elect a speaker and deputy speakers.
See at: https://bit.ly/3i0QGbr
Dacic: Enough with lies that Serbian government is ready to recognize Kosovo (Beta, N1)
We’ve had enough of the disgusting lies that the government in Serbia and President Aleksandar Vucic are ready to recognize the independence of Kosovo, as Bosko Obradovic stated for the umpteenth time today, Serbian Deputy Prime Minister Ivica Dacic stated in a statement on Saturday.
He continued saying that “in eight years of the Socialist Party of Serbia’s (SPS) coalition with Vucic, Serbia has returned the Kosovo issue to the agenda, unlike the time of Tadic, Jeremic and Djilas, when everyone said that everything had already been resolved.”
“During that time, almost ninety countries recognized Kosovo. During our rule, 18 countries withdrew the recognition of Kosovo, so that Kosovo no longer has a majority for the admission to international organizations,” Dacic noted.
According to him, Serbia and Vucic were clear when they said they want dialogue and a peaceful solution to the problem, but that they will never agree to blackmail or an ultimatum for the recognition of Kosovo.
“So, stop lying to the people that someone will recognize Kosovo,” Dacic concluded.
See at: https://bit.ly/3hYboZJ
Partition was an option for Serbia because of the lack of trust in the other side (KoSSev)
By Marko Savkovic
Few new ideas are offered on how to overcome the current impasse. If there are any, they are advocated without much enthusiasm. One aspect of this collective resignation is that over the years a lot has been proposed only to be rejected; the other, that it is a complex issue asking for a “final comprehensive” solution addressing at least five or six major issues that are still open; and third, a kind of self-censorship: if I propose it, who will support me at such an advanced phase (since we are always “one step away” from historic breakthrough, right).
Rightfully or not, both sides have raised the issue to that of the of highest national interest; “internationalized” the problem by inviting foreigners back in. Hence now the rumor about the “rebranding” of the Community/Association of Serb Majority Municipalities; will proposals come from Lajcak or Negotiators themselves? If yes, how ambitious can they be and what will be the role of Germany and France, other than providing support?
Secondly, Serbian and Kosovan positions are diametrical, so much so that they seem irreconcilable. While one side says, “recognition is out of the question”, the other claims “Ahtisaari and that’s it, no more concessions”.
Public opinion polls lead us to the conclusion that in Serbia, recognition is tantamount to betrayal, not worth considering even “in exchange” for EU membership (no such offer is on the table); while in Kosovo, an odium has been created towards the “Community/Association”. There is concern that it would be just a tool in the hands of Belgrade; make Kosovo dysfunctional for years to come, etc. etc.
Third, writing for Balkan Insight colleagues Xhambazi and Hartwell see Belgrade’s position as “monolithic” when compared to Pristina’s “disunited negotiators.” This is an interesting thesis: yes, it seems that Vučić has built a political machine that will accept what party leadership orders. However, citizens who are not members of the party also vote for him (according to the data from December 2019, the Progressives have 646,000 party members). If explicit recognition takes place, “his” electorate would be split in half (CDDRI, October 2019).
See at: https://bit.ly/2PhFhro
WHO: The “black” record of those infected in one day has been broken again (B92, Tanjug)
The WHO announced that a record 262.929 cases of coronavirus worldwide were confirmed in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of infected to 17.66 million.
The death toll rose by 5.851, the WHO added.
According to TASS, a total of 17.660,523 people have been infected with the coronavirus in the world, and 680.894 people have died as a result of this infection.
WHO statistics are based on officially confirmed country data.
Most cases, 9.476,763, were registered in South and North America.
In the last 24 hours, the number of infected people increased there by 156.433, and the number of deaths by 3.963. Thus, the total number of deaths reached 359.180.
As for Europe, 3.375,535 cases of coronavirus and 213.284 deaths have been confirmed. In the last 24 hours, the number of patients increased by 17.419, and the number of deaths by 323.
In Southeast Asia, 2.131,165 people were infected and 45.837 died, as the number of cases increased by 58.971 and the number of deaths by 937 in the past 24 hours.
The United States leads in the number of infected with 4.523,888 cases, followed by Brazil with 2.662,485 cases and India with 1.750,723 infected.
Russia is ranked fourth with 850.870 cases, South Africa is in fifth place with 503.290 cases, Mexico is ranked sixth with 424.637 cases, and Peru is in seventh place with 407.492 cases.
Among the top ten countries in the world in terms of the number of infected are Chile with 357.658 cases, Iran with 306.752 cases and Great Britain with 303.956 infected with COVID-19.