- COVID-19 report: 188 new cases, 12 deaths (media)
- Hoti: Reopening of schools depends on epidemiological situation (media)
- KFOR: Serbian Armed Forces’ presence, part of synchronised patrol (media)
- Kosovo FM: Serbian gendarmerie patrol in Kosovo, unauthorised (media)
- Veliu: KFOR and KP to begin joint patrolling along border with Serbia (media)
- LVV: Interference of Serbian gendarmerie, unacceptable (media)
- PDK: Presence of Serbian forces in Karaceva, open threat to Kosovo (media)
- KLA associations call on PM Hoti to halt dialogue with Serbia (media)
- Bosnia’s Izetbegovic doubts Serbia will recognise Kosovo (media)
Kosovo Media Highlights
COVID-19 report: 188 new cases, 12 deaths (media)
188 new cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in Kosovo over the last 24 hours and 12 deaths, the National Institute for Public Health said.
Meanwhile, 142 patients have recovered over the same timeframe.
There are currently 4,481 active cases of coronavirus in Kosovo.
Hoti: Reopening of schools depends on epidemiological situation (media)
Prime Minister of Kosovo Avdullah Hoti said that the Ministry of Education and the Institute for Public Health are preparing a manual on how to organise the new school year and that experiences of other countries are being looked at in this regard.
“Naturally, the final decision on opening of schools will depend on the epidemiological situation,” Hoti wrote on Facebook.
KFOR: Serbian Armed Forces’ presence, part of synchronised patrol (media)
KFOR has issued a statement saying that the presence of Serbian gendarmeries in the territory of Kosovo on Friday, 7 August, was part of a ‘routine synchronised patrol’.
“On 07 August 2020, at approximately 17:20 hours, KFOR elements from Regional Command East conducted a synchronized patrol with counterparts from the Serbian Armed Forces (SAF) on the Administrative Boundary Line (ABL) in vicinity of the village of Hodonovc, in the municipality of Kamenica. Since 2008, synchronized patrols are routinely conducted together by KFOR and Serbian Armed Forces along the ABL in order to provide security and to ensure that there are no accidents. In this regard KFOR also conducts joint patrols with the Kosovo Security Organizations in the vicinity of the Administrative Boundary Line,” KFOR said.
It added that the Administrative Boundary Line between Kosovo and Serbia is around 350 kilometres and “is not clearly marked on the ground or defined by natural and identifiable terrain elements, such as rivers or mountain ranges, but only delineated on maps.”
“While performing their activities, synchronized patrols have to adapt their itineraries to terrain constraints. This implies that KFOR-SAF synchronized patrols move the ABL with a degree of adaptation imposed by the terrain. However, at no time SAF elements of a synchronized patrol are separated from KFOR members; and this was the case this time too.”
Kosovo FM: Serbian gendarmerie patrol in Kosovo, unauthorised (media)
Kosovo’s Foreign Minister Meliza Haradinaj-Stublla has reacted to the statement issued by KFOR explaining the activity in the village of Karaceva over the weekend where concerns were raised that Serbian forces patrolled inside the Kosovo territory.
Haradinaj-Stublla said that ‘synchronised patrolling’ implies that any military force acts within its own territory and does not cross the border. “The parties agree to move along the border line and in certain time inform one another about what they come across in their own terrain during the synchronised patrol. The events of 7 August in Karaceva does not result in being a synchronised patrolling but a joint one with Serbia for which no one has the mandate or authorisation,” she said.
“The concerned people should be explained whether Serbia breached agreement with NATO by entering 300m within the territory of Kosovo or whether this was done with prior approval,” Haradinaj-Stublla added.
Veliu: KFOR and KP to begin joint patrolling along border with Serbia (media)
Kosovo’s Minister of Internal Affairs, Agim Veliu, met KFOR Commander, Major General Michele Risi, following reports that Serbian forces patrolled inside the Kosovo territory.
Veliu said COMKFOR explained that there was a routine and synchronised patrol between KFOR and the Serbian Armed Forces which are ongoing since 2008.
“Such synchronised activities take place not only with the Serbian Forces but also with those of the Republic of Kosovo in order to avoid any possible confrontation between the members of the two forces,” Veliu said after the meeting. He said he welcomed the fact that in the past there were joint patrol activities between KFOR and the Kosovo Police and that he asked for such practice to resume in along the border with Serbia strip.
“The initiative was welcomed by General Risi who said they are ready to assist the Kosovo Police to resume such activities,” he said.
LVV: Interference of Serbian gendarmerie, unacceptable (media)
The Vetevendosje Movement has reacted to reports that Serbian gendarmerie forces patrolling in the village of Karaceva, Kamenica municipality, over the weekend saying that this is not the first time such a thing happens in the territory of Kosovo.
The party said that instead of the government of Kosovo and local institutions focusing on upholding the law and order and ensuring protection for citizens, “they remain slow, negligent, transfer the responsibility to KFOR, and even display mistrust towards residents and our own institutions.”
“It is final time for local institutions to be at the level of their duty for the protection and safety of citizens of the Republic of Kosovo. Such an interference of the gendarmerie is unacceptable as is the indifference of local institutions.”
PDK: Presence of Serbian forces in Karaceva, open threat to Kosovo (media)
The Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) considers that the patrolling of Serbian forces in the territory of Kosovo constitutes an ‘open threat’ to Kosovo’s sovereignty and national security.
“Continued provocations of Serb armed forces in the villages along the border strip and inside the territory of Kosovo, in front of KFOR which holds responsibility for that, are unacceptable,” PDK said. “When leaders of freedom, the state and Kosovo are being attacked precisely because of the just war against that killer army it is not the right time to make such experiments with symbolisms that bring back the pain and terror for citizens of the country.”
PDK added: “We call on the government of Kosovo and the international community to swiftly react and take direct actions to stop these open provocations towards the sovereignty of the country and avoid any possible conflict that could undermine the progress made this far.”
KLA associations call on PM Hoti to halt dialogue with Serbia (media)
Head of the Kosovo Liberation Army War Veterans’ Associations, Hysni Gucati, called on Kosovo Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti to suspend dialogue with Serbia as a sign of protest against international arrest warrants issued by Serbia for former KLA fighters.
“The game with KLA lists in Interpol has become too much. It is an unprecedented violation by the international community to allow Interpol such an unfair approach towards members of the KLA,” Gucati wrote on social media.
Bosnia’s Izetbegovic doubts Serbia will recognise Kosovo (media)
Bakir Izetbegovic, Deputy Speaker of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s House of Peoples said he did not believe there is a Serbian leader that would recognise an independent Kosovo but noted that if this were to happen, it would open appetites for Bosnia and Herzegovina and compromises for Serbs there would be sought out.
“There will be a lot of commotion which will eventually die down and will not bring anything about,” Izetbegovic said in an interview for Radio Sarajevo.