- COVID – 19 report: Three deaths, 43 new cases (media)
- Kosovo awarding Trump highest honor after Serb economic deal (Reuters)
- Opposition criticises PM Hoti for “concessions” in Washington (RFE)
- Krasniqi to Hoti: You signed an A4 letter with yourself (media)
- EU: Kosovo must propose way to implement Association (media)
- Tahiri: Kosovo, Serbia were equal before most powerful president (media)
- “Merkel, Macron told us to conclude dialogue by year’s end” (media)
- Abrashi: Ujman is politicised like demarcation with Montenegro (Kallxo)
COVID – 19 report: Three deaths, 43 new cases (media)
Three fatalities and 43 new cases of COVID – 19 have been recorded in the last 24 hours in Kosovo. 239 persons have recovered from the virus during this period. The highest number of new cases is from the municipality of Prishtina (13)
Kosovo awarding Trump highest honor after Serb economic deal (Reuters)
Kosovo is giving U.S. President Donald Trump its highest award for his role in helping Kosovo and Serbia reach a deal aimed at normalizing economic ties.
Kosovo President Hashim Thaci, in a letter seen by Reuters, informed Trump that he will receive Kosovo’s Medal of the Order of the Freedom.
Two Trump aides, national security adviser Robert O’Brien and Richard Grenell, the U.S. envoy for Kosovo-Serbia talks, are to receive Presidential Medal of Merits.
As part of an agreement reached earlier this month, Kosovo and Serbia – part of the former Yugoslavia – agreed to work on economic ties but left movement on political normalization on hold.
In his letter to Trump expressing his “profound gratitude for your personal contribution in brokering the agreement,” Thaci invited the U.S. president to visit Kosovo.
Opposition criticises PM Hoti for “concessions” in Washington (RFE)
The two biggest opposition parties in Kosovo, the Vetevendosje Movement and the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK), criticised the Hoti-led government on Thursday for making “concessions” to Serbia at the meeting in Washington.
Opposition MPs at the Assembly session on Thursday argued that Prime Minister Hoti made concessions to Serbia on the Ujman [Gazivoda] Lake in the northern part of Kosovo, for agreeing to become part of the Mini-Schengen initiative and that he agreed to remove the point that talked about mutual recognition between Kosovo and Serbia.
Prime Minister Hoti said in his address that the agreement in Washington was reached after an active role by the United States of America. “The agreement has 16 points, which include capital infrastructure projects. I think this is a new momentum in relations between the European Union and the United States when it comes to the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia,” Hoti said.
Krasniqi to Hoti: You signed an A4 letter with yourself (media)
Kosovo Assembly Vice President from the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK), Memli Krasniqi, said in his address at the Assembly session on Thursday that the recent meeting in Washington cannot be called historic for Kosovo.
“Many MPs said today that it was a historic meeting. Maybe it was a historic meeting for you Prime Minister, you will have that photograph at the Oval Office your whole life … but it won’t be historic for Kosovo. I cannot find anything historic about it; you signed an A4 letter, but you did not reach an agreement, you said it yourself that this is not an agreement. How can it be historic when it doesn’t have the seal of the Assembly,” Krasniqi said.
Krasniqi also argued that it was positive that the meeting was held at the White House because the U.S. are an ally of Kosovo and that the two previous Prime Ministers had threatened relations with the U.S.
EU Special Envoy: Discussions confirmed complexity of the issue (media)
The European Union Special Envoy for the Kosovo – Serbia Dialogue, Miroslav Lajcak, said on Thursday that talks with Kosovo’s Skender Hyseni and Serbian representative Marko Djuric confirmed the complexity of the issue discussed.
“Just finished today’s talks with the chief negotiators @markodjuric and Skender Hyseni on mutual financial claims and property. Our discussions confirmed the complexity and sensitivity of the issue. To be continued,” Lajcak tweeted.
Djuric told Serbian media after the meeting that his delegation insisted to address the issue of the Association/Community of Serb-majority municipalities in Kosovo, but that this was rejected by Prishtina’s representatives.
EU: Kosovo must propose way to implement Association (media)
European Union spokesman Peter Stano said today that Kosovo has assumed an international obligation by signing the agreement on the Association/Community of Serb-majority municipalities in 2013, which was then ratified with 2/3 of votes in the Kosovo Assembly. He said Kosovo must find a way how to implement the Association.
Stano said today’s meeting in Brussels between the Kosovo and Serbian delegation at the level of experts is focused on financial and property-related issues and that arrangements on non-majority communities will be discussed at the next meeting.
Tahiri: Kosovo, Serbia were equal before most powerful president (media)
Kosovo’s Principal Deputy Prime Minister Besnik Tahiri, who was part of the Kosovo delegation at the meeting in Washington where the economic deal with Serbia was signed, said on Thursday that Kosovo and Serbia were equal before the most powerful president in the world. Tahiri also talked about the issue of territories, saying that the topic was not addressed either in Washington or in Brussels.
“Merkel, Macron told us to conclude dialogue by year’s end” (media)
Xhavit Beqiri, advisor to Kosovo Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti, said in an interview on Dukagjini TV on Thursday evening that German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron said that the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia must conclude by the end of this year.
“All issues that will be addressed and all eventual agreements will fall in water if there is recognition from Serbia. Kosovo doesn’t have any obligation to stick to the agreements if there is no recognition from Serbia,” Beqiri said.
“At the meeting mediated by Merkel and Macron it was made clear that this is not an indefinite process. The end of the year was mentioned to conclude the process. So, there is a timeline when dialogue must conclude,” he added.
Abrashi: Ujman is politicised like demarcation with Montenegro (Kallxo)
Kosovo’s Minister of Infrastructure, Arban Abrashi, who was part of the Kosovo delegation in Washington, said on Thursday that the issue of the Ujman [Gazivoda] Lake is being politicised like the border demarcation with Montenegro.
“The issue of Ujman has been greatly politicised and I see a lot of media and people discussing it. I have the impression that a political cause is being created just like with the border demarcation with Montenegro, when we lost a couple of years,” he said.
Abrashi said the Washington agreement on the Ujman Lake only includes the feasibility study. “Because all issues with Serbia need to be resolved … There will only be a feasibility study in Ujman, and this is not tragic. The feasibility will be conducted,” he said.
“It was the American side that included Ujman on the agenda of the talks. We were invited there, and they included this issue.”