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UNMIK Media Observer, Afternoon Edition, October 13, 2021

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Albanian Language Media:

• Serbs in the north oppose police anti-smuggling operation (media)
• Kurti: Crime and criminal groups will not be tolerated and will be fought (media)
• Borrell: Violent incidents in the north to stop immediately (media)
• Police provide information about today’s operation (media)
• Ministers: Police operation aimed at fighting criminal groups (Kallxo)
• Haradinaj: No one can attack the police, operation’s timing dilemmas to be clarified (media)
• CDHRF: Authorities to take action against all those violating the law (media)
• AGK: Albanian and Serb journalists attacked in Mitrovica North (media)
• Kosovo Government adopts concept document for vetting in judiciary (media)
• COVID-19: One death, 29 new cases (media)

Serbian Language Media:

• Petkovic: Mitrovica and Zvecan showered with bursts, a showdown with the bare-handed people (N1)
• PM Brnabic: I call on the international community, KFOR and NATO to react urgently (RTS)
• Petkovic: Another provocation of Kurti, I informed Lajcak (RTS)
• Dr Elek: Patient with gunshot wound operated and stable, injured right shoulder blade and broken rib (Kosovo Online)
• Rakic before meeting with Vucic (Vecernje Novosti, TV Pink, Kosovo Online)
• Journalists of KoSSev face pressure not to report during the N. Mitrovica conflict (KoSSev)
• The Diocese of Raska and Prizren calls for calming the situation (KiM radio)
• Tear gas, shock bombs and sirens in the northern part of Mitrovica, police action and citizens’ protest (media)
• Daily Blic: Christopher Hill new US ambassador to Serbia (Kosovo Online)
• Petkovic calls internally displaced from Kosovo to go to the polls on October 17th (KiM radio)
• Serbia calls on internally displaced persons to vote (KiM radio)

International:

• Kosovo police clash with ethnic Serbs during smuggling raids (AP)
• One Serb shot, 6 policemen injured in Kosovo clashes (Reuters)
• Kosovo Police Clash With Serbs in Anti-Smuggling Crackdown (Balkan Insight)

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Albanian Language Media:

  • Serbs in the north oppose police anti-smuggling operation (media)
  • Kurti: Crime and criminal groups will not be tolerated and will be fought (media)
  • Borrell: Violent incidents in the north to stop immediately (media)
  • Police provide information about today’s operation (media)
  • Ministers: Police operation aimed at fighting criminal groups (Kallxo)
  • Haradinaj: No one can attack the police, operation’s timing dilemmas to be clarified (media)
  • CDHRF: Authorities to take action against all those violating the law (media)
  • AGK: Albanian and Serb journalists attacked in Mitrovica North (media)
  • Kosovo Government adopts concept document for vetting in judiciary (media)
  • COVID-19: One death, 29 new cases (media)

Serbian Language Media:

  • Petkovic: Mitrovica and Zvecan showered with bursts, a showdown with the bare-handed people (N1)
  • PM Brnabic: I call on the international community, KFOR and NATO to react urgently (RTS)
  • Petkovic: Another provocation of Kurti, I informed Lajcak (RTS)
  • Dr Elek: Patient with gunshot wound operated and stable, injured right shoulder blade and broken rib (Kosovo Online)
  • Rakic before meeting with Vucic (Vecernje Novosti, TV Pink, Kosovo Online)
  • Journalists of KoSSev face pressure not to report during the N. Mitrovica conflict (KoSSev)
  • The Diocese of Raska and Prizren calls for calming the situation (KiM radio)
  • Tear gas, shock bombs and sirens in the northern part of Mitrovica, police action and citizens’ protest (media)
  • Daily Blic: Christopher Hill new US ambassador to Serbia (Kosovo Online)
  • Petkovic calls internally displaced from Kosovo to go to the polls on October 17th (KiM radio)
  • Serbia calls on internally displaced persons to vote (KiM radio)

International:

  • Kosovo police clash with ethnic Serbs during smuggling raids (AP)
  • One Serb shot, 6 policemen injured in Kosovo clashes (Reuters)
  • Kosovo Police Clash With Serbs in Anti-Smuggling Crackdown (Balkan Insight)

 

 

Albanian Language Media  

 

Serbs in the north oppose police anti-smuggling operation (media)

Serb citizens in the north opposed a Kosovo Police operation against smuggled goods this morning. Radio Free Europe reported from Mitrovica north that sirens of firefighting trucks and auto-ambulances could be heard all morning. 

Kosovo Police members could be seen in front of pharmacies in the north. Teargas was thrown at protesters to disperse them after they were heading toward the police. The crowds in Mitrovica North have almost been dispersed while the police operation is ongoing in Zvecan where local Serbs have gathered to oppose the action.

Kosovo Police said in a statement that the operation is Kosovo-wide and is being carried out in Mitrovica North, Mitrovica South, Prishtina and Peja. Police said the operation started early this morning and that a series of goods believed to have been smuggled have been confiscated. “All police actions are being implemented in coordination with the competent prosecutions and courts, who have ordered controls and raids in different locations, including houses, business facilities and warehouses,” the police statement notes.

Gazeta Express has published a video showing Serb citizens attacking police officers.

Koha reports that the police operation in the north is now over and that police armored vehicles were seen leaving the north. The news website also reports that the main road in the Bosniak Neighborhood in the north remains blocked.

Kallxo news website too reports that heavy trucks are blocking the roads entering the north.

Indeksonline reports that the police and customs operation in Zvecan is over and that it ended successfully despite the fact that local Serbs attacked the police with grenades and firearms. 

Kurti: Crime and criminal groups will not be tolerated and will be fought (media)

Prime Minister of Kosovo Albin Kurti commented on today’s police operation taking place in several regions of Kosovo as part of the fight against crime and contraband, Koha reports. 

“Early this morning, the Kosovo Police with the goal of fighting smuggling, carried out several search operations in different locations in Pristina, Peja, and Mitrovica (both south and north). These police operations followed intensive investigations and are based on coordinated orders by the relevant prosecutions and courts. Goods and other items have been seized as part of material evidence,” Kurti wrote on Facebook. 

He added: “Crime and criminal groups will not be tolerated and will be fought. We will fight smuggling and prevent it. Today’s police operation has ended. I call on citizens in the northern municipality of Mitrovica not to fall prey to some media in Serbia that protect crime, corruption and smuggling and that want to politicise and ethnicise it.” 

Borrell: Violent incidents in the north to stop immediately (media)

The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell said today that “the violent incidents in the north of Kosovo need to stop immediately.”

“Unilateral and uncoordinated actions that endanger stability are unacceptable. All open issues must be addressed through the EU-facilitated Dialogue. We are in contact with Belgrade and Pristina,” he wrote on Twitter.

Police provide information about today’s operation (media)

The Kosovo Police issued a statement regarding its operation underway today saying it was taking place in several regions of Kosovo, including Pristina, Peja, Mitrovica South and Mitrovica North.

All police operations are being conducted in coordination with relevant prosecutions and courts, based on whose orders the search operations are taking place in residential premises, businesses, warehouses, the police said.

“This police operation which is still ongoing also involves the Kosovo Customs and different profile units of the police which are supporting the police operation. As a result of intensive investigations and professional police actions and Kosovo Customs, so far different goods and items have been confiscated as material evidence.”

In yet another statement, the Kosovo Police said its operation faced no problems except in the northern part of Mitrovica where “criminal groups in an organised way gathered, blocked the roads with different transport vehicles, used gas canisters, shock bombs, fired shots and hand grenades in order to prevent and attack customs and police officials from performing their duties”.

“In reference to the situation created, direct endangerment of officials, blocking of roads, use of gas canisters, shock bombs, use of firearms and hand grenades by suspects and damage/arson of official vehicles, the Kosovo Police was forced to take police action by using the necessary legal means, in order to provide security to the officials involved in the operation, the citizens in that area and to create the possibility of free movement,” the statement reads.

It further noted that as a result of lethal means being thrown at the police, so far six police officers sustained injuries, of whom five of the Albanian and one of the Serb nationality. Based on preliminary information, the police said, one of the persons involved in the attack has been injured.

At this stage, eight persons have been detained by the police as part of its operation which has now been concluded.

Ministers: Police operation aimed at fighting criminal groups (Kallxo)

Kosovo’s Minister of Justice Albulena Haxhiu and the Minister of Finance, Work and Transfers, Hekuran Murati reacted to today’s Kosovo Police operation.

“This police operation is on a country level and includes Peja, Pristina, south and north Mitrovica. This action is aimed at destroying criminal groups and has the support of the government, because criminality should be stopped and criminal groups destroyed,” she said today at a press conference with Minister Murati.

Murati meanwhile said that Kosovo Customs are also involved in the police operation. “The action has to do with smuggling of goods without labels and without declarations, so the Kosovo Tax Administration is not involved but rather the Kosovo Customs,” he said.

Haradinaj: No one can attack the police, operation’s timing dilemmas to be clarified (media)

Leader of the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK) Ramush Haradinaj took to Facebook to comment on the police operation today.

“No one has the right to raise hand on a Kosovo police officer. Hooligans and bandits must be put in prison and the state needs to be uncompromising towards them. Anyone who attacks the Kosovo police and disturbs public order needs to receive the deserved punishment. 

“We want to believe that today’s actions are part of the regular operational plan of the police in fighting crime. However, the government has the duty to clarify both to the public opinion and itself, regarding the timing chosen for carrying out these operations.

“If possible any dilemma should be removed as to whether these actions may have been carried out for electoral purposes.

“In support of the Kosovo Police.”

CDHRF: Authorities to take action against all those violating the law (media)

The Kosovo-based Council for Defence of Human Rights and Freedoms (CDHRF) said that “organised groups of extremists mobilised crowds to oppose the rule of law enforcement.”

In a press release, CDHRF said it condemned the violence used by protesters against the Kosovo Police. “Investigation authorities can and should take action against all those who are violating the law in order for the situation to return to normal and for inspectors to act unhindered by anyone so as to combat smuggling, organized crime and the informal economy. CDHRF also condemns the attack on T7 journalists and other journalists, demanding they be provided with a peaceful environment and conditions for carrying out their tasks [in] informing the public about the development of events in that part of Kosovo.” 

AGK: Albanian and Serb journalists attacked in Mitrovica North (media)

The Association of Journalists of Kosovo issued a statement expressing concern over, as it said, the difficult and unsafe working conditions for journalists today in the northern municipalities of Kosovo.

“According to reports, several journalists of different Albanian media outlets were attacked in the ‘Bosniak Quarter’ in Northern Mitrovica and another incident occurred on the way to Leposavic where protesters chased cars with journalists. Meanwhile, there were attacks and pressured on journalists of the local portal ‘Kossev’, by protesters. As a result, the portal has withdrawn its teams from the ground.”

AGK called on the Kosovo Police to offer security for the journalists to unobstructedly carry out their tasks. 

Kosovo Government adopts concept document for vetting in judiciary (media)

The Kosovo Government adopted today the concept document for the vetting process in the judiciary. Minister of Justice, Albulena Haxhiu, said in the presentation of the document that “this is a good start of reforms in the judiciary”.

“The rule of law is very important. This is why we are more determined than ever before to have important reforms in the rule of law area. We need integrity and professionalism in the judicial institutions, and we need to restore the people’s trust,” she said.

Prime Minister Albin Kurti said that so far judicial institutions have been more in the service of the system than of the people. “We won our freedom but we must institutionalise it through the judiciary. The judiciary must be independent not only in its form but in its content too. The judiciary protects our freedoms and rights and is the best guardian not only against injustices but also against any possible non-democratic tendency of power,” Kurti said.

COVID-19: One death, 29 new cases (media)

One death from COVID-19 and 29 new cases with the virus were recorded in the last 24 hours in Kosovo. 36 persons recovered from the virus during this time.

There are 1,043 active cases with COVID-19 in Kosovo.

 

 

 

Serbian Language Media

 

Petkovic: Mitrovica and Zvecan showered with bursts, a showdown with the bare-handed people (N1)

The director of the Office for Kosovo and Metohija, Petar Petkovic said in a press conference on the situation in north from this morning that Kosovska Mitrovica and Zvecan were showered with bursts and that members of the special units of the Kosovo police were “clashing with the bare-handed people”, reported N1.

“Albanian police from the southern part, together with members of special units armed to the teeth, equipped with live ammunition and shock bombs, stormed the north of Kosovo, Kosovska Mitrovica and Zvecan. We have dozens of injured people, because of this situation, Vucic went to Raška, where he will have a meeting with Serbs from Kosovo, and he will visit some other locations. The seventh time that members of special units invade the north and clash with the bare-handed people, the reason allegedly is the smuggling of goods, and when you see that the whole of Kosovska Mitrovica and Zvecan are in bursts, you see that it is the intention of psychopath Kurti to produce large-scale conflicts,” Petkovic said.

Petkovic said that Kurti’s behaviour goes over the top, as well as that doctors are fighting for the life of the severely wounded Srecko Sofronijevic.

“That brought the savagery of Kurti, dozens of injured Serbs and causing chaos. When the special unit headed towards the technical school, the brave people managed to defend that part of Kosovska Mitrovica and drive them away. Gathered in Zvecan, they managed to drive them out of the center of Zvecan, under the bursts they had suffered. They broke into pharmacies, just as they harassed our doctors at the beginning of the year. Now they are also settling accounts over medicines, so that our people cannot even be treated. When they returned to the Belvedere base, six vehicles headed north again and our people stopped them there, near the town of Rudare, where there was a big clash, where members of the special police with live ammunition went against the bare-handed people,” Petkovic said.

As he says, “all this is the oil of the psychopath Kurti”, who, he adds, wants to provoke a crisis of a wider scale.

“He wants to take revenge on the Serbs, to try to conquer the north, but thanks to our brave people and Vucic‘s policy, we managed to prevent a larger crisis. Let them ask themselves what the next move of the madman Kurti will be, because I have no other word to use for a man who wants to confiscate drugs and shoot at people. What will the international community do, whose obligation is to defend the Serbian people according to Resolution 1244, we testify that our people are being attacked, that the north is invaded, they create problems with energy, justice, they introduce some unacceptable anti-dumping measures, generating a new crisis day by day , to try to create a new reality,” he adds.

The first drop of blood fell, says Petkovic and states that they warned that this must not happen.

KFOR should react and protect the Serbian people, if they can’t, there will be someone who will,” Petkovic said.

PM Brnabic: I call on the international community, KFOR and NATO to react urgently (RTS)

“I call on the international community, NATO and KFOR to react urgently and curb Albin Kurti. The situation is more than dramatic, and this is the last moment in which a clear reaction is needed in order to stop the crazy policy pursued by Pristina,” said Prime Minister Ana Brnabic, reported RTS. 

This kind of behavior goes over the top and brings us to the brink of chaos, Brnabic pointed out.

Petkovic: Another provocation of Kurti, I informed Lajcak (RTS, TV Happy)

The director of the Office for Kosovo and Metohija, Petar Petkovic assessed that this morning’s action of the Kosovo police was another provocation of the Kosovo’s PM, Albin Kurti, before the local elections, and added that he informed the EU Special Rapporteur on Dialogue Miroslav Lajcak.

Kosovo police raided city pharmacies, business, residential, warehouses in North Mitrovica and checked customs documents.

Petkovic told TV Happy that such behavior of Pristina goes over the top and added that Kurti was trying to deepen the crisis with every move he made.

“While we are solving everything through dialogue, you have Kurti and others who solve things with crises in order to occupy the north of Kosovo, which is their obsession. They are trying to criminalize the north,” Petkovic said, adding that Pristina authorities were ”trying to compensate for the humiliation they suffered with the last agreement in Brussels”.

Rakic before meeting with Vucic (Vecernje Novosti, TV Pink, Kosovo Online)

The president of the Serbian List, Goran Rakic said that Serbs from Kosovo headed to Raska, where they will meet with the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic at 3 p.m.

He said that this is the most important meeting for them, and that today’s events have spilled the beans. He also says that this is a matter of life or death for all Serbs and that this is “Crystal Night”. 

– We cannot and will not tolerate this anymore. This is the most important meeting for us and the drop that spilled over the glass. We will all come to the meeting, we will ask Vucic if he can help us. We must have that information today, because for us it is a matter of life or death. They banned us with vaccines, now they wanted medicine, all that remains is for them to take our air. It’s calm right now, but you know we have wounded people. They used ammunition and shot at the people – Rakic told TV Pink.

Journalists of KoSSev face pressure not to report during the N. Mitrovica conflict (KoSSev)

The police units from Pristina have been conducting an anti-smuggling operation throughout Kosovo, including the north, since this morning. During the operation in North Mitrovica, a conflict broke between demonstrators and the special police units, which provided assistance to the local police units. Journalists of the KoSSev portal, who were reporting from the field in North Mitrovica this morning, faced pressure from the demonstrators, which was why they were unable to follow all events as they happened from the field.

On several occasions, the KoSSev portal’s journalists were told to stop filming, and shortly after 9am, one of the demonstrators tried to seize the phone of the journalist and editor of our portal, Ivan Mitic and ordered him to stop filming.

An hour later, after the clash between the demonstrators and special units ended, and while the firefighters were extinguishing one of the car fires, one of the demonstrators approached Mitic, and told him to stop filming.

Soon after, several other demonstrators approached the KoSSev journalist. Mitic was asked “why is he filming”, he was told to stop doing it, while several of them told him to give them his phone or delete all the video and photo material of this morning’s events and to leave the scene.

Mitic, who often reports from the field, heard demonstrators saying that he is “the one that live-streams all the time“, a bigger incident was avoided when a fellow citizen protected the KoSSev journalist.

At the time, Mitic was wearing a vest with large letters “PRESS” printed on it, and his press card was visibly displayed.

A trainee journalist from our portal experienced similar problems in the field, and in the meantime, we learned that other journalists were also asked not to film at the scene. After the latest pressure on KoSSev journalists, the editor of the portal told journalists to withdraw from the scene.

See at:https://bit.ly/3BFN2xU

Dr Elek: Patient with gunshot wound operated and stable, injured right shoulder blade and broken rib (Kosovo Online)

The director of the KBC in North Mitrovica, Zlatan Elek, told Kosovo Online that, after this morning’s action by the Kosovo Police in North Mitrovica, two people were hospitalized, one of whom underwent surgery with severe injuries due to a gunshot wound.

“Two patients were placed in the KBC Kosovska Mitrovica, one was seriously injured, he was shot in the back, he has injuries to his right shoulder blade, a fracture of the second rib and the bullet came out through the front of his neck, with heavy bleeding, emergency surgery was performed and bullet taken out, he is in the intensive care unit and is in a stable health condition for now,” said Elek

He added that the other injured person was injured in the area of the chest with blunt trauma, that he is currently being examined, as well as that he is receiving inpatient treatment.

According to Elek, the other persons were injured by shock bombs, rubber bullets and tear gas, and the first injured have reported to the Eye Department.

“Everyone has been given help, they are currently stable and are not in hospital,” Elek said.

In KBC Kosovska Mitrovica, 10 citizens requested medical assistance due to injuries sustained in the action of the Kosovo police this morning in North Mitrovica and Zvecan.

The Diocese of Raska and Prizren calls for calming the situation (KiM radio)

On the occasion of this morning’s action of the Kosovo Police in the north of Kosovo, during which violence was used against Serbian citizens, the Diocese of Raska and Prizren expresses the greatest concern and calls for calming down the situation, the statement reads.

“According to the data of the hospital from North Mitrovica, at least one person of Serbian nationality was wounded by a firearm by the police, and the media report that the number of injured is higher.”

“The use of force by the Albanian Kosovo police, especially firearms, is an open act of aggression against citizens on ethnic grounds and threatens to cause enormous security instability. The Diocese of Raska and Prizren strongly urges that the police forces withdraw immediately because the situation may further escalate, ” reads the announcement.

Also, the Diocese appeals to the international forces of KFOR and EULEX to urgently establish peace and order and protect citizens from violent behavior of the police and call on citizens to exercise maximum restraint.

Tear gas, shock bombs and sirens in the northern part of Mitrovica, police action and citizens’ protest (media)

Serbian media reported that this morning in the northern part of Mitrovica, actions of the Kosovo Police were underway, and the citizens gathered and blocked Kneza Milosa Street. 

According to portal Kosovo Online, the Kosovo police came from South Mitrovica, and entered one of the city pharmacies to check customs papers.

The gathered people expressed dissatisfaction with the mentioned operation, and the situation escalated when the Kosovo police started throwing shock bombs and tear gas.

After the operation started, alarm sirens could be heard in North Mitrovica, and the intersection near the Technical School was blocked.

“They break into warehouses, shops, pharmacies and they carry out the operation on their own and without consultations and preparations with the police in the northern part of Mitrovica,” eyewitnesses told RTS.

According to the KoSSev portal, dissatisfied Serbs responded by throwing rocks at the police, after which the Kosovo police threw tear gas.

During the operation, material damage was caused to several civilian cars parked nearby. The special forces tried to reach the Technical School, but they gave up and returned a few meters lower towards the Bosniak settlement.

KoSSev also reports that journalists in the field faced pressure from protesters, who demanded that they not film. The portal wrote that other journalists were also asked not to film. After the latest pressure on KoSSev journalists, the editor of the portal withdrew the journalists from the scene.

RTS reported that the Kosovo police issued a statement stating that they “started police operations in the early morning hours in order to realize strategic goals in the prevention of criminal acts, especially in the fight against smuggling of goods”.

According to the statement, “the action is being carried out in the region of Pristina, Pec, South and North Mitrovica”.

“All police actions are carried out in coordination with the competent prosecutor’s offices and courts and relate to checks and searches at various locations such as houses, residential, business premises, warehouses. As a result of intensive actions and professional actions of the Kosovo police and customs, up to now a variety of goods have been seized, which serve as material evidence,” the statement said.

Members of the Kosovo Police Intervention Unit are also in the neighboring municipality of Zvecan.

Daily Blic: Christopher Hill new US ambassador to Serbia (Kosovo Online)

An experienced American diplomat and expert on the situation in the region, Christopher Hill, will be appointed the new ambassador of the United States of America to Serbia, Blic has learned and states that the appointment of Hill could speed up the resolution of the Kosovo issue, cited portal Kosovo Online.

Hill will replace Anthony Godfrey, an experienced diplomat who has been in Belgrade since November 2019.

It is interesting that the first service of Christopher Hill was in Belgrade. 

The new American ambassador is a connoisseur of the region and a close friend and associate of US President Joseph Biden.

“In this way, the US administration sends the message that they care about Serbia and the Balkans. It shows that the American view and understanding of Serbia’s role in the Western Balkans is changing,” said a Blic source from diplomatic circles

The paper states that the United States, although a mentor of Kosovo, made a turn during the recent events in Kosovo, when it sharply criticized Pristina’s moves and non-compliance with the Brussels Agreement.

Blic write that the appointment of Hill could speed up the resolution of the Kosovo issue, because Hill is certainly not coming to be an extra

“The arrival of Hill, known for his pragmatism, shows that America wants to take a more active part in the processes in the Balkans, but also to be able to better understand Serbia. The appointment of Hill returns your country to the position of a priority partner of the US administration in the Balkans,” say a diplomat close to the US administration, according to Blic. 

As that interlocutor points out, Hill wants to bring American investments to Serbia, and he will also work on the promotion of Serbia as an investment destination.

In addition to Belgrade, Hill served in Skopje and Tirana, but to this day he remains best known as the US special envoy for Kosovo during the two years of war.

He was also a member of Richard Holbrooke’s negotiating team for Bosnia. He served as ambassador to South Korea, Iraq, and Poland.

In a text in the weekly “Zeit” (May 1999), Christopher Hill was described as a “shuttle diplomat” who “rushed here and there between Belgrade and Pristina”, and as a man of the greatest trust of Richard Holbrooke, whom he helped to calm down the conflict in Bosnia.

Petkovic calls internally displaced from Kosovo to go to the polls on October 17th (KiM radio)

The director of the Office for Kosovo and Metohija, Petar Petkovic visited Jagodina and talked to displaced persons from Kosovo, temporarily housed in this city and invited them to take part and vote in the upcoming local elections in Kosovo on October 17, reported KiM radio.

Petkovic was welcomed by the President of the City Assembly Dragan Markovic Palma, and the director of the Office for KiM told the displaced that “it is vital for the survival of the Serbian people in Kosovo” to go to the local elections in as many numbers as possible and support the Serbian List.

“I know that you have built a new nest in beautiful Jagodina, but again I know that your heart and soul are in Kosovo and Metohija and nothing can be dearer to you than your Novo Brdo, Vitina, Gracanica, Strpce. From our municipalities in the north of Kosovo and Metohija, our beautiful shrines, our mountains, fields and everything you had to leave when you set out for central Serbia, so we have to save 10 Serbian municipalities, because we keep the pledge to form the Community of Serbian Municipalities, because it will be a framework for collective security and rights of the Serbian people in Kosovo and Metohija,” Petkovic said.

“Know that you have your country with you, which will do everything to increase the living standards of you and your children, and that is why I am asking you to turn out October 17 and go to the local elections,” he added, noting that “only the Serbian List is a guarantor of the stay and survival of the Serbian people in Kosovo and Metohija, and it has, among other things, the support of President Aleksandar Vucic.”

After visiting Jagodina, as stated, Petkovic and his team will visit internally displaced persons from Kosovo in Smederevo, with whom they will also “talk about the importance of participating in the upcoming local elections in Kosovo”.

Serbia calls on internally displaced persons to vote (KiM radio)

“At the request of our citizens living in Kosovo and Metohija, the Republic of Serbia invites internally displaced persons from the southern province, temporarily located in central Serbia, to vote in the upcoming elections scheduled for October 17,” said the video clip, available on YouTube, reported KiM radio.

As it is further stated in the same clip, “those interested can call the phone number 0800 201-011 until October 15”.

The clip ends with the message “Let’s vote for the stay and survival of our people in Kosovo and Metohija!”

KiM radio recalled that “interested parties” must exclusively vote at the polling station in the municipality in which they have registered residence, at the polling station where the person is registered in the Central Voter Register.

As KiM radio unofficially learned, bus transportation to polling stations in Kosovo will be organized for all those interested. The departure is planned for the early morning hours on Sunday, October 17, from the main bus station in all major cities, except Belgrade, where buses will depart from the Sava Center, i.e. Nis, where the departure will be organized in front of Super Vero market.

 

 

 

International 

 

Kosovo police clash with ethnic Serbs during smuggling raids (AP)

Kosovo police have clashed with ethnic Serbs in the north during an operation against the smuggling of goods, police and local media reported Wednesday.

A police statement said that raids were held in four areas, including northern Mitrovica which is mostly populated by ethnic Serbs.

Video footage showed police firing tear gas as Serbs hurled stones and other objects at officers. Serbs also blocked the main road with trucks, the same as last month during a tense situation to do with a spat over vehicle license plates.

See more at: https://bit.ly/3ly3dYG

One Serb shot, 6 policemen injured in Kosovo clashes (Reuters)

One Serb was shot and six police officers injured on Wednesday when police fired tear gas to disperse a crowd that became hostile after raids on suspected smugglers in a volatile area of Kosovo populated by the Serb minority.

Kosovo police said officers met resistance in Mitrovica as they carried out an operation to seize smuggled goods in several towns on Wednesday.

A statement said police responded when protesters in Mitrovica used hand grenades and stun grenades against officers. It said six police officers were injured.

See more at: https://reut.rs/3FGa3Dx

Kosovo Police Clash With Serbs in Anti-Smuggling Crackdown (Balkan Insight)

Kosovo Police clashed with Kosovo Serb protesters in the divided northern town of Mitrovica on Wednesday as they conducted an operation against the smuggling of goods in the town.

Kosovo Serbs threw different explosive devices at the police and put up blockades of trucks on roads close to the technical high school in Serb-run North Mitrovica.

Police used tear gas to disperse the protesters.

Police announced that six police officers, five ethnic Albanians and one ethnic Serb, were injured during the action in Serb-dominated northern Kosovo and returned to the other side of the river Ibar of the ethnically divided town.

See more at: https://bit.ly/3DDqxdO

 

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