- Kurti: Kosovo’s NATO membership would diminish security threats in the Balkans (media)
- Xhacka: NATO should open its doors to Kosovo (media)
- No agreement reached at Friday’s meeting of chief negotiators (media)
- Bislimi: Kosovo remains constructive and committed to dialogue (media)
- Kosovo Foreign Minister Responds to Serbia’s Derecognition Claims (Exit)
- Kusari-Lila on dialogue: Moving forward at all costs is not an alternative (EO)
- Kosovo to set up special agency to assess external pressure on security (Koha)
- Kosovo concludes negotiations with MCC, Haradinaj takes credit (media)
- COVID-19: 16 new cases (media)
Kurti: Kosovo’s NATO membership would diminish security threats in the Balkans (media)
Prime Minister of Kosovo Albin Kurti said Kosovo feels secure as it has NATO and U.S. presence but added that an accelerated membership in the Alliance would diminish the security threats in the Western Balkans and strengthen peace and security in Europe.
Speaking to the students of the Chicago DePaul University, Kurti noted that Russia’s efforts to use Kosovo as a precedent for actions in Ukraine are inaccurate. “Make no mistake, the undoing of our progress in Kosovo would be the only greatest victory that Vladimir Putin would have liked. This is the reason behind his unreasonable fixation to our country,” Kurti said.
At the end of the lecture, Kurti said that the United States of America is Kosovo’s partner and closest ally and that “our bond is strong also because we share the common values of freedom and democracy and the deep conviction that all people are created equal and should have an equal right to seek happiness, freedom and autonomy to pursue truth.”
Xhacka: NATO should open its doors to Kosovo (media)
Albania’s Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Olta Xhacka has called on NATO to open its membership doors to the Western Balkan countries, including Kosovo. Xhacka attended an informal two-day meeting of the North Atlantic Council (NAC) held in Berlin this week.
“NATO must pursue an open-door policy for other Western Balkan countries, including Kosovo, which shares the same values, as a contribution to the security of Europe as a whole,” Xhacka said.
The meeting, which preceded the NATO summit in Madrid in late June, focused on Ukraine, the consequences of Russian aggression on alliance security, the membership of Finland and Sweden, and the NATO strategic concept. Minister Xhacka underlined the support for the membership of Finland and Sweden, for which Albania is taking measures to soon start the relevant procedures.
No agreement reached at Friday’s meeting of chief negotiators (media)
The EU facilitator for Kosovo-Serbia dialogue Miroslav Lajcak had meetings with Kosovo’ chief negotiator Besnik Bislimi and Serbia’s Petar Petkovic in an effort to finalise an agreement between the parties. Bislimi said the Serbian side is responsible for the fact that no agreement was reached on Friday.
“Unfortunately we witnessed a very strange behaviour of the Serbian side that was saying they have an idea but could not present it citing political problems. In this sense, the journey was in vain because it seems they came to Brussels only to give the news to the media that they wish to talk but came without any proposal or solution,” Bislimi said. He added that the Kosovo side requested a three-party meeting but that the Serbian delegation conditioned it with a discussion on the Association of Serb-majority municipalities. “Of course we could not accept that because the topics of the meeting had already been set.”
At the same time, Lajcak said after the meeting: “Just finished today’s meetings of Chief Negotiators in Brussels. Results are mixed. Regrettably, no agreement was reached on licence plates, however we made progress on other files including energy. The work will continue.”
Bislimi: Kosovo remains constructive and committed to dialogue (media)
Kosovo’s Deputy Prime Minister and chief negotiator, Besnik Bislimi, met the German envoy to the Western Balkans, Manuel Sarrazin. Bislimi said Kosovo remains a constructive party in the dialogue with Serbia and blamed the latter for, as he said, lack of readiness to reach agreement.
“Kosovo continues to be constructive, creative and committed in this process,” Bislimi is quoted in a press release issued by the Government of Kosovo. It added that Bislimi expressed deep appreciation for Germany’s support in Kosovo’s European integration process, including visa liberalisation and membership to the Council of Europe.
Kosovo Foreign Minister Responds to Serbia’s Derecognition Claims (Exit)
Kosovo Foreign Minister Donika Gervalla said they have not received information of any countries withdrawing their recognition of Kosovo following claims of this nature by Serbia.
During a press conference held on Friday, May 13, Gervalla denied having received information that confirms these claims.
“The fact that only a few hours after Kosovo’s application, [Serbia] says they have ensured [Kosovo’s] derecognition shows two things: Either the news is untrue or they have been working on it for a long time, as opposed to what they publicly stated,” Gervalla said.
Earlier on Friday, Serbian Foreign Minister Nikola Selakovic declared that four countries had revoked their decision to recognize Kosovo, but did not specify their names.
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Kusari-Lila on dialogue: Moving forward at all costs is not an alternative (EO)
Vetevendosje Movement (LVV) MP Mimoza Kusari-Lila, through a Facebook post, responded to the criticism for the stagnation of the dialogue process between Kosovo and Serbia. She said that the criticism from inside and outside Kosovo shows a lack of reflection on the experience so far in dialogue but also tends to create the belief that Kosovo is not constructive.
“For those inside the country, trying to harm the government by harming the country is neither wisdom nor patriotism. For those abroad, it is Serbia that is not at all in line with the principles of democracy and freedom. The latest case of Russian aggression against Ukraine, and the alignment of Serbia with Russia, is the best indicator of Serbia’s lack of awareness of democracy, freedom and territorial integrity of independent states,” Kusari-Lila wrote. She has noted that moving forward at all costs is not an alternative to stagnation.
Kosovo to set up special agency to assess external pressure on security (Koha)
The legal framework of the Ministry of Defence and the Kosovo Security Force is expected to be enriched by an agency whose mission will be to gather information on the armies and defence systems of other countries, as well as on external pressures which may affect or endanger the security of defence, Koha reports.
Members of the Assembly’s Committee on Security and Defence said that the draft law concerning the issue has not yet reached them but that they are aware of preparations for the setting up of such an agency which is also part of the KSF transition.
Kosovo concludes negotiations with MCC, Haradinaj takes credit (media)
Prime Minister of Kosovo Albin Kurti announced that the Government concluded negotiations with Millenium Challenge Corporation (MCC) on the Compact program.
“Our Government and MCC’s teams concluded negotiations for a proposed $236.7M Compact agreement tailored to help Kosova towards its energy transition and socio-economic transformation. Shared values build bonds. Shared values and goals strengthen them,” Kurti wrote on Twitter.
At the same time, the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK) said that the agreement of the Government of Kosovo with the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) is the merit of its leader and former prime minister Ramush Haradinaj. “This is a joint success of the U.S. government and former Prime Minister Haradinaj. This is not meant to be a boast or to take credit, but only for the sake of the truth”, the party said.
COVID-19: 16 new cases (media)
16 new cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in the last 24 hours in Kosovo. There are 328 active cases with COVID-19 in Kosovo.