Albanian Language Media:
- Osmani: Preparations by Serbia to escalate Western Balkans and Kosovo (BBC)
- After the tensions in the north, NATO SG Stoltenberg spoke with Kurti (RTK)
- Hovenier: Decisions on reciprocity were coordinated with internationals (media)
- Kosovo Police Director: We are investigating events in north of Kosovo (media)
- 1,030 new cases with COVID-19 in Kosovo (media)
Serbian Language Media:
- Situation in northern Kosovo normalised (Tanjug)
- Petkovic: We will seek in Brussels compromise solution (Kosovo Online)
- Vucic with Botsan-Kharchenko on situation in Kosovo (Kosovo Online)
- Serbia gets new Parliament (N1)
- Dodik: Serbia has right to defend safety of Serbs in Kosovo (N1)
- Sanchez: International law violated by recognition of Kosovo (RTS)
- Hoxhaj: Stance of Spain and Greece ‘buried’ chances of Kosovo to be recognized by five EU member states (Kosovo Online)
- NATO SG speaks with Kurti (Kosovo Online)
- Selakovic spoke with his Saudi Arabian counterpart on regional and geopolitical challenges (Kosovo Online)
- NUNS calls to find out who disables KoSSev portal whenever crisis with Pristina erupt (BETA)
- Kosovo police arrested Serb near Rudare (Kosovo Online)
- Covid-19: 16 new cases in Serbian areas (KoSSev)
- Opinion piece by Milenko Vasovic: “Serbia’s Vulin Serves a Purpose, Spewing Hate” (BIRN)
- Manifesta 14: An unflinching look at Kosovo’s fraught history and ambitious future (wallpaper.com)
Albanian Language Media
Osmani: Preparations by Serbia to escalate Western Balkans and Kosovo (BBC)
President of Kosovo Vjosa Osmani said in an interview with the BBC that “tensions are escalating right now. However, there have been preparations by Serbia, aided and abetted by Russia, for quite some time, to try to escalate the Western Balkans in general and Kosovo in particular. In the past decade that Vucic has been running Serbia but especially in the past couple of months they kept supporting illegal structures in north Kosovo that are made of criminal gangs,” Osmani said.
Watch full interview here: https://bit.ly/3ztoVCH
After the tensions in the north, NATO SG Stoltenberg spoke with Kurti (RTK)
The Secretary General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg has announced that he has spoken with the Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti regarding the recent tensions in the north of Kosovo.
Spoke to Albin Kurti about the recent tensions in Kosovo and the continued importance of our
NATO KFOR mission. All sides must maintain calm, avoid unilateral actions and support EU-mediated support dialogue. I remain in close contact with both Pristina and Belgrade,” Stoltenberg tweeted.
Hovenier: Decisions on reciprocity were coordinated with internationals (media)
The U.S. Ambassador to Kosovo Jeff Hovenier took to Twitter to welcome Kosovo’s decision to temporarily suspend the measures on licence plates and entry/exit documents.
“The U.S. welcomes the decision by Kosovo’s leaders to suspend temporarily the implementation of reciprocity measures on license plates and entry/exit documents, both measures are fully in line with the Brussels agreements and were coordinated with the international community,” Hovenier wrote.
Kosovo Police Director: We are investigating events in north of Kosovo (media)
Kosovo Police Director, Samedin Mehmeti, told a press conference in Prishtina today that investigations are underway about the events in the north of Kosovo on Sunday. “Criminal cases have been initiated; we are carrying out investigations. Only a day has passed since they withdrew. It is too early to say how many people are being investigated. When we have accurate information, we will share it with the public,” Mehmeti said.
1,030 new cases with COVID-19 in Kosovo (media)
1,030 new cases with COVID-19 were confirmed in the last 24 hours in Kosovo. There have been no deaths from the virus during this time. There are 9,914 active cases with COVID-19 in Kosovo.
Serbian Language Media
Situation in northern Kosovo normalised (Tanjug)
All barricades, set up by local residents in northern Kosovo have been removed yesterday around the noon, however Pristina authorities have not opened immediately crossing point Jarinje and Brnjak, Tanjug news agency reports.
The situation in the north of Kosovo, 26 hours after high tensions caused by Pristina’s decisions on Serbian ID cards and licence plates is now normalised.
All roads and administrative crossings are operational.
Serbian List MP Igor Simic told TV Pink this morning that “when somebody looks from outside everything here seems normal, but believe me tension is still there, you can feel it in the air. We want peace because we live here, and believe me no one more than us wishes peace at this moment”.
He also said that Serbian people remain determined to defend their right to existence, survival and remain in Kosovo and Metohija.
Petkovic: We will seek in Brussels compromise solution (Kosovo Online)
Office for Kosovo and Metohija Director, Petar Petkovic said freedom of movement has been completely restored in Kosovo and Metohija, in particular in northern Kosovo, adding that crossing points of Jarinje and Brnjak are functional now, Kosovo Online portal reports.
However he added what Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurit did by making unilateral decisions “indicates proportions on his militancy”.
Petkovic also told TV Pink that Belgrade will seek compromise solutions in Brussels, however it will not allow the abolishment of Serbian documents.
Petkovic said that Serbian people in Kosovo and President Aleksandar Vucic with their reactions to Pristina’s unilateral acts relating to Serbian ID cards and licence plates demonstrated that anything can be resolved with talks and agreements, and in no way by unilateral acts.
“There are no longer entry/exit documents Pristina wanted to impose on Serbian citizens entering Kosovo and Metohija. This way we retrieved the position to talk about all these issues in Brussels (…)”, Petkovic said.
He said Kurti “should stop lying that Serbia wanted conflict”, adding Serbs retreated from barricades the very moment Kurti, under pressure from US and others, revoked unilateral decision that violates the agreement. He termed the fact that crossing points Jarinje and Brnjak remained closed for few hours although all barricades in northern Kosovo were removed as an evidence of “Kurti’s blatant lies”.
Petkovic warned although the decision was postponed for 30 days “the danger of attacks and new unilateral acts by Kurti is still present, given that he doesn’t want to calm down and talk”.
Vucic with Botsan-Kharchenko on situation in Kosovo (Kosovo Online)
Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic met Ambassador of Russian Federation to Serbia, Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko and discussed with him the situation in Kosovo and Metohija, Kosovo Online portal reports.
Vucic said in a post on his official Instagram account ‘buducnostsrbijeav’ that topics also included war in Ukraine and numerous other issues on economic cooperation.
“Good talks with Ambassador Botsan-Kharchenko during which we elaborated in detail numerous topics relating to trade and economic cooperation, events on regional and global political scene, with particular focus on conflict in Ukraine and situation in Kosovo and Metohija”, Vucic said in a post.
Serbia gets new Parliament (N1)
The first sitting of the Serbian Parliament, 13th legislature, was convened Monday by the speaker from the previous legislature, Ivica Dacic, N1 reports.
MP mandates were verified, following which the new MPs took an oath of office. The sitting was presided over by the oldest member of the Parliament, Vladeta Jankovic, who is an opposition politician.
Jankovic told the Parliament that in any country that has not had equal elections for ten years the legitimacy of other branches of power would also be thrown into question. He was repeatedly interrupted by the applause of opposition MPs while the governing party MPs showed their disapproval.
Head of the Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) MP caucus said that Jankovic abused his position and violated the Rules of Procedure.
The new parliament has 250 elected MPs from 12 lists of candidates, the media were told during consultations, and 15 MP caucuses are expected to be formed.
The Aleksandar Vucic – We Can Do Everything Together list will have 120 seats in the new Parliament, the United for Serbia’s Victory 38 seats, the coalition Socialist Party of Serbia (SPS) and Unified Serbia (JS) 31 seats. The Coalition HOPE for Serbia will have 15 seats, We Must will have 13 seats, while the Dveri Movement and the Serb Party Oath Keepers will have 10 seats each. The Alliance of Vojvodina Hungarians got five seats, Mufti’s Legacy three, Vojvodjani and Party of Democratic Action Sandzak two each and the Albanians got one seat.
Vladeta Jankovic said that the sitting will resume on Tuesday when parliamentary bodies are to be formed.
Dodik: Serbia has right to defend safety of Serbs in Kosovo (N1)
Bosnia Serb Presidency member Milorad Dodik said Serbia has the right to defend the safety of the Serbs in Kosovo, according to the UN Security Council Resolution 1244, N1 reports.
“Unilateral and irresponsible moves by Kosovo prime minister Albin Kurti jeopardised the safety of the Serbs in Kosovo and, according to the UN Security Council Resolution 1244, Serbia has the right to defend the safety of the Serbs in the southern province”, Dodik wrote on Twitter.
He emphasised that Republika Srpska, Bosnia’s Serb-majority region, “fully and strongly supports the leadership of Serbia in the efforts to deescalate the situation and to find a peaceful solution through dialogue to protect the rights of the Serb people”.
According to Dodik, it is clear that the rights of the Serbs in Kosovo as well as the Serbs in Republika Srpska are “violated under political pressures” and the international community is “using dual standards when it comes to the Serbs”.
Tensions escalated in the north of Kosovo a day before the Kosovo government’s decision to issue temporary documents for Serbian citizens entering Kosovo and to change Serbian licence plates came into force.
Serbs in the north of Kosovo set up barricades towards the Jarinje crossing, and after diplomatic intervention by the USA, the Kosovo government announced it would postpone the implementation of the decision until September 1.
Sanchez: International law violated by recognition of Kosovo (RTS)
Prime Minister of Spain, Pedro Sanchez said in Tirana that international law has been violated by recognition of Kosovo independence, adding Madrid cannot accept something like that, RTS reports.
“We think it was a unilateral declaration of independence and we think international law has been violated, therefore we can not accept something like that. I am saying this, with all due respect we have for Albanian people”, Sanchez said in a joint press conference with Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama.
He added it was normal to have disagreement between two friendly states such as Spain and Albania, noting that in this regard there is disagreement related to Kosovo recognition.
He also said this doesn’t mean that within the European integration context, Spain doesn’t promote dialogue between Serbia and Pristina.
Hoxhaj: Stance of Spain and Greece ‘buried’ chances of Kosovo to be recognized by five EU member states (Kosovo Online)
PDK MP and Kosovo Assembly deputy speaker Enver Hoxhaj said that until yesterday Kosovo had “a golden chance” to obtain recognition from the five EU member states that do not recognize Kosovo, however this “historic impetus was buried” in a longer run by the stances of Spain and Greece, Kosovo Online portal reports.
“Kosovo until yesterday had a golden opportunity to obtain recognition from the five EU member states due to the strategic fall of Russia and isolation of Serbia. Yesterday’s stance of the Spanish Prime Minister in Tirana and Greek Foreign Affairs Minister in Vietnam against recognition of independence, finally buried in a longer run a historic impetus and a chance”, Hoxhaj wrote on Facebook.
“The times ahead of us are the times of loneliness and irresponsibility of Kurti’s government”, Hoxhaj is also quoted as saying.
NATO SG speaks with Kurti (Kosovo Online)
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said he spoke with (Kosovo PM) Albin Kurti about recent tensions in northern Kosovo and said that unilateral actions must be avoided, Kosovo Online portal reports.
Stoltenberg also emphasised the significance of KFOR Mission presence in Kosovo, called for restraint and extended support to the continuation of dialogue.
“Spoke to @albinkurti about the recent tensions in #Kosovo & the continued importance of our @NATO_KFOR mission. All sides must maintain calm, avoid unilateral actions & support EU-mediated dialogue. I remain in close contact w/both Pristina & Belgrade”, Stoltenberg wrote on Twitter.
Selakovic spoke with his Saudi Arabian counterpart on regional and geopolitical challenges (Kosovo Online)
Serbian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nikola Selakovic spoke over the phone with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia, Prince Faisal bin Farhan al Saud on current regional and geopolitical challenges, Kosovo Online portal reports.
As the Serbian Ministry’s statement reads, Selakovic said that Serbia strives to advance bilateral relations with Saudi Arabia, which he assessed as good with significant potential for further development in various fields.
In this regard, Selakovic in particular stressed the necessity of maintaining political dialogue at high and the highest level, adding the meetings at the highest level would contribute to that.
Minister of the Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia on this occasion thanked Serbia for its support to the candidacy of Riyadh to host EXPO 2030.
NUNS calls to find out who disables KoSSev portal whenever crisis with Pristina erupt (BETA)
Independent Association of Journalists of Serbia (NUNS) called on responsible bodies today to find out who performed the cyber-attack and disabled KoSSev portal at the times of latest incidents and road blocks in northern Kosovo, BETA news agency reports.
“The attack took place in a moment when sirens went off in Kosovska Mitrovica at the time of “emergency situation” and KoSSev portal journalists were again prevented from carrying out their duties and informing the public on current situation in Kosovo and Metohija. The redaction had to move its work on social media, which additionally made their work difficult”, NUNS said in a statement.
“Whenever a crisis in Belgrade-Pristina relations happens, an attack on the KoSSev portal also takes place, which demonstrates that such attacks are by no means coincidence, and are well prepared in advance. In particular because IP addresses of those carrying out the attack have been detected world wide”, NUNS said.
Kosovo police arrested Serb near Rudare (Kosovo Online)
Kosovo Online portal said that members of Kosovo special police units armed with long barrels arrested a Serb near Rudare. Rudare was a spot of road blockades on Sunday set up by local Serbs opposing Pristina’s decision on Serbian ID cards and licence plates.
The portal further reported that Serb was transporting medications and sanitary material for the pharmacy, stopped while driving the vehicle and arrested without elaboration. It also said reasons for the arrest remain unknown.
Covid-19: 16 new cases in Serbian areas (KoSSev)
Out of 38 tested samples in the Serb-populated areas in Kosovo, 16 persons tested for Covid-19, Crisis Committee of Mitrovica North announced today.
The new cases were registered as follows: six in Mitrovica North, four in Zvecan, two in Leposavic and one each in Gracanica and Zubin Potok.
Meanwhile, the Gracanica Crisis Committee announced that nine persons tested positive for Covid-19.
Currently there are 114 active cases in the Serbian areas in Kosovo.
Opinion piece by Milenko Vasovic: “Serbia’s Vulin Serves a Purpose, Spewing Hate” (BIRN)
Some Serbs struggle to take their interior minister seriously, but President Aleksandar Vucic has his reasons for keeping him close.
Serbia’s interior minister, Aleksandar Vulin, says what Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic thinks but does not want to say publicly. That’s what many in Serbia, and the members of Vucic’s Serbian Progressive Party, SNS, believe. And Serbian tabloids and other regime media carefully follow Vulin’s pronouncements.
If Vulin says that there is an Ustasha regime in Zagreb, then everyone repeats in unison – “Ustasha”; if Vulin says there are traitors in Montenegro, that sets the tone for the media and their ‘analysts’. In other words, listen to Vulin, repeat what he says and ‘you can’t go wrong.’
Vulin is the minister in charge of “reckoning” with the “enemies” of Serbia abroad; he “knows” that admitting Kosovo into NATO would threaten the state of Serbia; he can “recognises” the “pathological hatred” felt by Bosnia’s Bakir Izetbegovic, president of the Bosniak Party of Democratic Action, towards Vucic; he knows that the cocaine smuggler Radoje Zvicer, a leader of the Kotor crime clan, planned to assassinate Vucic and that Montenegrin President Milo Djukanovic was his political patron. All-seeing Vulin’s “radar” also picked up that Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti had taken the first step “toward dragging Serbia into armed conflicts.”
Read more at: https://bit.ly/3oTPMmx
Manifesta 14: An unflinching look at Kosovo’s fraught history and ambitious future (wallpaper.com)
In Prishtina, nomadic biennial Manifesta 14 draws on the past and future of Kosovo through ambitious art and staggering architecture
The theme for this year’s Manifesta, the roving European biennial known for its melding of art and urbanism, is centred around ‘new practices and modes of collective storytelling’—a focus that found fertile ground in Kosovo and its capital Prishtina. Since the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999 and Kosovo’s declaration of independence from Serbia in 2008, the young country has long been the focus of fiercely competing historical narratives surrounding sovereignty.
It can feel unnerving when European art biennials and cultural visions wade in such explicit terms into highly contentious political territory; these events often barely camouflage their implicit purpose of being tools of soft power for Western political interests. Yet in this particular context, the cards are on the table—and Kosovars aren’t being shy about using Manifesta 14 to platform their issues, too. In the opening speeches by politicians and organisers, arts and culture journalists were explicitly called upon to raise awareness of how unjustly Kosovars are affected by limitations on travel and strict visa rules imposed by European countries. As Manifesta’s digital media coordinator, DJ and activist Oda Haliti explains, about a third of her fee for a DJ gig abroad would go towards issuing a visa, which doesn’t guarantee she’ll receive it. As Manifesta’s director Hedwig Fijen put it: ‘If Kosovars can’t travel to see art, we must bring it to them.’
Read more at: https://bit.ly/3vA7HCN