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UNMIK Headlines 16 June

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• No arrest, suspects or information about Pista killing (dailies)
• Haradinaj and Limaj meet to discuss coalition (Epoka e Re)
• Assembly Speaker blocks creation of an opposition government (Tribuna)
• Former COMKFOR helping Vetevendosje to enter opposition bloc? (Lajm)
• Hooper: Political fight in Kosovo must not get out of control (Koha)
• Enver Hasani violates the law (Zeri)
• The Hague starts preparations for special court (Lajm)
• NATO will assist Williamson’s investigations (Koha)

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Headlines – 16.06.2014

No arrest, suspects or information about Pista killing (dailies)

All dailies report on the assassination of Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) candidate for Parliament, Elvis Pista, who was gunned down by unknown assailants on Sunday morning in the town of Rahovec/Orahovac. Over 2,000 people attended the funeral on Sunday. The police have not arrested anyone in relation to the killing, but has offered €10,000 to anyone with information that can help resolve the case. The Basic Prosecution in Gjakove/Djakovica said it has some information about the case, but will not reveal anything until the verification process is completed. The police issued a statement saying that Pista was shot in the back by four bullets from a small caliber weapon that probably had a silencer. Outgoing Prime Minister Hashim Thaci sent his condolences to the family of the deceased. “I condemn in harshest terms this ugly criminal act that has outraged the whole country. On behalf of myself and the government of Kosovo, I express my deepest sympathies and our greatest solidarity and support”, said Thaci. He added that law enforcement agencies are undertaking all necessary steps to ensure that those responsible for the killing will face justice.

Tribuna reports that a march against killings in general took place in Rahovec/Orahovac after Pista’s funeral and was led by PDK deputy leaders Kadri Veseli and Hajredin Kuci. Hundreds of people who attended Pista’s funeral also took part in the march. Bota Sot quotes family members and associates as saying that Pista did not have problems with anyone. Gazeta Express however published a document showing that Pista had a weapon permit and it quotes people close to the victim as saying that he used to carry a weapon and that earlier he had some troubles.

Haradinaj and Limaj meet to discuss coalition (Epoka e Re)

Ramush Haradinaj, leader of the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK), and Fatmir Limaj, leader of the Initiative for Kosovo (NISMA), met on Sunday to discuss their governing plan, several days after they signed the agreement for a post-election coalition together with Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) leader Isa Mustafa. Haradinaj said the meeting went well and that the leaders will continue to meet in the future. He also said that experts would continue to discuss the government plan.

Assembly Speaker blocks creation of an opposition government (Tribuna)

On the front page, the paper claims that the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) has hired local and international lawyers to interpret the procedures for electing the Assembly Speaker and they concluded that the post can only go to someone from the winning party while the parliamentary groups can be created only once the Assembly is formed. The assessment dismisses arguments from the opposition bloc, which expressed its plan to join into a single parliamentary group so as to outvote the PDK and elect a Speaker from its own ranks.

Former COMKFOR helping Vetevendosje to enter opposition bloc? (Lajm)

The former KFOR commander, German General Klaus Reinhardt, is in Kosovo for the 15th anniversary of the liberation. Reinhardt was also seen on Sunday in the headquarters of several political parties. Is he facilitating the efforts to bring the Vetevendosje Movement into the opposition bloc? On Saturday, Reinhardt was greeted at Vetevendosje headquarters by its leader Albin Kurti and Rexhep Selimi. Sources told Gazeta Express that Reinhardt is playing the role of facilitator in the latest developments.

Hooper: Political fight in Kosovo must not get out of control (Koha)

“Kosovo has organized free and fair elections which are seen as a great step forward and now all must respect constitutional provisions during the formation of the government,” US expert on the Balkans James Hooper said in an interview for Voice of America. He noted that Kosovo is now able to resolve its political complications without interference from the international community. “Recent developments can help improve Kosovo’s image as long as tensions and the political fight for the ruling mandate does not get out of control,” he added. Hooper also said that, for whoever forms the next government in Pristina, dialogue with Serbia must continue. He also said that if outgoing Prime Minister Hashim Thaci does not form the government, then it is probably time for him to consider turning over the reins to his successors.

Enver Hasani violates the law (Zeri)

The paper argues that, by publicly declaring that the LDK-AAK-Nisma coalition is illegitimate, Enver Hasani, chairman of the Constitutional Court of Kosovo, has violated the Court’s regulations, since he commented on an issue before it was addressed to the Court, and because he is not entitled to comment on a matter without the presence of the panel of judges. The paper quotes Gjyljeta Mushkolaj, a former judge of the Constitutional Court, as saying that judges should not comment on issues that can be addressed to the Constitutional Court.

The Hague starts preparations for special court (Lajm)

Preparations are underway in The Hague for the establishment of the special court of Kosovo. Anonymous Dutch officials said they are preparing to manage the unusual case of establishing the court of an independent state in their territory, although the court will function according to Kosovo laws. The Netherlands will amend some of its legislation to facilitate “the import of the special court of Kosovo”. After the formation of the assembly and the government, Pristina too is expected to amend several laws that will help create the special court and make it functional.

NATO will assist Williamson’s investigations (Koha)

The paper reports in a front-page article that, despite speculation in the Kosovo media, EU diplomats and officials in Brussels say they do not know what will be the outcome of investigations by Clint Williamson in relation to Dick Marty’s allegations of organized crime and organs trafficking. During its work, the Special Task Force led by Williamson cooperated with many countries, especially with Serbia and Albania, but also with NATO and EU member states. Williamson is now asking for institutional cooperation from NATO, which commands the KFOR military mission in Kosovo. Six months ago, Williamson sent a request to NATO asking for access to documents that would help his investigations. Diplomatic sources told the paper that NATO was willing to cooperate. Sources in NATO said cooperation with the Special Task Force will be similar to the case of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), which means that there would have to be a request for every case and the approval would come only with the consent of all member states.

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