- UK calls on Kosovo leaders to remove import tariff (Zeri)
- State delegation complains that tariff is damaging dialogue (Koha)
- Three top delegations came and left, tariff remains in force (Zeri)
- Haradinaj: Dialogue was derailed long before tariffs were introduced (media)
- Haradinaj: Kosovo committed to long-term partnership with U.S. (Zeri)
- KFOR refutes Vucic: There are no plans to intervene in the North (RTK)
- Fajon: I have great trust in Mogherini (RTK)
- Government, opposition call on President to nominate CEC members (media)
- U.S. State Department identifies violations of human rights in Kosovo (Epoka)
- Citaku: Proudly shared stories of amazing women from Kosovo at UN (media)
UK calls on Kosovo leaders to remove import tariff (Zeri)
The paper reports in one of its front-page stories that Director General for Political Affairs at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Richard Moore, who visited Kosovo on Wednesday, called on state leaders to make way to dialogue with Serbia and to remove every obstacle in the process. Asked by reporters if he is bringing a message from London, Moore said briefly that he has a special message and that he would convey it to Prime Minister Haradinaj at the meeting.
Haradinaj said after meeting Moore: “Kosovo needs the continuous support of the UK and we are committed to strengthening the partnership between our two countries”.
Haradinaj also said that “Kosovo is committed to stability and sustainable peace in the region and is deeply interested to reach a final settlement with Serbia in its current borders”.
State delegation complains that tariff is damaging dialogue (Koha)
The paper reports on its front page that the co-heads of Kosovo’s state delegation for talks with Serbia, Fatmir Limaj and Shpend Ahmeti, complained on Wednesday that the import tariff on Serbian goods was damaging the process of dialogue with Serbia, as it is being brought up in every meeting they have with international officials. They made these remarks after meeting Director General for Political Affairs at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Richard Moore, in Pristina.
“The tariff is being brought up all the time. The coalition must take a joint decision, because the tariff is damaging us. One person says one thing, the other says something different. Kosovo cannot be protected with this approach,” Ahmeti told reporters after the meeting.
Limaj said: “we need to find a way to give dialogue a chance and to remove obstacles. This is what we are being told all the time both in Kosovo and Brussels”.
The paper notes that Moore also met with Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj on Wednesday and that “the head of the government, who is faced with pressure both in and outside Kosovo to remove the tariff, did not say a word about it after the meeting”.
Three top delegations came and left, tariff remains in force (Zeri)
The paper reports on its front page that senior officials from the U.S., Germany and the UK, visited Kosovo in the last five days, and were unison in their calls to remove the import tariff on Serbian and Bosnian goods. Prime Minister Haradinaj however is refusing the request, “and has remained a lone leader in the battle to keep the tariff in force”.
Haradinaj: Dialogue was derailed long before tariffs were introduced (media)
Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj took to Twitter on Wednesday to comment on a statement by EU High Representative Federica Mogherini who said on Tuesday that she would call dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina as soon as the latter lifts the import tariff on Serbian goods.
Haradinaj tweeted: “dialogue was derailed long before tariffs were introduced. Lack of transparency, encouraging land swap proposal and failure to implement existing agreements – those are the reasons. Dialogue can and should resume without relating it to tariffs”.
Haradinaj: Kosovo committed to long-term partnership with U.S. (Zeri)
Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj met on Wednesday with U.S. Ambassador Philip Kosnett and discussed several topics, with special emphasis on economic development and security issues. “Our partnership in the security area is needed to fight organized crime, corruption and terrorism. The government is committed to long-term partnership with the U.S. and we will never stop in this respect,” Haradinaj said after the meeting.
KFOR refutes Vucic: There are no plans to intervene in the North (RTK)
KFOR Spokesperson Vincenzo Grasso, refuted the President of Serbia Aleksandar Vucic, who said that Pristina is planning an armed intervention in order to gain control in the north of Kosovo and to take over the Trepca mining complex.
Grasso said there are no indications of such plans as speculated in the media. He added that situation in Kosovo is under control and there are no indications of incidents. He went on further to call these allegations a provocation and called on both sides to restrain from unnecessary and ungrounded tensions based on fake information.
“The concerns caused by the current rhetoric create possibility for escalation of an isolated case. KFOR calls on all those responsible for public speech and on all the media, not to trigger consequences with such things,” Grasso concluded.
Fajon: I have great trust in Mogherini (RTK)
Tanja Fajon, MP of the European Parliament assessed the speech of the EU High Representative Frederica Mogherini at the Security Council as a request for support from this UN body on finalization of the Belgrade-Pristina agreement in order to close the matter in a positive manner. “I have a great trust on Frederica Mogherini. I know that dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia is very important not only for her, but the entire EU,” Fajon said. She added that the EU High Representative wants to end her mandate with a positive history.
“This is not only because this matter is ranked highly in the agenda of the European Commission and of Frederica Mogherini, but in order for people to live normal lives in both sides,” Fajon said.
Government, opposition call on President to nominate CEC members (media)
Parliamentary groups from the government and opposition appealed on Wednesday to the President of Kosovo Hashim Thaci, to nominate members of the Central Election Commission (CEC) as soon as possible.
In a debate at the extraordinary parliamentary session called by opposition political parties, the Democratic League of Kosovo and Vetevendosje Movement requested to have two members each at CEC, otherwise they are going to address the Constitutional Court. However, government representatives did not agree with this proposal.
Koha Ditore covers the session under the headline Assembly gives ultimatum to Thaci: Appoint CEC members or you’ll end up in the Constitutional Court.
U.S. State Department identifies violations of human rights in Kosovo (Epoka)
The U.S. State Department published on Wednesday the report on human rights in the world for 2018. In the part for Kosovo, the report mentions refoulement, endemic government corruption, crimes involving violence or threats of violence against journalists, and attacks against members of ethnic minorities or other marginalized communities, including by security forces.
“Kosovo’s security forces have engaged in attacks against ethnic communities and other marginalized groups,” the State Department said in its annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices.
The report also mentions expelling of six Turkish citizens from Kosovo to Turkey, sought for unclear accusations.
Citaku: Proudly shared stories of amazing women from Kosovo at UN (media)
Kosovo’s Ambassador to the U.S., Vlora Citaku, gave a speech at the United Nations on Wednesday where she shared the stories of brave women from Kosovo and was accompanied by Vasfije Krasniqi-Goodman, the first Kosovo Albanian survivor of wartime sexual violence to speak out publicly.
Citaku wrote on Twitter that she “proudly shared the stories of the amazing women from Kosovo at the United Nations”. “20.000 women were raped in Kosovo during the war. They never received justice. No one was ever indicted. There will be no peace and reconciliation until the perpetrators of this horrendous crime are brought to justice,” she tweeted.