Radio Kosovska Mitrovica has published a press release of the tourist organisation “Outdoor In” in which they have pointed out that the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office has issued an instruction to British tourists traveling to Kosovo to avoid municipalities with Serb majority in the north of Kosovo – Kosovska Mitrovica, Leposavic, Zubin Potok and Zvecan. The reasoning for this decision are the protests that may turn violent towards the tourists.
“We have found, with regret, that with this announcement, the Embassy of Great Britain is misinforming/disadvantaging the public both in Kosovo and around the world, and it is inflicting irreparable damage to the tourism industry and the economic development of the municipalities in the north of Kosovo. We remind the Embassy of the United Kingdom and public that there was not a single violent incident in northern Kosovo that resulted in an attack on international or domestic tourists. The hospitality of people from the north of Kosovo is widely known, as evidenced by an increasing number of international tourists visiting this area, including tourists from the United Kingdom” it was said in the press release.
“Outdoor In” has been working on promoting the tourism in the north of Kosovo for years.
“As part of our efforts, we have included four mentioned municipalities in international tourist guides on Kosovo such as Bradt and Le Petit Futé travel guides. Due to our activities, this area will also be part of the latest tourist guide for the Western Balkans, which will be published by the world’s largest travel publisher Lonely Planet. …In the last few months alone, Via Ferrata Berim (Zubin Potok) was written about by Lonely Planet, the famous American tourist publication Frommer’s, the Russian tourist portal Perito Burrito, the Chinese tourist portal Hi Europe, and soon we will also see the text on the Swedish tourist portal Vagabond. In addition, BBC cameramen announced that they would include northern Kosovo as one the most attractive tourist destinations in the Western Balkan”.
“Outdoor In” invited the British Embassy in Kosovo to explain to the public based on which parameters they have reached the conclusion that the north of Kosovo is not safe for international or British tourists.
“If the Embassy has information that there are reasonable claims for violence against tourists visiting four municipalities in the north of Kosovo, we urge them to address the competent authorities to deal with potential violators. However, if this statement is based on hypocritical and groundless prejudices about the violent character of citizens from the north of Kosovo, we expect a reassessment of security and withdrawal of this controversial statement” it was concluded in the press release. Outdoor In invited the representatives of the British Embassy to come and see for themselves the natural beauty of this region.