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UNMIK Media Observer, Morning Edition, May 27, 2024

Albanian Language Media:

  • NATO Parliamentary Assembly approves advancement of Kosovo's status (media)
  • Osmani: NATO is Kosovo's destiny (RTK)
  • Konjufca: Kosovo is NATO's success story (media)
  • Kusari-Lila calls vote for Kosovo in NATO GA an important step (RTK)
  • Maqedonci: Kosovo only one step away from NATO membership (media)
  • Szunyog: Kosovo should lift ban on Serbian products as soon as possible (Koha)
  • OSCE, EUSR welcome CoE’s legal opinion on IMC draft law (media)
  • Zeqiri: Criminal groups convinced one part of residents not to accept me as mayor (EO)
  • Population census, KAS: Kosovo is expected to have 1.6 million inhabitants (RTK)
  • Opposition with different positions on early elections (media)

Serbian Language Media: 

  • Djuric: Voting on Srebrenica resolution signal to those wishing to push Kosovo to UN (Kosovo Online)
  • Serbian Delegation at NATO PA: By admitting Kosovo living conditions of Serbs additionally deteriorated (Kosovo Online)
  • Petkovic: Admission of Kosovo as NATO PA associate member yet another award for terror against Serbs (Kosovo Online)
  • Ponos: Kosovo's entry into NATO was a priority of the most powerful, the language of our delegation was for domestic use (N1, Danas)
  • Vucevic thanks Cyprus for not voting for Srebrenica resolution (Tanjug)
  • Ana Marija Ivkovic: As tensions in Kosovo grow, so does misinformation (Radio KIM)
  • Vlajic: War in the region still going on, only it’s fought with narratives (N1)
  • KAS: Kosovo will have 1.6 million inhabitants; Gracanica: Not all households were enumerated (KiM radio, Kontakt plus radio)

Albanian Language Media  


Kurti: Data from population census, a basis for better decisions (RFE)

Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti said that the results of the population census will enable Kosovo’s institutions to prepare better policies, strategies, and decisions for a more sustainable development. He made these remarks during a ceremony marking the end of the registration of the population, economic households, and residencies in Kosovo. “The collected data will be a basis for better policies, strategies, and decisions, for a more rapid and sustainable development of our country,” Kurti said.

The census was launched on May 5, and although it was initially scheduled to end on May 17, it was postponed to May 24, after requests from several municipalities.

Kosovo’s Agency for Statistics said the census was successful. “The registration of the population, as one of the biggest and most complex processes of a country in peacetime, despite its challenges and complexity, has been concluded with great success. This success was achieved thanks to the cooperation and coordination that the Agency for Statistics had with other local and international institutions,” the agency said in a press release. 

PDK leader sends letters to VV, LDK and AAK leaders for early elections (media)

Leader of the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) Memli Krasniqi sent letters to leaders of the Vetevendosje Movement, the Democratic League of Kosovo, and the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo, reiterating the position of the PDK to hold early general elections. Krasniqi said elections now are a civic necessity and not a political wish, “therefore the time has come to act in coordination and with concrete steps”.

Krasniqi said that “Kosovo and our citizens need a new government focused on economic development, civic well-being and Euro-Atlantic integration. New elections are needed to create a functioning Assembly in the service of the people”. 

Krasniqi also said that the PDK has proposed June 30 and July 7 as dates for the new elections, and that due to legal and constitutional timelines, the procedural motion to dissolve the Assembly should be voted no later than May 29.

LDK’s Rukiqi: Kurti’s resignation only way to new elections (EO)

Senior member of the Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) Berat Rukiqi said in an interview with the news website that according to this party the resignation of Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti is the only way for Kosovo to go to early general elections. He argued that options proposed by other parties are wrong and that they would be an amnesty for Kurti’s bad governance. 

KFOR denies it negotiated the withdrawal of terrorist group from Banjska (media)

The Committee for Defense and Security of the NATO General Assembly quoted a report by the International Crisis Group (ICG) according to which after the September 2024 attack in Banjska in the north of Kosovo, KFOR took part in negotiations for the withdrawal of Serbian paramilitaries from the area. KFOR said in a statement this is not accurate and that they were never involved in the alleged negotiations. The international peacekeeping mission said that it strengthened its presence in the north of Kosovo and that it coordinated closely with the Kosovo Police and the EU Rule of Law Mission to reinforce security there. KFOR also said it always maintained the position that the facts must be verified, and that the perpetrators must be brought to justice.

Gervalla: Serbia has turned again into real threat for the whole region (media)

Kosovo’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Donika Gervalla, said at a roundtable organized by the Hudson Institute, that Serbia has again turned into a real threat not only for Kosovo and Bosnia and Herzegovina, but for the whole region. She highlighted “the importance of western democracies changing their strategy toward Serbia as the biggest opponent of the western and democratic values in Europe”.

Rohde: Kosovo has a diverse and interesting culture (media)

German Ambassador to Kosovo, Jorn Rohde, said in a post on X that “Kosovo has a diverse and interesting culture, but also many archaeological sites that have yet to be discovered and preserved. I had the pleasure of visiting a site near Klina where a Roman villa has been excavated. Great visit with Olivier Guerot. Thanks to Elvis Shala & Sali Shoshi”.

360 Serbs applied to convert drivers’ licenses to Kosovo licenses (EO)

Head of Kosovo’s Civil Registration Agency, Blerim Camaj, in an interview with the news website, said that around 360 Serb citizens have applied with the agency to convert their drivers licenses to Kosovo licenses. “Serb citizens are converting their drivers licenses since May 9. The procedure is going well. Data shows that until May 22, 360 Serbs have applied. The decision was very necessary because these citizens had registered their vehicles to Kosovo licenses plates, but did not have drivers licenses issued by the Republic of Kosovo,” he said.

Camaj also said that after visa liberalization for Kosovo, there is great interest among Kosovo Serbs in the north to get equipped with Kosovo passports. “After visa liberalization citizens in the north are greatly interested to get passports. From January to May 22, around 2,500 Serb citizens have been equipped with Kosovo passports,” he said.


Serbian Language Media


KFOR denies negotiating withdrawal of attackers from Banjska (KoSSev, N1, media)

KFOR has denied claims that the mission negotiated the withdrawal of attackers from Banjska in September of last year. “This is inaccurate. At no time was KFOR involved in the purported negotiations,” they said. In the meantime, media report that Goran Petronijevic, Milan Radoicic’s lawyer, who headed the attack in Banjska, also denied allegations of negotiations on withdrawal.

Early in the morning of September 24 last year, an armed conflict broke out between an armed group of Serbs led, by his own admission, Milan Radoicic, and members of the Kosovo Police.

In the conflict, at the entrance to the village, a sergeant of the regular unit of the Kosovo Police was killed, as well as three members from the armed group of Serbs, while several others were wounded and arrested.

On that day and in the following days, speculations ran rampant as to how many people were part of the group that clashed with the police, and how they managed to escape on the same day, presumably to central Serbia.

Neither Belgrade, nor Pristina, nor the international community gave an answer to this question.

The claim that KFOR allegedly negotiated the withdrawal of the attackers from Banjska – despite the lack of confirmation from NATO officials, was included in at least two international reports, namely a report by the International Crisis Group (ICG) and a preliminary draft of the Defense and Security Committee of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.

The Crisis Group stated in its report published at the beginning of April that KFOR allegedly negotiated the withdrawal of the group of Serbs.

“A tense standoff ensued between the group and Kosovo special police surrounding them. Fearing a bloodbath, KFOR negotiated the group’s withdrawal into the surrounding woods…” the report reads.

The same claim was then found in the new preliminary draft of the report of the Defense and Security Committee of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, with reference to the allegations of the International Crisis Group.

Read more at:

Office for KiM:  A hand grenade planted in the yard of a Serbian family, new pressure (RTS, media)

The family of Ivica Djuzic from the village of Mogila near Vitina had a hand grenade planted in the yard of their house and it was only by sheer luck that there were no more serious consequences, the Office for Kosovo and Metohija announced, reported RTS. 

Among other things, the announcement said that the Djuzic family has been targeted by local Albanians for a long time, and Ivica's son Boban Djuzic was attacked and stabbed by a group of Albanian youths at the beginning of last year, and now they have found themselves under a new attack.

Serbs in Kosovo physically, legally, and politically endangered, said the Serbian Assembly delegation in the NATO Parliamentary Assembly (Kosovo Online, RTS, media)

The head of the Serbian National Assembly's delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, Natasa Jovanovic, highlighted the extremely complex reality in Kosovo during the debate on the draft report of the Defense and Security Committee, "Western Balkans – Renewed Security Challenges at NATO's Doorstep." In a statement released by the Serbian Assembly, Jovanovic emphasized the widespread institutional discrimination against Serbs in Kosovo in various aspects—administrative, legislative, judicial, prosecutorial, property, health, etc.

Read more at:

Milicevic: The census will be used for political purposes, there was no will for it to be inclusive (Kosovo Online)

The Executive Director of the NGO "Aktiv," Miodrag Milicevic, says that the census results will undoubtedly be used for political purposes, and the key oversight is that the process was not inclusive, especially concerning non-Albanian communities.

“If we look at the obligations and the impact it has and will have after the official results are published, it will certainly be exploited for political purposes. In practice, precisely because of all these shortcomings, including the part of the north that will be completely excluded, despite the assurances from the Kosovo side that the census would be fully implemented. This is not happening in practice. We will end up with partial results that will carry, I am sure, political consequences, including perhaps even a reassessment of the Ahtisaari Plan, which is actively included in the Constitution of Kosovo and offers constitutional guarantees to the Serbian and other non-majority communities living in Kosovo,” Milicevic told Kosovo Online.

He assessed that the questionnaire presented to the Serbian community was "scandalous," from the translation to the problematic questions, indicating a fundamental disrespect for the rights guaranteed by the constitution and laws to minority communities.

“It is scandalous that such a questionnaire and the content of such a questionnaire would be published. This is a scandal in itself and speaks not only to the quality of the translation, which is a technical issue, but more about the respect for the rights of a community. This points to a much larger fundamental problem, which is the disrespect for the rights guaranteed by the constitution and numerous laws and other mechanisms to a community, in this specific case – the Serbian community,” Milicevic emphasized.

Read more at:

Europol: Decoding the EU’s most threatening criminal networks (KoSSev)

Portal KoSSev reported that the European Police Service - Europol published a report on the most dangerous European criminal networks and the consequences of their activities on European soil. Drug trafficking, organized property crime, smuggling of goods and human trafficking are the main "activities" of more than 800 criminal networks identified by Europol. In these networks, the dominant role is played by criminals from the European Union, but also from the Western Balkans. 

While Serbia is defined as a center for "modification of stolen vehicles in order to give them a new identity for further sale", Albanians are identified on many of the 60 pages of the long report as "key figures" in criminal networks that are mainly active in the cocaine trade, heroin and cannabis, i.e. highlighted as active in other forms of crime.

Also, in multinational criminal groups from the Western Balkans, Serbs stand out as citizens of several countries, reported KoSSev.

Read full Europol report at :

EU media: Resolution on Srebrenica forced in a divided UN General Assembly (N1, Beta)

The adoption of the UN resolution on the genocide of Srebrenica is a "diplomatic fiasco" for the West, it is "a national hot topic and the best thing that can happen to President Aleksandar Vucic at this moment", it was also a "forced act of a divided international community", EU media wrote about the recently adopted Resolution, reported N1.

The German newspaper “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung” believes that on the domestic front, considering that on June 2, elections will be held in Serbia, Vucic is responsible for the lost vote in the UN and the anger he caused against Germany.

The French daily “Mond“ assessed that the adoption of the Resolution in the UN General Assembly on the International Day of Remembrance and Commemoration of the Srebrenica Genocide in 1995 “was a forced act of a divided international community because the Resolution vote was far from unanimous.”

“Le Mond” points out that “so far this was the only resolution, after those on the genocide in Rwanda in 2003 and the Holocaust in 2005, the majority of the UN members did not accept that, although it did not even mention any responsibility of Serbia”.

Read more at:

“While we were watching the UN meeting on Srebrenica, lithium mining was approved”: Activists start a storm on social networks (N1, KoSSev)

Two young men from the "Cardboard Revolution" movement from Bosnia and Herzegovina are active and popular on social networks, and in their videos, they are critical of events in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the region. In their last video, they referred to the rejection of the proposal to ban lithium mines near Tuzla.

“While we all watched the United Nations session on all televisions and portals, at the same time, in the background, far from the eyes of the public, the National Assembly of the Republika Srpska (RS) entity was sitting. And get this, at the same time as the UNGA session was held, they rejected the resolution demanding a ban on the opening of lithium mines between Tuzla and Lopare,” the two young men said in the video.

They noted that, while “the people were arguing about the past and smoking a fabricated story about a genocidal nation … the end for Lopare, Tuzla, Bijeljina, Brcko and the entire region“ was being passed in the background.

The RS National Assembly voted in favour of opening a lithium mine, they stated.

Read more at: