Kosovo: Politicians are the ‘BARRAGE’ of its future

Kosovo authorities are hoping they will find a solution to reduce tensions in northern Kosovo in the next few days and weeks. Situation is reported to be extremely tense...

Kosovo authorities are hoping they will find a solution to reduce tensions in northern Kosovo in the next few days and weeks. Situation is reported to be extremely tense with several key roads blocked since the last seven months.

Pristina, KOSOVO – by Vedat Xhymshiti
| Monday, January 30, 2012 | The IndepdendenT NewsweeK |
Dukagjin Gorani, advisor to Prime Minister Hashim Thaçi, told Radio Free Europe that the government continues to be willing to implement the basic provisions of the Ahtisaari Plan, and it should be recognized as an achievement.
“It is expected that in the coming period, in the next few days and weeks, the issue of the north will gradually return as a priority issue, at least as far as public political communication is concerned, so that we can launch the proper implementation of the integration strategy,” Gorani said.
However, Serbs living in northern Kosovo have made it clear that they will not back down from their initiative to hold a referendum, regardless of the calls from Belgrade.
During a press conference held in Belgrade on Wednesday, Kosovo’s Serbian representatives said there will be no delays on the referendum and will be held on the national day of the State of Serbia, which is the 15th of February.
“This is the key message of the referendum,” said Marko Jaksic, a Serb politician from northern Kosovo.
On the other hand, Serbian Revival Movement (SPO) representatives opposed the division of northern Kosovo, and said publicly that they will not support the eventual referendum in four Serb municipalities in northern Kosovo. SPO leaders held a press conference in Cagllavica on Wednesday where they reiterated their opposition to the referendum.
Randjel Nojkic, a spokesman for the SPO, said the party was rejecting any form of referendum, “As these plans are parts of ideologies from the 90s”. Nojkic also said that some Serbs in northern Kosovo are trying to use referendum to divide the north and then merge it with Serbia.
“We find this unacceptable because it damages the interests of other Kosovo Serbs, who are one single community and cannot be divided into northern and southern Serbs,” Nojkic added.
Serbia against dissolving parallel structures
Serbian government officials expressed their anger with International Steering Group (ISG) following the group’s Tuesday’s statement issued in Vienna which declared year-end as the deadline when Kosovo’s supervised independence should be concluded.
Oliver Ivanovic, Minister for Kosovo in the Serbian government, said his country does not pay attention to the ISG’s call for removal of Serbia’s political and security structures from Kosovo. Ivanovic ruled out the possibility of the withdrawal of Serbia’s state structures from Kosovo, insisting Serbia has the right and obligation to take care of its citizens’ security.
Serbia lost control over Kosovo in 1999, when NATO waged a 78 days-long bombing campaign to halt the killing and expulsion of ethnic Albanians in a two-year counter-insurgency war headed by then-President Slobodan Milosevic.
Current Serbian President Boris Tadic is trying to assert control over the ‘lost’ territory by taking a tough line in the negotiations between Serbia and Kosovo being mediated by the international community in Pristina.
Kosovo’s sovereignty is being provisionally contr
olled by the KFOR-led international community, while every single political development in Kosovo is dependent on the response of the Serbian authorities based in Belgrade. Critics of the foreign diplomats in Kosovo claim they are working in cahoots with the local politicians and supporting organised crime and political mafia. One critic, on condition of anonymity, said the diplomats from international community are bringing money in Kosovo in the name of donations, while taking them back in their own pocket. “They insist they’re doing this for the sake of cooperation and helping Kosovo, as they claim, “gain its freedom, prosperity, democracy and finally, the most wanted independence,” the source said while declining to give his name on security grounds.
One year ago, Kosovo’s prime minister, Hashim Thaçi, has been identified as one of the “biggest fish” in organised crime in the country, according to western military intelligence reports leaked to British Daily ‘The Guardian’.
The NATO documents, which were marked as “Secret”, indicated that the US and other Western powers backing Kosovo’s government have had extensive knowledge of its criminal connections for several years.
They also identified other senior ruling politicians in Kosovo as having links to the Albanian mafia, stating that they exert considerable control over Thaçi, a former guerrilla leader.
The leaked classified information, marked as “USA KFOR”, provides detailed information about organised criminal networks in Kosovo based on reports compiled by Western intelligence agencies and informants.
The geographical spread of Kosovo’s criminal gangs is set out, alongside details of alleged familial and business links. The Council of Europe is expected to formally demand an investigation into claims that Thaçi was the head of a “mafia-like” network responsible for smuggling weapons, drugs and human organs during and after the 1998-99 Kosovo war.
Leaks also suggest there are ethnic Albanian Kosovo politicians that run illegal businesses in northern Kosovo, a territory that is increasingly becoming a crime den.

However, former guerilla leader Mr. Thaçi, remains the country’s prime minister, supported by the outgoing U.S. ambassador Christopher W. Dell, which according to critics in 2010, Mr. Dell joined the camp of political manipulators, vote thieves, and corruptors of the fragile political system. The U.S. ambassador throughout the year of 2011, has been characterized by the very opposite of what America symbolizes”.

A fact-files box which qualifies the U.S. ambassador to Pristina as the dissapointment of the year according to Kosovo daily ‘Koha Ditore’.

More than 80 countries, including the United States and 22 of the EU’s 27 members, have recognised the state which is the last to emerge from the remains of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. However Russia, Serbia’s old-time ally, has blocked a United Nations Security Council resolution on the country’s independence and emergence as a free state.

Vedat Xhymshiti | Promote your Page too

Vudi Xhymshiti; is an independent journalist, editor and photographer. He is focusing on the issues of the domestic politics of Kosovo, Foreign Policy of the United States, the Russian Federation, the European Union and the Middle East. Xhymshiti is also focused on the issues of the politics of race, gender, identity, migration as well as displacement of people due to climate change and armed conflicts. He has been published in various media including Der Spiegel, NY Times, TIME, Paris Match, Le Monde etc. Xhymshiti is also a print media critic and founder of THE Frontliner.

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