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Politics Monitor

Kosovo Tensions: Macron And Scholz Demand Fresh Elections

The two leaders demand that new polls be organized in the contested municipalities. Tensions are high in the region.

The call from Paris and Berlin. Thursday June 1, Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz called on Kosovo to organize new elections in the north, the scene of clashes for several days. The results are disputed in several municipalities.

“We have asked both parties to organize new elections in these four municipalities as soon as possible”, declared Emmanuel Macron after a quadripartite meeting with the Serbian and Kosovar presidents in Chisinau, on the sidelines of a summit of the European Political Community. According to the French president, this request implies a “commitment on the part of Kosovo” and the “participation in these elections in a clear way on the part of the Serbian side”. Questioned shortly after on this point, the President of Kosovo Vjosa Osmani assured that she was “ready to consider” this possibility.

“Clear decisions” were requested from the two leaders “for next week”, insisted the French president, also referring to “the priority and immediate settlement of the question of the association of Serbian municipalities on the part of Kosovo”. At the same time, the head of EU diplomacy will bring together ministers of both parties on the association of these Serbian municipalities, added Emmanuel Macron.

Elected officials with… 5% of voters

The French Head of State also deplored “the regrettable organization of elections when the guarantees of a smooth running were not provided” and the election of “four mayors with less than 5% of the voters, which is obviously not a condition of legitimacy”.

For the past few days, the situation has been very tense in the region, which has been going from crisis to crisis for years. Many members of the majority Serb community in four northern towns do not recognize Pristina’s authority and are loyal to Belgrade. The Serbs boycotted the April municipal elections in these localities, which resulted in the election of Albanian mayors with a turnout of less than 3.5%. Their enthronement last week by the Kosovar government set fire to the powder.

This article is originally published on lepoint.fr

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