Albanian leaders express displeasure

BELGRADE

Political leaders from southern Serbia say the situation in the region is stable, but the state is ignoring people living in that area of the country.The latest incidents in southern Serbia were enough for Bujanovac Municipal President Šaip Kamberi to accuse the Serbian police of repression in the region. 

He sent a letter to the U.S., U.K., French and Germany embassies and the OSCE mission, calling for them to warn the state institutions of this new discrimination. Today, Kamberi says that the situation in the south is stable.

His statements on Thursday regarding the incidents in Preševo and Bujanovac appeared to have been forgotten today. Kamberi is no longer mentioning police repression, nor is he claiming that the south is in a state of emergency, but rather that the situation is stable.

He does, however, reproach the government for immediately linking these incidents to terrorism. “We can say that the situation is stable, except for tensions that were heightened after the incidents in the Preševo Valley. Following certain ill-considered statements from our senior officials who immediately shouted terrorism, and their influence on the investigation, we can say that the situation is stable, and I hope there will be no repeats of such incidents,” Kamberi said.

In the letter sent by Kamberi it was stated that Albanians in the region would consider quitting the Coordination Body “if the repression continues.” MP Riza Halimi is also dissatisfied with the work of the coordination center for the municipalities of Preševo, Bujanovac and Medveđa.

“I reacted very strongly to statements from Minister Marković that the coordination center was of a consultative character and that not much could be done, and when Preševo Municipal President Ragmi Mustafa said that it was a roundtable,” Halimi said.

“The coordination center is a body of government, it must have executive competence, it must solve problems for people on the ground. If that does not happen, then it is just décor.” he said.

Halimi added that people in southern Serbia faced drastic problems, but that he did not see the political will for solving them, which had been proven by today’s roundtable in the state parliament. No one from the ruling coalition or the coordination center showed up to the meeting even after two hours of waiting.

A roundtable was due to be help today on the topic of supporting integration and cooperation in southern Serbia.

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