Balkans

Kosovo to Open 22 Embassies in 2009

Pristina – Kosovo’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs says it will open some 22 new embassies in countries around the world in 2009. In the Pristina daily newspaper ‘Zeri’, the ministry’s spokeswoman Albana Beqiri said these embassies will be set up by ambassadors, adding the that ministry will soon begin hiring …

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Kosovo Security Force Delayed Until January

Pristina _ The transformation of Kosovo’s Protection Corps, TMK, into Kosovo’s Security Forces, KSF, has been postponed until January because of delays in appointed a chief. The Kosovo’s Protection Corps, which is mostly made of former fighters from the Kosovo Liberation Army, will continue providing additional security along with NATO …

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Outcry at Bosnian Government’s Pay Rise

Sarajevo _ There are calls for new elections after leaders in Bosnia’s Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim)-Croat dominated Federation entity, upped their salaries despite a looming economic crisis. Calls for a campaign of ‘civil disobedience’ are coming from Bosnian trade unions, non-governmental organisations and media. “They have completely lost any connection with …

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Balkan Police Ministers Debate Croat Attack

Sarajevo – Interior ministers from Serbia, Bosnia, Montenegro, Croatia and Slovenia meeting over the weekend have backed a need for greater cross-border cooperation following the murder of a Croatian journalist. The ministers were also unanimous that the recent assassination of Croatian journalist and publisher Ivo Pukanic had confirmed that mobsters in …

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EULEX December 2 Launch ‘Not Guaranteed’

Pristina – The EU has not decided on a definite date to launch its Kosovo law-and-order mission, EULEX, says the spokeswoman for the bloc’s foreign policy chief, Javier Solana. “(The previously stated launch date of) December 2 is not guaranteed,” Christina Gallach said, adding that “the date will be decided in …

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Parties Neck-and-Neck in Romania Election

Bucharest – The first results from Romania’s general election show the centre-right Democratic Party, PLD, and leftist Social Democratic Party, PSD, each neck-and-neck with 33 percent of the vote. Data from the Central Electoral Bureau, based on a count of around 71 percent of votes, also show Prime Minister Calin Popescu …

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‘Forget the UN Six-Point Plan’, says Kosovo PM

Pristina _ “Forget the six points, it is not applicable in Kosovo,” Kosovo’s Prime Minister Hashim Thaci said during a tour of rural areas, saying the UN plan is against the will of Kosovo’s people. He added that the plan goes against the Constitution and sovereignty of the Republic of …

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Macedonia Appoints New “Name” Negotiator

 Skopje – Macedonia on Monday is to notify UN envoy Matthew Nimetz that it has appointed Zoran Jolevski, its ambassador to the US, as negotiator in the “name row” talks with Greece. Macedonia’s President Branko Crvenkovski is expected to sign the appointment note on Monday to formalise the decision, local media …

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Kosovo Ex-PM Alarmed at Serb Proposal

Pristina – Serbia’s call for the review of the so-called Kumanovo agreement which led to withdrawal of Serb forces from Kosovo in 1999, has alarmed Pristina ex-Premier Agim Ceku. Ceku, who signed the agreement, said Serbia is attempting to impose its own will and NATO’s agenda, following its successful bids in …

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Serbia Wants Review of 1999 Kosovo Deal

Belgrade – Serbia’s President Boris Tadic and his military chief-of-staff, say changes need to be made to the Kosovo peace deal that ended the NATO-led air strikes on Serbia in 1999. Army Chief Zdravko Ponos said that he would discuss the matter with NATO officials about changes to the so-called Kumanovo …

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