KFOR leaves the municipal buildings in the north of Kosovo, assesses the stable situation

2024-02-25 21:40:00, Kosova & Bota CNA

KFOR leaves the municipal buildings in the north of Kosovo, assesses the stable

The peacekeeping mission of NATO in Kosovo, KFOR, said on Sunday that the situation in the municipality of Zveçan is stable and as a result its troops have left the municipal building where they were stationed after last year's tensions.

"As a result, units from the KFOR Reserve Forces Battalion will no longer be present in the municipal building, but will continue to stay in the area to carry out regular checks to guarantee a safe environment for all residents of this municipality", says an announcement of this mission.

Tensions in the municipalities in the north inhabited by Serbian majority erupted in May of last year when the Albanian mayors who emerged from the April elections, which were boycotted by the Serbian citizens and their political representatives, were accompanied by police forces to the municipal buildings. About 90 members of the peacekeeping forces were injured during the clashes with the Serbian protesters.

The deputy director of the police in North Mitrovica, Veton Elshani, told Voice of America that Zvecani is the last municipality in which there were still members of KFOR.

"In the beginning, KFOR was in three municipalities, Zubin Potok, Leposavic and Zveçan. They withdrew from Zubin Potoku and Leposaviqi earlier, while Zveçani is the third and last municipality because in one municipality there were no members of KFOR at all", he said.

Mr. Elshani emphasized that the Kosovo police continue to be present in these buildings and that the security situation is calm.

Kosovo was found under punitive measures of the European Union after the tensions of May last year, which required the withdrawal of special police units and the organization of new elections in the area.

Authorities in Kosovo say that reducing the presence of special units in and around municipal buildings in the north and opening the process for organizing elections should lead to the removal of punitive measures.

The President of Kosovo, Vjosa Osmani, said on Friday that this is necessary to move forward with holding new elections in the four northern municipalities.

The Central Election Commission said it is verifying the lists of signatories of a petition for the removal of the current presidents, which took place at the end of January, according to an administrative instruction of the government to pave the way for the organization of a voting process for their dismissal./ VOA

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