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This is the situation in Banjska of Kosovo after Sunday's clashes

2023-09-27 18:43:00, Kosova & Bota CNA

This is the situation in Banjska of Kosovo after Sunday's clashes

Kosovo police said on Wednesday that they have completed checks in the northern village of Banjské, three days after a clash with a group of gunmen who attacked law enforcement, killing one officer and injuring another.

"I can confirm that the situation in Banjska is calm, the situation is good. People are free to move. However, there are still risks from unexploded ordnance. They may be in the bushes in the surrounding mountains, so the police with their specialized units will carry out checks in the coming days", said the deputy director of the police in the municipality of North Mitrovica, Veton Elshani.

 

The group that attacked the police on Sunday then forced their way into the Orthodox monastery in the village of Banjska, continuing to fire on law enforcement. The fight ended when most of the attackers escaped. Three of the armed attackers were killed. The attack was described as a terrorist act by Kosovo institutions and Western diplomats.

The Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, said on Sunday that the state sovereignty, territorial integrity and national security of Kosovo have been violated.

"On that day, the danger, intent, potential and readiness of criminal and terrorist groups, which we have been fighting for more than two and a half years, have been proven. With over 5 million euros worth of military weaponry and sufficient quantities for a group of hundreds of fighters, the scenario for bloodshed in Kosovo has been proven. It includes individuals sanctioned by the United States of America and the United Kingdom for criminal activities. They are looking for our justice institutions for criminal offenses in Kosovo. They appear side by side at a table in Belgrade and Raska, with the president of Serbia, (Aleksandar) Vu?i?, warning of the direct role of the Serbian state in this matter", said Prime Minister Kurti.

 

He said that the attack has also revealed the difficulties as well as the need for even greater international cooperation in maintaining the border with Serbia and with it the need for open punishment, with clear language and strict demands on Serbia from the international community.

The authorities in Pristina presented on Tuesday a video recording where, according to them, one of the members of the armed group that attacked the Kosovo police is the vice president of the Serbian List, Milan Radoj?i?, who is sanctioned by the United States and the United Kingdom.

"After documenting the participation in this terrorist attack of the vice president of the Serbian List, Millan Radoicic, one more thing has been proven that deserves everyone's attention: the vital importance of reviving the political pluralism of the Serbs in Kosovo. There is no democracy and freedom without pluralism. Kosovo Serbs must be freed from the tutelage of Serbia", said Prime Minister Kurti.

The Minister of the Interior of Kosovo, Xhelal Sveçla, shared today the photo of what he said was one of the members of the armed group who was killed on Sunday. He wrote on social networks that "participant in that act is also Bojan Mijailovi?, the bodyguard of the head of the Serbian Intelligence Agency, Aleksandar Vulin, during his visit to the Republic of Kosovo in 2013".

The recent developments in the north of the country were the subject of the discussions of the President of Kosovo Vjosa Osmani with the leaders of the opposition parties.

The chairman of the Democratic League, Lumir Abdixhiku, said that at the meeting he expressed "the necessity of national unity in the face of the challenges that may come from Serbia; as a state sponsoring and harboring terrorists".

The chairman of the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo, Ramush Haradinaj, said after the meeting that the risks are still great, while he asked for close cooperation with the allies.

"Such a situation is quite complex and it can be seen that in the coming stages, a coordination of all is required, so no one should fail to do their part, no one in Kosovo. But even though we are from this country, we will do our duty in the service of the country, we need allies", he said.

The attack was described as a terrorist act by Kosovo institutions and Western diplomats, while the authorities in Serbia have denied any connection with the group.

Lista Serbe also announced three days of mourning in areas inhabited by a majority of Serbs in memory of the three armed attackers who were killed on Sunday in clashes with the police. The government of Serbia also declared Wednesday a day of mourning.

Groups of Serbian citizens in the north of Kosovo lit candles last night in commemoration of the three Serbs killed during Sunday's clashes.

The authorities said that the declaration of mourning for the three members of the group reveals the authorship of the organization of Sunday's attack, which has prompted new international concerns about the stability of the region./ VOA

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