Corruption at Kosovo customs and PTK

PTK-CustomsPRISTINA, Kosovo — As to Kosovo media two major public institutions were confronted with corruption cases on Wednesday: Reportedly the office of the Kosovo Special Prosecutor filed an indictment against Shyqyri Haxha, the CEO of the publicly owned Post Telekom Kosovo. Accusations refer to a damage of 100,000 Euro caused by a license given to the "Mobile Virtual Network Operator" Dardafon.net in 2008 and 2009. Another indictment targets the Director General of the Kosovo Customs, Naim Huruglica, as well as the head of its legal office, Lulzim Rafun. Both men face accusations to have harmed the Kosovo Budget by misusing  their insider knowledge concerning a planned increase of tobacco tax. Prior to this decision the respective officials are said to have imported a sizable amount of tobacco, supported by four Kosovo companies. KON / NK

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Explosion in "Ferronikel" Company

FN2PRISTINA, Kosovo — Reportedly at least two employees of the "Ferronikel" factory were injured by an explosion in the night from 7th. to 8th. June. The explosion happened an electric oven and lasted over 15 minutes. As to witnesses the explosion was heard also in nearby houses and facilities. Police seemingly enforced a temporary evacuation. The Greek management of the factory is said to face complaints of its employees: According to "Ferronikel" staff the explosion was caused by insufficient working conditions and inappropriate equipment. "Ferronikel" is a mining and metallurgical enterprise nearby the Kosovar town of  Gllogovc in the region of Drenas. The former "publicly owned" company was privatized in April 2007. KON / NK

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Privatization of Post-Telekom Kosovo

045PRISTINA, Kosovo — As to Kosovar media two European companies have reached the final round of bids for 75% of the shares of the publicly owned "Post Telecom Kosovo" – PTK, the main Kosovar operator for tele- phone and mobile phone network services. The competitors are  “Hrvatski Telecom” from Croatia, which is owned by “Deutsche Telekom” from Germany, and “Telekom Austria". According to figures of the Kosovo Ministry for Economic Development these bidders together – considering their parent companies – have more than 170 million customers world-wide and a financial turnover of more than 67 billion Euro yearly.  Read the rest of this entry »

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IMF Findings on Kosovo

IMFkosovoPRISTINA, Kosovo — As previously reported, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) stopped its financial support programme for Kosovo on 1st. June. According to IMF officials the "18-month Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) approved … in July 2010 was interrupted" due to the fact that "Elements of the 2011 budget – in particular the large increase in the wage bill – deviated from program commitments." A warning already given in March this year was ignored by Kosovo government officials. As to these developments an IMF consultation mission evaluated the situation and  "held discussions with Kosovar authorities".  Find a brief statement as well as a comprehensive (worth reading) set of the mission’s findings, recommendations and foreseen activities on the following page:  Read the rest of this entry »

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Due to Kosovo’s breach of agreements – IMF support stopped

Bedri.HamzaPRISTINA, Kosovo — As to Kosovar and international media the International Monetary Fund (IMF) today decided to terminate its Kosovo programme. For the Republic’s budget this means a loss of almost 140m Euro of donations and low-interest-rate loans from IMF, World Bank and European Commission (EC) in 2011: If Kosovo "does not manage to cut spending by the same amount by the end of the year, Kosovo should declare a complete economic crisis in 2012" the Serbian news provider B92 quotes a source.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Kosovo heads for ruin

MoneyPRISTINA, Kosovo — In a contribution for the guardian, the former Head of the ICO Eco- nomics unit in Kosovo, Andrea Capussela, reports that the Government of Kosovo acts "fiscally irresponsible" and is on the way to "mess up its IMF programme".  According to Capussela "the IMF is expected to make an announcement later today in which it declares Kosovo’s programme to be off-track. This would be a rare event," Capussela states: "Both money and credibility look to be lost … The irresponsibility of its government is leading Kosovo towards a fiscal crisis", which is said to be due to its extensively increased budget spending. Kosovo’s "incompetent … elite is free from accountability", Capussela writes. Read the full article. /KON/NK 

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Kosovo Anti-Corruption Report approved

Thaci-absentPRISTINA, Kosovo — The parliament of the Republic of Kosovo approved the 2010 report of Kosovo’s Anti-Corruption Agency. The docu- ment was already published on 24th March. Reportedly oppositional political parties used the according parliament session to criticize government officials, on this regard not to have fulfilled their duties: Despite an announced “zero tolerance” approach, corruption and graft remained on the same level of former years or even increased. According to the Agency corruption refers to most Kosovar institutions. It includes senior officials and ministers.

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EC Head Barroso to visit Kosovo on Friday

Barosso-2PRISTINA, Kosovo — As to Kosovar media the President of the European Commission, the Portuguese Jose Manuel Barroso, intends to pay a visit to Kosovo on Friday (the 20th. May). Reportedly Barroso will have meetings with the Kosovo President Atifete Jahjaga and Kosovo Prime Minister Hashim Thaci. In addition the EC president is said to visit the mainly Serb populated Kosovar municipality of Gracanica in order to lay the foundation stone for the construction of the municipality’s assembly building.

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Kosovo Highway: ‘Vetevendosje’ published Contract

Highway to hell?PRISTINA, Kosovo — The confidential motorway contract between the Kosovo Government and the American-Turkish consortium of the construction enter-prises Bechtel and Enka was made public by Kosovo’s oppositional Move-  ment for Self-Determination ‘Vete-vendosje’. As to Kosovar media, leading officials of ‘Vetevendosje’ claimed that in contrary to government announcements of 700 million euro costs for the highway, the contract doesn’t specify a final amount. Vetevendosje member Shpend Ahmeti stated that according to the contract the Government of Kosovo carries all risks.

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Kosovo reacts on Serbia’s and Bosnia’s refusal to implement CEFTA agreement

Kursari-Lila2PRISTINA / BRUSSELS — Kosovo Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade and Industry Mimoza Kusari-Lila announced in Brussels, that Kosovo soon will implement reciprocal measures addressing Serbia’s and Bosnia’s unwillingness to fulfill contractual duties in terms of the Central European Free Trade Agreement – CEFTA. Both the Republic of Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina refuse Kosovar products to be sold on their local markets. In addition both countries blockade the transit of products from Kosovo through their territories. Likewise Serbia and Bosnia, Kosovo is a CEFTA member country.

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  • 'They haven't forgotten us': Former refugees meet Kosovo president ... - CBC.ca 18/11/2017
    CBC.ca'They haven't forgotten us': Former refugees meet Kosovo president ...CBC.caPresident Hashim Thaçi, who is in Nova Scotia this weekend for the Halifax International Security Forum, says he wanted to visit CFB Halifax to say thank you.and more »
  • Kosovo Voters Go To Polls In Local Election Runoffs - RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty 19/11/2017
    RadioFreeEurope/RadioLibertyKosovo Voters Go To Polls In Local Election RunoffsRadioFreeEurope/RadioLibertyVoters in Kosovo are heading to the polls for the second round of local elections that are seen as another step in the young republic's effort to solidify its democratic credentials. The November 19 runoffs are taking place in half of the country […]
  • EU courts trouble with Kosovo scandal - POLITICO.eu 17/11/2017
    POLITICO.euEU courts trouble with Kosovo scandalPOLITICO.euThe European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo, known as EULEX, was shaken Thursday after its chief judge, British national Malcolm Simmons, resigned and unleashed a string of accusations against the organization. But EULEX then revealed that ...Top Judge In EU's Kosovar Mission Resigns Amid A […]
  • Opposition Parties Make Gains in Kosovo Election Run-offs - Balkan Insight 20/11/2017
    Balkan InsightOpposition Parties Make Gains in Kosovo Election Run-offsBalkan InsightPreliminary results from Kosovo's Central Election Commission, CEC, held good news for the opposition Vetevendosje party and the Democratic League of Kosovo, LDK - and for the governing Alliance of the Future of Kosovo, AAK. It was bad night for the ...and more »
  • Top judge quits EU Kosovo mission, alleging corruption - POLITICO.eu 16/11/2017
    POLITICO.euTop judge quits EU Kosovo mission, alleging corruptionPOLITICO.euThe chief judge at an EU organization tasked with improving the rule of law in Kosovo quit and accused other senior members of the mission of corruption and malpractice, Le Monde reported Thursday. Malcolm Simmons, a British national, said he had ...British judge with EU mission in K […]
  • Kosovo at risk of attacks by returning Islamist militants: report - Reuters 13/11/2017
    Kosovo at risk of attacks by returning Islamist militants: reportReutersInternational and local security agencies have previously warned of the risk posed by returning fighters, and in 2015, Kosovo adopted a law making fighting in foreign conflicts punishable by up to 15 years in jail. The report said there had been ...and more »
  • Kosovo president brings thanks for 1999 refugee aid - TheChronicleHerald.ca 19/11/2017
    TheChronicleHerald.caKosovo president brings thanks for 1999 refugee aidTheChronicleHerald.caArber Rexhepi was an 11-year-old boy who enjoyed playing soccer on the streets of his hometown in Kosovo when his world turned upside down in the spring of 1999. “Before I knew it, you had an ultimatum on your head. And it was be killed or be gone,” ...and more » […]
  • UK sent protest to Suriname for revoking Kosovo recognition - B92 20/11/2017
    B92UK sent protest to Suriname for revoking Kosovo recognitionB92Speaking with journalists before the beginning of the session of the presidency of his Socialist Party of Serbia (SPS) Dacic also told reporters that a paper, which, according to Pristina authorities, proves that Guinea Bissau has recognized Kosovo ...
  • Four Sentenced In Kosovo For 2016 Parliament Attack - RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty 17/11/2017
    RadioFreeEurope/RadioLibertyFour Sentenced In Kosovo For 2016 Parliament AttackRadioFreeEurope/RadioLibertyA court in Kosovo has sentenced four opposition figures, including a lawmaker, to prison terms after their convictions for taking part in an attack last year on the parliament building in Pristina. The court on November 17 sentenced the men to prison .. […]
  • Kosovo: Time for action overtakes time for excuses, UN envoy tells Security Council - UN News Centre 14/11/2017
    UN News CentreKosovo: Time for action overtakes time for excuses, UN envoy tells Security CouncilUN News Centre14 November 2017 – Noting recent momentum to advance democracy and good governance in Kosovo, the head of the United Nations Mission there urged for more emphasis on rebuilding trust and reconciliation, including through engagement with women ...Ser […]

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  • Kosovo president brings thanks for 1999 refugee aid 19/11/2017
    Kosovo President Hashim Thaci reviews his colour guard during welcoming ceremonies Saturday at CFB Halifax. Thaci, who was in Halifax to attend the International Security Forum, visited the base to express appreciation for the military's role in helping war refugees from Kosovo in 1999.
  • Kosovo Voters Heading To Polls In Local Election Runoffs 19/11/2017
    Half of Kosovo's municipalities still have to fill council seats in the second round of local elections on November 19. Voters in Kosovo are heading to the polls for the second round of local elections that are seen as another step in the young republic's effort to solidify its democratic credentials. The November 19 runoffs are taking place in hal […]
  • Four Sentenced In Kosovo For 2016 Parliament Attack 17/11/2017
    A court in Kosovo has sentenced four opposition figures, including a lawmaker, to prison terms after their convictions for taking part in an attack last year on the parliament building in Pristina. The court on November 17 sentenced the men to prison terms ranging from two to eight years for the attack on August 4, 2016, in which a rocket-propelled grenade w […]
  • Kosovo opposition supporters jailed for 2016 grenade attack 17/11/2017
    Republicans stretch closer to delivering the first big legislative victory for President Donald Trump and their party, whisking a $1.5 trillion overhaul of business and personal income taxes through the House. Republicans stretch closer to delivering the first big legislative victory for President Donald Trump and their party, whisking a $1.5 trillion overha […]

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