Today: Wednesday, 24 April 2024 year

In Kosovo, the police intimidated Serbs at night, the Serbian government said.

In Kosovo, the police intimidated Serbs at night, the Serbian government said.

Last night, the police of the self-proclaimed Kosovo invaded the northern part of Kosovska Mitrovica in armored vehicles and intimidated local Serbs on the streets, Petar Petkovic, director of the office for Kosovo and Metohija under the Serbian government, said at a briefing.

“Kurti commandos with long-barreled automatic weapons literally occupied the northern part of Kosovska Mitrovica. They entered from the southern part with more than 30 armored vehicles and wearing masks, mocked the entire North Mitrovica. Inside the cordoned off city, they not only patrolled, but also <…> stopped cars, searched people, beat and insulted,” he said.

The day before, thousands of residents of Kosovska Mitrovica took to the streets to demand the release of three Serbs detained during clashes on May 29 and later on suspicion of organizing riots. Later it became known about the detention of another Serb, who is suspected of attacking journalists. Serbian authorities, for their part, arrested three Koso-Albanian special forces this week.

Another round of tension in Kosovo and Metohija began at the end of May, after an attempt by the Kosovo Albanian authorities to appoint new mayors of several municipalities in the north of the province. Protests have not subsided so far.

Kosovo Prime Minister Kurti demanded that the West put pressure on Belgrade to release the commandos. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic called on the ambassadors of the United States, Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy and the head of the permanent EU delegation to stop the Kosovo Albanian authorities and prevent a new war in the Balkans.

Against this background, the EU announced that they intended to limit funding to Kosovo and stop high-level visits due to Pristina’s refusal to promote de-escalation, and the US Special Representative in the Balkans threatened both Pristina and Belgrade with consequences.