Kosovo minister on local vote controversies

Minister of Kosovo Goran Bogdanović says that the time when Belgrade was sending “directives” had passed.

He was answering criticism of the official Belgrade’s position toward the local elections held in the province last weekend, organized by the Kosovo Albanian government in Priština.

“We were not leading an anti-campaign, we did not threaten anyone and we did not demonize anybody. Perhaps fewer Serbs would have voted if we acted like our predecessors.”

“We gave a recommendation to the Kosovo Serbs that there were no conditions to vote in the so-called Kosovo elections,” the minister said.

However, some of the Serbs decided to vote because they thought that it would help them improve their economic situation and survive in the area, he added.

“Experience teaches us that [ethnic] Albanian authorities haven’t done and will not do anything to improve the lives of the members of the Serb community in Kosovo. They only need Serbs in the elections as some sort of decor, so they could say that Serbs participated,” Bogdanović said.

Kosovo Albanian authorities have done everything, from manipulations to bribing, in order to declare the elections successful.

“Only five or six people voted in some polling stations, but they made it look like there had been a hundred. There are 123,000 Serbian voters on the voting lists, but less than 8,000 voted ,which is about five to six percent, including other ethnic minorities, and that cannot be regarded as a success,” the Kosovo minister pointed out.

“The Albanians certainly wish to create a rift among Serbs. There are also some members of the Serb community who wish that, but this government will not allow Serbs to go against Serbs, and we will not allow the Serb community to be divided,” he concluded.

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