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PRESS RELEASE – May 22, 2019

22. May 2019.

Belgrade – I spoke on the subject of the possible incorporation of the municipalities of Presevo, Bujanovac and Medvedja in the territory of Kosovo and Metohija on several occasions , and I also gave an opinion based on the unique position of the governmental bodies and the assrances of  representatives of the international community dealing with this issue that these three municipalities were,  had been and would continue to be part of the territory of the Republic of Serbia, "said Zoran Stankovic, the President of the Coordination Body for the Municipalities of  Presevo, Bujanovac and Medvedja.

The Coordination Body has a role and obligation to coordinate the work between the local self-governments and the Government of the Republic of Serbia and other governmental bodies, Mr. Stankovic explained, and said that that governmental body did not have any executive jurisdiction which implied the sanctioning of illegal and other kinds of behavior.

Mr. Stankovic also pointed out that he was advocating that the laws in the Republic of Serbia were to be respected and that in cases of their violation, we should react in a legally prescribed manner. Respecting the laws of this country is a duty of all its citizens and can not be interpreted as a pressure and violation of the rights of any person regardless of their national or religious affiliation.

“If the competent governmental authorities estimate that a certain violation of the law has been done by some procedure, such as the celebration of the "Captain Leshi Days" event in Bujanovac, which the public considers to be a violation of the law, a reaction will follow in a legally prescribed manner. It is true that there is a discrepancy between the statements made by specific Albanian leaders and their respect for the laws of the Republic of Serbia. Local Albanian leaders respect the laws of our country in their daily work and work with us for the benefit of the citizens of these municipalities. I would like to emphasize that they were publicly told by Edi Rama (in 2014), the Prime Minister of Albania , as well as by the President of the Republic of Albania, Bujar Nisani, and Ilir Meta, when they paid a visit to these municipalities (in 2017), that they should  solve all their problems as citizens of our country and within the framework of the bodies of the Republic of Serbia. Making references to the past, which is not shared by all the citizens of these municipalities, is not the path to the future that we want to build together,"said the President of the Coordination Body.

We do not have the right to react to provocations, lies and manipulations because we respect the interests of the citizens of the Republic of Serbia, which require us to behave responsibly, professionally and in a civilized manner, Mr. Stankovic said.

Source: Coordination Body