"Economic situation reason behind rioting"

BELGRADE -- Marko Djuric believes that the basic reason for violent protests in Pristina on Tuesday is bad economic situation and dissatisfaction with the government.

(Tanjug, file)
(Tanjug, file)

"The subtext of these demonstrations is bad economic situation and dissatisfaction with the way a small elite has an airtight grip on power," the director of the Serbian Government Office for Kosovo told the state broadcaster RTS.

Asked whether Kosovo Minister of Returns and Communities Aleksandar Jablanovic would be sacked, Djuric said that "Serbia wants stability in Kosovo which Serb members of the government in Pristina should fulfill."

"If Serb members of the government in Kosovo do not produce results in this segment, someone from Belgrade might seek accountability, too," said Djuric.

He then stated that as the Kosovo talks continue in Brussels on February 9, creatig a community of Serb municipalities will be discussed, as well as property issues, "not just Trepca but also many other resources essential for life."

"Addressing the issue of property is a key part of the core of normalization of relations in the province. We want to start on serious topics, in the coming days we will have preparatory talks for Brussels," Djuric said.

He added that the dialogue in Brussels was "only one of the steps in the normalization of relations which Serbia is fully committed to."

Commenting on trial in Kosovo of Oliver Ivanovic, Djuric expressed hope that Ivanovic will "finally will soon get the right to a fair trial and the right to be released."