Meetings of municipal assemblies delayed

KOSOVSKA MITROVICA -- The meetings of the four municipal assemblies in northern Kosovo towns, that had been scheduled for Tuesday, will be postponed, it has been announced.

This will happen "at the request of the Serbian government and the EU," the mayors of the four municipalities stated.

The dispute concerning the contents of the invitations to the ceremonial meeting used to confirm the mandates and have assembly members sign a formal statement will be resolved by Serbia's Prime Minister Ivica Dačić and officials of Kosovo's provisional government at their meeting in Brussels at the start of 2014, a statement says.

"All ethnic Albanian assembly members answered the invitation and appeared at the meeting of the municipal assembly, so we are surprised by Priština's threats that it will not recognize the assembly meetings as legal. It is now perfectly clear that Priština does not like the Brussels agreement, that the government of the Republic of Serbia has not recognized Priština's unilateral decisions and that ethnic Albanian officials are afraid of the creation of a community of Serb municipalities," the statement says.

The mayors from northern Kosovo said they and the local assemblies would perform all their duties according to the law, because they were obligated to do so by the people who had placed their trust in them, but they also warned the international community and Priština that they would not accept any decisions regarding their municipalities not made with their consent.

"We, the legitimate and legal representatives of our people, will continue to support fully the government of the Republic of Serbia in its effort to fully implement the Brussels agreement and form the community of Serb municipalities, which is obviously a great threat to the separatist ambitions of the Albanians in Kosovo," said the mayors of Leposavić, northern Kosovska Mitrovica, Zvečan and Zubin Potok.

Councilors from Albanian parties initially said that they would boycott the session of the northern Kosovska Mitrovica municipality in protest of the fact the invitations they received did not feature the coat of arms of "the Republic of Kosovo."

A Priština ministry in charge of local self-administration said in the meantime that the ceremonial sessions would not be held as municipalities in northern Kosovo did not meet legal requirements.