EU is concerned over the works in LP, asks the government to respect the law and property rights

Objekat EU u Prištini
Objekat EU, ilustracija

The EU is following the active construction activities taking place in the localities of Dren and Lesak within Leposavic municipality in northern Kosovo with concern – the land expropriated by the Kosovo government in January. We urge the Kosovo government to take all efforts to ensure that due process is followed and that property owners’ rights are fully respected, the EU Office in Kosovo said in a statement for KoSSev.

Fifteen days after the Kosovo government decided to expropriate land in the municipality of Leposavic, road widening works leading to the expropriated plots began in the village of Dren yesterday.

As was confirmed on Wednesday, a border police station is being built on those same land parcels. The site was secured by dozens of members of the Kosovo Police. Upon seeing heavy machinery and armored vehicles at the site, locals and plot owners gathered in protest.

The president of the Leposavic Provisional Authority, Zoran Todic, also visited the location and sent a request that the works be stopped immediately. He stressed that no one had been informed about the works in advance.

Previously, Todic confirmed that the owners were not notified that their land was expropriated. Together with other locals, they have been gathering since yesterday to protest against these decisions of the Kosovo government.

In a response to KoSSev regarding the issue, EU Office in Kosovo said that they are concerned with the active construction activities taking place in these localities.

They noted that Kosovo law allows for a period of public consultation and the opportunity for the citizens to challenge any decision.

“It is important to note that the expropriation process, under Kosovo law, requires a period for public consultation and the opportunity for affected citizens to challenge any decision on expropriation in the courts before any decision on expropriation becomes final.”

The EU urges the Kosovo government to “take all efforts to ensure that due process is followed and that property owners’ rights are fully respected.”

According to KoSSev’s findings, the government decided to expropriate over 80ha of land in two cadastral zones – the villages of Dren and Lesak, both privately-owned and state-owned land. Although the land covers two cadastral zones, the satellite view reveals that it is actually one huge piece of land, which includes a village cemetery in Dren.

The municipality of Leposavic confirmed for KoSSev that around 25 ha is privately-owned, while about 57 ha are owned by the “Ibar” company.

On that same day, KoSSev published a text on the expropriation of land in Leposavic, the president of the PA of the municipality, as well as the vice-president of Srpska Lista, held a meeting with the owners of these land parcels.

They underlined that Kurti is thus “seizing Serb land” and carrying out legal violence, alleging that the expropriation is not in line with the law.

They revealed that they have agreed with the owners to hire a legal team to file an appeal against this “illegal decision that seizes Serb land by legal violence.”

Preuzimanje i objavljivanje tekstova sa portala KoSSev nije dozvoljeno bez navođenja izvora. Hvala na poštovanju etike novinarske profesije.