Kosovo: „Review“ of the demarcation agreement; Montenegro: „The marking of the established border“

Demarkacija Crna Gora Kosovo
FOTO: Shutterstock

The “border demarcation” process between Kosovo and Montenegro has finished and a „marking of the state border demarcation agreement“ is underway, the Government of Montenegro told KoSSev. On the other hand, the Kosovo Prime Minister, Ramush Haradinaj has a different interpretation of what was agreed back in 2015. He claims that the Law on the ratification of his government’s agreement envisages the possibility of “reviewing the agreement” – and that this process has started.

The Kosovo Assembly ratified the demarcation agreement with Montenegro last March – after several interruptions of the session due to the use of tear gas by the Self-Determination Movement. The government of Ramush Haradinaj was a new at the time, and the Kosovo prime minister, being the head of the executive power, found himself in an ungrateful position of having to advocate the adoption of an agreement he had harshly opposed as a representative of the opposition. Furthermore, during the meetings of the „Commission on border demarcation with Montenegro,“ Haradinaj tossed geographical maps around the office and accused the head of the Commission of betraying Kosovo’s interests.

Nevertheless, as he explained to the public a few months later, the demarcation agreement with Montenegro – which he strongly opposed – should be adopted because the draft law on the ratification of his government’s agreement envisages the possibility of “reviewing the agreement.”

The agreement was adopted in the Kosovo Assembly with 80 votes in favor – with great pressure from the international community, as the European Commission listed the ratification of this agreement as one of the conditions for granting a visa-free regime to Kosovo. A large part of the Kosovo public viewed this decision by the European Commission as unfair because the solution – as it was represented – of a bilateral agreement on borders was not a condition for visa liberalization „for any country in the region.“

Haradinaj: The review process of the border demarcation agreement with Montenegro has started

The Kosovo Prime Minister now claims that the review process of the demarcation agreement has started and that he held a meeting with the former Rector of the University of Pristina, Mujo Rugova last week, with whom he talked about the course and finalization of this process.

„The demarcation review in the direction of Kula and Cakor is a process that has already been agreed by the Government of Kosovo and Montenegro. In addition to the work of the interstate commissions and preparations, I welcomed the former rector of the University of Pristina ‘Hasan Prishtina,’ Mujo Rugova today, with whom I discussed the course of this process and further steps to be taken for its finalization, or correction of the sectors in the direction of Kula and Cakor. The contribution of the esteemed Professor Rugova is welcome and irreplaceable in the spirit of this mutual cooperation,“ Haradinaj posted on Facebook.

Immediately after the summit in Poznan, Haradinaj announced via Facebook that a „border crossing“ will be opened in this part at the end of this process.

Government of Montenegro: Demarcation completed in 2015

According to the Government of Montenegro, however, this process was completed in August 2015, when an agreement was reached between the two governments and formalized by the ratification of these agreements by the Montenegro Assembly in December 2015 and by the Kosovo Assembly in the middle of 2018 when the Law on Ratification of the Demarcation Agreement entered into force.

„In accordance with the concluded Agreement between the Commission of Montenegro and the Republic of Kosovo, the Agreement on the established state borders will be commemorated within two years of its entry into force. We believe that, in the spirit of good neighborly relations and regional cooperation, the commissions of Montenegro and the Republic of Kosovo will contribute to the full implementation of this Agreement,“ the Government of Montenegro stated in a written reply to KoSSev.

In addition to Montenegro – which claims that the process of demarcation with Kosovo was completed, and Kosovo – which has been sending messages that the review process has begun, there is also a third party, the Republic of Serbia, which does not recognize Kosovo’s independence. According to its Constitution, Kosovo is an integral part of Serbia. Even though Serbia’s border authorities do not have physical access to border control from the territory of Kosovo towards Montenegro, it only recognizes the border between the Republic of Serbia and Montenegro in that part.

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