Kryeziu on the construction of a road through an Orthodox cemetery: The Kosovo government was not responsible for the decision

Zaustavljeni radovi

Even though almost all local government representatives made claims that official Pristina is behind the construction of the road planned to pass through the old Orthodox cemetery in North Mitrovica, the Kosovo government denied these allegations. „There is no government decision or ministerial decision of that kind“ – the spokesman of the Kosovo government, Perparim Kryeziu, confirmed for KoSSev.

The Kosovo authorities started building a road leading to burned and abandoned Albanian-owned houses earlier this month, the reconstruction of which was recently launched as part of a program that was announced for the return of Albanians to the Brdjani and Mikronaselje settlements in North Mitrovica.

In Mikronaselje, the road to these houses leads through the now dug-up old town cemetery, where tombstones that could be several hundred years old are situated. The section of the site where the heavy machinery was situated has already caused considerable damage.

Several tombstones were destroyed and damaged, and graves were dug up to such an extent that human bones were also excavated.

Part of the human bones were thrown out by the construction company carrying out the works along with the rubble next to the Ibar River near the Vojni Remont site.

The works were suspended yesterday. The police launched an investigation, questioned one individual and opened a case of „damage to cemeteries and corpses“.

The Municipality of North Mitrovica says that it was most likely a mistake made by the Kosovo Ministry of Infrastructure, and that this local self-government was not informed of the works.

However, the Ministry of Administration and Local Self-Government announced late last night that the government in Pristina is not carrying out these works.

In their statement, they referred to the allegations of Srpska Lista, denying them, although several officials in the municipality of North Mitrovica told KoSSev that it was a mistake by the Kosovo Ministry of Infrastructure.

In view of the conflicting claims, KoSSev reached out to the Kosovo government for additional explanation.

Repeating the statement of this ministry, the spokesman of the Kosovo government, Perparim Kryeziu, said today that the official Pristina is not behind this project.

At the same time, he emphasized that the Kosovo government is only responsible for projects related to the construction of houses.

„In this particular case, the Government is only responsible for financing the costs of building and renovating houses within our subsidy scheme for building and renovating houses of non-majority communities in municipalities,“ Kryeziu told KoSSev.

He pointed out that these projects do not include other infrastructure projects.

„This scheme does not include other infrastructure projects such as the one concerning the road in this particular case,“ he stressed.

Confirming that the Kosovo Police is investigating this case, he added that they are waiting for results of the investigation.

„We remain committed to providing the best service to all our citizens,“ he told KoSSev.

In connection with this case, criminal charges were filed by the Diocese of Raska-Prizren, the Church Committee of KM, as well as a group of citizens led by the former president of the Kosovo Court of Appeals in Mitrovica, Nikola Kabašić.

The cemetery in question is considerably old, with the last burial taking place place in 1953.

According to preliminary estimates, some tombstones in the cemetery could be several hundred years old.

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