The Kosovo government approves curfew in the north


The Kosovo government announced last night that it approved new measures aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19 in the municipalities of North Mitrovica, Zubin Potok, Leposavic and Zvecan.

The new measures include a 9 pm to 5 am curfew, while persons who tested positive to coronavirus or those who are suspected of being infected cannot leave or enter these municipalities for a period of 14 days. According to the Kosovo media reports, Hoti announced earlier in the day that „there is no quarantine for the north“.

„In order to prevent the spread and control the COVID-19 pandemic, the government approved the request of the Ministry of Health to stop any movement of individuals outside their homes and apartments from 9 pm to 5 am in the municipalities of North Mitrovica, Zubin Potok, Leposavic and Zvecan starting from July 8, 2020,“ the government wrote in a statement.

The curfew does not apply in the following cases:

• Health emergencies, cases in which there is a need to care for the sick and people with special needs, and in cases when the sick or people with special needs are unable to take care of themselves;
• where assistance is sought from relevant institutions, for example, by victims of domestic violence;
• in the event of the death of a family member;
• and when it comes to satisfying the needs of pets, but not further than 500 meters from the apartment/house.
In no case shall any other purpose other than those specified be used as an exemption from the curfew.

The Kosovo government emphasized:

„The decision adopted by the Kosovo government today prohibits the entry and exit of infected persons for 24 hours a day, of those who have been in contact or are suspected of being infected in the municipalities of North Mitrovica, Leposavic, Zvecan and Zubin Potok for a period of 14 days from the day this decision enters into force, except in the above extraordinary cases.“

They claim that the decision was proposed by the Kosovo Minister of Health at the request of the mayors of the northern municipalities, who manage the local emergency teams.
„The decision is also based on an analysis of the epidemiological situation by field experts at the National Institute of Public Health – as the number of citizens who have tested positive for coronavirus in these municipalities has increased – aimed at preventing the spread and control Covid-19.“

Quarantine measures are not in force in the four municipalities in the north of Kosovo, the Kosovo Prime Minister, Avdullah Hoti had announced earlier in the day, following a meeting with the team in charge of dealing with the COVID-19 outbreak, Pristina-based Koha reported. Hoti, however, did not provide any details about the new measures.

Contrary to Hoti’s claim, the emergency teams from the north placed the four northern municipalities under quarantine on Tuesday, while also introducing a seven-day curfew from 9 pm to 5 am. These measures were announced by Hoti’s deputy Goran Rakic.

Hoti emphasized that no one can impose a quarantine measure without the say-so of the Kosovo government.

„The law of Kosovo is the only one that applies in the north, there is no other law. As a government, we will decide whether to introduce a curfew. Kosovo institutions respect only the decisions that come from the government of Kosovo, and no other decision,“ he said.

Hoti added that „only Kosovo laws apply in the territory of Kosovo.“



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