Vitia: 1,000 PCR tests from Serbia to be destroyed in a timely manner

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The one thousand COVID-19 test kits donated by Serbia to Kosovo in April last year will soon be destroyed, Kosovo Health Minister, Arben Vitia, said at today’s session of the Kosovo Assembly on 100th day of the Albin Kurti-led government.

“The test kits will be treated like all expired drugs. They will be destroyed in a timely manner,“ the Health Minister said in response to a question from PDK MP Bekim Haxhiu on what happened to the thousand test kits that were donated by Serbia.

This MP said that, by doing so, Serbia presented itself as a humane state, adding that at the same time Kosovo would „pay for their destruction“.

Vitia underlined that, like other laboratory materials, these test kits were stored away, according to the data of the Kosovo Institute of Public Health.

At the same time, he said that donations from Serbia arrived in millions during other governments in Kosovo and that donations keep coming.

On April 17th of last year, Belgrade sent 1,000 test kits to Pristina, as part of the region’s cooperation in the fight against COVID-19, a spokesman for the Kosovo Ministry of Health, Faik Hoti, confirmed for KoSSev at the time. On the other hand, Kosovo “allowed medical teams from Serbia to enter Kosovo periodically to provide medical services to members of the Serb community, at the request of mayors from Serb-majority municipalities,” the ministry said in a response to KoSSev.

At the time, the government in Pristina was also led by Albin Kurti, that is, Self-Determination in cooperation with the LDK. The Kurti-led government also found itself a target of criticism of the Kosovo opposition and public over this donation.

Last year, during Kurti’s first term as prime minister he was questioned during a parliamentary session by deputies as to whether the shipment contained the inscription ‘For the Republic of Kosovo’ or ‘For Kosovo and Metohija’, to which he replied that he did not know and advised journalists to contact the Minister of Health.

A petition was also launched to reject the shipment. The deputy chairman of the KLA veterans’ association, Nasim Haradinaj, who is currently facing trial in The Hague, demanded an urgent investigation by the parliamentary commission and the prosecution, and called on the Pristina Institute of Public Health to „throw the test kits in the trash.“

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