Saturday, April 3, 2010
While many having been talking about the security threat in the north from "parallel institutions," the latest news concerns protests over attempted Serb returns to southern Kosovo and the desecration of Serb cemeteries there. In a village near Istog/Istok, a group of Serb IDPs decided to return to their land and for the past three days, local Albanians have been demonstrating against them. The Serbian government has called on the international community for a clear sign of support for Serb returnees but also praised the actions of KPS and KFOR for keeping the two sides apart.
Near Pristina, a Serb cemetery in the village of Rubofc/Rabovce near Lipjan/Lipljan was vandalized by unknowns. Prime Minister Thaci was quick to visit the site. (Desecration of graves is unfortunately not a rare occurrence in Kosovo. A grave of a Serb woman recently buried was vandalized in Gnjilane/Gjilan in February.)
With southern Kosovo Serbs beginning to accept the reality of being surrounded by Albanian-majority Kosovo and trying to "play ball," it would seem that Pristina and the ICO/EULEX/EU combine would see the opportunity to focus on making the south a model of multi-ethnic harmony. They have a long way to go.