Kosovo authorities announced, late Saturday, 3 incidents in which shots were fired in different locations at police units that were on an official mission in the north of the country.
The Kosovo police said, in a statement, that “criminal groups blocked several roads in the north of the country, firing shots from various locations at police units that were on an official mission near the Gazivod Lake dam, on their way to the Brinjak crossing with Serbia.”
She added that “the police forces, in self-defense, were forced to respond with firearms to the criminal groups that moved away and retreated to an unknown destination.”
And the statement continued: “According to information received from the police units, gunshots were heard in several areas.”
- Advertisement -
There was no official information about injuries or damage.
The Kosovo police had previously announced the closure of the two border crossings with Serbia in the north of the country for security reasons.
Yesterday evening, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic announced that Belgrade would officially request the NATO peacekeeping mission in Kosovo, known as “KFOR”, to deploy elements of the Serbian police and army in Kosovo in accordance with United Nations Resolution 1244.
In response, the Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, said that his country would respond to any aggression against it.
He added: “We do not want conflict, we want peace and progress, but we will respond to any aggression with all our strength.”
Tensions escalated between the two neighboring countries after the Pristina government’s attempt to ask the Kosovo Serbs to replace old car plates coming from neighboring Serbia with plates issued by Kosovo.
The decision led to the withdrawal of Kosovo Serbs from all central and local institutions, but late last month an agreement to end the conflict was reached.
On Saturday evening, Kosovo President Fyuza Osmani announced the postponement of local elections in 4 municipalities in the north of the country, amid security concerns, after they were scheduled for later this December.
Earlier this week, some polling stations in the north of the country were damaged, and gunfire was heard in those areas, which raised fears of a new escalation between the two countries.
Kosovo, whose majority population is Albanian, seceded from Serbia in 1999 and declared its independence from it in 2008, but Belgrade still considers it part of its territory and supports a Serb minority in Kosovo.