The President: Soldiers, athletes and artists, the pride of the 11th Anniversary of Independence

Prishtina, February 17, 2019 - The President of the Republic of Kosovo, Hashim Thaçi, addressed the citizens at the parade of the Kosovo Army on the 11th Anniversary of Independence.

“You, soldiers of the Kosovo Security Force are our pride. You are the best proof of the success of our state, of our progress. Only 11 years ago we started jointly the path of the consolidation of the independent republic of Kosovo”, stated President Thaçi.

The Head of State said that we welcome the day when the Kosovo soldiers, together with the soldiers of the region, will serve to build peace in every corner of the planet.

“We are obliged to offer peace to the new generations to come. But we also have the obligation to teach them about our past, about the sacrifices we have made to gain our freedom and independence. Our journey to state building has demanded patience and wisdom. It has demanded to know when to take strategic decisions and when to make compromises. But every time we have kept our eyes on our main aspiration. On freedom and independence. On the state of Kosovo”, said President Thaçi.

He said that this year we must take another strategic decision for the future of our country.

“We must reach a peaceful, inclusive, permanent agreement with Serbia, which ensures mutual recognition and the membership of Kosovo in the UN, NATO and the EU. Not to forget the past, but not to let the past sufferings and tragedies to be repeated. For this decision it is demanded again from us to have wisdom and unity”, admitted President Thaçi.

In front of the citizens and international guests, President Thaçi has said that on our successful journey to statehood there is another irreplaceable factor.

“This is our partnership with the international community, primarily with the United States of America, but also with the European Union, the countries of Europe and with NATO”, said Thaçi, adding that each time we were united in Kosovo and with our international partners, especially with the USA and the EU, we have come out victorious.

“Even if the decisions seemed tough and severe at first, history has shown that they were the best and proper decisions for the time and circumstances”, said President Thaçi.

The Head of State has added that for Kosovo it remains essential to preserve and cultivate the partnership with our allies.

He emphasized that Kosovo’s successes, the building of the army, the building of the state are our common success.

“On this date we commemorate with the deepest respect all those who have sacrificed everything they had for this freedom and for this state. We commemorate every martyr, every warrior, every prisoner, every refugee, every activist, every humanitarian worker, every journalist, every teacher, and every worker who have done everything in their power to gain freedom and build the state. Honouring the past, we look to the future”, said President Thaçi.

President Thaçi said that the dedication and professionalism of the KSF soldiers, the successes of Kosovo’s scientists, athletes and artists are an inspiration for all of us.

“They are a motive to us. They are a confirmation that we worked well and fairly. They are proof that we are on the right track. But they are also an obligation to work even harder”, he said.

Congratulating all the citizens on the 11th Anniversary of Independence, President Thaçi said that united we will accomplish every aspiration of our people.