The President of the Republic of Kosovo, Mrs. Atifete Jahjaga visited today Janjevo, where she was notified about the position that the Croatian community who lives in this township has, and with their problems and concerns.
On this visit she was accompanied by Mr. Slobodan Petrovic, deputy prime minister of the Local Government, the deputy mayor of the municipality of Lipjan, the Mayor of Janjevo and other officials.
The Ambassador of the Republic of Croatia in our country, Mr. Zoran Vodopija, was present as well.
After being welcomed by the parish priest Don Matej Palic and having visited the Catholic Church “St. Nikola”, President Jahjaga met Croatian citizens who had come to greet her, addressed the present citizens with a speech.
“I come here today with very good news. We have agreed with the Prime Minister of Kosovo that the Croatian community will be a constitutional community, defined by the Constitution of the Republic of Kosovo and will have a reserved seat in the Assembly of the Republic of Kosovo”, said President Jahjaga initially.
I came here today to discuss together with you and to see how we can move forward, how we can contribute to the development of Janjevo, how to contribute, in cooperation with you, in improving the position of the citizens in this municipality, she added.
President Jahjaga said that Kosovo is a country of all the citizens, a country built on the principle of citizenship, where all the citizens have equal rights and freedoms, regardless of their affiliation.
“You, Croatians, have made a major contribution to the development, the advancement of the country for centuries and also have made an extraordinary contribution in all processes of advancement and civilizing processes of this country. I demand from you to continue your contribution and you have and will have my strong support, as you are the bridge of cooperation between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Croatia”, said President Jahjaga.
Later, President Jahjaga and the other municipal and governmental officials held a meeting with the representatives of the Croatian community of Janjevo, where they got acquainted with their problems and discuss about the ways of overcoming them and the development of this locality. The continuous problem of emigration of Croats to Croatia was stressed, the problem of unemployment of the Croats in Kosovo, and the problem of destruction and plunder of property, houses and their wealth, stressing the fact that only in Janjevo there are so far over four hundred houses and properties that have remained empty because their owners have moved to Croatia. It was emphasized that investment in the infrastructure of Janjevo would affect migration to stop and to encourage residents to return to their properties to live and work in Kosovo.
After the meeting, President Jahjaga and the accompanying officials visited the locality of Janjevo, the house of Father Shtjefën Gjeçov, which is in the phase of renovation, and met people and talked with them.
The priest in the Church of Janjevo, Don Matej Palic, speaking on behalf of the Croatian citizens of Janjevo, has thanked President Jahjaga for the visit and has expressed the belief that the central and local institutions will help this locality, to enable better living conditions for the citizens.