Tirana, 13 January 2011- In the course of his official visit to the Republic of Albania, the Acting President of the Republic of Kosovo Dr. Jakup Krasniqi was received today by the Prime Minister of Republic of Albania, Dr. Sali Berisha.
The meeting discussed relations and cooperation between two countries, latest developments in Kosovo following general elections and issues related to the Council of Europe Rapporteur Dick Marty’s report.
At a joint conference held after the meeting, the Acting President of Kosovo Dr. Jakup Krasniqi and Prime Minister of Albania, Sali Berisha, having considered allegations of the Rapporteur Marty as false, racist and anti-Albanian, requested resolution due to be adopted by the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly obliges Rapporteur Marty to provide EULEX and the Hague International Court of Justice with all pieces of evidence concerning allegations contained in his report.
Below you may read the entire transkript of the press conference:
The Acting President Dr. Jakup Krasniqi: Whenever I come to Albania, I feel exactly as in Kosovo. I had the special pleasure of talking to the Prime Minister of Albania Mr. Berisha, with a special emphasis on the political evolutions in Kosovo and, as representatives of the two countries, we discussed, of course, a deeper cooperation between Albania and Kosovo in the field of internal affairs and economic growth and foreign diplomacy.
We dwelled on the report by the Council of Europe Rapporteur, Mr. Dick Marty, which accuses not only the Kosovo Liberation Army, but all Albanians in Kosovo and Albania.
These repeated, rather than new allegations oblige our two countries’ politicians and diplomacies to coordinate so as to challenge the report, which has also been considered a political pamphlet. We are ready to support international professional institutions in conducting a comprehensive investigation into all allegations directed against fair war for freedom and liberation that was waged by the people of Kosovo. We are convinced that the entire political program of the national movement for the liberation of Kosovo has at no stage had another aim besides the war for freedom and liberation. If at certain stages the Kosovo liberation war for freedom and national liberation might have been considered as a sin by certain circles, it was never waged by ways of organised crime against an ethnic group or a people or by abductions, annihilation, forced disappearance or trafficking of anyone’s organs for criminal purposes.
In this case, we are ready to face international justice. We are convinced that the European Union has a professional team in Kosovo to support the justice system in Kosovo, and, in terms of executive powers, we have asked from EULEX to resume investigations that were interrupted by the international administration in Kosovo.
In this case, I consider that justice is on both Kosovo and Albania’s side and we are convinced that our war was just, that it was a dignified war and that, having been such, it has enjoyed the support of the European Union and the United States and NATO. In this case, we see this as an accusation directed against all the countries that have supported the freedom of the people of Kosovo in many directions, military and humanitarian ones. Therefore, I am convinced that, as we discussed with the Prime Minister of Kosovo, coordination from now on will serve justice, stability and growth in both Albania and Kosovo.
Prime Minister Berisha: We had a hearty and brotherly meeting with President of the Republic of Kosovo and the President of the Parliament, Mr. Jakup Krasniqi and the delegation that is accompanying him, which discussed, above all, paths and ways to an overall intensification of relations between our two countries on all fronts. It is my pleasure to find that these relations are seeing a constant evolution. These relations are of a very special importance for the people of our two countries. In this context, Kosovo will institutionalise its new institutions and is, of course, on the verge of other important developments, such as the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia, a dialogue that is crucial to peace, stability and the future of the region.
Of course, our meeting discussed Senator Dick Marty’s report. We believe and consider that the best answer to this purely racist and defamatory report is our request for a full investigation into all issues raised in this report by EULEX and Hague International Court. I want to stress once again that the Government of Albania has sent an official invitation to EULEX-it and International Court to reinitiate inquiries into Senator Marty’s allegations, which brings nothing new, besides listing allegations repeatedly dismissed in the course of previous investigations. However, since these allegations come from an institution this time, I believe it necessitates another complete investigation. The Government of Albania will provide all the necessary facilities for an inquiry into his allegations. We don’t obstruct. Rather, we are favouring such an inquiry, though we express our discontent with the fact that such racist reports are read at the Council of Europe.
I want to make it clear here that I don’t hold Dick Marty a racist because of his allegations. He has collected these allegations from Belgrade’s annals, from Russian lobbies and so on, but Dick Marty is proving his naked racism to the world with his descriptions of the Albanian society. He has allowed himself to copy samples from the Serbian racist doctrine against Albanians and to paste them into a report to the Council of Europe. The Albanian society is not the one described in Dick Marty’s or Çubriloviç’s writings. Of course, the Albanian society is a society that has its millennia-long history. It also has a history of its regions, with all their particulars. You may notice that Dick Marty has chosen Albanians as kidney rippers and Jews as kidney takers. It wasn’t possible to have a Russian or someone else depicted as a person that has taken the trafficked kidneys, but it had to be a Jew, which clearly indicates his racism.
I want to tell you once again that our request for an investigation is outright. We are free countries and absolutely determined to punish any type of crime against humanity whatsoever. International law will react by using its most vicious power against anyone, because the Kosovo liberation war constitutes the brightest chapter of the Albanian national history. It represents one of the wars that have brought the last colonial rule in Europe to an end and the Albanian struggle that advanced the cause of their freedom into a cause for a free world. We can only say to those that feel hurt by the freedom of the Albanians: May God free your souls from hatred and racism against Albanians. Albanians represent a nation that finds inspiration in the virtue of friendship and that has left behind no wounds in any other nation’s territory. It was others who have left behind hordes and bones in Albanian lands, and Albanians, nowhere. Two thousand years of resistance, this is their history. Kosovo Liberation War ended a 130-year long war that was waged in an occupied land. Determined Albanians are determined to write a new chapter with their neighbours, the chapter of European integration, and to look towards their joint future.
Question: Mr. Krasniqi, do you believe that these allegations are damaging Kosovo’s image and will they affect impending talks between Kosovo and Serbia?
Acting President Dr. Jakup Krasniqi: Council of Europe’s Rapporteur’s report has certainly damaged Kosovo’s image, because the very deception that it has entailed has indeed damaged Kosovo politically. However, as to whether it will affect forthcoming talks between Kosovo and Serbia, I believe that it will not. It may only delay them.
From the Rambouillet and thereafter, Kosovo has always been and is ready to talk about anything that is in the interest of the Republic of Kosovo and of its people, but also in the interest of the Republic of Serbia and its people. When I say people of Serbia and Kosovo, I also mean Albanians living in the Republic of Serbia and Serbs living in Kosovo. We are ready to talk about everything that contributes to the improvement and advancement of the quality of the life of the people of the two countries.
Question: Mr. Prime Minister, you have sent and invitation to EULEX and Hague Court on 22 December to conduct an investigation. Have you received any answer from them? How will Albania react at the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly and, as a member, what will it request in concrete terms?
Prime Minister Berisha: First of all, I’d like to add something concerning the first question. A racist anti-Albanian hysteria can not distract Albanians in their course or their endeavours for peace, stability and integration. Regardless of that, we remain open to an earnest international inquiry and ready to contribute to the truth that will come out.
Secondly, our delegation will go the Parliamentary Assembly with the message and determination to call for an inquiry to be envisaged by the resolution due to be voted by international institutions, which should be conducted by EULEX and International Court. The delegation will also request that the resolution requires Dick Marty to hand over all the information that he possesses to EULEX and International Court.
This is a major legal and moral obligation that appertains to the Council of Europe. We will vote on the resolution and, of course, once again, we detest Dick Marty’s racist report. However, racism does no honour to anyone. On the contrary, it is an atavism that civilised people must fight against, so that they can break lose of it and share common values.
This is the position that our delegation will maintain. I have received the invitation to be there months ago from the President if the Parliamentary Assembly Mr. Çaushoglu and it will be a great pleasure to address the Assembly. We will request Dick Marty be required to hand over to EULEX all the pieces of evidence that he claims he has collected, so as to serve the revelation of the truth.
Question: Though we cannot anticipate effects of the Council of Europe resolution will have, I’d like to ask about your engagements in writing a new chapter for the Albanian society. Prishtina and Tirana have the ability and capacities to draft, under the logos of our two states, a project or a report that would in a scientifically confirmable, historically just and politically correct manner, challenge all allegations contained in Dick Marty’s report. What are options for coming out with such a document?
Prime Minister Berisha: Researchers can do their work. Government authorities will respond by assisting, facilitating and calling for a comprehensive inquiry into Dick Marty’s allegations. But, as Government, will not invest or deal with the anti-Albanian racism archives. We will deal with the future. Researchers will do their job, and we will engage in building a future with the nations that surround us, with the neighbouring countries.
Acting President Dr. Jakup Krasniqi: I agree with what Prime Minister Berisha just said. Politicians in Kosovo and Albania are obliged to develop the country, to recognise perspectives for the people of our two countries. After June 1999, Kosovo and Albania have embarked on a new era of coexistence, which may advance in many fields. Perhaps in the course of these few years we have managed to deepen our relations and cooperation in all possible fields, but I expect Albania and Kosovo will develop programs for economic growth in their countries and for unification of all what can be unified between our two countries, which shares a people with the same culture and history.
Question: Are there any new developments concerning the formation of the new government in Kosovo?
Acting President Dr. Jakup Krasniqi: You know that an electoral process has taken place on 12 December in Kosovo and that it is continuing. We will have repeated elections in Mitrovica on 23 January 2011. We are expecting their final results and establishment of government and institutions that will emerge from these elections will follow. We are expecting from independent election institutions to correct the process. We believe they will do it and we will establish new institutions.