Protests in Pristina against agreement with Serbia, opposition leader arrested

Thousands of people rallied in Pristina on Saturday, protesting against an agreement on the normalisation of relations with Serbia and demanding the Kosovo government scrap it.

The protest was organised by the opposition, which is particularly against the part of the agreement envisaging greater autonomy for Serbs in Kosovo and does not want a border agreement with Montenegro either, believing that it would cost Kosovo party of its territory.

Organizers said Saturday's rally, on neighboring Albania's national Independence Day, also celebrated by Kosovo Albanian brethren, attracted some 35,000 participants at the Zahir Pajaziti Square in downtown Pristina.

Police raided the offices of the opposition movement Vetevendosje (Self-determination), whose deputies recently paralysed the work of parliament in protest against the normalisation agreement. They arrested the movement's leader, Albin Kurti, and several other persons.

Police have surrounded the offices, occasionally clashing with the movement's supporters in the streets. All nearby streets have been blocked, with hundreds of officers not letting anyone pass. There have been no major clashes.

Some opposition supporters tried to push police away from the road, but they were forced back by police who used pepper spray against them. Then police forces were seen entering the building and bringing out several opposition supporters.

Police said that two policemen and two opposition supporters were injured during the scuffling when they entered the party headquarters and were confronted by people who were hitting them with hard objects, chairs and other items.

Last update: Thu, 23/06/2016 - 19:29
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