European Western Balkans

Albin Kurti’s government falls, the next step is the appointment of a new candidate for prime minister

Albin Kurti; Photo: Flickr / Europe Upf

PRISTINA – Assembly of Kosovo passed a motion of no confidence yesterday to the Kurti’s Government, who took office just 51 days ago. The government is in a technical mandate as of today, and the procedure requires President Hashim Thaçi to first offer a prime ministerial term to the winner of last year’s elections, which is again the Self-determination movement.

Members of the Kosovo Assembly, with 82 votes in favor, passed a motion of no confidence to the government led by Albin Kurti. There were 32 votes against and one abstention.

The coalition partner of Kurti’s Self-determination movement the Democratic Alliance of Kosovo, the opposition Democratic Party of Kosovo, the Serb List and other MPs voted in favor of the fall of the government.

According to KoSSev, a significant part of the discussion of MPs, including Kurti himself, was filled with the accusation of the Self-determination that behind the request for a state of emergency in Kosovo is a plan for “territorial exchange” in dialogue with Serbia.

The opposition, as well as members of the Democratic Alliance of Kosovo, have accused Kurti on the other hand of authoritarianism, of disrespecting the coalition, and of deteriorating the relations with the US. The immediate cause for launching the no-confidence vote was Kurti’s dismissal of Interior Minister Agim Veliu, a member of the DSK.

The fact that the session took place at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic did not go unnoticed. The commencement of the session was marked by noise heard from the Pristina balcony, which showed citizens’ dissatisfaction with the political struggle ahead of the start of the session, as the world battles a pandemic, and Kosovo is also under public health emergency, KoSSev reports.

What are the next steps?

As constitutional law professor Enver Hasani explained, the government will now be in a technical mandate, while it is up to the president to offer a new prime ministerial term to the strongest party in parliament. However, there is no deadline by which this procedure must be completed.

“The procedure is as follows: the head of state sends a letter to whoever was first in the last election, that is again Self-determination. Then, the head of state has no deadline, he/she can think for months whose name to send. Again, this could be Kurti or another candidate, which would be more logical. Then, if the head of state sends the candidate’s name, he/she gets a 15-day term from the president to form the cabinet. If he/she fails within that deadline, then we have a second round. In this case, in the second attempt, the president can invite all parties, if Self-determination does not get an absolute majority, then the president not only does not have to go to the second-ranked party, but can call all other parties to the conversation and seek maximum consensus, including from Self-Determination,” Hasani explained.

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