Thursday, October 10, 2013

Dacic: Low level of returns to Kosovo is alarming

10/9/2013 4:26:00 PM

BELGRADE - Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dacic said during a meeting he had with United Nations (UN) Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) Chaloka Beyani on Wednesday that the IDPs in Serbia are in an extremely difficult position and the low level of returns to Kosovo is worrying. “Since 1999, about 18,000 internally displaced persons have returned to Kosovo-Metohija, but less than 4,000 of them managed to achieve a sustainable return,” Dacic said, adding that only 47 IDPs returned to the southern Serbian province in the first quarter of this year.

 Dacic pointed out that the interim Kosovo government seeks to exclude a large number of IDPs from electoral rolls for the November 3 local elections in the province. “The internally displaced persons should be enabled to vote in the local elections in Kosovo,” the Serbian government's media relations office quoted Dacic as saying during his meeting with Beyani. Dacic said that the United Nations “need to seriously consider this issue and, in collaboration with international missions and the provisional authorities in the province, try to improve the conditions for the return of internally displaced persons.” The most important thing is to ensure the return of the usurped property and renovation of destroyed houses and apartments, Dacic said.

 “The process is hindered by long court cases and the privatization in Kosovo-Metohija, which have adversely affected the internally displaced persons who used to work in the privatized enterprises,” said the Serbian prime minister. Photo Tanjug, F. Kraincanic

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