Monday, October 14, 2013

Large explosion in Kosovska Mitrovica, no casualties

10/14/2013 2:28:00 PM

KOSOVSKA MITROVICA - A large explosion occurred in northern Kosovska Mitrovica just before 4 a.m. CET on Monday, resulting in no casualties, but considerable property damage. The explosive device was placed at a ground floor window of a residential building in the centre of northern Kosovska Mitrovica. 

 The owner of the apartment is a Serb and he and his wife were inside at the time of the incident. The explosion also caused considerable property damage to Hotel BB, which is next to the building where the device was planted. A vehicle that was parked nearby was also damaged. The police rushed to the site, followed by police officers from EULEX and KFOR troops. The Kosovo police has not made any statements about this latest incident in Kosovska Mitrovica or possible motives for the attack. ----------

- Serbia's Kosovo office condemns incident 
 The Serbian government office for Kosovo has condemned the incident in northern Kosovska Mitrovica on Monday, when an explosive device went off outside a residential building, and demanded that the culprits be brought to justice. The Serbian government is putting maximum effort into normalizing the relations in Kosovo, which is the only way to establish trust between all the Kosovo residents, regardless of their nationality, the office said. "It is the only way for the Serbs and Albanians to believe in justice and the fact that a peaceful and safe life in Kosovo is possible and necessary," the statement says. -----

-- Ivanovic: Goal of incidents is for Serbs not to vote 
 Kosovska Mitrovica mayor candidate Oliver Ivanovic has said that political motives were behind the explosion in northern Kosovska Mitrovica on Monday, explaining that the goal was to scare the Serbs out of voting in the coming local elections. 

 The apartment outside of which the explosive device was placed belongs to a candidate from the Serbian Liberal Party's list and it is clear that the motive for the attack was political, with the goal of spreading fear among the voters and reducing the turnout, he said. "I doubt that some Albanian can appear at 4 a.m. and plant explosives. I cannot be certain, we will wait for the results of the investigation, but my opinion is that it was most likely a Serb. It is an evil that has entered us," he stated. The similar incidents that happened before have not been solved, he noted, pointing to an attack on his apartment as an example and adding that such things would happen again if nothing changed.

 The Serbian police also need to get involved in solving those cases, as they are respected by the people in Kosovo and feared by criminals, Ivanovic remarked. Cooperation between EULEX, the Kosovo police and the Serbian police is necessary, he believes. The visit by the Minister for Kosovo to the monastery Hilandar was inappropriate at a time when the government was talking about cutting down expenses, he stated, wondering if the government officials would be interested in knowing who had paid for it. ---------

-- UNMIK condemns bombing attack in northern Mitrovica 
 PRISTINA - UNMIK Chief Farid Zarif condemned the bombing attack in northern Mitrovica and said that this is a cowardly act which seriously jeopardises security and stability in the region ahead of the local elections in the province.

 The severe blast hit northern Kosovska Mitrovica some time before 4 a.m. but nobody was injured in the incident although considerable damage was done to the apartment of Kosovo Serb Nebojsa Maric and the whole apartment block, as well as the nearby buildings and vehicles.

 “I personally received firm assurances from everyone in northern Kosovo that violent acts and intimidation would not be tolerated, and I believe that local leaders should ensure the highest level of support to the implementation of laws. Any attempt to undermine the stability in the electoral campaign should be treated as a top priority issue,” he underscored. Photo Tanjug, BOKI

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