BNV cancels solemn session, PM urges council to respect laws

Source: Tanjug / Vlada Srbije / Slobodan Miljević

The Bosniak National Council (BNV) has cancelled the solemn session and debate, which Kosovo’s Foreign Minister Behgjet Pacolli was supposed to attend. He was invited by BNV Chairman Sulejman Ugljanin to the session but the Government of Serbia did not approve that visit.

The Kosovo official was earlier invited to attend the session and debate titled “The process of establishing the regional balance and cooperation in the Balkans” in Novi Pazar, the town with the predominantly Bosniak population.

However, as the Radio Television of Serbia reported, the Government of Serbia rejected Pacolli’s request for the visit, because the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) does not recognize the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which is why the regulations on visits of officials cannot be applied in Pacolli’s case.

Prime Minister of Serbia Ana Brnabic warned the leaders of the Council to respect the laws of their state, primarily the Law on National Councils of Ethnic Minorities, which forbids the council members to get involved with politics.

Brnabic, also the Chairwoman of the Republic Council for Ethnic Minorities, warned the BNV members not to abuse their council, adding that such initiatives were opposite to the purpose and activities of that body.

She urged the leadership of the BNV to get serious, to be responsible towards the citizens they represent and not to collect cheap political points at expense of stability. The prime minister also urged them not to misuse tolerance and understanding of the Government of Serbia.

Serbia’s Ministry of Education condemned the BNV’s invitation for school principals in the town of Novi Pazar to attend the solemn session that the Kosovo Foreign Minister was invited to as well.

The ministry finds the invitation contrary to the interest of Serbia and has assessed it as “open abuse of state institutions in political purposes.”