Kosovo Serbs working for Belgrade-controlled institutions told Radio Free Europe that they have been ordered not to take vacations.
RFE was told by a health care system employee who insisted on anonymity fearing for his job that he and his co-workers were told that they can’t go on vacation for the foreseeable future because of the political situation following the Kosovo government’s decision ordering the re-registration of vehicles which now have Serbia-issued license plates. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic reacted to that decision with claims that Pristina was planning to launch an assault on the four Serb-majority municipalities in the north.
The health care system employee said that a lot of people paid for their vacations and will now have to lose their deposits.
“We were told explicitly at a meeting of CEOs with head nurses that vacations are forbidden and that if any sector chief allows his staff to go on vacation they will be dismissed immediately,” another health care system employee said.
Employees in the education sector were also ordered not take vacations. “The principle told us that there will be no vacations for the immediate future and that we are under obligation to come to work. Allegedly the Education Ministry issued the order… People are afraid and angry,” the man who insisted on anonymity said.
RFE said it asked but did not get a comment from the authorities in the north of Kosovo.
Holiday Plus travel agency owner Nenad Stojakovic told RFE that a large number of his clients had canceled their trips. “The big problem is repaying them. Mor than 100 people have canceled their vacations,” he said.
Belgrade-controlled institutions in the north of Kosovo employ a large number of Kosovo Serbs, RFE said adding that 91.8 million Euro were earmarked for Kosovo in the Serbian state budget.