Albania’s Prime Minister Edi Rama stated he is going to sue Kosovo’s Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj in a Kosovo court for defamation over the latter’s alleged claim that Rama planned to share €10 billion with the presidents of Serbia and Kosovo.
On Thursday night, an agitated Rama repeatedly called Haradinaj “a liar” who “lies in the most unscrupulous way” when journalists asked him about Haradinaj’s comment on a potential plan for Kosovo and Serbia to swap lands.
I am preparing [to press charges] for the 10 billion [amount], not me personally, I have a special anti-defamation office. The mister [Haradinaj] will need to appear before Kosovo courts to prove his accusation for the €10 billion that was going to be divided on the table between me, Hashim Thaçi and the president of Serbia […] Telling a people there was €10 billion on the table to be divided among these three persons who agreed to divide Kosovo, and still [be able to] get votes…
In fact, Prime Minister Haradinaj’s actual statement does not allege that any of the three – Rama, Vučić, or Thaçi – would personally profit from the €10 billion he mentioned. Instead, he declared that by giving away the Trepça mine to Serbia, as per an alleged plan for an exchange of territories, Kosovo would have lost €10 billion in profits. Haradinaj added that such plan was agreed by the presidents of Serbia and Kosovo and supported by Prime Minister Rama.
Profits from the Trepça mine over 20 years would be €10 billion, after an investment of only €140 million, according to Haradinaj’s calculations. He added that by resigning in July and triggering snap elections he stopped the land swap plan.
I stopped the €10-billion-worth robbery that would have been accomplished through the plan to divide Kosovo. This was the hidden economic aim of the plan to exchange territories between Kosovo and Serbia. Thaçi, Vučić, and Rama were partners in this scheme. I stopped this robbery […]
In face of domestic criticism over the last week, last night Rama defended his government’s work on European integration arguing that the blocking of accession talks was entirely due to France’s demands for internal reforms.
It’s not clear whether Rama’s vow to sue Haradinaj, which comes at a time of growing criticism against his government failure to start accession talks with the EU, will ever become true.
When the Albanian Electiongate wiretaps were published in June, Rama also vowed to sue Bild journalist Peter Tiede for defamation. However, four months after his threat, no charges have been brought against the journalist.