Ramush Haradinaj, the leader of the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK), has warned Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti that his party will quit the governing coalition if Lake Ujman is included in the Kosovo-Serbia deal.
A deal is expected to be signed at the White House this afternoon.
According to Haradinaj, it includes the joint management of Lake Ujman which lies between the two countries.
“The Ujman Lake lies 9.2 km in the territory of Kosovo, and 2.7 km in the territory of Serbia. So, it is a water border between Kosovo and Serbia. There is also a hydropower plant in the Kosovo side. We do not agree that it should be in a trilateral agreement where Serbia is also a party to Ujman’s future. We are open to have the US Department of Energy as part of the future of Ujman, but not for a tripartite agreement where Serbia is also a party,” Haradiaj told RFE/REL on Friday.
“[Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti] does not have the support of me and the Alliance. I do not know what the fate of this agreement will be. I appeal to Prime Minister Hoti not to sign it. So, an agreement where Ujmani is the subject of any tripartite relationship, in which Serbia is a party, should not be signed,” he said.
The Kosovo government has the support of a minimum 61 deputies. AAK’s departure from coalition could lead to the government collapse.
Haradinaj added that there are several other sensitive issues in the draft deal but Ujman Lake is the red line for AAK to support it.
“I am aware of all the content. There was no element of recognition [of Kosovo]. There have been several points regarding mutual relations, one of which, point 10, Serbia asked to be removed. There are other points that are sensitive – it is the Minishengen, then there is the moratorium on non-membership in international organizations for a year. There are many points, but, in respect of the host, in this case the US, we are able to find a way out. But the only obstacle is the issue of Ujman Lake for which I do not understand why it should be part of an agreement with Serbia,” he stated.
Haradinaj warned his AAK will quit the governing coalition if the deal included Ujman Lake.
“This will have a great impact on all political relations that we have because the AAK is not ready for cooperation in governance, and in any form, to help in an agreement where Serbia, even indirectly, becomes a party to Kosovo’s resources,” he concluded.