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Kosovo leaders in coalition pledge

Kosovo's prime minister and main opposition leader have pledged to form a coalition government, ending five months of political fighting plagued by accusations of government corruption.

President Atifete Jahjaga said premier Hashim Thaci's Democratic Party and Isa Mustafa's Democratic League would try to overcome a political stalemate that has threatened to send the Balkan country into bankruptcy as its MPs have been unable to vote on the budget.

The deal is likely to upset other opposition parties that sided with Mr Mustafa in a bid to oust Mr Thaci from governing the country, following allegations of high-level corruption and an international investigation into organ trafficking.

The grand coalition will still have to be voted in Kosovo's parliament, a 120-seat legislature that has not convened because rival political parties could not agree on a governing deal.

Mr Thaci won the June 8 poll, but lacks a clear majority needed to name a cabinet and faced an opposition block that conditioned any new government with his departure from power. Details of the deal are not yet known.

Once convened, Kosovo's parliament will have to vote on a budget and a contentious law allowing the creation of a special European Union-led court that could see Mr Thaci and his war comrades charged with harvesting organs of captured Serb civilians. Mr Thaci denies the claims.

Mr Thaci, t he former head of the Kosovo Liberation Army, led ethnic Albanian guerrillas during the 1998-99 separatist war against Serbia. Serbia rejects Kosovo's 2008 secession.


From Belfast Telegraph