“Former fighters of Kosovo’s independence movement began collecting signatures on Friday for a petition seeking to extend the jurisdiction of a war crimes court to include Serbs, their adversaries in their war for independence. Three associations of Kosovo Liberation Army veterans aim to collect the 10,000 signatures needed to change a 2015 law governing the Kosovo Specialist Chambers court, based in The Hague, Netherlands, and which can currently prosecute ethnic Albanians but not Serbs for crimes committed during and immediately after the 1998-1999 war. The court is made up of Judges from European Union member countries, the United States and Canada. It has jurisdiction over crimes against humanity, war crimes and other crimes under Kosovo law.” (Washington Post)

Kosovo’s Deputy Prime Minister, Enver Hoxhaj, says that Kosovo will apply for membership of the Council of Europe this month or the latest by January next year. According to Hoxhaj, Kosovo could be admitted to the organization in two years. ‘The Council of Europe, after the European Union, is one of the most important organizations in Europe, and we are the only country in the region that are not part of it. There are four countries that have recognized Kosovo’s statehood and that chair the presidency of this organization,’ Hoxhaj said in today’s meeting of the Kosovo government. ‘We need to show we have stable institutions and make progress in the rule of law and human rights areas.'” (RTK)

“A prosecutor in Kosovo has withdrawn his bid to a Pristina court to allow the extradition of a Turkish citizen allegedly linked to a U.S.-based cleric Ankara blames for orchestrating a failed coup last year. During a December 14 hearing, prosecutor Ali Rexha told the judge that Turkish authorities had not provided enough evidence against Ugur Toksoy to justify their extradition request. Rexha told reporters after the court session that he repeatedly asked the Turkish Embassy to provide more evidence but did not receive any. He said the prosecution might file a new request later if there was new evidence. Toksoy welcomed the prosecutor’s decision, saying: ‘Today here I saw justice. I am very happy.’ His lawyer, Adem Vokshi, said that ‘if Turkey had proof about him, they would have sent it by now.’ There was no immediate reaction from the Turkish Embassy in Pristina.(RFERL)