IBNA Special Report
Pristina, January 8, 2015/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Elton Tota
A refugee from Kosovo, Ali Fetahu was the first victim of illegal migration. He lost his life as a result of the bad weather, in an attempt to go abroad.
His death caused strong reactions in Kosovo. Opposition parties and civil society say that massive migration of the citizens of Kosovo to European countries is a national, social and economic tragedy.
Vice chairman of Self Determination, Glauk Konjufca said that the citizens are fleeing as a result of the “violence” that the current government is exerting on them.
“Ali Fetahu is the last martyr of a tragedy that the country has recently lived. This is a national tragedy because tens of thousands of citizens from Kosovo are putting their life at risk in order to flee from their fatherland, Kosovo. It’s a social, economic and national tragedy of the people of Kosovo”. According to him, people can see that there’s no hope for the improvement of their life with this government.
“They must see what the citizens of Kosovo are going through, by freezing to death in these under zero temperatures, with the only scope of leaving their country to European countries. People are leaving out of the difficulties that they have and the government must change its approach in this aspect”.
Konjufca said that Self Determination calls upon the people not to flee, but change the government, by overthrowing it.
Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK) has also expressed its concern about this situation. AAK blames for this situation the wrong policies followed so far by the government of Kosovo and invites masses to prevent this trend and other tragedies with the youth of the country.
AAK also says that it has motioned an extraordinary session for this phenomenon, but such motion has not been backed in the parliament of Kosovo.
Meanwhile, president of Kosovo, Atifete Jahjaga, who visited Fetahu’s family to express her condolences, said that “this tragic case” underlines the need for the institutions of Kosovo and the entire society to do everything in order to prevent illegal migration of the citizens of the country in order not to fall of victim of those who want to gain from their misfortune”.
CBCDT: The state must urgently tackle illegal migration
Reactions have also come from civil society. The Cross Border Cooperation and Development Trust (CBCDT) requests the state to take urgent measures with its legislative and executive institutions to seriously address the phenomenon of illegal migration of the citizens of Kosovo.
This organization has demanded from the authorities of the country to engage as soon as possible in order to analyze the causes and the consequences of this phenomenon in the political, legal, economic, social and demographic aspect. The organization says that the solution of these problems consists on a more accelerated social economic development strategy.
“What is becoming more and more concerning is the phenomenon of unlawful migration of the citizens of Kosovo, especially of youngsters and children to EU countries”, reads CBCDT statement.
According to them, what’s happening in the recent months where people are trying to leave the country, is nothing else but a game of organized crime elements. The organization says that the country is being left by those who do not know the consequences.
Recently, there have been growing concerns in Kosovo for the increase of the number of people who try to leave toward EU countries.
Authorities say that groups of citizens are using the territory of Serbia in order to cross over to Hungary and then to EU countries, in search of a better life. They say that groups of smugglers are exploiting the situation for purposes of gain.
A part of the diplomats of EU countries have said that the citizens of Kosovo cannot be granted asylum in Western European countries, while calling on the authorities to address the factors that encourage migration.
In December, Council of Foreign Ministers of the European Union said in its conclusions on Kosovo, that the need for economic structural reforms that address the rate of unemployment has become urgent.
The European commission launched talks with Kosovo for the liberalization of the visa regime in January 2013. Kosovo is the only country in Southeast Europe which has not benefited this liberalization and its citizens can travel to a handful of countries without a visa. /ibna/