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Kosovo's President To Give Haradinaj Mandate To Form Government

Ramush Haradinaj (left) and Hashim Thaci (file photo)

PRISTINA -- Kosovo’s President Hashim Thaci says that Ramush Haradinaj, leader of the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK), has enough support in parliament to form a coalition government after general elections were held in June.

Thaci told RFE/RL that he will give Haradinaj a formal mandate to try to form a government, despite speculation that Haradinaj may not be able to find coalition partners after winning 35 percent of the vote in the June 11 poll.

Officials from the European Union and other Western institutions have been concerned that inconclusive election results could plunge the country into the same constitutional crisis it faced after a 2014 vote failed to produce a clear winner, delaying the formation of a government for nine months.

But Thaci told RFE/RL on July 6 that Haradinaj has confirmed after coalition negotiations that he has enough votes from parliamentary deputies to form a government.

The 48-year-old Haradinaj has been tried and acquitted twice on war crimes charges at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague.

Haradinaj was elected as Kosovo’s prime minister in 2004 but resigned after 100 days to surrender himself for trial at The Hague. He denies all charges.

Based on reporting by RFE/RL's Balkan Service correspondent Amra Zejneli