A coalition of former ethnic Albanian rebel commanders has reportedly won the majority of votes in Kosovo’s snap general election, held on Sunday, June 11. The alliance, dubbed the “war wing” by Kosovo’s media, won 35.78 percent of votes, falling short of an outright majority. The leading party in the alliance, the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK), led by President Hathim Thaci, is expected to form a coalition government by Friday, June 16.
Both the United States and the European Union sent election observation teams to Kosovo for the election. The US Embassy in Pristina has condemned attempts to affect the electoral process, citing multiple incidents of political candidates and journalists being intimidated throughout the country.
Protests and political violence are possible in the coming days.
Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, however Serbia does not recognize Kosovo as an independent state. Most of Kosovo’s 1.8 million people are ethnically Albanian, and there is often tension between the country’s Serb minority, who automatically get ten representatives in Kosovo’s legislative assembly.
Sunday’s snap election took place a year earlier than originally planned due to Prime Minister Isa Mustafa's government losing a no-confidence vote on May 10. The election is Kosovo’s third since 2008.
Individuals present in Kosovo are advised to avoid all protests, particularly during periods of heightened political tensions, and to monitor the sociopolitical climate.