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Watch: Peacekeepers deploy to the streets of Zvecan in northern Kosovo


Recent clashes between NATO-led peacekeepers and protesters have raised fears of renewed conflict in this region that has been witnessing crises for years.

NATO peacekeepers are seen on the streets of Zvecan in northern Kosovo, on Thursday morning.

This comes with the increase of international efforts to defuse the crisis in Kosovo, where the Serbs came out in new protests.

The recent clashes that took place between NATO-led peacekeepers and protesters raised fears of renewed conflict in this region, which has been witnessing ongoing crises for years.

Many Serbs, who form a majority in four northern cities, do not recognize the authority of Pristina and are loyal to Belgrade.

After their political representatives left the local administrations in these four towns in November in the context of a standoff between Belgrade and Pristina, the Serbs boycotted the municipal elections organized by the Kosovo government in April to end the institutional vacuum.

Albanian mayors won this election, with a turnout of less than 3.5 percent.

Kosovar Prime Minister Albin Kurti’s government installed mayors last week, despite calls for calm from the European Union and the United States, prompting dozens to take to the streets.

The demonstrators, who were calm, spread a huge Serbian flag more than 200 meters long between the city center and the vicinity of the municipal building. They also hung Serbian flags on the metal barrier erected by KFOR.

The escalating tension raised concerns about the outbreak of a new war similar to the one that took place in Kosovo in 1998-1999.

And the war ended in Kosovo, which is home to 1.8 million people, the vast majority of whom are Albanians, and resulted in the killing of more than 10 thousand people and the displacement of more than one million people in 1999 with a bombing campaign of NATO led by the United States.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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