Vote-tampering probe prompts Kosovo’s foreign minister to step down

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Flag of Kosovo
Flag of Kosovo

dpa/GNA – Kosovo’s foreign minister resigned on Tuesday, saying she needs to step down so she can defend herself against allegations of election tampering, according to local media reports.

Meliza Haradinaj-Stublla said the fact that she was leaving office was by no means acknowledgement of any guilt, but a necessary step that would allow her to focus on her legal defence.

According to the allegations, her husband bribed election officials so that they would clear the way for her to become a member of the parliament.

The country’s election commission has called for a recount of votes, cast for Haradinaj-Stubbla’s Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AKK) party, in the February 14 election.

The AAK is a junior coalition partner in the government of Avdullah Hoti, which took office in June. It received eight votes.

The election had to be redone because according to a ruling by the Constitutional Court, the last government was formed through an illegitimate vote in parliament.

Regardless, the AAK is unlikely to be part of the next government, after the left-wing Vetevendosje (Self-determination) party won 58 of 120 seats in the legislature in the most recent election, giving its leader, Albin Kurti, a fair amount of flexibility in choosing coalition partners.

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