"URA" that Unites Albanians and Serbs in Montenegro

By Marjana DODA

One week after the parliamentary elections in Montenegro, a nationalist fury has started against the Albanian "kingmaker" who has a "veto" for the formation of the new government in this tiny Balkan country. Dritan Abazovic is one of three leaders of Montenegrin opposition parties that joined forces to overthrow Milo Djukanovic's Democratic Party of Montenegro (PDS) party after 30 years in power.
Exactly on August 30 parliamentary elections were held in Montenegro as well as local elections in 5 municipalities. The turnout in the poll was massive where 409,880 citizens or 75.9 percent of the eligible voters participated in the voting. Despite the fact that the elections took place in the heated atmosphere between the pro-Montenegrin and pro-Serb blocs, where there were warnings of unrest, Montenegro fortunately passed this important democratic test by offering free elections.
And yet, this choice made by the majority of Montenegrin citizens jas not been welcomed by all. The victory of the opposition has caused a cacophony inside and outside Montenegro.
Albanian Dritan Abazovic, who is the leader of the URA Movement and has won 4 seats in the Assembly, has joined the votes with the pro-Serbian opposition. The four deputies that "URA" has won are vital for each of the first two parties that will form the new government in Podgorica. Dritan Abazovic positioned himself alongside the Democratic Front giving 4 seats to the pro-Serbs and coming out against Milo Djukanovic.
He supported a coalition of Serbian nationalists called "Crno na bijelo" (White on Black) with main leaders Zdravko Krivokapic and Aleksa Becic of the For the Future of Montenegro party (27 deputies), and "Peace is our nation". (10 deputies).
Together they have managed to get 41 deputies, enough to form a government that has pledged to focus on EU integration.
"We knew we would change the game. We have been waiting for the change of government for 30 years, many people have not believed it, but now it is a reality. We said we would write the history and we have written it. Mafia will no longer rule in Montenegro."
It is the statement made immediately after the closing of the ballot boxes by Dritan Abazovic, the 34-year-old politician of Montenegro that became the attraction of this poll.
What all the Albanian parties could not do together, despite the interventions from abroad, was done by Dritan himself, the boy from Ulcinj who, although does not speak Albanian approached the gray electorate. He brought Serbs and Albanians, Montenegrins and Bosniaks closer to him and today he has the veto on the formation of a new government in Montenegro.
Although he was attacked precisely for his language in fact Dritan Abazovic should be taken as an example not only by the Albanian parties in Montenegro, but also by those in North Macedonia.
I say this because Albanian political parties have followed the same course as Montenegrin or Macedonian parties, campaigning and making promises only to their ethnic groups and not to every citizen living in the repective countries.
Thus, Abazovic clearly showed that an Albanian can get Montenegrin and even Serbian votes. An Albanian who promises prosperity, economic development, stability and integration is also welcomed by non-Albanians.
Today we should be happy for this new development in Montenegro. We must be supporters of Dritan, because exactly in the neighboring country, where the Albanians have been oppressed, even though the friend of Prime Minister Rama, Djukanovic ruled, today we have an Albanian who will give a new direction to the country. This Albanian, this new leader must be supported in order to guarantee a rule of law for every citizen in Montenegro, Albanians, Montenegrins, Serbs, and Bosniaks, and if the "Bridge" of Dritan can unite these ethnicities, then let welcome it to a European future, let us build this bridge together.
Abazovic's decision to co-operate with pro-Serb forces has drawn criticism but he has also been attacked as a traitor. Everyone advises and instructs the leader of "URA" to form a coalition with Milo Djukanovic's party rather than join the co-government with pro-Serbian parties, warning of another policy approach towards pro-Serbian and pro-Russian parties.
Gjukanov's mythology is not at all appropriate, just as the call and support given by the Prime Minister of Albania, Mr. Edi Rama to the Montenegrin president almost putting on him saint's dress. It is also not right the stance of Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev whose concern was indisputably Milos' victory.
Abazovic's move is seen as quite dangerous, as many analysts and political scientists say, arguing it could lead Montenegro to a dead end, close to Serbia and Russia, and deviate from the path of Euro-Atlantic integration.
"I think the theses put forward about the pro-Russian and pro-Serbian opposition are wrong. Not that such parties do not exist or because such parties have not received a significant number of seats. We need to form a civilian government. No pro-Serb majority has won here.The vast majority of Montenegrin citizens, despite their mandate, can hardly wait for the changes" said the.head of the Black on White.
(Full analysis can be found in Albanian at argumentum.al)

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