KCSF organized a discussion on the protection of waters

The protection of rivers from the damage that is being caused to them by the construction of hydropower plants in Kosovo was discussed in Prizren on the World Day of Rivers, as well as the problems of Lumbardhi River of Prizren.

On 27 September 2020, on the World Day of Rivers, X40 and KCSF organized a discussion, entitled “Lum Lumi”, in Prizren. Initially, the discussion focused on the damage caused to the rivers by the hydropower plants in Kosovo, and then on the problems of Lumbardhi River of Prizren. The Kosovo Assembly President, Mrs. Vjosa Osmani, numerous MPs, representatives of public institutions, civil society and civic initiatives activists, as well as many citizens, took part in the discussions.

In her opening speech, Mrs. Osmani said: “We fully believe in the protection of rivers, and of the flora and fauna in them as well, which is also the protection of the tradition and of the citizens that live around them, it is the protection of our life and health. We opt, no doubt, for a developed Kosovo, and the green energy is the future, but, at the same time, we are aware that any investment can be made in harmony with the nature and it must be made in accordance with and by respecting the standards, the laws and the best practices for the protection of the environment.” In the end, she added, “It has already been confirmed that Kosovo has insufficient water reserves, and one thing is clear: we have no rivers to give away, and it is our obligation to commit ourselves to an increased care for the protection of our water resources”.

In his opening speech, the Executive Director of KCSF, Mr. Taulant Hoxha, said: “Lumbardhi Cinema is a symbol of civic resistance of Prizren and of the protection of the public interest, and many activists who are resisting so that Kosovo’s scarce water resources are not destroyed for the benefits of a small group and at the expense of all the citizens of the country, have gathered here today”.

Mr. Dren Marseli, the organizer of Bunarfest, pointed out that, for some years, the competitors of this festival have been forced to make a part of the floating with tires downstream Lumbardh outside the river due to the damage of the river bed. Mrs. Shpresa Loshaj, an activist for the protection of rivers from “Pishtarët” [Torchers] Organization from Deçan said: “It is important for us that the citizens of that area understand that the discussion on the problem of the construction of the hydropower plant is quite normal, to raise the awareness that something wrong and unlawful has happened and to increase the courage to discuss these problems in Junik and Deçan”.

This event was organized within the 16th edition of “Bunarfest” Festival and EJA Kosovo Program of KCSF. Through this program, KCSF will support civil society initiatives through grants and capacity building with the overall goal to contribute to a democratic and inclusive society in Kosovo.

EJA Kosovo is co-financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida).