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Kosovo Serb politician killed in drive-by shooting

Kosovo Serb politician killed in drive-by shooting

Ivanovic, who was the leader of the civic initiative, Freedom, Democracy and Justice (SDP), succumbed to the chest wounds, the chief prosecutor of the prosecutor's office in Mitrovica told the local media.

"He was taken to the hospital right away", the lawyer told the Serbian daily Blic.

He was shot five times in the chest, Efe news agency reported, quoting Serbian state TV.

Kosovo police said they had found a burned opel vehicle in norther Mitrovica after the shooting and they suspected the auto could be linked to shooting.

"We know that in recent days the Serbs were threatened with a war by Veseli and other Albanians", Marko Djuric said in a separate video file posted on the website of Tanjug. The former Serbian province formally declared independence in 2008. It declared independence from Belgrade in 2008, and though the country is not a member of the United Nations, it's recognized as an independent country by more than 100 countries - including the United States, Britain and Germany.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic called for an emergency national security meeting over the killing.

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In Pristina, the Kosovo government strongly denounced the slaying, saying it considers the attack a challenge to "the rule of law and efforts to establish the rule of law in the whole of Kosovo territory".

In a 2016 ruling that stunned many of his contacts in the western diplomatic community, Mr Ivanovic was convicted of war crimes, but the verdict was later quashed and a retrial ordered. They planned to discuss the issues of auto register plates and functioning of the bridge in Kosovska Mitrovica that divides the northern Serbian and southern Albanian parts of the city.

Both Serbian and Kosovo Albanian officials refrained from explicitly accusing each other of being behind the killing as the worldwide community urged the two sides to remain calm.

"One of the Serbian delegation representatives in Brussels said that the dialogue, for now, will be terminated and the Serbian delegation is on its way back to Belgrade", Goranovic said.

Under pressure from the global community and European Union auspices, Kosovo and Serbia have been trying to normalise ties some 20 years since the start of the bloody war that claimed 13,000 lives, mostly ethnic Albanians.

Some 40,000-50,000 ethnic Serbs live in northern Kosovo, resisting integration with the rest of the mainly ethnic Albanian country.

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