Media freedom in Kosovo
The case represents progress on the media freedom front in Kosovo, which scores 49 out of 100 in Freedom House’s index. Defamation is considered a civil offense in the Balkan country, with offenders being subject to fines. The burden of proof falls on the defendants in such cases, media laws are only inconsistently implemented, and “both the police and the judiciary lack experience and training in addressing threats against the media,” the index says.
"While Kosovo’s constitution and legal framework provide for freedom of expression and of the press, the media environment is affected by political interference, financial pressure, and a high degree of ownership concentration.”
With the opening for Albanian-language media after the Kosovo War in the 1990s, “the media market has grown and diversified,” despite obstacles due to the influence of political and business groups, says the organisation Balkanmedia. The past several years have seen the growth of local independent online media such as Insajderi.com and Kosovo 2.0.
An article Kosovo 2.0 published on 17 August speaks out on “Pronto Affair 2.” The writers call Grabovci’s resignation “the bare minimum required for salvaging Kosovo’s political integrity. But it should not serve to mask the deepest political and social problems being graphically exposed by the current wiretapping revelations.”
All of Kosovo’s worst political and social traits, often kept just below the surface behind a thinly veiled veneer, are now being brought to the surface; the facade shattered.”
ECPMF will continue following the “Pronto 2” story as it develops.