Kosovo lawmakers wrestle for control of parliament

PRISTINA: Lawmakers in Kosovo wrestled for control of parliament on Thursday, as it sat for the first time since an inconclusive June election triggered a constitutional crisis unprecedented in the young state's short history.
An opposition bloc, supported by deputies representing some of Kosovo's ethnic minorities, elected the leader of the largest opposition party as speaker of parliament, but only after lawmakers from the party of outgoing Prime Minister Hashim Thaci declared the session adjourned and walked out. The chaotic scene spoke to a deepening crisis over who will rule the impoverished country of 1.7 million people for the next four years. Thaci's Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) emerged from the election as the biggest party with 30 percent of votes. But three opposition parties have united in a bid to outmanoeuvre the PDK and thwart Thaci's bid for a third consecutive term as prime minister. The election of Isa Mustafa, leader of the Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK), as speaker suggested the party may have the makings of a working majority, although the PDK looked certain to declare his election illegitimate. "The government of Kosovo will send this issue today to the constitutional court," said outgoing deputy prime minister Hajredin Kuci, a member of the PDK. 

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