Kosovo police use tear gas to disperse opposition protesters

By The Associated Press | Posted - Jan. 9, 2016 at 11:10 a.m.



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PRISTINA, Kosovo (AP) — Police in Kosovo have used water cannons and tear gas to disperse a group of violent opposition supporters in the capital, Pristina (PREE'-shtee-nah).

The violence came at the end of an otherwise peaceful rally in which several thousand ethnic Albanians called on Kosovo's government to resign, arguing the executive has broken the country's constitution in reaching deals with Serbia and Montenegro last year.

At the end of the rally, some demonstrators pelted police and the government building with rocks and other hard objects, despite calls from organizers to disperse peacefully. Part of a government building was set on fire before police intervened.

A police spokesman says eight officers, two demonstrators and two journalists were injured, while 24 protesters were detained.

In December, Kosovo's Constitutional Court decided that part of a deal between Kosovo and Serbia, which would give more powers to ethnic Serbs in Kosovo, was not in line with the country's constitution.

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APPHOTO PRI125: A Kosovo police armoured vehicle burns after it was hit with molotov cocktail during a violent clashes in Kosovo capital Pristina on Saturday, Jan. 9, 2016. A government building was set on fire in Pristina on Saturday as supporters of Kosovo's main opposition parties gathered during a rally organised as part of their continued attempts to bring down the government. Security forces used tear gas to push back protesters. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu) (9 Jan 2016)

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APPHOTO PRI103: Supporters of the opposition throw molotov cocktail at Kosovo police forces guarding the government building in Kosovo capital Pristina on Saturday, Jan. 9, 2016. A government building was set on fire in Pristina on Saturday as supporters of Kosovo's main opposition parties gathered during a rally organised as part of their continued attempts to bring down the government. Security forces used tear gas to push back protesters. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu) (9 Jan 2016)

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APPHOTO PRI115: Kosovo police member try to extinguish fire from molotov cocktails thrown by supporters of the opposition during a violent clashes in Kosovo capital Pristina on Saturday, Jan. 9, 2016. A government building was set on fire in Pristina on Saturday as supporters of Kosovo's main opposition parties gathered during a rally organised as part of their continued attempts to bring down the government. Security forces used tear gas to push back protesters. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu) (9 Jan 2016)

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APPHOTO PRI117: Supporters of the opposition throw back tear gas canisters at Kosovo police forces guarding the government building during violent clashes in Kosovo capital Pristina on Saturday, Jan. 9, 2016. A government building was set on fire in Pristina on Saturday as supporters of Kosovo's main opposition parties gathered during a rally organised as part of their continued attempts to bring down the government. Security forces used tear gas to push back protesters. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu) (9 Jan 2016)

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