MPs vote Hashim Thaci in as Kosovo president on Friday night amid violent opposition party protests outside parliament.
Hashim Thaci has been elected as Kosovo’s president after 71 of the country’s 120 MPs voted in favour of his nomination. Ten ballots were deemed invalid.
The alternative candidate, Rafet Rama, also from the Democratic Party of Kosovo, PDK, received no votes.
The vote followed a deal reached between coalition government partners, the PDK and Prime Minister Isa Mustafa’s Democratic League of Kosovo, LDK, in December 2014, agreeing the prime minister post would be held by the LDK but the president post would go to the PDK.
Several MPs from LDK refused to vote for Thaci as president.
Thaci was elected in the third round of voting held late Friday evening after failing to win the two-third majority backing in two votes earlier the same day. The third round required only a simple majority.
Hashim Thaci thanked the MPs for their support and confidence, adding that he will continue to work for Kosovo’s best interests.
He said that his election will open the way for fresh hope and optimism for Kosovo.
“I will serve to all Kosovo citizens regardless of their ethnicity,” Thaci said.
He will formally take office on April 7.