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Reuters/Laura Hasani
This isn’t the first time it has happened, either.
THAT ESCALATED QUICKLY

Unhappy politicians in Kosovo tear-gassed their own parliament

By Johnny Simon

Parliament members from a Kosovo opposition party used tear gas to disrupt a controversial vote earlier today.

The Kosovo Assembly was voting on a border agreement with Montenegro, according to Reuters. The agreement is reportedly a key condition for gaining visa-free travel through the European Union for Kosovars. But the small nation’s Self-Determination Movement opposes the measure, arguing that Kosovo would relinquish too much territory in the agreement: an estimated 30 square miles (77 square kilometers).

To halt the vote, party members released gas in the voting chamber before the vote could take place, and later again when Assembly members began to reconvene. This is not the first time; parliamentarians from the same group used tear gas to disrupt voting on the same issues in 2015 and 2016.

EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
Kosovo opposition lawmakers throw tear gas for the third time before the vote for agreement on border demarcation with Montenegro during a parliamentary session in Pristina, Kosovo on Mar. 21, 2018.
EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
A lawmaker of the ruling coalition and security member remove a tear gas canister released by Kosovo opposition lawmakers during a parliamentary session in Pristina, Kosovo on Mar. 21.
EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
A lawmaker of the ruling coalition and security member remove a tear gas canister.
EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
Tear gas rises from canisters.
EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
Tear gas rises from canisters.
EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
Tear gas rises from a canister released by Kosovo opposition lawmakers.
EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
The Kosovo Assembly fills with tear gas.

Members of Kosovo Assembly leave the chambers.

EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
Tear gas rises from canisters released by Kosovo opposition lawmakers.
EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
A security member inspects the Kosovo’s Parliament room.
Reuters/Laura Hasani
Kosovo opposition politicians release tear gas in parliament to obstruct a session in Pristina.
EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj
Kosovo police officers detain Sami Kurteshi, (C), opposition lawmaker of the Self-Determination party.