Politics

30 Apr 2019, 07:44 AM

April 30, 2019 - After arriving in Berlin, at the invitation of German Chancellor and French President, President of Montenegro, Milo Đukanović, met with the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini.

Mrs Mogherini was very glad to meet president Đukanović, in the lead-up to tonight’s meeting, taking into account President’s knowledge of the subject and the rating he has with regional partners.

President Đukanović thanked Mrs Mogherini for the continuous dedication to the European perspective of WB and expressed hope that the encounter in Berlin will be a great stimulus for the efforts put in keeping this perspective open.

President Đukanović and Mrs Mogherini talked about the situation in the region and stressed the importance of regional cooperation and good relations with the neighbors.

Text from CdM on April 29, 2019, read the full text on CdM

29 Apr 2019, 02:11 AM

28 April 2019 - President of Montenegro Milo Đukanović will travel to Berlin tomorrow, where at the joint invitation from German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron, he will attend a high-level meeting on the Western Balkans.

The political situation in the region and progress in normalizing relations between Serbia and Kosovo will be discussed at the meeting.

Besides the President of Montenegro, the heads of state or government of the Western Balkans, the prime ministers of Croatia and Slovenia and senior EU officials, are invited.

Milo Đukanović recently hosted Christian-Democratic Union Member of Bundestag Christian Schmidt. The President of Montenegro expressed his satisfaction with the opportunity to meet with the German Bundestag member, following a recent official visit to Berlin, thanking FR Germany for its dedication to Montenegro.

On this occasion, Đukanović reminded of the importance of continuation of the European path for the stability of the region, insisting on further intensifying mutual co-operation, determination to accelerate reform and joint commitment to resolving open issues at the WB. In this context, he welcomed the upcoming meeting in Berlin at the initiative of German Chancellor Merkel and French President Macron, because, he said, this region is part of the European house and European responsibility.

German Bundestag member Christian Schmidt thanked the President for recognition that his recent visit to Berlin was significant from a political point of view. He pointed to the continuity of German support for Montenegro since the renewal of independence and the European perspective of Montenegro and region. And the upcoming event in Berlin should be seen in the context of support and interest of Germany and France for the further destiny of the Balkans, said Schmidt

28 Apr 2019, 00:11 AM

28 April 2019 - Montenegrin Minister of Foreign Affairs Srđan Darmanović said that he expects a positive report by the European Commission on the progress of Montenegro towards the EU and that the country will definitely be the next EU member.

"The preliminary document that was created in November in the area of ​​the rule of law was very encouraging for us. If we get a positive report, especially on the implementation of the provisional benchmarks for Chapters 23 and 24, that would be a significant moment for our further path towards the EU, even more significant than the question whether we will open the last negotiating chapter in the first or the second semester," Darmanović said in an interview with the TVCG.

On this occasion, Darmanović also said that there is no dispute that Montenegro is an absolute leader in the region when it comes to European integration. He added that Montenegro would open the last negotiating chapter this year, and reminded of the previous February report of the EU on the Western Balkans pointing out that those who achieve better results will move faster and that by 2025, EU enlargement might occur.

"It must be understood that the policy of enlargement is not a one-way but a two-way process, and we cannot become an EU member just by our effort. Of course, the primary responsibility is for us to show that our society is closer to the European legal system," Darmanović pointed out.

Speaking about the effects of membership in NATO, the Minister said that joining the Alliance was the greatest achievement of Montenegro's foreign policy after the restoration of independence, because Montenegro, for the first time in its history, became an institutional part of the Western world and part of the group of countries that have the values ​​of modern and civilized and democratic world, most of whom were defenders of freedom and during the Cold War.

He emphasized that Montenegro has very good relations with all the friends and partners from the region: "The policy of good neighbourly relations, in addition to NATO membership and European agenda, is one of the three pillars of Montenegrin foreign policy”. The Head of Montenegrin diplomacy also assessed that the country is continuously trying to maintain this kind of approach even when its friends have different views and interests.

27 Apr 2019, 21:06 PM

26 April 2019 - Prime Minister Duško Marković hosted Christian Democratic Union member in the Bundestag, Christian Schmidt. The Prime Minister, recalling the dialogue at the highest level between the two countries following last year's official talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin, expressed satisfaction with the fact that the realization of the reached agreement is in the final stage.

The agreement foresees that Germany sends expert assistance to Montenegro to advance the rule of law. In this context, PM Marković emphasised Montenegro's interest in partnership with Germany in further overcoming the challenges in our European integration process.

"Our interest and our wish are to have a dialogue with Germany on key development issues, as well as on a bilateral level. We do not need this to strengthen our position, but we need German know-how and experience to continue progressive reforms and improve our system even faster and better," the Prime Minister stressed.

Prime Minister Duško Marković informed Mr. Schmidt about the Government's economic and political results, the results of our European integration, as well as strategic priorities in the coming period.

Bundestag Member Schmidt congratulated the Prime Minister on Montenegro's membership in NATO and expressed full support for the reforms that our country implements and our European integration, concluding that the goal is Montenegro's membership in the European Union.

Both sides agreed on the possibilities for stronger German investments in Montenegro.

President of Montenegro Milo Đukanović recently also hosted Christian-Democratic Union Member of Bundestag Christian Schmidt. During this occasion, the President of Montenegro expressed his satisfaction with the opportunity to meet with the German Bundestag member, following a recent official visit to Berlin, thanking FR Germany for its dedication to Montenegro.

27 Apr 2019, 17:52 PM

April 27, 2019 - The new civic protest in the organization of the ODUPRISE movement is most likely to be held on Tuesday, May 7, after which a meeting of opposition leaders will take place. For now, it is uncertain whether the meeting will be held without representatives of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), whose delegates participated in the replacement of Kotor's mayor Vladimir Jokic.

The opposition condemned the dismissal of Jokić and its officials no longer see SDP as an opposition party. From the ODUPRISE movement, they announced that SDP had excluded itself from the Agreement on the Future.
 
Party leader Ranko Krivokapic has announced in the meantime that he will not run for next party congress in June and accept responsibility for Kotor, but SDP remains attached to the Agreement on the Future signed by the opposition delegates and representatives of the ODUPRISE Movement. Democratic leader Aleksa Bečić has decisively announced that he will no longer be at the same table with Krivokapic. The party's central committee had earlier informed its activists and officials that in the event of SDP's participation in the Jokić shift, they no longer had any party-party cooperation.
 
Head of the Movement ODUPRISE Džemal Perovic could not determine whether Krivokapic would be invited to the next meeting, but stresses that "everything should be done to live the Agreement on Future and that his goal is to shift power and to form a technical government."
 
"We are not the owners of the Agreement, but its guards. After all, efforts to reach the unity of the opposition and after this document has been signed, there is no way to exclude a person from it. And we cannot," Perovic told News. Perovic urged everyone to consider each of their decisions seriously. "Our ultimate goal is to shift power and to form a technical government," Perovic explained. He said the next meeting was planned after the protest.
 
The URA Civil Movement states that "who knows which time the SDP provided the arm of the Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS)." "Anyone who voted in 2016 for the change and formation of the so-called "opposition government" certainly did not want it to end in this way. It is simply the expectations of opposition voters in Kotor who have been betrayed, and the very act of voting with the DPS for the dismissal of Jokić has been irresponsible to thousands of people who protest and express their bickering against this regime. The SDP has deprived the Agreement on the Future by its action," Mileta Radovanic general secretary URA told "Vijesti."
 
He adds that SDP has created enormous distrust in all opposition parties. "The only good thing about the whole of this situation is that the crystalline is a reversal of the political scene. DPS partner, always a partner of DPS," Radovanic said.
 
The Democratic Front (DF) did not officially announce the events in Kotor and the message that the SDP is not part of the opposition. Only one of the members of the Presidency published their position on social networks. After dismissing Jokić from Facebook, Nebojsa Medojevic (DF) wrote that enormous damage was caused to the hard-to-trust and unity of the opposition, but also to go further.
 
"The uniqueness of the opposition is above all. That was obvious to somebody," Medojević wrote. From that alliance, it was unofficially said that both SDP and Democrats are responsible for what happened in Kotor.
 
Vijesti's source from DF says that Krivokapić at earlier meetings of the opposition announced that SDP would not support Jokić and that some of Kotor's mayor's advisers had identified as controversial.
"The DF has announced from the beginning that it will support any agreement reached by the SDP and the Democrats and that at this moment both parties are responsible for the events in Kotor. The fact of filing a resignation Krivokapić has left room for the opposition to continue joint gatherings, but all political entities must be declared," he says.
 
The chairman of the Municipal Assembly of Kotor Dragica Perovic announced yesterday that the decision to dismiss Jokić is not and cannot be legal, although it has already produced "an anarchic state" and that it will be unlawful and quite certain to be annulled by the competent institutions. "So with certainty, I say, for me, and not just for me, President Jokić is still president of the Kotor Municipality. As long as the competent authority does not legally proceed this legal violence, I, as the President of the Municipal Assembly, to which citizens in the elections have given their trust, will remain where I am. I publicly point out that Mrs. Željko Aprcović and Ranko Krivokapić bear all responsibility for the blockade of the town of Kotor and the local administration," Perovic said.
 
 
 
26 Apr 2019, 18:15 PM

25 April 2019 - During the term of office of this Government, more than 15,000 new jobs have been created. As the Prime Minister, I am proud of this result, Prime Minister Duško Marković said at the Prime Minister's Questions session, which took place in the Parliament of Montenegro.

Answering a question about what the Government has done to improve the rights and quality of life of workers, Prime Minister Marković said that the Government had initiated an increase in the minimum wage by 15%, which will have a direct impact on about 35,000 employees.

"The Draft Law Amending the Law on Internal Trade, passed by the Government on 7 March, provides for the ban on performing wholesale and retail activities on Sundays and days of state and other holidays. Introducing a non-working Sunday in the trade sector, which is an initiative of the Chamber of Commerce, empowers the right to a weekly rest period of at least 24 hours continuously, which is used on Sundays, as defined by the Labour Law. This measure will have a direct impact on 37,000 employees in the trade sector," said the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister announced that the rate of income tax on earnings of natural persons will be reduced from 11% to 9%, adding that in public administration bodies the working hours changed from 7:00 to 15:00, which is more favourable for employees, especially for mothers.

"In addition to these measures, the Government continuously helps to solve the housing issues of employees. Since 2016, 318 employees in the education sector, 717 persons from the Police and 317 health workers have solved their housing issues under favourable conditions. Furthermore, the Housing Cooperative Healthcare, founded by two trade unions and the Ministry of Health, will allocate around 500,000 euros to its employees in 2019. I also recall the 1000+ Project, which has been present for a decade, and which enabled 1,162 family households to resolve their housing issues, of which 735 are from the public sector, and 427 from other social categories," Prime Minister Duško Marković pointed out.

The Prime Minister expressed belief that the International Labour Day will be welcomed with high-quality and effective decisions that have been reached in the interests of the workers and that the Government will contribute to preserving the growth of employment and a better quality of life for all citizens in the dialogue with partners, trade unions and employers' associations.

25 Apr 2019, 11:42 AM

April 25, 2019 - The delegates of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the opposition parties in Kotor- DPS, SD, HGI, and LP voted yesterday for the dismissal of the president of the municipality, Vladimir Jokić.

By replacing Jokić, the Municipality of Kotor is practically "disguised" because, in accordance with the Law on Local Self-Government, it has not been appointed Acting President of the Municipality after the mayor has been dismissed so that he remains a duty officer until the election of a new mayor or the introduction of compulsory administration.
 
Chair of the session, Željko Avramovic (DPS) announced that he would suggest 18 delegates to accept the decision calmly.
 
Jokic's dismissal initiative was launched by SDP, a coalition partner of the government in Kotor, and the proposal was supported by opposition DPS, SD and HGI, and LP.
 
Only the Vice Presidents were able to take up this duty, but Ljiljana Popovic Moškov (URA) resigned a few days ago, and Mišo Samardžić (Movement for Changes) announced the resignation.
Jokić yesterday dismissed the duties of vice-president of the municipality of Branko Nedovic (SDP), whom his party, supported by the opposition DPS, SD, HGI, and LS, intended to settle in Jokic's armchair.
 
The new assembly majority made by the SDP, together with DPS, SD, LP, and HGI due to Jokic's change of Nedovic, was forced to withdraw from the agenda of the Assembly the appointment of Nedovic for acting as President of the Municipality, and the session was concluded to be subsequently resumed after completion agreement between these parties.
 
President of DPS party in Kotor, chairman Zeljko Avramovic appealed to Jokić and said to "all the other employees in the municipality that Jokic led" to accept without hesitation the decision of the Assembly to rid the mayor and to "understand it seriously and do nothing that would subject to criminal responsibility."
 
The dilemma remains that yesterday's decisions of the Assembly of Kotor were legally valid since they were made after Parliament President Dragica Perović found that formal legal preconditions for meeting started and that the agenda was supplemented by the subsequent proposal for deciding the Acting President of the Municipality. Perovic officially ceased the session and gave a break for an indefinite period.
 
Despite this, the SDP and opposition parties subsequently continued the session alone, giving authority to the eldest member of the House of Representatives Jovo Suđić (DPS) to be chairman. He did not accept it, but "delegation" for the chairmanship of the session was transferred to the chairman of the DPS Kotor, Željko Avramović.
 
24 Apr 2019, 23:44 PM

23 April 2019 - President of Montenegro Milo Đukanović hosted Christian-Democratic Union Member of Bundestag Christian Schmidt. The President of Montenegro expressed his satisfaction with the opportunity to meet with the German Bundestag member, following a recent official visit to Berlin, thanking FR Germany for its dedication to Montenegro.

He also pointed out the strong support for the Western Balkans' European perspective and significant involvement of the Bundestag in such German policy as well as close co-operation between the two states, as witnessed by a dynamic dialogue over the past few months.

"It is also good for our country and for the region that Germany is not slowing down in its efforts, despite the current opportunities on the European and global scene, to Europeanize the region," the President said.

Đukanović reminded of the importance of continuation of the European path for the stability of the region, insisting on further intensifying mutual co-operation, determination to accelerate reform and joint commitment to resolving open issues at the WB. In this context, he welcomed the upcoming meeting in Berlin at the initiative of German Chancellor Merkel and French President Macron, because, he said, this region is part of the European house and European responsibility.

Bundestag Member Christian Schmidt Hosted by President of Montenegro

That is why he said that the European perspective of the Western Balkans should be made more reachable and uncompromising fulfillment of conditions for EU accession while simultaneously implementing clear actions that the region will bring to Europe and connect infrastructurally with it. 

German Bundestag member Christian Schmidt thanked the President for recognition that his recent visit to Berlin was very important from a political point of view. He pointed to the continuity of German support for Montenegro since the renewal of independence and the European perspective of Montenegro and region. And the upcoming event in Berlin should be seen in the context of support and interest of Germany and France for the further destiny of the Balkans, said Schmidt

He welcomed Montenegro's attitude towards reform and the promotion of the rule of law, the fight against organized crime and corruption, and stressed the importance of cooperation in this context.

The interlocutors agreed that both the political and the expert cooperation of the two states is at a high level, especially in the field of defense and internal affairs. Both sides expressed their interest in the stronger presence of German investors.

During the meeting, there was talk about current events in the region, in the light of the upcoming meeting in Berlin on April 29.

24 Apr 2019, 23:40 PM

23 April 2019 - Minister of Defence Predrag Bošković paid an official visit to the Republic of Latvia. During the meeting with Latvian counterpart Artis Pabriks in Riga, Bošković expressed Montenegro's readiness to strengthen bilateral cooperation with the Republic of Latvia, as a reliable ally in contributing to the overall strengthening of collective defence.

"By sending members of the Armed Forces of Montenegro to the enhanced Forward Presence in the East - eFP, we have demonstrated our commitment to NATO's deterrence and defence policy, as well as the willingness to contribute to designing stability within and outside the borders of the NATO by participating in international missions and operations", Bošković said.

He informed his Latvian counterpart about Montenegro's plans for further contribution to the eFP mission, stressing that Montenegro, with its participation in this mission, demonstrates its determination to continuously contribute to the overall efforts of the Alliance in strengthening the security of its citizens and territory. Minister Bošković stressed that the sending of the Scout Division of the Armed Forces of Montenegro to the eFP mission represents a strong platform for defining joint bilateral activities and projects.

Minister Pabriks stressed the strong support of the Republic of Latvia for strengthening the European and Euro-Atlantic perspective of the Western Balkans, affirming the impact of Montenegro's full membership in NATO on the stability of the Western Balkan region. Pabriks said that Montenegro had proved itself as a reliable and credible ally, stressing that Montenegro's contribution to the eFP mission is yet another indicator of its commitment to strengthening global peace and stability and trust among the armed forces of allied countries.

Bošković also met with State Secretary of the Latvian Ministry of Defence Janis Garisson. The two officials visited the Adaži base, the headquarters of the Multinational Battle Group in Latvia, within which an infantry reconnaissance division of the Armed Forced of Montenegro was engaged in December 2018.

In a conversation with Montenegrin soldiers, Bošković expressed satisfaction with the positive ratings of senior military representatives on their professional attitude towards assigned tasks. He expressed the expectation that they will continue to represent Montenegro decently by a responsible approach to the obligations and patriotic attitude towards their country. Bošković said that participation of Montenegro in this mission is another opportunity for strengthening the capacity of the Armed Forces of Montenegro and inter-ally trust.

24 Apr 2019, 10:51 AM

April 24, 2019 - The session of the Municipal Assembly of Kotor, where the councilors will decide on the Proposal for the dismissal of the President of the Municipality of Kotor Vladimir Jokic, is scheduled for today at noon. The proposal for the removal of Jokić was jointly filed by the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and opposition parties in that city - the Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS), the Social Democrats (SD) and the Croatian Civic Initiative (HGI).

Several leaders of local administration announced resignations if today’s Assembly replaces President of the Municipality Vladimir Jokic.
 
"If the Assembly of the Municipality of Kotor at the session of 24 April decides on the dismissal of the President of the Municipality, we will submit irrevocable resignations to the functions we perform, considering it as a professional and moral obligation, "says the letter submitted to the Radio Kotor. Assembly of Kotor president Dragica Perović, Vice President of the Municipality Milivoje Mišo Samardžić, Secretary of the Assembly Maja Mršulja, Chief administrator Veljko Vujović, Director of Cultural Center Nikola Đurković Marija Bernard, Secretary of the Secretariat for Property-Legal Affairs Željko Dapčević, Secretary of the Secretariat for General Administration Marina Bjelja and Director of Information Center Ida Waldegg signed the letter. 
 
The SDP initiated Jokić's dismissal as considered that he had made several illegal decisions, including for Port of Kotor, and their proposal supported opposition parties at the local level.
 
A public gathering precedes the debate on this initiative in support of Vladimir Jokić organized by Democratic Party of Montenegro, scheduled for 11 am in front of the palace Bizanti.
 
On the occasion of today's session of the Assembly, and after the last meeting of the Municipal Committee, the SDP made a statement saying that “SDP Kotor fully backed the foundation of the Club's commitment to the Municipal Assembly - which has persistently and publicly held last year and day in the Assembly Kotor Municipality.
 
"SDP Kotor reiterates its readiness to continue, despite the unprecedented blatant absence of individual members of the ruling majority, attempting to preserve power within the existing majority, trying to make a modest contribution to the struggle of citizens in the protest ODUPRISE 97000," according to the SDP statement
 
23 Apr 2019, 10:34 AM

April 23, 2019 - The Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the Democrats did not agree on overcoming the crisis in the Kotor government, so the SDP will not withdraw the initiative for the replacement of Mayor Vladimir Jokic (Democrats).

Although the previous two days during the exchange of proposals on the relationship between the two parties gained the impression that the matter was smooth, the meeting of opposition leaders with representatives of the Movement ODUPRISE returned things to the beginning. The Democrats do not agree with the referendum question formulated by the SDP, while SDP insists that this is a matter of substance.
 
The session of the Municipal Assembly of Kotor, on whose agenda Jokić's decommissioning initiative is coming tomorrow.
 
Before the meeting of opposition leaders and ODUPRISE Jokic informed the SDP to accept their proposal to call for a local referendum, with details to be negotiated yet. SDP has already submitted to the parties' clubs and president of Assembly of Kotor Dragica Perović the Proposal of the decision to announce the referendum in Kotor. They suggest that the issue on the referendum is "Do you agree with the enlargement of Luža (the operational port of Kotor) for mooring mega cruisers?" They expect Perovic's Proposal of the decision to be included in the agenda of the first session of the Kotor Municipal Assembly.
 
The SDP considers that the decision of the Assembly of Shareholders of the Port of Kotor to build a berthing pylon dolphin for mega cruisers mooring across the Old Town is very damaging to the Boka Bay and tourism in that town. They also point out that the mayor has no UNESCO approval for such a project. They argue that the referendum question for the natives of Kotor, which they have suggested, is the essence of the problem.
 
However, Democrats believe that the councillors need to harmonise the referendum question. One of the leaders of the DF proposed that a compromise would be resolved by asking citizens whether to ask for Jokić's dismissal, but to SDP President Ranko Krivokapić that was unacceptable.
 
He insisted on accepting the SDP proposal. Krivokapić has rejected the idea as an inescapable attempt to resolve the ambiguity at the meeting of the party leaders and the members of the Kotor local government.
 
Since the session of the Kotor Municipal Assembly has already been scheduled, one of the proposals was that it would begin to be terminated until an agreement was reached, but Krivokapić did not support that. He does not trust Jokić, because he thinks that he makes unlawful decisions, as previously made by the mayor of Podgorica, Miomir Mugoša.
 
President of the DPS of Kotor, Željko Aprcovic, was not ready to comment on the new circumstances surrounding the SDP-Democrats, as well as the local members of the SDP and the Civic Movement URA.
 
Jokic responded earlier to the SDP to accept the proposal to call for a local referendum and that he was ready to submit a proposal to hold a local consultative referendum on proposed infrastructure projects from the Port of Kotor business plan. "To create and sustain such a referendum as quickly as possible, I suggest that the members of the ruling coalition in Kotor form a working group for the preparation of a referendum that would define the referendum question, the timing and other issues that can be opened when it is organised," Jokic responded to SDP. He called on the SDP to create pre-conditions for organising the referendum and the functioning of the city through its club in the Assembly of the Municipality of Kotor. "In the way that your delegates will withdraw the signatures and the proposal for dismissal of the municipal president, participate in the sessions of the Assembly of Kotor, and urgently and without delay adopt the proposed budget and other documents necessary for the work of the companies and institutions in Kotor so that the city functions smoothly," Jokić replied.
 
The Jokic dismissal initiative was submitted by SDP members, and opposition DPS, SD and HGI. They stated that Mayor Jokic should be removed due to "failure to implement the strategic plan for the development of the city, to occupy the powers of the Assembly and to impose self-determination of harmful decisions".
 
"Democrats accept the SDP Presidency initiative on calling a referendum on proposed projects from the Port of Kotor business plan. This initiative, implying the assumption of political responsibility for the outcome of the referendum on both sides, was accepted without delay by the President of the Kotor Municipality, Vladimir Jokić and the Municipal Committee of the Democratic Party of Kotor," said Secretary General of the Democratic Party Boris Bogdanovic last night.
 
"We believe that the referendum as a form of direct decision-making is the highest achievement of democracy, and that one who strives to establish the highest democratic standards cannot reject the initiative that citizens deliberately decide on matters of importance to one local self-government. For the Democratic Party of Montenegro, our Municipal Committee, the President of the Municipality and our constituents in the Assembly of the Municipality of Kotor, any referendum issue is acceptable to the 17 members who form a committee majority in the Assembly of Kotor. A referendum, following the Law and the Statute of the Municipality, is not announced by the President of the Municipality, but by the Assembly of the Municipality of Kotor. In this connection, accepting the initiative of the SDP, we have also accepted that in such a referendum to verify the trust of the President of the Municipality of Kotor. The President of the Kotor Municipality is publicly committed to resigning in the event of a negative outcome of the referendum," Bogdanovic said, commenting on the distrust of the SDP that they are ready for a referendum.
 
"This created all the conditions for the SDP to withdraw the initiative for the dissolution of the president of the Kotor Municipality, to come to the Kotor Municipality Assembly and to bring the budget, to create all the necessary prerequisites for the referendum. If the SDP does not do so, the Democrats will defend Kotor with all the democratic means and will not allow this municipality to return to the hands of those we won in 2016," Bogdanovic said.
 
Source: Vijesti, Boka News
 
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