Kosovo parliament session halted by opposition's tear gas

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Kosovo parliament session halted by opposition's tear gas
Supporter of the opposition throws back a tear gas canister at police forces in Kosovo capital Pristina on Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015. Kosovo police used tear gas to disperse opposition supporters gathered Wednesday to protest the arrest of a lawmaker who took part in violence inside parliament trying to force the government to renounce recent deals with Serbia and Montenegro. Scores of opposition supporters gathered in front of the government headquarters in downtown Pristina, throwing stones and paint against the building. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu)
Riot police officers stand guard against opposition supporters in Pristina on November 18, 2015. Kosovo police fired tear gas and arrested 13 protesters Wednesday during clashes in which demonstrators threw stones and Molotov cocktails outside parliament in the latest eruption of anger over relations with Belgrade. Opposition MPs and their supporters are in a weeks-long protest against EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
Fire fighters try to extinguish a van set on fire by opposition supporters during clashes with riot police in Pristina on November 18, 2015. Kosovo police fired tear gas and arrested 13 protesters Wednesday during clashes in which demonstrators threw stones and Molotov cocktails outside parliament in the latest eruption of anger over relations with Belgrade. Opposition MPs and their supporters are in a weeks-long protest against EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
A supporter of the opposition kick back a gas canister at Kosovo police in Pristina, Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015. Kosovo police used tear gas to disperse opposition supporters gathered Wednesday to protest the arrest of a lawmaker who took part in violence inside parliament trying to force the government to renounce recent deals with Serbia and Montenegro. Scores of opposition supporters continue in evening hours the protest in front of the government headquarters in downtown Pristina, throwing stones and molotov cocktails at police and government buildings. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu)
Molotov cocktail burns on top of an armoured police vehicle during clashes between Kosovo police and stone throwing supporters of the opposition in Kosovo capital Pristina on Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015. Kosovo police used tear gas to disperse opposition supporters gathered Wednesday to protest the arrest of a lawmaker who took part in violence inside parliament trying to force the government to renounce recent deals with Serbia and Montenegro. Scores of opposition supporters gathered in front of the government headquarters in downtown Pristina, throwing stones and paint against the building. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu)
Opposition supporters throw stones and kick back tear gas canisters as they clash with riot police in Pristina on November 18, 2015, in the latest eruption of a long-running protest against agreements made with Serbia. Opposition MPs have been paralysing parliamentary sessions for weeks in a bid to thwart EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
Riot police detain opposition supporters during clashes in Pristina on November 18, 2015, in the latest eruption of a long-running protest against agreements made with Serbia. Opposition MPs have been paralysing parliamentary sessions for weeks in a bid to thwart EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
Opposition supporters stand in a cloud of tear gas as they clash with riot police in Pristina on November 18, 2015, in the latest eruption of a long-running protest against agreements made with Serbia. Opposition MPs have been paralysing parliamentary sessions for weeks in a bid to thwart EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
Opposition supporters throw stones as they clash with riot police in Pristina on November 18, 2015, in the latest eruption of a long-running protest against agreements made with Serbia. Opposition MPs have been paralysing parliamentary sessions for weeks in a bid to thwart EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
A woman is assisted after she collapsed when tear gas was used during clashes between riot police and opposition supporters in Pristina on November 18, 2015, in the latest eruption of a long-running protest against agreements made with Serbia. Opposition MPs have been paralysing parliamentary sessions for weeks in a bid to thwart EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
A riot police officer fires tear gas toward opposition supporters during clashes in Pristina on November 18, 2015, in the latest eruption of a long-running protest against agreements made with Serbia. Opposition MPs have been paralysing parliamentary sessions for weeks in a bid to thwart EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
Opposition supporters disperse after tear gas was used during clashes with riot police in Pristina on November 18, 2015, in the latest eruption of a long-running protest against agreements made with Serbia. Opposition MPs have been paralysing parliamentary sessions for weeks in a bid to thwart EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
Supporter of the opposition is detained by police forces in riot gear in Kosovo capital Pristina, Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015, as scores of opposition supporters gathered in front of the government headquarters in downtown Pristina, throwing stones and paint against the building. Kosovo police used tear gas to disperse opposition supporters gathered Wednesday to protest the arrest of a lawmaker who took part in violence inside parliament trying to force the government to renounce recent deals with Serbia and Montenegro.(AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu)
Opposition supporters kick tear gas canisters as they clash with riot police in Pristina on November 18, 2015, in the latest eruption of a long-running protest against agreements made with Serbia. Opposition MPs have been paralysing parliamentary sessions for weeks in a bid to thwart EU-brokered dialogue and agreements with Serbia, the country from which Kosovo broke away and declared independence in 2008. AFP PHOTO / ARMEND NIMANI (Photo credit should read ARMEND NIMANI/AFP/Getty Images)
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PRISTINA, Kosovo (AP) — Kosovo's opposition used tear gas and pepper spray inside parliament and pelted police with rocks and pink paint outside the building on Tuesday in another attempt to force the government to renounce recent deals with Serbia and Montenegro.

Albin Kurti, a leader of the opposition Self-Determination Movement, used pepper spray on ministers, forcing lawmakers to evacuate the main hall. A tear gas canister was also opened in the hall. Outside, police also used tear gas to stop rock-throwing protesters from breaking in. Windows were broken and riot police were covered in paint. Rocks and firebombs were thrown at police and a few cars were damaged.

Lawmakers from the governing coalition later held the session at a different hall in the building. Opposition parliamentarians were not allowed to enter as the 2016 budget was passed by 79 votes to 1.

"These sessions are illegitimate and those decisions cannot be considered as legitimate," said Visar Ymeri of the Self-Determination party, adding that Kurti and another lawmaker were injured by police pepper spray.

Police denied that, saying lawmaker Albulena Haxhiu was injured by the tar gas used by her colleagues, according to police spokesman Baki Kelani.

The spokesman said six policemen and one protester were injured, and two opposition supporters were arrested after being found with firebombs.

Over the past two months, Kosovo's opposition has sought to disrupt parliament and force the government to renounce a deal with Serbia giving more powers to ethnic-Serb communities and one with Montenegro on border demarcation.

Ymeri said the government is trying to "install in our country a Serbian republic and give to Montenegro 8,000 hectares of our land."

Deputy Prime Minister Hashim Thaci criticized the protesters. "They do not have any argument against the government's agenda and they want to come to power through violence," he said.

The opposition also said it does not trust the Constitutional Court, claiming it is too close to the government. The court last week suspended any action on the deal with Serbia until it has ruled on its constitutionality.

Kosovo in 2008 declared independence from Serbia, but that is not recognized by Belgrade. The two sides are holding EU-led talks to overcome their differences.

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Llazar Semini in Tirana, Albania, contributed to this report.

Teargas Fired in Kosovo's Parliament
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