Kosovo gov't suspends pay increases amid criticism

PRISTINA, Kosovo — Kosovo's prime minister has suspended significant pay increases for top government officials amid a wave of criticism.

Ramush Haradinaj on Wednesday said the government suspended them and will wait for a Constitutional Court verdict on the issue.

On Tuesday, Kosovo's Agency Against Corruption said there was no legal basis for the government's decision to double or significantly raise the salaries of top officials. Thirty lawmakers then asked the Constitutional Court's opinion on the legal basis of such a decision.

In late December, the government decided to raise salaries, doubling it for the prime minister to 2,950 euros ($3,656) a month before taxes. The average salary in the country is 354 euros a month ($438).

Kosovo is one of Europe's poorest countries.

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