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Kosovo president indicted for battle crimes

The Workplace of the Particular Prosecutor within the Hague says it has filed an indictment towards Kosovo President Hashim Thaci and “others” for battle crimes and crimes towards humanity.

The indictment is “the result of a lengthy investigation and reflects the SPO’s (Special Prosecutor’s Office) determination that it can prove all of the charges beyond a reasonable doubt,” the SPO mentioned in a press release.

Thaci and 9 different former separatist fighters had been indicted on a spread of crimes towards humanity and battle crimes prices together with homicide by a court docket investigating crimes towards ethnic Serbs throughout and after Kosovo’s 1998-99 independence battle with Serbia.

A press release from a prosecutor of the Kosovo Specialist Chambers issued on Wednesday mentioned Thaci and the others suspects “are criminally responsible for nearly 100 murders,” involving a whole lot of recognized Kosovar Albanian, Serb and Roma victims, in addition to political opponents.

Different prices embrace enforced disappearance, persecution, and torture.

Thaci commanded fighters within the Kosovo Liberation Military, or KLA, throughout the battle.

The indicted group additionally consists of Kadri Veseli, former parliament speaker and chief of the opposition Democratic Occasion of Kosovo.

The indictment issued on Wednesday was the primary by the particular tribunal primarily based within the Hague.

The court docket has been working since 2015 and has questioned a whole lot of witnesses.

Kosovo’s prime minister resigned final yr earlier than he was questioned.

The indictment is being reviewed by a pre-trial choose who will determine whether or not to substantiate the costs, in keeping with the assertion.

The prosecutor additionally accused Thaci and Veseli of repeated efforts “to obstruct and undermine the work” of the tribunal.

“By taking these actions, Mr Thaci and Mr Veseli have put their personal interests ahead of the victims of their crimes, the rule of law and all people of Kosovo,” it added.

The 1998-1999 battle left greater than 10,000 useless and 1641 are nonetheless unaccounted for.

It ended after a 78-day NATO bombing marketing campaign.

Serbia does not recognise Kosovo’s 2008 declaration of independence.

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By Punit Nirankari

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