UNS: How murders of journalists in Kosovo were "lost"

Out of 14 killed and kidnapped journalists and media workers, Kosovo Prosecution is investigating 7 cases, three are "in the process of hand-over" from EULEX.

One is closed, while there is no information about the three remaining, the Association of Journalists of Serbia (UNS) said it learned.

These are considerably different data compared to those UNS received from EULEX a month ago when we were told that there were only two open investigations.

"No case is closed for us. We consider them open until we find new evidence about perpetrators, which would ultimately lead to the formation of indictments," explained to UNS Aleksandar Lumezi, Chief Kosovo Prosecutor.

The excuse for discrepancies in information is a complex procedure of duties' hand-over from institutions responsible for the rule of law: the police, the prosecution, and the judiciary from UNMIK to EULEX, to the institutions of Pristina.

But if we compare the dates of closures and "disappearance" of investigations about our colleagues, it is obvious that most of them have been ignored or stopped by international prosecutors.

Obstruction of justice - the police does not respond to the prosecution's request

The information the UNS obtained its investigation also points to the criminal offense of interfering with justice, as it happened that the police, while under the supervision of UNMIK, did not act on the prosecution's request. Namely in cases of the murder of well-known Albanian journalists, close to Ibrahim Rugova who advocated a peaceful solution for the conflict in Kosovo, a political opponent to Hashim Taci and Azem Sula.

Shefki Popova, a journalist of "Rilindja," was killed on September 10, 2000. The data collected by the UNS Dossier shows the investigation existed. The case, PPN 306/2000, until June 12 of this year was in the Prosecutor's Office of the Basic Court in Mitrovica....

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