Kosovo Minister – Only Special Court Can Deliver Murdered Father Justice

On BIRN's televised programme Jeta ne Kosove on Thursday, Agriculture Minister Besian Mustafa expressed his dismay at the failure of the justice system in Kosovo to shed light on the murder of his father, Xhemajl, in 2000.

"In these 20 years, the judicial system in Kosovo has failed to provide any answers about the murder," he told BIRN. "This includes UNMIK, EULEX and the local institutions."

Xhemajl Mustafa was a prominent activist for the Democratic League of Kosovo, LDK, in the 1990s and a close ally of former Kosovo president Ibrahim Rugova.

On November 23, 2000, he was killed in front of his apartment in the capital Prishtina. No suspect has ever been charged with his murder.

Mustafa says the family have continually been told that investigations were continuing but to no avail. "We know the case was transferred from EULEX to local institutions but since then it's always the same response: investigations continue."

Dozens of prominent LDK activists were killed during and immediately after the war in Kosovo, in what the LDK has labelled "political eliminations." The victims include Tahir Zemaj, former MP Smajl Hajdaraj, Shaban Manaj, and Rugova's friend and adviser, Xhemajl Mustafa.

The Specialist Prosecution Office's indictment against former Kosovo President Hashim Thaci, Kadri Veseli, Rexhep Selimi and Jakup Krasniqi, which was made public earlier this month, sys that the four men were part of a joint criminal enterprise that sought to "remove opponents," including persons associated with the LDK.

Although Mustafa says that his family was not contacted by the Specialist Prosecution Office, he hopes the court can finally deliver justice for his father. "As a family, our last hope lies in the Hague-based court,...

Continue reading on: