Former Kosovan leader cleared of war crimes
Friday 04 April 2008
Ramush Haradinaj, a former prime minister of Kosovo and senior militia commander, was found not guilty of murder and torture yesterday by the United Nations war crimes tribunal in The Hague.
Idriz Balaj, a Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) aide, was also acquitted, but a third KLA commander, Lahi Brahimaj, was sentenced to six years in prison for the torture of two protected witnesses identified only as "Witness 3" and "Witness 6" by the presiding judge, Alphons Orie. He said the trial had faced "significant difficulties" since it began in March 2007 in persuading witnesses to testify on behalf of the prosecution.
The three were accused of 37 atrocities, including the killing of at least 40 mostly Serb civilians, and the torture and eviction of Serbs, Roma and ethnic Albanians in a KLA campaign in north-western Kosovo from March to September 1998. "Only seven of these murders can be proven, beyond reasonable doubt, to be the work of the KLA," Judge Orie said. The evidence for other murders and the link between the KLA and its commanders was "vague, inconclusive".
Mr Haradinaj was the region's KLA commander, while Mr Balaj led a special unit called the Black Eagles. Brahimaj ran a KLA detention centre at Jablanica.
- 1 BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
- 2 18th century sex toy found in 'toilet of sword fighting school' in Poland
- 3 US? China? India? The 10 biggest economies in 2030 will be...
- 4 'I wish my teacher knew...': Young students share their 'heartbreaking' worries in notes
General Election 2015: David Cameron catching up in polls – but he badly needs a clear lead
South Africa xenophobic attacks: Shops looted and violence on streets of Johannesburg as foreigners are forced to hide in police stations
18th century sex toy found in 'toilet of sword fighting school' in Poland
'I wish my teacher knew...': Young students share their 'heartbreaking' worries in notes
Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
£30000 - £40000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application ...
£18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...
£27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Domestic Service Only Engineers are requ...
£23600 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Employability Service withi...