İrem UZUN -TDO- Kosovo’s president Hashim Thaci has been indicted for crimes against humanity and war crimes, by a prosecutor investigating crimes committed during Kosovo’s 1998-99 independence war with Serbia. 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 said in a statement.
The charges were made public as Thaci was en route to Washington ahead of a White House meeting with Serbia’s president set for Saturday and brokered by Richard Grenell, Donald Trump’s Balkan peace envoy. Trump hoped to broker a deal between the two countries, which have not normalized relations since Kosovo broke away from Serbia following a NATO bombing campaign and declared independence. The group, Thaci and 10 other politicians, are charged “with a range of crimes against humanity and war crimes, including murder, enforced disappearance of persons, persecution, and torture”. Prosecutor said the group were “criminally responsible for nearly 100 murders”, and noted that the victims included Serbs, Kosovo Albanians and other ethnicities and included political opponents. The 52-year-old Thaci, like many other present-day Kosovo politicians, played a prominent role in the resistance movement that pitted ethnic Albanians against Serbs in what was then a Serbian province.
Thaci has not yet commented on the charges, however he canceled his trip to Washington after the announcement.