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The release of the convicted war criminal Sreten Lukic and his return to Serbia highlights how the Belgrade authorities are still doing nothing to prosecute other high-ranking officials for wartime crimes in Kosovo and the subsequent cover-up. I…
Unmarked graves in Djakovca (Gjakove) cemetery, July 1999. Witnesses said that Serbian forces exhumed and moved at least 70 bodies from here in May of that year.
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Law Could Strengthen Effective Prosecution of War Crimes

(Kyiv) A bill adopted by Ukraine’s parliament on May 20, 2021, could help authorities prosecute war crimes and crimes against humanity domestically, Human Rights Watch said today. The law, On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts on the…
Lawmakers attend a parliament session in Kiev, Ukraine December 21, 2017.
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While eyes were fixed on elections in the United States last week, a president in Europe resigned to face trial for atrocity crimes committed more than 20 years ago. Kosovo’s Specialist Prosecutor’s Office formally charged President…
Then-President of Kosovo Hashim Thaçi during a press conference in Kosovo capital Pristina on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019.  ©2019 Visar Kryeziu/AP Photo
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Witness Protection Essential

(Brussels) – The indictment made public on June 24, 2020 against Kosovo President Hashim Thaçi and other former Kosovo Liberation Army leaders advances justice for war crimes and crimes against humanity during and after the 1998-1999 Kosovo war, Human…
Kosovo President Hashim Thaçi during a press conference in Kosovo capital Pristina on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. © 2019 Visar Kryeziu/AP Photo
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President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Your Excellency, We respectfully call on your government to immediately ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, which Ukraine signed in 2000 and take all necessary measures to fight…
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Impunity Hampers Sustainable Peace

This week marks 20 years since the end of the Kosovo war. What began as systematic Serbian state oppression led to attacks by an ethnic Albanian armed group, a vicious government response, and 78 days of NATO airstrikes. …
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On February 6, the European Commission will present its new strategy for the enlargement of the EU. People in the Western Balkans may greet the news with scepticism. But if the EU institutions and states are really willing to end the EU…
Roma refugees from Kosovo drink water at the Vrela Ribnicka camp in Podgorica, Montenegro on October 13, 2012
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It was just a bolt of pink cotton lying on the floor of a school gym but more than 20 years later, it haunts me still – soldiers tore off strips of that cloth, blindfolded dozens of men, trucked them to a nearby field, shot them, and buried all but a…
Two Bosnian Muslim women cry over a coffin July 10, 2005 with remains of their relative in a factory hall in Potocari where 610 victims of Srebrenica massacre wait for the funeral.
News

Witness Protection Required

(Brussels) - The Kosovo government and assembly took an important step toward justice on August 3, 2015, by creating a special court to try serious crimes committed after the 1998-1999 Kosovo war, Human Rights Watch said today. The Kosovo government and…
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Meeting in Washington with Prime Minister

(Washington, DC) – US Vice President Joe Biden should urge Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucić to take concrete steps to advance human rights protection, Human Rights Watch said in a letter to Biden released today. Biden and Vucić will meet this week…
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Vice President Joe Biden                              The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, DC 20500             RE: Human Rights Situation in Serbia  Dear Vice President Biden…
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Almost 20 years after Bosnian Serb forces slaughtered more than 7,000 Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) upheld the convictions of five men for genocide for what is considered the worst…
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Justice Needed for Post-War Crimes

(Brussels) – Kosovo’s newly formed parliament should promptly enact the legislative and constitutional changes required for the special court on post-war atrocity crimes to function, Human Rights Watch said today. Kosovo held parliamentary elections on…
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Update, September 11, 2014 What is Russia’s involvement in eastern Ukraine? Since clashes between armed insurgent groups in eastern Ukraine and Ukrainian government forces began, Moscow has made clear its political support for the insurgents and clearly…
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New Q&A on International Humanitarian Law

(Berlin) – Ukrainian government forces and armed insurgents in eastern Ukraine must respect the laws of war, Human Rights Watch said in a document published today. “Eastern Ukraine: Questions and Answers about the Laws of War” examines the development of…
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Parliament Should Also Endorse EU Law Mission Extension

(Brussels) – Kosovo’s parliament should approve the establishment of a special court located abroad to try alleged war crimes and other serious crimes committed during and after the 1998-1999 Kosovo war. The parliament should also agree to extend the…