Protest against arrest of KLA members in Pristina

Protest against arrest of KLA members in Pristina

Several thousand people demonstrated in Pristina Monday against the arrest of former commanders of the so-called Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA).

The demonstration was organized by former KLA members, after a Pristina court has ordered that a number of their fellow soldiers and commanders of the KLA “Drenica Group,” including its two influential former leaders, Sami Ljustaku and Sulejman Selimi, be placed in house arrest.

The protest, which began Monday morning, ended at about 1 p.m. with the participants announcing new protests.

The court in Pristina ordered that all the seven men suspected of committing war crimes in 1998 and 1999 await their trial for war crimes in house arrest.

The order came after a marathon questioning of the suspects.

EULEX Prosecutor Maurizio Salustro has demanded that the suspects remain in custody until the completion of the process.

Sulejman Selimi, known by the nom de guerre “Sultan,” currently serves as the Ambassador of Kosovo to Albania.

Until the end of 1998, Selimi was chief military commander of the KLA. Following the disbanding of the KLA in 1999, he served as a senior officer of the Kosovo Protection Corps, and between 2009 and 2011, as the commander of the Kosovo Security Force.

Kosovo Prime Minister Hasim Taci reacted to the court order stating that the accusations against Selimi and others are “unfounded.”