Haradinaj trial begins 05 Mar 2007
The trial of former Kosovo Prime Minister, Ramush Haradinaj, along with two other former KLA commanders, has begun at the ICTY.

On Monday, 5 March 2007, the trial of former Kosovo Prime Minister, Ramush Haradinaj, and two other former Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) commanders, Idriz Balaj and Lahi Brahimaj, began at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague.

The indictment against Ramush Haradinaj, Idriz Balaj and Lahi Brahimaj alleges that all three participated in a joint criminal enterprise, the purpose of which was the consolidation of total control of the KLA over the KLA operational zone of Dukagjin. This was allegedly undertaken by the unlawful removal and mistreatment of Serb civilians and by the mistreatment of Kosovar Albanians, Kosovar Roma and other civilians, who were seen as collaborating with Serbian Forces or not supporting the KLA.

The indictment alleges that, after 24 March 1998, KLA forces, under the command and control of Ramush Haradinaj, mounted a military campaign to seize control of the area between the villages of Glođane/Gllogjan and Dečani/Deçan and to drive ethnic Serbs out of the villages where they were living. The indictment also states that the KLA forces under the command and control of Ramush Haradinaj, including the "Black Eagles" under the direct command of Idriz Balaj, drove non-Albanian civilians out of these villages, killing those civilians that remained behind.

According to the indictment, in mid-May 1998, a make-shift detention facility at the KLA headquarters in Jablanica/Jabllanicë was established. During their detention, detainees were subjected to several forms of physical mistreatment and denied medical treatment for their injuries. A number of prisoners at the facility died as a result of their injuries, or were executed on orders of the accused.

Ramush Haradinaj, Idriz Balaj and Lahi Brahimaj face 18 charges of crimes against humanity and 19 charges of violations of the laws and customs of war.

Press release

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