Balkans: November 26, 2002


On November 25 UNMIK arrested a former KLA commander, Gani Ymeri, on suspicion of kidnapping and attempted murder. His alleged crimes occurred in June 1999 in a predominantly Kosovar Serb village (Gojbulja). A KFOR report said Ymeri is also a commander of the KPC. A subsequent wire service report speculated that the ICTY may be about to indict one (or several) ethnic Albanians for war crimes committed in Kosovo from 1998-1999. UNMIK, however, reported that the Ymeri arrest was not related to an ICTY investigation. The election of moderate Kosovar Albanian leader Ibrahim Rugova does give UNMIK more political leeway to deal with some of the KLA extremists (many of whom are tied to smuggling and racketeering operations).


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