Kosovo court jails Serb ex-army officer for war crimes - InfoNews

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Kosovo court jails Serb ex-army officer for war crimes

June 22, 2020 - 8:57 AM

PRISTINA, Kosovo - A Kosovo court on Monday jailed a former Serb army police reserve officer for 22 years for crimes committed during the 1998-1999 war.

The Prizren court sentenced Darko Tasic for desecration of corpses and also for participation in the illegal confiscation and looting of people’s property in the village of Krusha e Vogel, 87 kilometres (55 miles) west of the capital, Pristina.

Witnesses testified seeing Tasic and his father gather up bodies from a massacre in March 1999, put them in a truck, set it on fire and push it into the Drini River.

Other witnesses told how Tasic looted houses and then set them alight. He was ordered to pay financial compensation to one ethnic Albanian family.

Tasic, who was arrested in November 2017, has denied the charges but it is not clear whether he will appeal the verdict.

Kosovo police reported that after the hearing, family members of the ethnic Albanian victims who felt the sentence wasn't long enough tried to stop the police van transporting Tasic. The vehicle was damaged but no one was injured.

Kosovo was a Serb province until the 1998-1999 insurrection by ethnic Albanian rebels sparked a bloody crackdown from the Serb regime. That pushed NATO to carry out a 78-day bombing campaign to force Serbian troops out of Kosovo.

The war left more than 10,000 people dead, and 1,641 are still missing.

Kosovo declared independence in 2008 but Serbia has not recognized it.

News from © The Associated Press, 2020
The Associated Press

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