Skip to comments.The UN in Kosovo praises potential war criminal - why?
Posted on 03/11/2005 12:30:11 AM PST by Nennsy
potential war criminal - why?
PressInfo # 208
March 10, 2005
Jan Oberg, TFF director
Danish diplomat, Søren Jessen-Petersen is the highest authority in Kosovo and SRSG, Special Representative of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, there. In spite of that, his unconditional embrace of Mr. Ramush Haradinaj, a former leader of the illegal Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and former prime minister in the non-independent Kosovo and now indicted for war crimes by the Hague Tribunal seems to raise no eyebrows in any capital, media or at the UN in New York.
All relevant links here.
Mr. Søren Jessen-Petersen's embrace of Haradinaj
In a statement on Haradinaj's resignation Jessen-Petersen praises him for his "dynamic leadership, strong commitment and vision" and says that thanks to that "Kosovo is today closer than ever before to achieving its aspirations in settling its future status." He calls him his "close partner and friend." In spite of the fact that the Prime Minister had no choice but to voluntarily go to the Hague, Kofi Annan's representative praises him for the "dignity and maturity" he has shown in deciding to do so. He also expresses his understanding of the "shock and anger" the people of Kosovo must feel at this development, "people" meaning of course only the Albanians and hardly the Serbs, Romas and other minorities living there.
Søren Jessen-Petersen continues in a paragraph that deserves to be quoted at length:
"The decision announced by Mr. Haradinaj to co-operate with the Tribunal, despite his firm conviction of innocence, and although painful for him, his family, Kosovo and for his many friends and partners, including in UNMIK, is at the same time an example of Kosovo's growing political maturity as a responsible member of the international community. I trust that Mr. Haradinaj will again be able to serve Kosovo to whose better future he has sacrificed and contributed so much."
Unless the SRSG implies that Haradinaj's going to the Hague Tribunal is to serve Kosovo - which is unlikely given other parts of the statement - he here expresses his belief in Mr. Haradinaj's innocence and his return to be of service to Kosovo. Isn't that sensational? One wonders whether he SRSG implies that the indictment by the Hague Tribunal is a mistake or not serious? Does Kofi Annan's representative show a certain disdain for the Tribunal that was set up in 1993 by the very organisation he represents?
Is he unaware of what kind of organisation KLA was and that, at an early stage, it was considered a terrorist organisation by high-level US diplomats? Does he consider every and each charge against Haradinaj raised by Serbia (of which Kosovo is a part) sheer inventions? Has he not had access to intelligence information about the activities of KLA units at the time when Haradinaj was a hard-line extremist with a gun in his hand? Has he never heard anyone talk about these things in Kosovo? Or does he carelessly ignore it all and believes that his dear friend Haradinaj was constitutionally unable to do anything bad back in the 1990s? All relevant links here.
It goes without saying anyone shall be considered non-guilty until proven guilty. So too Haradinaj. But "trusting" that he is 100% innocent and will return to Kosovo is to make a political point beyond that. And, mind you, no international diplomat and few media ever respected the mentioned principle when it comes to Milosevic or other people indicted by the Tribunal.
Does the international community's fear of failure explain this sympathy?
Mr. Søren Jessen-Petersen is neither naïve nor inexperienced. So two explanations are left: A) His cosy chat about his potential war crimes friend is what he has been told by some participant in the greater scheme of things to say; it is not Kofi Annan whose own statement was much more careful. This explanation can not be ruled out. Or B) that this is an example of the shabbiness that has come to define the international community's conflict-management policies in Kosovo. Why so?
Because it is a manifest conflict-resolution and peace-building failure. Six years after NATO's bombing and all the implicit promises given to the Albanian side about independence, Albanian hardliners and many ordinary Albanians want the international community to deliver very soon. Unfortunately, there is no viable solution in sight. Albanian patience, for very good reasons, is running out. I know from my visits to the province that no observer there dare rule out that we could witness anything from localised riots to warfare if the Albanians do not see progress in the direction of formal independence. And who is going to grant Kosovo that? Mr. Clinton and Madeleine Albright? The International Crisis Group - a near-governmental organisation that now runs a campaign for Kosovo's independence with its pro-Albanian lobbyists and NATO bombing advocates? Or the UN Security Council - but that won't be able to. Carving out provinces and make them states by bombing is a bit too much for those who have secessionist provinces themselves.
The international community, to put it crudely, is afraid of ending up facing by and large the same challenges from their post-1999 friends as Belgrade leaders did, just much worse because, after all, Milosevic never promised Kosovo any kind of independence.
The international community in general and the Security Council in particular cannot get its acts together, except in one regard because it helps cover up its own failure: blame Belgrade for everything going wrong the last 10 years and praise the Albanians in the role as innocent victims. Such is the political psychology behind the headlines and the statements: Side with one and try anyhow to look like an impartial mediator and negotiation leader. Well, that Jessen-Petersen can no longer be. His statements is a Himalayan mistake from the point of view of building trust with the Serbs and other minorities in Kosovo and with Belgrade. And contrary to what he and many others seem to believe, no sustainable solution to Kosovo's problems can be found without them.
The differences between Serbs and other indicted people
Serb President Milosevic was thrown out by his own people in a miraculous non-violent action. The people rose against their own leader, something the Croats, Bosniaks or Albanians never even contemplated to express their contempt, if any, for their own leaders' manipulations, corruption, militarism, nepotism, nationalism and the shame they brought over their own people. Then Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindic got nothing of what he was allegedly promised by the West for delivering Milosevic to the Hague; rather, his action is likely to have been one of the reasons why he was murdered.
Within the last few months, six high-level Serb officers have accepted, like Haradinaj, to go to the Hague. No international praise for them. Instead one hears the mantra that Belgrade must deliver Karadzic and Mladic. Does anyone seriously believe that NATO have not been able for 10 years to find them in Bosnia or that NATO states do not have such intelligence that they know where they are? Belgrade is constantly told that they must be in Serbia and that Belgrade must cooperate with the Hague Tribunal to get any help and see the door to EU integration open just a little. This is as bizarre as can be. CIA and FBI people have been invited by the Belgrade authorities to find them in Serbia. For about a year they have been unable to. Could it be that someone wants to avoid arresting them and have them as a card to play against Belgrade?
Be this as it may, let's remember two things: First, that "balkanisation" is a much too nice term for the unprincipled games played in that region by the international community during the last 15 or so years. Secondly, Mr. Søren Jessen-Petersen has offered the world a new distinction, namely that between our good, friendly potential war criminals who deserve our sympathy for accepting the law - and the others who, doing the same, deserve no praise.
One wonders how Kofi Annan feels about his representative's embrace of a man indicted for war crimes at the UN Tribunal? We don't know but he has reasons to hope that no leading daily will begin to investigate the cosy day-to-day co-operation between the UN and the Albanian extremists - and Haradinaj is not the only one - in the Kosovo province since 1999.
Richard Boucher, Spokesman
March 8, 2005
Indictment of Ramush Haradinaj
The United States welcomes Ramush Haradinajs decision to resign from his Prime Minister post, and his expressed plan to go voluntarily to The Hague. His actions demonstrate his deep concern for the future of Kosovo and its people.
The United States and the international community remain committed to supporting the development of Kosovos institutions in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 1244 and to the continued implementation of the "Standards for Kosovo." Ensuring that the rule of law extends to all citizens is an essential component of the Standards.
2005 is an important year for the aspirations of the people of Kosovo. In order to receive a positive assessment from the Comprehensive Review later this year and to begin a process to determine its future status, Kosovo must preserve peace and continue to work to implement the Standards. The people of Kosovo will enjoy the full support of the United States in those efforts. Violence will not be tolerated and will have negative consequences for the outcome of the review and for Kosovos future. We will continue to work with Kosovos provisional government on these issues.
The United States remains committed to supporting the work of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. We call upon all parties in Kosovo and throughout the Balkans to cooperate with the Tribunal, including apprehending and transferring all indictees to The Hague, as a prerequisite for full integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions. We urge all individuals indicted by the Tribunal to act with dignity and in accordance with their obligations in reporting to the Tribunal without further delay.
UNITED STATES OFFICE PRISTINA
Office of Public Affairs
Arberia/Dragodan, Nazim Hikmet 30, Pristina 38000
TEL: (038) 549 516 FAX: (038) 548 615
Tuesday, March 8 2005
Statement by the Chief of Mission
[Pristina, USOP] - I thank former PM Haradinaj for his statement earlier today, announcing his resignation and intention to travel to the Hague to defend himself against the indictment brought by the ICTY. Mr. Haradinaj will now have the chance to defend himself in front of the world, and I know he is well prepared to do so.
The U.S. supports the ICTY and calls upon all parties - in Kosovo and elsewhere in the region - to cooperate fully with the Tribunal. This is a test of a societys commitment to the rule of law.
U.S. policy toward Kosovo remains unchanged. We are committed to the standards review in mid-2005, and, if that review is positive to begin a discussion on final status.
This moment represents a challenge for Kosovos democratic institutions and its people. I look forward to working with the Provisional Government, and a new Prime Minister fully committed to making progress on standards.
You see Mark, I don't really get it. How can US Government, or UNMIK praise someone charged with rape, murder, etc?
For US, am not that surprised. After all he was navigating NATO/US planes during bombing of Serbia, but for God's sake he was killing civilians.
All this bla, bla, bla, "he cares about his people, he sacrifices himself for Kosovo" and rest of the crap, is really making me sick. HE WAS KILLING CIVILIANS OF ALL ETHINC GROUPS. Is this making a person a HERO???
Has world gone mad????
At least world has openly shown which values really matter.
Jessen-Petersen under pressure after calling Haradinaj a friend (Koha)
Koha Ditore quotes a news broadcast of KTV as saying that quotes unnamed sources as saying that the Contact Group is exerting pressure on UNMIK chief Søren Jessen-Petersen for calling Haradinaj a friend. According to the TV station, the pressure of CG could result in his resignation.
At 12:00hrs the SNC and Association of Serbian Municiplaities to hold a press conference after raising initiave over Petersen's replacement.
Denmark puts forward Kosovo UN chief for UNHCR
COPENHAGEN (AFX) - The Danish government has put forward Soren Jessen-Petersen, the head of the UN mission in Kosovo, to be the next United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the foreign ministry said.
The headhunt is on for a new UNHCR after former refugees
chief and Dutch former prime minister Ruud Lubbers resigned last month after details emerged from an internal enquiry into sexual harassment allegations.
What irony, if it is to be true? To be a Commissioner for Refugees. the man who is wipping over a criminal's departure to the prison cell? Mourning over the man who was killing people who became refugees?!
Lord, have mercy for our mental health.
Its the UN! What do you expect boys and girls?!?!? The UN never saw a dictator or war criminal that they didn't love.
Kofi Annan, UNSEC. Tainted with conduct during Rwanda genocide and Iraq Food for Oil scam. Terrorist supporter.
Louise Arbour, UN High Commissioner for human rights. Tainted with Rwanda genocide investigation coverup and her track record while ICTY prosecutor. Terrorist supporter
Soren Jessen-Petersen, UN High Commissioner for refugees. During his tenure, more than 200,000 Rwandan Hutu refugees dissapeared without trace in Congo, pressumably slaughtered. No UN investigation, case closed. Terrorist supporter according to his own account.
It is evident what kind of people are allowed to take UN top positions. People who can be easily leashed because of their previous criminal conduct.
In other time, Arbour, Annan and Jessen-Petersen would be locked up with the keys thrown away. Today, such deplorable individuals give us lectures on human decency, morality and humanity.
This is as repugnant as having OBL being elected as a chairman of Lower Manhattan Development Corporation.
Text of investigator's letter:
"So Denis MacShane believes it was "very brave" of indicted war criminal Ramush Haradinaj to give himself up to a UN tribunal (Kosovo government falls, March 9). Haradinaj, as Mr MacShane knows, was a senior commander of the Kosovo Liberation Army, which was responsible for sickening atrocities against both Serb and Albanian civilians. Haradinaj and his followers were backed by western governments during this time.
I have witnessed the true nature of Haradinaj's men. During an investigation into the international arms trade for Channel 5 and the Sunday Mirror, senior KLA veterans who claimed they took their orders from "Ramush" sold a huge cache of Semtex plastic explosives to myself and other members of an undercover team. When they were told the Semtex could be used in terrorist attacks against targets in the UK, their response was to offer us rocket launchers . The men responsible are now dead or imprisoned. The weapons are under UN control.
The UN governor of Kosovo says he has lost a "friend and partner" in Haradinaj. The UN should be more cautious about the company they keep.
May God have mercy on Serbs if this animal becomes Commissioner for refugees.
After Rwanda genocide, hundreds of thousands of Hutus fled to neighboring Congo. Over 200, 000 were missing, presumably killed but there was no enquiry by UN and case is closed. This scumbag was in charge.
Maybe that's why he's wipping over Haradinaj. He tends to have more understanding for prosecutor than for victim.
So an Albania gangster sold 30 pounds of explosive for £10,000. Kind of small-time compared to his Slavic neighbors to the west:
And in neighbouring Montenegro, on the Adriatic coast's version of the Costa Del Crime, another war criminal was selling death on an industrial scale. The man, known as Vesko - a former bodyguard of Serbian warlord Arkan - offered to supply us with 20 rocket-propelled grenades, 20 shoulder-fired missiles and 20 Spider machine guns used by the SAS.
and to the east:
In Belgrade, the capital of nearby Serbia, the local Mafia emailed us to offer a cache of anti-tank missiles, Kalashnikovs, a mortar and illegal landmines for £50,000.
and to the north:
In neighbouring Croatia we bought a machine gun and a Walther PPK pistol.
Well, actually the Croats were pretty small-time even compared to the Albanians. Perhaps all the Croatian Semtex was expended fighting the Serbs.
But we won him over by playing on one of his weaknesses...he is a huge fan of Irish rock band U2. He couldn't wait to deal with us when we promised him one of the band's CDs - which we had signed with a fake message from lead singer Bono.
Now that part made senseSemtex can be rolled into little plastic balls and stuffed into the ears in order to block out offensive noise.
we arrived in Kosovo posing as members of the Real IRA Our first contact was with a Mafia arms dealer "I can give you enough Semtex for a small war. Do you need it for terrorism?"
OK, what do you think is the motivation at work here: A curse on the flaccid moustache of the pork-eating Yankee colonialist Crusaders and their Zionist puppets in Belgrade OR Show me the money?
We next met Sadkutz in a Mafia-run brothel called The Massage Club
After a hard day of jihadism, what could be more relaxing than a massage? Oh those Islamic fundamentalists! Who says they dont know how to have fun? Lets seebrothels and illegal arms deals; is Pristina with the Albanians more like Kabul under the Taliban? Riyadh with the Wahabbis? Tehran under the mullahs? Caves with Bin Laden? Or
Belgrade under Milosevic-BINGO!!!!
As to the SRSG and Haradinaj being friends, they worked closely together and by all accounts got a heckuva lot more done in the past few months than any previous SRSG or Kosovo politician. Jessen-Petersen is probably sincerely grateful and they may well have become personal friends. Irrespective of that, you shouldn't "go native" and when speaking as the SRSG he should not have made comments that call into question his objectivity.
Above's a photo of Haradinaj and his wife--I had heard once he had a KLA girl-friend--if that's her then maybe those long winter nights hiding in the hills from the Serbs weren't so hard to take. No such bennies in the detention facility at the Hague.
Nope. I was just pointing out the hypocrisy in ignoring--in the same story--the even larger arms dealings offered up by Serbian gangsters next door in Serbia and Montenegro.
Arkan was not a PM.
Nennsy, like I told Pythag up above, the positive comments about him from the US & the UN & OSCE etc are primarily because he immediately resigned, told the Kosovar Albanians to stay calm, and turned himself in. As you know, it could have been a lot different if he had refused to go or made some kind of rabble-rousing rant inciting the Albanians to resist. Regardless of what he did in the past, he did the responsible thing this time.
And neither was Haradinaj when that story was written.
Haradinaj's alleged connection to a £10,000 deal for explosives is pretty small potatoes compared to the biggest illegal arms dealer in recent Balkans history--Slobodan Milosevic. His gangster dealings made him filthy rich; partly as a result of his sanction-evading trade with Iraq. Slobo & his wife combined to be the biggest political recipients of Saddam's oil bribes in Europe. The Yugo Socialist Party received vouchers for 1,000,000 barrels and the Yugo Left party received 9.5 million; those organizations are headed by Mr. and Mrs. Milosevic, respectively.
Box cutters are small potatoes as well Mark, but the results of their implementation were gargantuan in scope.
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