News 16 Jan 13

Kosovo Arrests Serbian Grave Desecration Suspect

Police have detained a man suspected of destroying Serbian Orthodox graves in Kosovo Polje but insisted that he wasn’t motivated by ethnic hatred.

Edona Peci
Pristina
Destroyed gravestones in Kosovo Polje I Photo by Beta

A police statement said that a 48-year-old man, named as M. Buzuku, an ethnic Ashkali, was arrested on Tuesday afternoon for allegedly vandalising more than 50 gravestones.

Police ruled out the possibility that ethnic or religious motives had caused him to damage the memorials at the cemetery in Kosovo Polje, saying that he had stolen some of the stones for personal gain.

The suspect has been charged with larceny, the statement said.

International organisations working in Kosovo have condemned the vandalism and called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice.

The UN mission in Kosovo, UNMIK, said that “the destruction of graveyards in any community is contemptible”.

UNMIK said that municipalities throughout Kosovo have recently been participating in a restoration programme for Orthodox cemeteries.

“Unfortunately, such incidents seriously impede the progress achieved thus far,” the UN mission’s statement said.

The acting head of the OSCE mission in Kosovo, Paivi Nikander, said that the desecration “highlights the absolute lack of respect for the dead and the ethnicity they belong to”.

However the head of the Kosovo Polje municipality, Burim Berisha, stressed that the area was “multi-ethnic and secure for all communities living there”.

The Serb population of Kosovo Polje has shrunk significantly since the war in Kosovo.

Talk about it!

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest Headlines

News 18 Nov 17

Croatia Commemorates 26 Years Since Vukovar’s Fall

Interview 30 Oct 17

World Jewish Congress Urges Croatia to Debate Holocaust

news 25 Oct 17

Kosovo Acts to Preserve War Victims’ Possessions

News 23 Oct 17

Monument to Murdered Serbian PM Djindjic Sparks Row

Feature 11 Oct 17

Why Croatia’s President Tudjman Imitated General Franco

feature 03 Oct 17

Bosnia Activists Install Signs at Unmarked War Sites

News 28 Sep 17

Sarajevans Furious After Councillors Snub Wartime Hero

Feature 25 Sep 17

Bosnia’s ‘Bone Hospital’ Still Haunts its Inmates