"NATO bombed Serbia because of lies"

NATO launched its 1999 war against Serbia "because of German Defense Minister Rudolf Scharping's lies", claims a former member of an OSCE mission in Kosovo.

Source: Blic, NDR

Belgrade-based Blic newspaper writes, quoting the Vestionline website, that ahead of the start of the war, Scharping falsely presented members of the ethnic Albanian KLA "rebels" as - civilian victims.

The Serbian authorities considered the KLA to be a terrorist group.

Scharping was accused by former German police official Henning Hensch, an OSCE observer in Kosovo before the war, who spoke for Germany's NDR television.

This OSCE observer was personally present during the investigation of the scene in Rugovo in Kosovo in January 1999, where Serbian police units fought against KLA members.

The German television program featuring an interview with Hensch also showed Scharping in a news conference in early 1999, where he presented photographs from Rugovo of KLA members killed in battle, claiming they depicted massacred civilians.

Furthermore, the German minister told reporters that the OSCE photos of the scene were made "secretly by a German officer", and that he would have "gladly presented him (to reporters)", but that the officer is question was "receiving medical treatment because of the traumatic experiences" that he underwent in Kosovo.

13 years later, NDR journalists asked the German Defense Ministry to confirm that "a German officer" was in the area at the time secretly taking photoraphs, to after several weeks receive a reply that this was not the case.

Scharping himself, said the television, could not be reached for comment.

NATO's aerial war lasted for 78 days in the spring of 1999, and ended with the signing of the Kumanovo Agreement, and the adoption of Resolution 1244 at the UN Security Council.

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