Pristina denies entry to missing persons commission chief

The Missing Persons Commission chair and the head of the Working Group on Missing Persons under the UN auspices was not allowed to enter Kosovo two days ago.

Source: Tanjug
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(Getty Images, file, illustration)
(Getty Images, file, illustration)

Because of this, families of Serb victims have requested an urgent reaction from international officials.

Veljko Odalovic was not permitted to enter after being kept for several hours at the Jarinje administrative crossing, representatives of the Association of Families of Missing, Kidnapped and Killed Persons in Kosovo and Metohija said in a statement on Friday.

On the occasion of the scandalous ban imposed by the so-called Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kosovo, based on a so-called black list, families of Serb victims are protesting and seeking an immediate response from international officials, as well as the urgent abolition of this unlawful ban imposed on a man who has spent decades selflessly fighting to resolve problems of families of missing persons, the statement said.

"From the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General Zahir Tanin, we expect to, in accordance with his mandate, at long last put an end to the arrogance of those who obviously stand for abandoning this humanitarian and civilizational issue," the statement said.

It is further stated that a urgent reaction is expected from the Pristina delegation in the Working Group on Missing Persons toward the provisional institutions of authorities in Pristina.

"From the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the EU and all other relevant factors, we also expect a reaction to this, to us unreasonable decisions," the statement added.

The report of the ICRC, which chairs the Belgrade-Pristina Working Group, shows how much the Commission for Missing Persons of the Government of Serbia, led by Odalovic, has done, the statement said.

"A large number of locations have been searched that resulted in finding the remains of 900 people of Albanian nationality. The Pristina delegation also received over 2,500 documents about missing Albanians from the Belgrade delegation," the statement said.

Because the president of the Commission is prevented from entering the territory of Kosovo and Metohija unimpeded, families of Serb victims at a meeting held on February 14 decided to reexamine future cooperation with all international representatives in Kosovo.

"With this ban, provisional institutions (in Pristina) have sent us a clear message that they want to stop the process of searching for and finding persons who went missing during conflicts in Kosovo and Metohija," the statement concluded.

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