UN tribunal acquits Kosovo former prime minister of war crimes
A UN war crimes court on Thursday cleared Kosovo's ex-prime minister Ramush Haradinaj of murder and torture during the 1990s war of independence, enraging Belgrade with the second such acquittal in two weeks. The Hague-based International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) cleared the former military commander and two of his former guerrilla comrades after a case that lasted seven years.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012
"The chamber finds you not guilty on all counts in the indictment," Judge Bakone Justice Moloto said, ordering the trio released immediately after their retrial. The second trial had been held because of alleged witness intimidation in the first proceedings.
Fireworks exploded around Kosovo's capital Pristina and the court's public gallery erupted in cries of joy as the acquittals were announced. Haradinaj, 44 and Idriz Balaj, 41, were being retried on six war crime charges at the tribunal for allegedly murdering and torturing Serbs and non-Albanians during the 1998-99 conflict, after initially being acquitted.