Need for independent investigation and fair trials | Den norske Helsingforskomité

Need for independent investigation and fair trials

(14/02-2007) The violent handling of the Self-Determination Movement’s protest on Saturday raises serious concerns about leadership in Kosovo.

The Norwegian Helsinki Committee, the Swedish Helsinki Committee and the International Helsinki Federation question the international and the national leadership’s ability to reassure the public that the institutions in Kosovo have the both authority and the ability to lead the province fairly and efficiently. The organisations believe that it is mandatory that


an independent, transparent and swift investigation into the deaths and injuries be undertaken

all demonstrators apprehended are tried in accordance with the rule of law or released


There are media reports that some of the demonstrators arrested were within days sentenced to forty days imprisonment. Those reports raise the question of how it would be possible that a severely backlogged court system can in two days time fairly try and sentence several protestors, particularly when an investigation of the police is not expected for another two weeks.