www.slobodan-milosevic.org - April 26, 2005

Written by: Andy Wilcoxson

The testimony of Dragan Jasovic continued at the trial of Slobodan Milosevic on Tuesday. Jasovic was a police detective working for the Urosevac SUP in Kosovo until June of 1999.

The Urosevac SUP covered the area of Urosevac, Stimlje, Strpce, and Kacanik, as well as the village of Racak.

As a detective, Mr. Jasovic took statements from numerous people living in the area. He came to court with statements from 90 different people concerning KLA activities in and around Racak. Jasovic personally took all 90 of the statements.

The police took the statements to inform themselves about the activities of the KLA. People gave the statements to the police on their own accord, and their authenticity is evidenced by the fact that the person who gave the statement signed each page of the document together with Jasovic and his partner.

The statements identified 30 out of the 40 people killed in Racak on January 15, 1999 as members of the KLA.

In most cases, KLA members were identified by 3 or 4 different people. In some cases as many as eight different people identified particular KLA members. Ethnic Albanians gave the witness statements almost exclusively.

The statements detailed the activities of the KLA in the area. The location of the KLA headquarters was named, and details about the KLA prison in Lapusnik were also contained.

The statements spoke of a campaign of KLA terror against Albanians designed to discipline them, and force them to support the KLA and its goals. According to the witness statements, scores of Albanian civilians were kidnapped and killed by the KLA throughout Kosovo.

Informers gave details of KLA training and weapons procurement operations. Some members of the KLA received training in Switzerland, and a substantial portion of the KLA’s weapons came from Albania, when rioters looted Albanian Army depots in 1997. The statements also revealed that the KLA was recruiting women and children for combat activities.

Mr. Nice has tried to undermine the credibility of the statements by alleging that Albanians were tortured by Jasovic and forced to sign the statements under duress. Jasovic has flatly denied these accusations. It is interesting to note that Jasovic first came to the tribunal as a prosecution witness in the Limaj trial, not as a defense witness for Milosevic.

One of the Albanians that Mr. Nice tracked down told the prosecution that he had seen blood on the floor of the basement of the Urosevac SUP building, and was so scared by the sight that he signed a statement without even reading it. Jasovic, who worked precisely in the Urosevac SUP building, testified that the building did not even have a basement.

Jasovic said that he understood why the Albanians would want to deny giving statements to the police. He said that the KLA killed and terrorized Albanians and their families if they cooperated with the Serbian authorities. Today, Kosovo is fully in the hands of the KLA. The Kosovo Protection Corps (KPC) and the Albanian National Army (ANA) are nothing more than the KLA under a new name.

In order to protect the lives of the Albanians who gave statements to the police, their names were not mentioned in open session. If it was necessary to mention a name the court went in to closed session.

Jasovic will continue his testimony when the trial resumes on Wednesday.

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