KLA Sentences Two Reporters to 60 Days Imprisonment

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November 3, 1998


Adem Demaçi
Political Representative of the Kosovo Liberation Army
Pristina

 

Dear Mr. Demaçi,

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is deeply disturbed by the Kosovo Liberation Army's October 29 criminal trial and sentencing of reporters Nebojsa Radosevic and Vladimir Dobricic.

According to a KLA statement released on November 1, Radosevic, 32, and Dobricic, 50, reporters for the Yugoslav state news agency Tanjug, were convicted by a KLA military tribunal of violating the group's code of military and civilian conduct. They were sentenced to 60 days' imprisonment. The communique provided no further details.

Radosevic and Dobricic disappeared on October 18 on the road to Magura, where two Serb police officers had been killed on the previous day. This was the second instance of Serb journalists disappearing in the conflict zone in recent months. On August 21, Radio Pristina reporter Djuro Slavuj, and his driver, Ranko Perenic, vanished as they left Orahovac by car for Malisevo. To date there has been no information about whereabouts of Slavuj and Perenic.

As an independent organization dedicated to defending the universally recognized rights of our colleagues around the world, CPJ condemns the arrest and imprisonment of journalists Radosevic and Dobricic for practicing their profession. Their capture and incarceration in the course of performing their duties violate international norms guaranteeing the right "to seek and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers," as expressed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We urge those within the KLA who are responsible for these actions against the journalists to immediately and unconditionally release the Tanjug reporters, and assist in locating the missing Radio Pristina employees.

Thank you for your attention. We await your reply.

 

Sincerely,

Ann K. Cooper

Executive Director



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Adem Demaçi
Political Representative of the Kosovo Liberation Army
Pristina

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