“Many victims of the 1998-1999 war in Kosovo*, in particular displaced persons, families of missing persons and victims of wartime sexual violence, are still trying to re-build their lives, find out the truth about their loved ones and access justice.”
“The on-going political deliberations have not focused sufficiently on the needs of victims, leaving them with the feeling of abandonment and hopelessness. A paradigm shift is necessary in order to put the victims at the centre of the political dialogue, and prioritise their human rights,” – said today the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Nils Muižnieks, at the end of his four-day mission to Kosovo.
The Commissioner is concerned that more than 15 years after the conflict around 16 500 persons belonging to all communities remain internally displaced in Kosovo, while some 20 000 displaced persons from Kosovo to Serbia have not yet managed to return home despite their wish. About 470 displaced persons are accommodated in 29 collective centres throughout Kosovo, including the collective centre “Samacki dom”, in northern Mitrovica, that the Commissioner visited.