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Protests in Kosovo over Swiss extradition

Around 100 people have demonstrated outside the Swiss embassy in Kosovo against the planned extradition of a Kosovan freedom fighter from Geneva to Serbia.

The man, a former member of the Kosovo Liberation Army, is accused of committing war crimes in 1999 against Serbian civilians and Albanians. He says he was in Macedonia at the time the crimes were committed.

He was arrested in Vevey in Switzerland in April and Serbia filed a request for his extradition in March. The Kosovan justice minister sent a letter to the Swiss authorities in May asking them not to go through with the extradition.

The protest outside the embassy in Pristina was staged by an organisation for Kosovan war veterans.

Nearly 5,200 people have signed a petition against the extradition. It was delivered to the Swiss justice ministry in mid-December.

The Federal Criminal Court rejected an appeal against the extradition  in November, saying there was “no serious reason for thinking that the Serbian authority’s efforts were motivated by the accused’s social group, race, belief or nationality”.

The case can still be passed to the highest court of the land – the Federal Court.  

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SWI swissinfo.ch - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR