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Serbia asking ICTY to reopen probe into Kosovo organ trafficking allegations

[JURIST] Serbia plans to officially request that the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website] resume a probe into allegations that separatist Kosovo Liberation Army leaders were involved in trafficking organs taken from Serb prisoners during the 1998-1999 war in Kosovo [BBC backgrounder], Serbian government officials said Monday. Former ICTY Chief Prosecutor Carla Del Ponte [JURIST news archive] has alleged in her new book [JURIST report] that approximately 300 Serb and other non-Albanian prisoners were victims of organ trafficking, but that a 2003 probe by her ICTY team failed to obtain sufficient evidence to prosecute. Kosovo Justice Minister Nekibe Kelmendi dismissed the allegations as "fabrications."

Last month, the Office of Serbia's War Crimes Prosecutor [official website] said that it was investigating "informal statements" [JURIST report] received from ICTY investigators alleging illegal organ harvesting. The ICTY has not commented officially on the alleged organ trafficking. The Turkish Press has more.

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