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Slovenia Releases Former Kosovo Prime Minister

Former Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj (file photo)

A court in Slovenia has ruled that former Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj has diplomatic immunity and can return home after being detained there on a Serbian war crimes warrant this week.

Haradinaj, an opposition political leader and former guerrilla commander during Kosovo's 1998-99 war, had been ordered to remain in Slovenia until a court ruled on his case.

In a statement, the district court in Kranj, Slovenia, said Haradinaj was free to leave.

The arrest of Haradinaj, who was prime minister of Kosovo in 2004-2005, had infuriated Kosovars, many of whom consider him a hero for his role in fighting Serbian forces in 1998-99.

The former Serbian province declared independence in 2008.

Haradinaj was tried and acquitted twice of war crimes at a United Nations court in the Hague.

He frequently travels through Europe, including Slovenia, and it remains unclear why police acted on the 2004 warrant on this occasion and not earlier.

Based on reporting by Reuters