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Serbia Calls For UN Probe Of Kosovo Organ Trafficking Allegations

Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic
Serbia's Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic has called on the United Nations to lead a probe into allegations that Kosovo rebels traded in organs taken from Serbian prisoners during the Kosovo conflict in 1999.

A Council of Europe report last year linked Hashim Thaci, a former leader of the Kosovo Liberation Army and now Kosovo's prime minister, to the alleged organ trafficking. The European Union law and order mission in Kosovo, EULEX, has launched an investigation into the allegations, supported by the Kosovo government.

But Jeremic, addressing a UN Security Council hearing on May 12, said that the UN was the proper body for the investigation.

"If all investigations into war crimes committed by Serbs received mandates from this body, then why is it that investigating war crimes committed against Serbs should not take place under the auspices of the Security Council as well?" Jeremic said.

"We ask what possible explanation could there be for such a double standard."

Jeremic also said an international inquiry would be "an integral part" and a "prerequisite" for the reconciliation process after Kosovo's split with Serbia.

Russia joined its close ally Serbia in demanding a UN Security Council mandate for the investigation.

compiled from agency reports

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