In addition to being a central political figure in Kosovo, the former Kosovo Prime Minister, Ramush Haradinaj has also been „the man of the hour“ in Serbian dailies and tabloids for days now. In addition to the news about starlets and other lascivious headlines, catastrophe warnings, the crime section, and several reminders of the St. Elijah holiday, a „homage“ to the former coalition partner of Belgrade-supported Srpska Lista has taken center stage on the front pages of Serbian newspapers.
The timeline in pictures of KLA uniforms, Kalashnikovs, the “Yellow House,” followed with words such as „organ harvesting“, „ripped out heart“, „refrigerated organs“ and Serbia’s „new evidence“ with „500 witnesses“ to be hidden from Haradinaj – is what is offered to the readers of the Serbian tabloids and daily newspapers.
Since yesterday, however, the Kosovo Prime Minister started “sharing the spotlight” with Croatian President, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarevic. While a memorial service was being held in Serbia, she cheerfully celebrated the (Operation) Storm. „SICKO – Awful woman, get some help/Kolinda: I regret not killing Serbs“ – the Belgrade-based Kurir tabloid wrote.
The Serbian newspapers often write about Kosovo and the Albanians. In addition to headlines on Ramush Haradinaj, the tragedy that took place on the Belgrade-Nis highway, suspected to have been caused by a driver from Finland, reportedly of Albanian origin, in which a family of four – with two children – was killed, has been dominating the headlines since August 3.
„Shiptar fell asleep at the wheel and killed the Pesic family“, along with news on the Croatian president, grace today’s cover of the Informer tabloid. The news further reads that an Albanian living in Finland, whose full name was revealed by Informer, has pleaded guilty to a tragedy that shook the Serbian public, in which eight-year-old twins, their father and grandmother, were killed.
Similar headlines appeared just a day before. Informer wrote: „Shiptar kills an entire family from Kragujevac.“ Srpski Telegraf tabloid revealed – „HORROR NEAR POZAREVAC: Albanian runs over an entire family.“
However, the former Kosovo Prime Minister and coalition partner of Srpska Lista – a party backed by official Belgrade, Ramush Haradinaj is the one that continues to dominate the headlines.
„Haradinaj’s Special Unit within the KLA: Mujahideens burned Serbs alive,“ Belgrade daily newspaper Vecernje Novosti reported today, while Politika newspaper cover page reads: „500 Serbs testified against Haradinaj.“
„Control agreement in Kosovo and Macedonia: Close ties and jobs of Zaev and Haradinaj“ – the breaking news of Blic daily reads. The same daily previously published shocking headlines about the Kosovo Prime Minister as a brutal war criminal.
Vecernje Novosti also reported: „HARADINAJ’S DOCTOR IS GOING TO HAGUE“, while the day before, on August 3, the same daily wrote, referring to “a Balkans expert” Professor Boris Smeljov: „Haradinaj did a bloody job for the West.“
Danas daily, when compared to other daily newspapers, had a unique headline: „Serbian opposition from Kosovo suspects that they were wiretapped by Belgrade.“
„THE GREAT SERIES OF BLIC – ORGAN TRADE AND HARADINAJ’S ROLE” – the headline that repeatedly took the center stage of Blic reads. Blic informed its readers about the alleged brutal crimes that, as the daily claimed, were perpetrated and instigated by Ramush Haradinaj.
„EARNED A FORTUNE ON SERBS’ ORGANS“; „UNMIK HAS EVIDENCE ABOUT HARADINAJ’S CRIMES: THEY RIPPED THE HEART OUT OF A LIVE YOUNG MAN AT THE ‘YELLOW HOUSE’“; „THEY REMOVED ORGANS OUT OF SERBS AND THREW THEIR BODIES IN THE VILLAGE CEMETERY“; „AWFUL TESTIMONY: WE CAN’T KEEP THE ORGANS IN THE REFRIGERATOR FOREVER.“
The headlines of other newspaper did not fall short:
„THESE DOCTORS BUTCHERED SERBS AND REMOVED THEIR ORGANS“ – Srpski Telegraf wrote on August 2nd.
„HORRIFYING: NEW EVIDENCE ON ATROCITIES COMMITTED BY HARADINAJ – KILLED THREE CHILDREN WHILE THEY WERE KNEELING“ – Kurir reported on the next day – August 3rd.
On the other hand, with more moderate headlines, Politika writes – „New evidence against Haradinaj in the ‘Yellow House’ case: There are witnesses to the crime, they should be protected“ and Vecernje Novosti reports: „Belgrade has additional evidence. A new indictment against Haradinaj?“
The same papers dedicated a central place on their front pages on August 3 to the news that Catholic bishops from Kosovo held a mass on the remains of the Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas, with the plan of making it a tradition for the Albanian Diaspora Day: „ALBANIAN’S OBSCENE ACT: THEY HELD A MASS AT SERBIAN HOLY SITE“ (Novosti) and „History revision in Novo Brdo – Mass in Orthodox Temple“ (Politika).
Some of the news in the Kosovo-Metohija issue also arrived from the world centers – the US and Russia: „We have the support of the Russian military for challenges in Kosovo,“ Vecernje Novosti wrote, quoting Serbian Army Chief of Staff Milan Mojsilovic.
Politika opted for a more moderate title yesterday: „Belgrade closer to Trump, Pristina bets on Congress.“ „Good news for Serbia: Trump dumped Albanian lobbyist – John Ratcliffe will not be US intelligence chief,“ the Kurir revealed.
Finally, Serbian newspapers also recalled one of Milosevic’s closest associates, former Prime Minister and President, Nikola Sainovic, who was sentenced to more than 20 years for war crimes by the Hague Tribunal. „Nikola Sainovic confirmed: They also took Kosovo from us in Dayton.“
Articles about Ramush Haradinaj’s alleged crimes have started regularly appearing in Serbian media ever since he responded to the call of the war crimes tribunal in Hague for the third time. He appeared before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in 2005 and 2012, and before the Kosovo Specialist Chambers in July of this year.
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