Acknowledging the truth about war crimes in Kosovo is the only way that both societies can move forward.

President Jahjaga was not able to read her speech in Belgrade, therefore I want to read a part of it here:

“The stories presented in the book are not only stories of torture and abuse. They are stories of the cruelest form of torture. These are stories of rape-rape used as a tool of war. These are stories of a truth that has been attempted to be concealed, hidden and buried. Over the years, I have met hundreds of survivors of sexual violence during the war, in different parts of my country.

Carefully and patiently, I have listened to their stories; I have cried for those who needed me to cry with them, and I have stayed strong for those who needed me to be strong. I have heard a story of a woman from the Drenica region who was gang-raped continuously by Serbian paramilitaries for over six months. I have spoken to a woman in Gjakova whose body was mutilated while she was raped.

Just recently, I met the child of a war rape victim who died without receiving the justice she hoped for, for so many years; I truly hope that you read this book, share it with your friends and family, ask your government to punish the perpetrators and call for reconciliation with your neighbours. We shall not let anybody keep us hostages of the past.

The victims of these crimes will never be able to find peace unless the perpetrators of these crimes are brought to justice. This is a precondition for long lasting peace, good neighbourly relations and a stable future for the next generations. The future of our countries lies in our hands. Let it be a future of reconciliation and peace”

Ambassador Vlora Citaku

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