The President: the Dubrava massacre, one of the gravest genocidal acts perpetrated by Serbia

Prishtina, May 20th 2019 – President of the Republic of Kosovo, Hashim Thaçi, participated today at the Memorial Academy held in honour of the hero Enver Topalli

President Thaçi said that Enver Topalli belongs to the group of typical activists and patriots of the eighties.

“1981 had made a great political and historic turn for Kosovo and for the nation. This generation, was best described by Professor Ukshin Hoti, himself also imprisoned during those years, who said that this generation was very demanding on themselves, was characterised by disciplined activists, thirsty for knowledge, adamant, sincere and with proper national upbringing and education,” said President Thaçi.

According to him, brutal intervention of the Yugoslav police and evaluation of the demonstrations as counter-revolution had made clear the determination of the patriotic elements not to agree at any moment with the Belgrade repressive policy, which peaked with the election of Milosheviq at its helm.

“While the subjectivity of Kosovo was systematically being eroded, the organisation of clandestine organisations was going on, the marking of the anniversaries of the demonstrations, distribution of the press, pamphlets and tracks never ceased,” added the President.

The head of state further added that as many other activists of the time, Enver Topalli as well, was influenced by secretive and patriotic personalities and movements, which had also been active prior to Spring 1981.

Political developments were asking for the establishment of a joint force, melting of the small political groups into a comprehensive front, both inside Kosovo and in the western world, where a strong diaspora was already active, said the President.

President Thaçi said that Enver Topalli was aware for the need to unite the political power of all groups. According to him, for this reason he resided for a while abroad, to then return to Kosovo, in order to strengthen the organisation of such patriotic groups.

The head of state said that Enver Topalli was in his life inspired by two important personalities.

“Adem Demaçi, the symbol of resistance, a man who became our national consciousness for 28 years in Yugoslav prisons and Rexhep Mala, one of the most resistant political prisoners, who suffered inhumane torture. For this reason, after his imprisonment and during his trial in 1984, Enver Topalli expressed in front of the judges his patriotic ideas and strongly backs the request for the Republic of Kosovo, with an impressive speech,” added the President.

The President also added that Enver Topalli did not cease his patriotic activity even during the 1990’s, and engaged with the Council for the Protection of Human Rights and Liberties, the culture commission and other organisations, where he also excels as an incessant and untiring activist.

“The tortures and imprisonments had harmed his health, but never the moral force, the ideal of freedom and the determination to oppose and fight the Serbian administration in Kosovo”, he added.

President Thaçi emphasized that Enver Topalli was also arrested several times during the 1990s to be imprisoned in 1998 when in Kosovo the open war began between the Kosovo Liberation Army and the Serb military and police forces.

“Unfortunately, on May 19, 1999, Enver Topalli was killed in the Dubrava Prison. Albanian prisoners, as said, with their hands tied, were killed in the cruelest way within the prison”, said President Thaçi.

The Head of State further added that, while commemorating Enver Topalli, we commemorate all the prisoners who were killed, wounded and mistreated at the Dubrava Prison.

“The crime committed in Dubrava is in the ranks of the most serious genocidal acts that the state of Serbia has committed in Kosovo during 1998-1999”, he stressed.

President Thaçi said that from March until today, throughout Kosovo, the crimes, massacres, burnings, acts of eradication and ethnic cleansing to the extent of genocide are being recalled.

“Even after 20 years, not a single ordered or executor of these crimes has appeared before the international or local justice”, emphasized the President.

Therefore, the Assembly of the Republic of Kosovo, several days ago, rightly issued a resolution condemning the genocide of Serbia in Kosovo.

“This is the best response of the Institutions of the Republic of Kosovo for the claimants of the denial of the crimes and the genocide directly conducted by the state of Serbia. Therefore, today, it is the time again that all, without distinction, like politics, institutions and as a society to be more united in the  condemnation of the genocide of Serbia and no one should become part of this boycott or denial of the crimes”.

Based on his constitutional and legal powers, President Thaçi bestowed the Order “Hero of Kosovo” upon Enver Topalli on the twentieth anniversary of his fall.