Photo: Atdhe Mulla.

Dehari’s death declared a suicide; requests for independent investigation continue

The autopsy report declared activist Astrit Dehari’s death a suicide; while both citizens and opposition party Vetevendosje insist on an independent investigation.

The autopsy report, released on Friday by the Institute of Legal Medicine, stated that the cause of Dehari’s death was self-inflicted asphyxiation.

“The death of the late Astrit Dehari came as a result of mechanical asphyxiation from blocking of the upper breathing channels with a solid tool…The damages described are ‘hesitant’ self-inflicted damages, which have been accompanied by external bleeding, but which did not lead to hemorrhagic shock,” the report stated.

This was confirmed Syle Hoxha, the Chief Prosecutor of the Basic Prosecution in Prizren, in a press conference held after Hoxha gave the report to Tome Gashi, the legal representative of Dehari’s family.

“All the evidence and the examinations conducted during the investigation process show that this case was a suicide,” said Hoxha. “He died as a result of mechanical asphyxiation, as a result of the upper breathing channels being closed by a strong object.”

Hoxha said that the prosecution has interviewed 17 people, four of which were interviewed twice. He added that there were no suspects.

“There is no suspicion of a physical fight or a problem amongst the prisoners or the officers with the late Dehari… We don’t have a suspect for a criminal act, or that could have caused the death,” said Hoxha.

Tome Gashi, the lawyer of the family Dehari, said that he will study the report before coming out with a conclusion.

“We will study the data, we will see what the cause of death was according to the legal medicine,” said Gashi, adding that the independent experts appointed by Dehari’s family did not receive all of the materials they requested.

“We will ask the prosecutor and other authorities to give us the material so that the appointed experts will have the same evidence, and if other results come, they will be accepted by the Dehari family, no matter what the report of the independent experts and the prosecution said,” said Gashi. “They have not given us the pictures taken during the autopsy, or the pictures from Astrit Dehari’s room.”

Vetevendosje also reacted to the autopsy results, claiming that the report does not include “scientific nor logical connections” between assumptions to conclusions of the cause of death.

“The report and its conclusion on the cause of death are unreliable,” the movement declared in a press statement.

Since Dehari died while in custody, the victim’s family and Vetevendosje have insisted on an independent investigation into the activist’s death. Civil society activists and common citizens have joined the call for an independent investigation and have called for a second protest on Thursday.

The Ministry of Justice has requested from the British Embassy that the metropolitan police, Scotland Yard, come to investigate the death of Astrit Dehari.

The request was sent to the embassy on November 14, four days before the preliminary results of the autopsy report were published, Koha Ditore reported.

Astrit Dehari, 26 years old, died on November 5 in the Detention Center in Prizren. Dehari  was one of the six Vetevendosje activists suspected to have attacked the Kosovo Assembly building earlier this year. Dehari spent 68 days in custody on suspicion of terrorism, although he was not yet indicted.

21/11/2016 - 11:37

21 November 2016 - 11:37

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