Four Vetevendosje activists were found guilty of attacking the Kosovo Assembly building and sentenced to a total of 21 years and six months in prison.
The Prishtina Basic Court announced the verdict against four Vetevendosje activists suspected of attacking the Kosovo Assembly building in August 2016.
Frasher Krasniqi, an elected Vetevendosje MP, was sentenced with eight years in prison; Atdhe Arifi was sentenced to six years; Egzon Haliti with five and half years; and Adea Batusha was sentenced with two years.
The activists were accused of terrorism for attacking the Kosovo Assembly building with a handheld mortar launcher.
The defendants pleaded not guilty at the hearing held on February 28 this year, claiming that the indictment was political. The Basic Court rejected the defense’s request for the dismissal of the charges and the dismissal of the proceedings.
Astrit Dehari, the 26-year-old activist who died in custody in a Prizren detention center on November 5, 2016, was also one of the suspects in the case.
The verdict was announced by the presiding judge Beqir Kalludra; Shadije Gerguri and Shashivar Hoti were the other judges on the panel.
Some supporters of the accused were present in the courtroom and voiced their protest when the verdict was read, leading the judge to order some of them out of the courtroom.
After the verdict, Nexhibe Arifi, mother of Atdhe Arifi, said that there was a lack of evidence in the case.
“I feel very sorry, not for my son but for Kosovo. I feel bad that we are living in this state where rights are violated. There is not a single piece of evidence [against the accused]. I can guarantee for my son’s whereabouts [on the night of the attack],” she said. “We are proud of our children.”
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