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Press Release

Supporting the work of Department of Forensic Medicine

11 August 2011

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Justice, Prof. Dr. Hajredin Kuçi and EULEX Head of Justice, Silvio Bonfigli, today paid a joint visit to the Department of Forensic Medicine.

They met with the Director, Dr. Arsim Gerxhaliu, the EULEX Co-Head, Mr. Alan Robinson, and staff of the Department to discuss and share views on the work and accomplishments of the Department.

In connection with the visit, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Justice, Prof. Dr. Hajredin Kuçi and EULEX Head of Justice, Silvio Bonfigli, jointly stated:

“We are pleased to be here today at the Department of Forensic Medicine to discuss the progress and challenges regarding the forensic medicine service and the important issue of missing persons.”

The Department of Forensic Medicine is a crucial institution responsible for providing forensic medicine and medical death investigation expertise, including exhuming the human remains related to the armed conflict in Kosovo and returning the remains to their families. These are difficult tasks of great concern. They are pivotal to the people and essential for the effective functioning of the judiciary of Kosovo.

Since the Department of Forensic Medicine and EULEX began working together in December 2008 almost 300 field operations have been conducted and the remains of 176 missing persons have been recovered, identified and handed back to affected families. Additionally, over 50 cases of mis-identifications have been solved. An exhaustive analysis of the unidentified remains held at the Department of Forensic Medicine Morgue is continuing, with over 2000 individual case-files having been reviewed. Strong outreach activities and cooperation with the families and family associations of missing persons are continuing.

“Our visit today has confirmed that the joint work carried out by the Department of Forensic Medicine and the EULEX Experts together is salient both for the people and the authorities of Kosovo.

Therefore, the Government of Kosovo and the EULEX would like to use this occasion to underline the dedication and joint commitment to the support and development of the Department of Forensic Medicine with the ultimate aim of making it a truly self-sustainable institution serving the needs of the judiciary and the people effectively.”