31,600 documents undoubtedly confirm death or disappearance of 13,535 individuals during war in Kosovo

post_prezentacija_KMBThe presentation and evaluation of the Kosovo Memory Book (KMB) Database was held today in the Belgrade Media Centre. The Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) and the Humanitarian Law Center Kosovo joined forces in the production of the KMB Database, containing data on the people who lost their lives  or disappeared in events related to the war in Kosovo in the period January 1st, 1998 – December 31st, 2000. The conference was attended by a large number of media, non-governmental organizations, and local and international institutions and experts.

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War Crimes and Past Human Rights Violations Data Base

The foundation of the HLC’s program is the War Crimes and Past Human Rights Violations Data Base (Data Base), which enables all information and documents pertaining to war crimes and other serious human rights violations to be organized in a professional manner,  easy of access  and  permanently preserved.

Content

Over 40,000 documents have been entered into the Data Base between late 2004, when it was installed, and January 1st, 2012. Over 16,000 documents have emerged as a result of the process, which the HLC has been implementing since its foundation, of documenting war crimes and other human rights violations committed on the territory of the former Yugoslavia during the 1990’s.. Most valuable among these documents are witness statements provided by eyewitnesses of war crimes and human rights violations and/or by family relatives of victims and members of armed forces who died or disappeared. The HLC has collected more than 11,400 witness statements to date. The greatest number of statements relate to  war crimes and human rights violations committed in Kosovo (9,939), then to  war crimes and human rights violations committed in BiH (over 451 statements), then to  war crimes and human rights violations committed in Croatia  (more than 470), and then to human rights violations committed in Serbia(over 500). More than 70 statements relating to human rights violations committed in Slovenia, Montenegro, Macedonia, and Albania have also been stored in the HLC’s Data Base.

Photographs of victims, mass grave sites, execution sites, memorials, monuments and headstones are also kept in the Data Base. Exhibits presented in the ICTY trials are also entered and analyzed in the Data Base. More than 6,133 such documents have been entered into the Data Base so far. In addition to this, the HLC also stores in its Data Base court files for war crimes trials conducted in the region, as well as court files for all earlier cases in which HLC attorneys have represented victims. The Data Base also contains reports by international and local state and non-governmental organizations, by foreign and domestic institutions, and in media archives, and many other documents.

Data relating to victims, soldiers, and perpetrators

By analyzing documents in the HLC’s Data Base, files have been created for 25,659 victims of war crimes and other human rights violations and for members of armed and police forces, including volunteer units, who died in battle throughout the entire territory of the former Yugoslavia. These files contain personal and family information, and information regarding the date and place of death or disappearance, the funerals, the perpetrators, etc. Each individual file is linked with all the documentary sources, which contain information on this particular person.

The greatest number of files have been created for the killed or missing in Kosovo in the period 1998-2000 (over 13,000); and the citizens of Serbia and Montenegro who were killed or disappeared in the wars in Slovenia, Croatia, and BiH (approximately 2,000), The Data Base also contains the files of several thousands of BiH and Croatian citizens who were killed or who disappeared in the wars in the period 1991-1995, and over 8,000 files of victims of other violations of international humanitarian law: forcible relocation, deportation, unlawful detention, torture, etc. Over 1,500 files of possible perpetrators of war crimes and other human rights violations have also been created in the Data Base.

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