Albert Berisha, charged with participating in terrorist organisations and on trial in Kosovo, said he travelled to Syria to help the moderate Syrian opposition but got trapped by ISIS fighters.
Ridvan Haqifi (left) and Lavdrim Muhaxheri (right), two ISIS Kosovo Albanian commanders. | Photo: ISIS propaganda video
Albert Berisha, a former Kosovar jihadist who travelled to fight in Syria, appeared before a Pristina court on Monday to recount his version of the story and maintain his innocence.
Berisha, who graduated in political sciences from the University of Pristina and holds a Masters degree from the University of Tirana, was arrested in 2014 and is charged with participating in terrorist organisations. This crime is punishable with a minimum of five years in prison.
Berisha said he went to Syria from October 6 to 20, 2013, to help the Syrian opposition in their struggle against Bashir Al-Assad’s regime but never engaged in fighting.
On arrival in Syria, he asked to join other Albanian-speaking formations to “avoid language barriers”, and was taken to meet Lavdrim Muhaxheri, the ISIS commander of Albanian fighters.
“I swear by God, that I had never heard of him or met him before,” Berisha said, when the prosecution asked whether he knew Muhaxheri before that meeting.
Berisha claimed he searched the internet during the two available daily hours of electricity, trying to understand where he had ended up and came across a video of Muhaxheri.
“It was then when I understood that he was part of the Islamic State organisation, so I decided to leave and join the Ahrar al-Sham group,” Berisha said.
As escaping ISIS proved almost impossible, according to Berisha, he used Facebook to contact a friend in Kosovo to arrange an exit plan.
“He then sent me an SMS saying a relative of mine was sick and I had to return home, which I used as justification to return to Kosovo,” the suspect told the court.
Berisha claimed he then joined Ahrar al Sham, saying he also checked the US State Department list of terrorist organisations, to make sure the group was not included among them.
“The group was being financially supported by Qatar, Saudi Arabia and indirectly supported with weaponry from the US,” Berisha recounted.
While Ahrar al-Sham does not appear on Western lists of terrorist organisations, it is recognised as such by Iraq, Syria, Iran and Russia. Other sources say the group has affiliations with Al Nusra – Al Qaeda’s branch in Syria and Iraq.
Berisha said that when he returned to Kosovo after Muhaxheri granted him permission to leave, an Albanian from Skopje told him that other “Albanian recruits at ISIS had expressed regret for not having killed” him.
Berisha said he spent little time with Ahrar al-Sham because of increased tensions between this fighting formation and ISIS, and he did not want to become part of the fighting between the two formations.
Around 100 people have been arrested in Kosovo since September 2014 on charges of active membership of, or affiliation to, Islamist groups including ISIS and Al-Nusra.
More than 50 are currently on trial. The latest estimates from the authorities are that about 300 Kosovo Albanians have joined ISIS and Al Nusra.
Kosovo and Metohia, two central regions of perennial Serbia, are the very essence of Serbian spiritual, cultural identity and statehood since Middle Ages to date. Fertile and clement planes of Kosovo with mild climate, and reach in water resources, with high mountain chains bordering with Albania have been good-blessed environment for a fruitful development of the highest achievements in all fields in medieval Serbia. The cultural and demographic strength of the Serbs is best illustrated by the presence of 1.500 monuments of Serbian culture identified so far. Numerous outstanding noble Serbian families used to live in these regions, as families ...
The struggle for peace and the struggle for full respect of universal human rights, as defined by UN Declaration on protection of human rights, are interdependent and non-separable. Violations of sovereignty and territorial integrity, military interventions, aggressions and occupations go hand in hand with massive violations of the basic human rights.
It is clear that there are no humanitarian military interventions.
NATO military aggression against Yugoslavia ( Serbia ) which started March 24rth, 1999 was launched to allegedly protect human rights of Kosovo Albanians. It was carried out in blatant violation of the basic principals of International Law and without approval of ...
In an email sent to his business partner and Democratic fundraiser Jeffrey Leeds, former Secretary of State Colin Powell wrote of Hillary Clinton, “Everything HRC touches she kind of screws up with hubris.”
Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State during Barack Obama’s first term was an unmitigated disaster for many nations around the world. Neither the Donald Trump campaign nor the corporate media have adequately described how a number of countries around the world suffered horribly from Mrs. Clinton’s foreign policy decisions.
Millions of people were adversely harmed by Clinton’s misguided policies and her “play-to-pay” operations involving favors in return for donations ...
Editor: Little did I know when I posted a short news story about the ‘invasion of Hungary’ last evening that the situation in Kosovo has become untenable and a mass exodus was so advanced. ‘Pungentpeppers’ has again pulled many threads together to give us the big picture of what is happening in Eastern Europe. Is the US responsible? An Austrian political leader says so!
Mass exodus from Muslim Kosovo into Europe
~150,000 or more Kosovars on the move since summer
~Hungarian Police catch 1,000 Kosovars daily – a small fraction of the total
~Hungarian mayor calls for fence as Kosovars overwhelm village
~Austrian politician blames ...
Documentary movie: Rachak Village in Kosovo 1999- Lies and the truth (in Serbian)
Лажи и истине о случају села Рачак на Косову и Метохији у јануару 1999. г.
Лажи и истине о случају села Рачак на Косову и Метохији у јануару 1999. г.
UN negotiator on Kosovo Martti Ahtisaari wanted to honor and commemorate Finnish Nazi SS troops in 1999 when he was the President of Finland. He wanted to have the Finnish taxpayers and the Finnish government fund and finance the construction of a plaque in the Ukraine to commemorate the deaths of Finnish Nazi SS troops killed during Operation Barbarossa. Ahtisaari is not, alone, however, in seeking to honor and celebrate the legacy of Nazis and the SS.
Kosovo Albanians have similarly honored and commemorated the legacy of Nazis and the SS. Kosovo Albanians have named a high school in Pec and ...
BELGRADE – The Diocese of Raska-Prizren of the Serbian Orthodox Church (SPC) denied the allegations that the unfinished Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Pristina was illegally built on usurped grounds and needs to be removed.
The government (of ethnic Albanians) in Pristina threatened to destroy the unfinished facilities of Christ the Saviour Cathedral in keeping with the law on legalisation in case a request for its registry is not filed by February 5.
The daily Blic in Pristina reported that together with the request for legalisation, SPC will have to submit the consent of the University of Pristina which launched a ...
Albanian-U.S. sponsored Kosovo Liberation Army in august 1998 with the heads of local Serb civilians
The following research is a review around the theme of Southeastern European organized crime, mainly in the period 1995-2007, highlighting the emergence of powerful regional “Mafias” with an actual global presence.
The main focus is the Albanian criminal syndicates centered on Kosovo. The research is composed by previous material of the writer, some of which was presented in international workshops. Moreover the issue of radical Islam is being overviewed in a second part,for the same period, along with information regarding the state of affairs of the ...
Bosnia and Kosovo are two of the biggest exporters of jihadists joining the Islamic State (ISIS) and al-Nusra Front (al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria) from the Balkans. As The Cipher Brief reported last month, legacies of the Communist era and the wars of the 1990s – presence of foreign fighters, economic and physical destruction, a lack of funding to rebuild, and the near eradication of moderate Islamic institutions – paved the way for Islamic extremist groups to establish a foothold in both countries. Now, ISIS recruiters are targeting Bosnia and Kosovo, and many Bosnians and Kosovars have left to fight in Syria and ...
The U.S. military base in Kosovo was constructed in 1999 without consulting with the government of Serbia and is the largest U.S. military base built outside of the U.S. since the Vietnam War. The site was apparently used for extraordinary renditions and has been referred to as a “little Guantanamo”.
This is a very little known fact as NATO, the U.S., the European Union and the West are in the process of forcing Serbia to effectively give up Kosovo, and indicates the real motive for the West’s support of the Kosovo Liberation Army which it had deemed a terrorist organization ...
“What we are really talking about is a humanitarian disaster precipitated by the cold political calculus of an autocratic leader who has pursued a political strategy against his own citizens,” said U.S. Gen. Wesley Clark, supreme allied commander in Europe.
Gen. Clark’s target was Slobodan Milosevic. Yet his words might have been used by another American general named Robert E. Lee, about another “autocratic leader” named Abraham Lincoln.
The day Clark made his statement bolstering the case for air strikes in Kosovo, the fall issue of Independent Review arrived. In a piece on Lincoln, “micromanager of the war effort,” scholar Thomas DiLorenzo ...
In one of the more bizarre foreign policy announcements of a bizarre Obama Administration, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has announced that Washington will “help” Kosovo to join NATO as well as the European Union. She made the pledge after a recent Washington meeting with Kosovan Prime Minister Hashim Thaci in Washington where she praised the progress of the Thaci government in its progress in “European integration and economic development.”1
Her announcement no doubt caused serious gas pains among government and military officials in the various capitals of European NATO. Few people appreciate just how mad Clinton’s plan to push ...
An inquiry by the EU has found "compelling indications" that ten Serb captives had their body organs harvested for illegal trafficking during the 1998-99 Kosovo war. However, it wasn't widespread and there will be no trial, the lead investigator said.
The chief prosecutor Clint Williamson, who led the investigation, said there was no evidence of widespread organ harvesting, but that the crime had occurred a number of times.
"There are compelling indications that this practice did occur on a very limited scale and that a small number of individuals were killed for the purpose of extracting and trafficking their organs," he told ...
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More background on the issue:
predsednik.rs | b.malagurski
We invite all of the civilized world to protect the Serbian cultural, religious and historical heritage in the Southern Serbian province of Kosovo and sign the petition against the separatist government in Pristina being granted membership in UNESCO.
Pozivamo civilizovani svet da zaštite srpsko kulturno, versko i istorijsko nasleđe u južnoj srpskoj pokrajini Kosovu i Metohiji, te potpišu peticiju protiv primanja separatističke vlasti u Prištini u članstvo UNESCO-a.
Nous appelons les citoyens du monde à défendre le patrimoine culturel, religieux et historique, de ...
A couple of months ago I chanced upon the Emperor's Clothes Website.
I noticed their startling claim that we have been systematically lied to about Yugoslavia, including Slobodan Milosevic. As they told it, he was not guilty of racist incitement and genocide; rather he advocated multiethnic peace. Since their views sharply contradicted my own, I started systematically checking their references by obtaining the relevant original documents. I have yet to find a single claim in error.
This was particularly surprising regarding the famous speech that Slobodan Milosevic delivered at Kosovo Field in 1989 at the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Kosovo. ...
At the age of 15 on a riverbank he was shot eight times just for being Serbian. He survived and a few days later during the religious holiday of Transfiguration he was out of his coma. But until now he has not received an answer to his question: who shot the children bathing in the river near the Kosovo village of Gorazdevac on August 13, 2003? In his interview to the Voice of Russia Bogdan Bukumiric tells a wonderful story of his rescue.
“It is not so scary to die as to be buried alive” - this is the inscription on ...
This list of shrines is based on a study by Milan Ivanovic, Crkveni spomenici XIII-XX veka (Church Monuments from 13th to 20th century) from Zaduzbine Kosova (The Foundations of Kosovo), Prizren-Belgrade 1987, and other recent publications. Dragan Jovanovic, researcher, compiled the major part of this list.
AJKOBILA (in the Middle Age Prozdrikobila, Pristina): demolished church in the vicinity of the present-day mosque.
AJNOVCE (in the Middle Ages Hainovci, K. Kamenica): 1. ruins of the Tamnica monastery with the church built and frescoed in the 14C on the foundations of an older Byzantme basilica; 2. remains of a church in the old cemetery ...
Kosovo history – Second part
Violation of human rights of Serbs in the province of Kosovo and Metohija
Kosovo and Other Countries Destroyed by Hillary Clinton
Mass exodus from Muslim Kosovo into Europe: Did US play a role in creating the crisis?
Documentary movie: Rachak village in Kosovo 1999 – Lies and the truth (in Serbian)
Kosovo: Honoring Nazis and the SS
Shaking Hands With a War Criminal
Kosovo government wants to destroy Christ the Savior cathedral in Pristina
Southeastern European organized crime & extremism review
Exporting Jihad: Bosnia and Kosovo
Europe’s “Little Guantanamo”: Why the U.S. wants Serbia to give up Kosovo
Why is Kosovo’s rebellion our war?
Kosovo’s “Mafia State” and camp Bondsteel: Towards a permanent US military presence in Southeast Europe
Western intelligence operation “Kosovo Liberation Army” harvested Serbs’ organs – EU inquiry
Sign the petition: “No Kosovo in UNESCO”
How politicians, the media, and scholars lied about Milosevic’s 1989 Kosovo speech
The killing of Serbian children in Kosovo: The story of a survivor
The shortened list of the Serb Christian Orthodox shrines of Kosovo-Metochia (13th-20th centuries)