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AI Index: EUR 70/130/99
UA 314/99
December 06, 1999

Fear for safety.   Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY)

Ethnic Albanian lawyer and human rights activist, Teki Bokshi was detained by Serbian police on 3 December. The authorities have not given any information about his whereabouts, and Amnesty International is seriously concerned for his safety.

Teki Bokshi, who lives in Kosovo, works for a Belgrade-based human rights organization, the Humanitarian Law Center (HLC). He was returning to Belgrade from visiting clients in Sremska Mitrovica prison, northwest of the city, with two other ethnic Albanian HLC lawyers, when their car was stopped about 15 kilometres from Belgrade by plainclothes police in a grey Mercedes with Ministry of the Interior licence plates.

The police took the car keys and demanded all three men's identity documents. Teki Bokshi had left his documents at the Belgrade hotel where he was staying. The police kept the other two lawyers' documents and ordered them to wait at the roadside, saying that they were taking Teki Bokshi to the hotel to check his identity.

Teki Bokshi was taken off at about 2pm. At 5pm the two other men raised the alarm. Despite appeals to the Serbian authorities, HLC director Nata a Kandi has been unable to obtain news from them of Teki Bokshi since his "disappearance".

The HLC, established in 1992, is a well-respected national human rights organization with offices in Belgrade, Montenegro and Kosovo. Teki Bokshi and the other two lawyers were defending some of nearly 2,000 ethnic Albanian prisoners from Kosovo, including some women and minors, detained on suspicion of committing acts of "terrorism" and accused of being members of the Kosovo Liberation Army, the main ethnic Albanian armed group in the conflict in Kosovo. Some have already been convicted in trials Amnesty International believes were unfair.

The Serbian authorities transferred the ethnic Albanians to prisons in Serbia proper after the Serbian police withdrew from Kosovo in June. It is likely that many of them have been tortured or ill-treated in detention. Some 300 prisoners have been released after charges against them were dropped.

Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express/airmail letters in English, French, German, Russian or your own language: - asking for information about the whereabouts of Teki Bokshi, who was detained by police between Sremska Mitrovica and Belgrade on 3 December 1999;
- calling for his immediate and unconditional release;
- expressing concern for his safety while he remains in unacknowledged detention.

President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Slobodan Milo evi
Predsednik SRJ
Bulevar Mihaila Pupina 2
11070 Beograd, Yugoslavia
Telegrams:  President, Belgrade, Yugoslavia
Faxes:  + 381 11 636 775
Telexes:  11062 siv yu
E-mails:  slobodan.milosevic@gov.yu
Salutation:   Dear President
  Minister of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Serbia
Vlajko Stojiljkovi
Ministar unutra njih poslova Republike Srbije
Kneza Milo a 101
11000 Beograd, FR Yugoslavia
Fax: +381 11 3617 508
Salutation: Dear Minister
Federal Minister of Internal Affairs
Zoran Sokolovi
Ministar za unutra nje poslove
Savezno ministarstvo za unutra nje poslove
11000 Beograd, FR Yugoslavia
Telegrams:  Federal Minister, Belgrade, Yugoslavia
Faxes:  + 381 11 361 7730
E-mails:  zoran.sokolovic@gov.yu
Salutation:  Dear Minister
Federal Minister of Foreign Affairs
Ministar za inostrane poslove
ivadin Jovanovi
Savezno ministarstvo za inostrane poslove
Kneza Milo a 24-26
11000 Beograd, Yugoslavia
Faxes:  + 381 11 367 2954
Telexes:  11173
E-mails:  zivadin.jovanovic@gov.yu
Also contact diplomatic representatives of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia accredited to your country.
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