As part of its efforts to help shed light on the fate and whereabouts of the missing persons in Kosovo, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) mission in Kosovo signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Governmental Commission of Missing Persons (GCMP) of Kosovo today.
The MoU is meant to serve as a guide and groundwork for the coordination and cooperation between the ICRC and GCMP in the course of actions aimed at clarifying the fate and whereabouts of those still missing in relation to the 1998–1999 armed conflict in Kosovo.
The head of the ICRC mission in Kosovo, Mr Agim Gashi, said, “At its core, this MoU is a step towards boosting the joint cooperation that the ICRC and GCMP have maintained for years now. The GCMP has shown a very proactive approach to the issue by undertaking concrete efforts to shed light on the fate and whereabouts of those who have gone missing in Kosovo. For the ICRC, the MoU certainly substantiates our unwavering support and commitment to strengthen the local capacities, aiming at a more effective way of dealing with the issue of missing people.”
“I want to take this opportunity to again express my appreciation for the cooperation with the GCMP and hope that the MoU will help us all achieve greater results on the ground,” Mr Gashi said.
More than 22 years have passed since the armed conflict in Kosovo. The families of more than 1’600 missing people are still waiting for answers about the fate and whereabouts of their loved ones.
As stipulated in the international humanitarian law, the families have a right to know what has happened to their loved ones, and the States are obliged to provide them with answers and support. As always, the ICRC stands ready to support the authorities in fulfilling their responsibilities in this regard and urges them to put the exclusively humanitarian issue of missing people at the forefront.