23 years from the Racak Massacre, leaders pay tribute to the victims

Today marks 23 years from the Racak Massacre in Kosovo. On 15 January 1999, 45 ethnic Albanian civilians were brutally murdered.

The former head of the OSCE Kosovo Verification Mission, Ambassador William Walker, declared at the time that the atrocities committed at the Racak Massacre fell under crimes against humanity.

What happened on 15 January 1999?

In the early hours of January 15, the townspeople of Recak woke up to a siege. According to witnesses, around 6:30 AM, Serb forces bombarded the village which was followed by a raid.

After the bloodbath, the Kosovo Liberation Army and Serb forces fought for 48 hours to retrieve the bodies of the victims.

It was the Racak Massacre that mobilized the international community. The atrocities committed there caught the attention of Western powers and revealed the truth over the genocidal plans of former warlord Slobodan Milosevic.

Recently, the spokesperson of the EU’s foreign policy and security chief, Peter Stano, declared that the Racak Massacre cannot be “denied or altered”.

“What happened in Recak and the atrocities committed there in January 1999 are well documented”, Stano said.

His statement came as a response to the remarks made by Serbian interior minister Aleksandar Vulin claiming that the massacre was a “fabrication”.