Kosovo press laments 'disgrace' of Germany shootings

3rd March 2011, Comments 0 comments

Kosovo's newspapers on Thursday lamented the damage done to the territory's image after German police arrested one of its citizens for a deadly attack on two US airmen at Frankfurt airport.

"Kosovo is at centre of the world's attention again for bad (news)" said the front-page headline in the Daily Koha Ditore, after Wednesday's attack, which left two other servicemen seriously injured.

The 21-year-old alleged attacker had further disgraced Kosovo's already tarnished image, the paper declared.

The paper was referring to recent allegations in a Council of Europe report that implicated Kosovo's leaders, including Prime Minister Hashim Thaci, in organ trafficking during the 1999 war.

"Shame! Kosovar kills two Americans," said Daily Zeri's front-page headline.

"The image of Kosovo has clearly been damaged in recent times," the paper said, also referring to the Council of Europe report.

German police and US investigators were investigating Thursday whether the alleged gunman had links to extremist organisations or had acted alone.

The 21-year-old man cried "Allahu Akhbar" ("God is Greatest"), reports quoted witnesses as saying, before opening fire in the bus outside one of Europe's busiest airports on Wednesday.

Kosovo police sources have named him as Arid Uka Thursday after initially reporting a different first name.

Officials were still checking if he was a Kosovo citizen as first reported, after reports that he held a German passport, they added.

The authorities in Kosovo were quick to condemn the "horrible" attack "against civilised values and against the traditions of the people of Kosovo".

The US played a leading role in a NATO air campaign that ousted Serbian security forces from Kosovo in 1999, ending a war that claimed about 13,000 victims.

Washington was among the first to recognise Kosovo's declaration of independence in 2008, despite Serbia's fierce opposition, and remains an important ally for Pristina.

© 2011 AFP

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