June 7, 2005


Vienna, 07/06/2005

The Vienna-based South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), a network of editors, media executives and leading journalists in South East Europe and an affiliate of the International Press Institute (IPI), is alarmed at the recent assassination attempt on a Kosovo journalist.

According to information before SEEMO, on Friday, 3 June, Bardhyl Ajeti, former journalist and editor for Bota sot daily from Kosovo, which is also published in Western Europe and USA, was shot with one bullet in the head and one in the back while driving through the village of Bresalc/Bresalce, some kilometres away from Gjilan/Gnjilane. Unknown persons have opened gunfire on Ajeti’s car, while driving by. His condition is critical, although he was immediately operated upon.

SEEMO has also been informed that on several occasions Ajeti claimed he was under threat. We would like to stress that this attempt on Ajeti’s life is

just one in a series of attacks on journalists in Kosovo. Only one year ago Fatmira Terdevci, a journalist for Koha Ditore, was attacked by unknown men. The perpetrators have still not been identified.

SEEMO calls upon the international and local authorities in Kosovo to do everything in their power to find those persons responsible for this

assassination attempt and to bring them to justice. SEEMO would also like to emphasise that freedom of expression and a safe working environment for journalists are the basic principles of any democratic society.