Gijlan. KOSOVO — October 2014. Since the end of the war in 1999, the Republic of Kosovo had experienced consistent economic growth according its leadership. Despite that, Kosovo continues to struggle with high rates of poverty and unemployment. The young people are severely affected by the hard labour market conditions. All that creates an environment that undermines the country’s social fabric
Mitrovica, KOSOVO — October 2014. Imam Enis Rama, member of country’s Islamic Council. In September, the Kosovo Police arrested him and other 14 Imam and Islamic suspected activists. These high-rank clergymen are accused of encouraging young members to become part of terrorist organisations such as Al Nusra and ISIS in Syria and Iraq. He was released after ten days.
Bresalc, KOSOVO — October 2014. Last year Genc Selimi was stopped at the airport in Istanbul due to the lack of an exit stamp from the country he was flying in, Pristina, the Kosovo’s capital city. Later in November 2013, under the terrorism involvement allegations he was arrested and brutally beaten from the Police in Kosovo. Kosovo media unverified reports says he fought alongside al-Qaeda and ISIS, Islamic Terrorist groups. Upon his return to Kosovo, he was arrested and remained in custody, although no evidence was found to confirm the prosecution. The family denounces police violence against, but Ombudsman legitimised it. In the picture left is his sister Genta with Genci’s little daughter on the right in picture is his second sister wearing Islamic scarf.
Bresalc, KOSOVO — October 2014 Findings suggests that the media editorial policy of the local press aims to defame anyone who could possibly be suspected for terrorism activity. The editorial policy commitment stand for creating a climate of hate and fear in the country. Ilma Hyseni has been socially isolated after her brother’s arrest for alleged terrorist association.
Gjilan, KOSOVO — October 2014 “UÇK” Monument Six years after the declaration of independence, Kosovo remain under a dramatic economic and political situation: due to unemployment (the youths unemployment is close to 70%), low foreign investment and political instability in the country. The prime minister Hashim Thaçi, which is alleged for war crimes against humanity during late ’90s, has been identified as one of the big fish in the mafia-type activities.
Viti, KOSOVO — October 2014 Mother, nephew, brother and father Ilaz Xhaferi express their sadness for the loss of their dearest family member. Granit Xhaferi, who was born in 1993, went to Syria with his wife (Sara Caka). The family is convinced that they had no passport to travel for Syria. Granit reportedly died in September and his wife is still in Syria. Granit father said ‘my son betrayed me’.
North of Kosovo, KOSOVO — October 2014 Ismete Muji, whose son died in Syria. The mother continues to berate her son’s choice as if he could still hear her.
Fog rests over the cold curtain of Livoç Lake, in a early morning of cold October, nearby Kosovo southeastern city of Gjilan.
Gjilan (city outskirt), KOSOVO — October 2014 The father asked his son (Patriot Matoshi) to burn his passport for the fear that he was going to go to Aleppo. The parents told that they’re not aware that he required a new passport, but despite the lack of documents, their son went to Syria and died right away, as unverified reports say during US Drone air strikes in Raqqa, Syria.
Central Mosque, Mitrovica, KOSOVO — October 2014 An estimated 60 police raids were carried out across Kosovo. There were mosques among the sites which may have been used as recruiting centres, but police brought no evidences about it.
(Central High Security Prison) Dubrava, KOSOVO — October 2014 Dubrava Prison, the largest prison of Kosovo is divided into five blocks and hosts about 800 detainees, including those alleged for terrorism activities abroad. Some witnesses say: “Some of the arrested for international terrorism are brutally beaten by the special police forces during the arrestment!”
Gjilan, KOSOVO — October 2014 A young pupil of Islamic High School “Alauddin” writes a note at his diary during his guarding discipline hour. In Kosovo, 90% of the population is Muslim and the majority of Muslims are moderate. Kosovo has always been an example of religious tolerance.
Gjilan, KOSOVO — October 2014 | Turkish Boarding School “Suleymaniye” | Turkey has always been an important presence in Kosovo. During the visit to Kosovo in 2013, the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan said: “Turkey is Kosovo, Kosovo is Turkey!”. Although lot of ethnic Albanians fear the resurrection of harsh long-standing 500 years occupation of the Ottoman Empire.
Pupils return to the classes in high school of Islamic teachings ‘Alauddin’ in Gjilan.
Gjilan, KOSOVO — October 2014 As Sun goes behind the clouds, the cold fog embrace the hills who lay above the Velekincë village, which lies in southern side of Kosovo southeast town of Gjilan.
Zhegër, KOSOVO — October 2014 Children play with a ball in a makeshift field as the sun goes down to lower temperatures in the village of Zhegra, bordering Macedonia’s hills, where police conducted operations in order to identify persons allegedly linked to terrorist activity associated with ISIS.
Velekincë, KOSOVO — October 2014 A child shares some of his moments with wire of his poor neighborhood district. Fifteen years since breaking from the war with Serbia, Kosovo stands among Europe’s poorest countries with millionaire politicians immersed in crime. A third of the workforce is unemployed and corruption is rife. About two out of three under the age of 25th are currently jobless, and nearly 50% of Kosovo’s 1.8 million people are considered to be poor, 25% of people is believed to be living below the poverty line. In Kosovo, the schooling rate is still low, especially among the poorest communities across the country.
Gjilan, KOSOVO — October 2014 | Turkish Boarding School “Suleymaniye”
Bresalc, KOSOVO — October 2014 Last year Genc Selimi was arrested for alleged terrorist association. His mother holds in her hands the son’s passport. Genc, as many guys, has only one entry stamp (after deportation from Turkey to Kosovo) in his passport. Dozens of Albanians, who flies from Pristina and Tirana, in the direction of Istanbul, Turkey, have no exit stamps at their passports from countries that have flown and have no entry stamp in the landing place, which is usually Istanbul, Turkey.
Pristina, KOSOVO — October 2014 During May 2012, Kosovo’s Foreign Minister Enver Hoxhaj voiced support for Syrians fighting to oust President Bashar al-Assad. Hoxhaj made clear at that time that Pristina was offering political support to the Syrian opposition.
Pasjak, KOSOVO — October 2014. Imam Samir Salihu. Founder of “Njeshmeria” Islamic NGO, closed for suspicious activity. Many NGOs have been closed on onknown legal grounds, but mainly suspecting recruitment activities for terrorism support in Syria or Iraq. The “Njeshmeria” NGO was responsible feeding about 300 orphans.
Nerudime (Manastirc) Ferizaj, KOSOVO — October 2014. Imam Nehat Hyseni said: “about two years Islamic Council of Kosovo asked us to talk about al-sham (Greater Syria) importance. I don’t prefer it, since I thought we have more problems at home, remember unemployment rate and the lack of a good education system”. He denied the accusations that sparked in the media against him for allegedly encouraging young Albanians to join terrorist forces in the middle eastern desert, by additionally saying “God Gave us Birth, here, in Kosovo”.
Gjilan, KOSOVO — October 2014 The sheep remain confined within a fence, while the owner tries to sell them to the believers of Islam, for the holiday of Eid al-Adha. Sales have largely failed, since the country’s health authorities alarmed citizens for the risk of a disease called the ‘blue tongue’ in animals.
Hani i Elezit, KOSOVO — October 2014 – An ethnic Albanian carry a tree.
Velekincë, KOSOVO — October 2014 | Family of a rural village. From Velekica some guys have joined THE terrorist groups in Syria, and their family considers that their choice has been caused by poverty and unemployment. About 30% of the population – two on six Kosovars – is considered to be poor. The Poverty is more prevalent in rural areas and especially among minority groups.
Lladovë, KOSOVO — October 2014 Even though several years passed since the end of the war, there is a strong US and NATO military presence. Camp Bondsteel, the main base of the United States Army under KFOR command, which is located near Uroševac in the southern part of Kosovo. It is the largest US military facility in Europe. For the United States, Kosovo is a strategic country for its geographic position.
Hani i Elezit, KOSOVO — October 2014 Nadire Topojani, mother of Sadat Topojani. Sadat is English teacher, author of a English book and father of two children. His Mom said that the police came to her house to carry out a search and they have ripped a religious picture claiming that it was the symbol of their religious belief, a gift frame brought for her from her relatives that lives in Turkey.
Velekincë, KOSOVO — October 2014 Matoshi Family — Computer of Ramadan Matoshi. Patriot Matoshi (19 years old) died in Syria fighting alongside ISIS. Al Qaeda-related groups in Syria are increasingly using social networking sites for recruitment purposes.