07:43 GMT +314 November 2019
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    Suspended EULEX prosecutor Maria Bamieh shows a document she claims proves the mission sidelined her for whistleblowing during an interview with The Associated Press in Kosovo capital Pristina

    EU Kosovo Mission Accused of Trying to Silence Whistleblower

    © AP Photo / Visar Kryeziu
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    A London-based whistleblower described the EU mission in Kosovo's warning of possible prosecution as an attempt to silence her after she disclosed details of bribery practices among senior mission staff, the Guardian reported Monday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) Maria Bamieh, a London-based lawyer who had worked with the mission known as Eulex since 2008, has claimed she was forced out in 2014 after disclosing documents proving that senior members of the mission's staff were involved in corruption.

    Eulex warned Bamieh that she could be prosecuted for leaking confidential documents, the paper said. The whisleblower has denied the accusations, claiming she only disclosed the documents after being suspended from the mission.

    "These latest developments only serve to demonstrate the lengths to which the relevant powers will go to prevent my concerns from being openly discussed. Despite this, I shall not be cowed and I shall not be intimidated," the newspaper quoted Bamieh as saying.

    According to the Guardian, Eulex has asked the tribunal for privacy and anonymity orders during the remaining stages of the proceedings.

    Bamieh's solicitor, Peter Daly, was quoted by the paper as saying that the EU Kosovo mission's threats and the "highly unusual request for blanket anonymity and desire to obscure these proceedings from any scrutiny – do not appear to sit comfortably with Eulex’s function as a protector of the rule of law."

    Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008 after spending several years under UN administration. It is recognized by Washington and many EU member nations.

    The European Union launched Eulex, the European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo, its largest mission to date, in 2008, primarily to fight corruption and organized crime in the country.


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