[1/2] [Massacre in Cuska (Qyshk)]

Call Number

General information

Part of series
HU OSA 392-2-13 Video recordings of WITNESS: WITNESS partners' raw footage: WITNESS Kosovo Project
Located at
DVD-ROM #5 / No. 1
Primary Type
Moving image
Date of Production
41 min.


Raw material
Contents Summary
The footage was shot in Cuska (Qyshk) in the district of Pejes. They show the bloodstained sites of mass killings, the remains of homes that were burned by Serbian paramilitary soldiers in May 1999, and new gravesites. The videos contain the testimonies of several survivors from Cuska (Qyshk). There is good quality footage of rubble, destroyed buildings. The first man who is interviewed is Nur Queka. He speaks about the murder of 3 unidentified persons, about 60,30, and 18 years of age, on the evening of May 3rd, 1999. He refers to the execution of Dem Lajci, from Katundi I Ri, about a month earlier, in the same place. He witnessed the killing of Aziz Sharapolli, around 70 years old, and Naxhmije Sharapolli, around 60 years old, on the night of May 13th.| A woman named is Lirije Gashi is interviewed. She relates the story of a massacre, which occurred in the morning of May 14th 1999. She knew several of the Serbian troops from her hometown, Peja. The soldiers separated the men from the women, robbed them, and then proceeded to shoot and burn the men. Only one man, Hazir Berisha survived.| The next man interviewed is Isa Gashi, who recounts his experience in the Cuska (Qyshk) massacre, May 14th, 1999, and how he managed to survive. Halil Gashi, Emin Gashi, Jashar Gashi, Uke Lushi, Osman Lushi, Gani Azdylaj, Ram Gashi, Xafer Gashi, Iber Kelmendi, Ismet Dinaj were all shot and burned to death after the paramilitary stole their money, and other valuables.| The third person who speaks is Rexh Isuf Kelmendi. He tells how they were separated into three groups the morning of May 14th. The first group was executed immediately. His group was taken to the home of Dem Gashi, and the third to the home of Sahit Mehmeti. He recalls how the police forced him to light the curtain on fire and then shot people all around him. He escaped through a window, but Besim, Brahim, Mentor, and Dogan Kelmendi, Brahim and Ahmet Gashi, Emrush Krasniqi and Ismet Dinaj were all killed.| Adjet Gashi is interviewed next. He found his cousins, Skender and Syle Gashi dead under the fallen roof of a burned house.| A 16-year-old boy named Nerzim Lushi speaks about being led around by the paramilitaries, being threatened and robbed, and witnessing torture. His father, Osman, uncle Sefedin, and 7 cousins, Abdullah, Skender, Xafer, Ramiz, Uke, Caush, and Arian Lushi were killed.| Hasir Berisha, the sole survivor of an aforementioned May 14th massacre, is interviewed. He tells how 5 soldiers with machine guns and an automatic rifle told them to sit on couches, and then shot at them. The soldiers then threw a canister of gasoline and set the house on fire. Hasir suffered 7-8 fractures in his leg, but escaped the fire. Isuf Shala from Graboc, Arian Caush Lushi, Zeqir Alia from Zllopek, Emrush Krasniqi from Vranoc, Abdullah, Xhafer and Ram Gashi, and Skender and Xhafer Lushi from Cuska (Qyshk) were all killed around him.| Haxhi Ceku is interviewed. He was a witness when his brother, Hasan, was shot and his legs were set on fire by Serbian troops, also the morning of May 14th, 1999. Hasan was the father of Agim Ceku, an Albanian officer. The man whose yard they were in while they were robbed and threatened, was shot in his home. Hasan's daughter talks about this experience, explaining that the paramilitary had been killing the families of Albanian officers, and they were just waiting for their turn to come.
Associated Country
Serbia and Montenegro