A United Nations police officer in Kosovo pleaded not guilty last week to charges that he murdered his local interpreter after a torrid love affair. Prosecutors said Sherif Abd Elaziz, 33, of Egypt, shot 23-year-old Albanian Vlora Berbati three times in the chest and abdomen; Berbati, they said, had demanded he leave his wife. Elaziz, who has a bullet wound in his left arm, acknowledged that Berbati was one of his several lovers, but said she took his gun and shot him in anger before accidentally shooting herself. Elaziz’s case is the most serious in a string of incidents that have raised concerns about the behavior of international forces in the region, which has been a U.N. protectorate since 1999. There are currently 4,500 international police in Kosovo, along with 30,000 peacekeepers.
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