Kosovo privatisation head took own life - autopsy
PRISTINA (Reuters) - The head of Kosovo's state privatisation agency mortally wounded himself by stabbing himself 11 times and was not murdered as initially thought, Kosovo and European Union justice officials said on Monday.
Dino Asanaj, 55, was found in his office on Thursday with stab wounds and was rushed to hospital, where he died hours later due to severe blood loss.
Murder was initially suspected but an autopsy pointed instead to a grisly suicide, said Blerim Krasniqi, a spokesman for the EU police and justice mission in Kosovo known as EULEX.
"The autopsy findings do not indicate anything other than a suicide," said Krasniqi.
The autopsy was carried out by a joint local and EULEX forensics team, including two prosecutors, who found that Asanaj stabbed himself 11 times, said Arsim Gerxhaliu, a Kosovo forensics expert who took part in the autopsy.
Kosovo media have reported that police found a suicide note in which Asanaj accused two local business people and a newspaper of driving him to suicide. Authorities have not confirmed the reports.
"He had two cuts on the right side of the neck, seven others on the left side ... and two other wounds on the left side of the chest," Gerxhaliu told local media, adding that only the two chest wounds would have been deep enough to be fatal.
The autopsy report has been met with some scepticism in Kosovo media that a person could self-inflict so many wounds.
But a Western official close to the investigation told Reuters that there were no "defensive wounds" on Asanaj's body of the kind that would be expected had he tried to protect himself from an attacker.
Asanaj ran the Privatisation Agency of Kosovo, in charge of selling state-owned companies. He was also a successful businessman who built a new residential development of more than 100 luxury houses in the suburbs of the capital Pristina.
(Reporting by Fatos Bytyci; Editing by Roger Atwood)
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