A prominent Kosovo lawyer and former politician was shot and wounded on Monday outside his apartment in the capital Pristina and police said they had arrested two suspects.

The motive for the attack on Azem Vllasi was not immediately clear.

Vllasi, 68, is no longer politically active, but was a close ally of Yugoslav leader Josip Broz Tito in the communist era. In the early 1990s he was jailed for opposing the decision of then-president Slobodan Milosevic to end autonomy for Kosovo, which was at that time a southern Serbian province.

Vllasi said his assailant had posed as a client seeking legal help in a property dispute. Vllasi said he had declined and instead offered the services of another lawyer. The man then fired at him, wounding him in the shoulder.

"Based on all the circumstances he was a hired gunman. Why and by whom, the investigation will show," Vllasi told Radio Free Europe from the hospital where he was being treated.

The police said they had confiscated a pistol with a silencer believed to have been used in the attack.