April 04, 2003

ERP KIM Newsletter 04-07-03

CONTENTS:

MICHEAL STEINER'S END OF MISSION: POOR RESULTS BEHIND MANY PROMISES

COURYARD OF ST. NICHOLAS CHURCH IN PRISTINA SHOWERED WITH STONES AGAIN - PARISH HOME WINDOWS BROKEN

ANAN: ESTABLISHING RIGHTS A KEY CHALLENGE FOR UNMIK
FORMER KLA OFFICER CHARGED WITH WEAPONS POSSESION
ALBANIA NABS TOP BALKAN REBEL SUSPECT

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MICHAEL STEINER'S END OF MISSION: POOR RESULTS BEHIND MANY PROMISES

Hardly any Serb will shed tears after Steiner leaves Kosovo. He will be remembered as a person who essentially failed to place himself above ethnic divisions and act as an objective and unbiased international representative

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ERPKIM INFO-SERVICE
APRIL 04, 2003

(photo: Michael Steiner- poor result behind many promises)

During his two years' mandate as a Special Representative of the UN Security Council in Kosovo Michael Steiner has failed to implement essential requirements of the UNSCR 1244, and hardly any objective observer could claim that Steiner leaves Kosovo with his job well done.

Despite certain success in formal establishing of interim Kosovo institutions, these institutions, including Kosovo Parliament and Kosovo Government, are still not in function of building of true multiethnic and democratic society and remain dominated by exclusively Albanian nationalistic agenda (such as independence of Kosovo and glorification of the terrorist UCK/KLA). Steiner tolerated these Albanian whims as an "expression of the democratic will of people" although such acts seriously undermined moral credibility of Kosovo institutions (if they had any at all). Despite symbolic Serb presence in these forums, Kosovo Serbs still do not have any confidence in these institutions and quite understandibly do not consider them as their own. For Kosovo Albanians, on the other hand, these institutions succesfully serve as a tool for establishing independent Kosovo state and not as a bridge of tolerance and reconcilliation with other ethnic communities. Especially alarming situation is in local municipal councils in which local Albanian administration is often not even ready to tolerate Serb language and elementary needs of the Serb community.

For two years Steiner is presenting to Kosovo Serbs his favourite "colorfull lie" - return of returnees and improvement of security for non-majority population.  Both promises have not been fulfilled because number of Serb returnees during his rule hardly exceeds 1000 persons out of 230.000 IDP's, while the returnees and the remaining Serbs are still being targeted by Kosovo Albanian extremists, especially terrorists of ANA. The recent massacre of the Stolic family, attacks on Serbs in Vitina and Lipljan, and the pervasive discrimination of Serbs in all parts of Kosovo are hardly encouragement to Serb returnees. Steiner's attempts to ascribe his personal failures to the Belgrade Government and the Serb community in general are most cynicall and hypocritical attempts to present to the world a false reality as truth. His last and desperate move to improve his rating before the session of the UN Security Council was his deal with the K/Albanian leaders to issue a formal appeal to Serb returnees. Anyone who is well acquainted with the Kosovo situation cannot but see behind this rethoric a joint attempt of Steiner and his Albanian friends to deceive international community in order to obtain further support for creation of independent Albanian state in Kosovo.

Another smoke-screen of Steiner's administration is his famous phrase: standards before status. In fact everythnig in Kosovo goes exactly in the opposite direction. In the province which is defined by the UN SC REsolution 1244 as a region within Serbia-Montnegro Steiner continued building institutions which have absolutely no link to the state they officially belong. Kosovo is rapidly becomming de facto an independent ethnic Albanian state in which hardly any Serb will be able to live at peace and hardly any Christian church survive. With implementation of security and human-rights standards in the limbo and rapid transfer of competencies to institutions which continue pursuing policy of ethnic exclusivism and discrimination of Serbs and minorities, Steiner has practically left only one option for the negotiation table. That is in reality the goal of Kosovo Albanian politicians who want to face Serbia with already accomplished fact on the ground and have independence recognized without any serious negotiation process. When observed in this context, Steiner's phrase has become a smoke screen behind which Kosovo Albanians continued building of a society taylored exclusively for themselves. Kosovo Serbs can only hope that Steiner's successor will give more meaning to this motto, which in reality should mean that without essential improvement of the human rights and security situatikon, and returning of the institutionalization process within the context of the UNSCR 1244, Kosovo's status cannot be seriously tackled.

Finally, during Steiner's mandate not a single serious crime against Serbs and non-Albanians has been sucessfully resolved. UNMIK police has remained helpless in front of the pervasive "conspiracy of silence" and fears that any decisive move aganist Albanian extremism might result in terrorist attacks against UN and KFOR personnel. The judicial system is still more or less undeveloped while other services, like health and education remained exclusively a priviledge of the majority population. In a situation in which almost all educational and medical institutions controlled by K/Albanians remain inaccessible for Kosovo Serbs, co called "Serb parallel institutions" inevitably remain the only way for Serbs to receive a minimum of these services in their isolated enclaves.

Putting all pieces together, hardly any Serb will shed tears after Michael Steiner leaves Kosovo. He will be remembered as a person who essentially failed to place himself above ethnic divisions and act as objective and unbiased international representative.

The commentary is reflecting views of the ERP KIM and the Serb National Council of Kosovo and Metohija.

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COURTYARD OF ST. NICHOLAS CHURCH SHOWERED WITH STONES AGAIN - PARISH HOME WINDOWS BROKEN

"Early morning I called police to make an inquiry but no one has come yet (16.00 p.m) to see what happened. I get the impression that they tolerate these attacks and do not care about us here", said Fr. Miroslav for the ERP KIM Info-service.

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ERPKIM INFO-SERVICE
GRACANICA, JULY 04, 2003

Fr. Miroslav Popadic informed today the Diocese of Raska and Prizren that in the night between 3rd and 4th of July the courtyard of St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox church in Pristina was showered again with stones. During this attack by Kosovo Albanian hooligans three windows on the parish home were broken. "All courtyard is full of stones", said Fr. Miroslav adding that provocations occur almost every night and that his church is left completely unprotected.

"Early morning I called police to make an inquiry but no one has come yet (16.00 p.m) to see what happened. I get the impression that they tolerate these attacks and do not care about us here", said Fr. Miroslav for the ERP KIM Info-service.

Only several days ago St. Nicholas church was stoned and several windows on this shrine were broken as well as the entrance door. After protests of the Serbian Orthodox Church no one from the international represetnatives made any effort to protect this only functioning Serbian Orthodox church in Pristina.

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ANAN: ESTABLISHING RIGHTS A KEY CHALLENGE FOR UNMIK

Annan highlighted that ethnic minorities, in particular Serbs, were not enjoying freedom of movement; he added that the guiding principle of UNMIK would remain "standards before status", as defined by outgoing governor Michael Steiner.

Full report by K.Anan:
UNSC Report of the Secretary General on the UN Interim Administration

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www.b92.net

Beta News Agency, Belgrade

July 3, 2003


NEW YORK -- Thursday -- UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has assessed that four years after the UN's Mission in Kosovo assumed interim control of the troubled province Kosovo has achieved significant progress in realising essential autonomy, but that the establishment of rights remain a central challenge for UNMIK to face.

Speaking at today's UN Security Council Kosovo-dedicated session, Annan said that UNMIK is more focused on the fight against organised crime and terrorism, as the overall crime rate in the province in gradually falling. However, he stressed that ethnically motivated crime and violence still represents a serious problem.

According to a report discussed by the Council, incidents such as the Obilic triple murder and the explosion that destroyed the Zvecan railway bridge are preventing the normalisation of the situation and the reconciliation process among the various communities.

Annan warned that such acts of violence were unacceptable and that Kosovo leaders and citizens had to act resolutely to prevent repetition.

Annan highlighted that ethnic minorities, in particular Serbs, were not enjoying freedom of movement; he added that the guiding principle of UNMIK would remain "standards before status", as defined by outgoing governor Michael Steiner.

The Secretary General welcomed the willingness expressed by Belgrade and Pristina to hold a constructive dialogue. Pointing out that this was needed because Kosovo-Albanian leaders were constantly calling for faster independence, while Belgrade seeks joint management with UNMIK, support to parallel structures and boycotts of UNMIK policy programmes.

In the report submitted to the Council by Ambassador Dejan Sahovic, head of the Serbia-Montenegro mission to the UN, the ambassador said: "We hope that the UN, EU and Contact Group members which show willingness, be included in the process in the interest of constructive dialogue and efficient implementation of the agreed measures.

"It seems that the constant efforts of the international community to influence Pristina to accept the talks on practical issues gave results. We believe that the dialogue should focus on security, repatriation, energy and transportation," Sahovic continued.

Contradicting Annan's earlier comment, Sahovic said that Belgrade has no intention of seeking joint management with UNMIK. However, he insisted that Serbian authorities are unreservedly dedicated to the improvement of the overall situation, pointing out that investigations into last month's Obilic murders had yielded no results.

He requested a more visible presence of KFOR and UNMIK forces, assessing that such a move would deter potential attackers of minorities.

The ambassador concluded that the overall situation in the province was still bad, expressing his expectation that Steiner's successor would be appointed as soon as possible.

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FORMER KLA OFFICER CHARGED WITH WEAPONS POSSESION
Jetula
Chari was initially arrested in February after being caught with a large quantity of mines, weapons and ammunition.

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www.b92.net

Beta News Agency, Belgrade

July 1, 2003

PRISTINA -- Tuesday -- The international prosecutor in Prizren, Kosovo, has issued an indictment against former Kosovo Liberation Army officer Jetula Chari for the illegal possession of weapons.

Speaking to agency Beta, UNMIK representative Andrea Angelli explained that Chari was initially arrested in February after being caught with a large quantity of mines, weapons and ammunition.

Following an investigation lasting several months, Chari - a former Kosovo police officer - was charged with illegal weapons possession and will be tried in Prizren this summer.

If he is convicted Chari could face a maximum of eight years imprisonment.


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ALBANIA NABS TOP BALKAN REBEL SUSPECT - SOURCES
ERP KIM info service subarticle

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REUTERS ALERTNET

02 Jul 2003 11:18:03 GMT

TIRANA, July 2 (Reuters) - Albanian police have detained four ethnic Albanian rebels, including the suspected political leader of a shadowy group that has claimed several attacks in the volatile Balkans, police sources said on Wednesday.

The four were members of a group called the Albanian National Army (ANA), the sources said. The United Nations mission in Kosovo has branded the group a terrorist organisation, while Gafur Adili, described as its political leader, is on a U.S. economic black list.

The sources, confirming a report in the daily Korrieri, said Adili was held late on Tuesday on charges including "inciting nationalistic hatred" after he arrived from Macedonia.

"We confirm that Adili was arrested last night along with three of his friends who are members of ANA," one police source said, adding that Adili was detained in a Tirana suburb.

The group, dismissed by some diplomats as little more than a band of criminals, says it wants to unite ethnic Albanian lands in the Balkans.

It has claimed responsibility for attacks in south Serbia's Presevo Valley and Macedonia, both gripped by ethnic Albanian insurgencies two years ago.

In a move that suggested the West was taking the rebels more seriously, Kosovo's U.N. governor Michael Steiner called the ANA a terrorist group in April after it claimed responsibility for a bomb attack on a railway in a Serb part of the province.

Kosovo's U.N. mission was not immediately available for comment on Adili's arrest.

Tirana, which has denounced ethnic Albanian insurgencies in the region, denied entry to Adili in March on grounds that his activities ran counter to its policy for Balkan stability.

The United States put Adili on an economic blacklist last July, accusing him of stoking instability in the Balkans.

Kosovo was placed under U.N.-led administration in 1999 after a NATO bombing campaign to halt Serb repression of its Albanian majority.

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ERP KIM Info-Service is the official Information Service of the Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Raska and Prizren and works with the blessing of His Grace Bishop Artemije.
Our Information Service is distributing news on Kosovo related issues. The main focus of the Info-Service is the life of the Serbian Orthodox Church and the Serbian community in the Province of Kosovo and Metohija. ERP KIM Info Service works in cooperation with www.serbian-translation.com as well as the Kosovo Daily News (KDN) News List

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