May 16, 2003

ERP KIM Newsletter 16-05-03

CONTENTS:

KOSOVO ALBANIAN "LIBERATION WAR" RECOGNIZED BY PARLIAMENT

SNC: KOSOVO PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION LEGALIZES CRIMES COMITTED BY ALBANIAN EXTREMISTS

CHIEF OF UNMIK ISSUES DECLARATION ON KOSOVO PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION

POVRATAK COALITION CONDEMNS KOSOVO ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION

COVIC CONDEMNS KOSOVO PROTECTION CORPS AND UNMIK

COVIC CLAIMS INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT ON KOSOVO

SERBIAN PREMIER AND KOSOVO OMBUDSMAN AGREE THAT HUMAN RIGHTS IN KOSOVO SHOULD BE PROMOTED

GREGORY COPLEY: SERBIA IS COMING AGAIN INTO THE US FOCUS OF INTEREST

MARTIN DICKINSON: SERBIA HAS VALID ARGUEMENTS AGAINST PRIVATIZATION IN KOSOVO

More News Available on our:
KOSOVO DAILY NEWS LIST (KDN)
KDN Archive

This newsletter is available on our ERP KIM Web-site:
/erpkiminfo.html


KOSOVO ALBANIAN "LIBERATION WAR" RECOGNIZED BY PARLIAMENT
According to the document, the Kosovo people's liberation struggle has been deemed a political fight in all its phases and forms, beginning with peaceful resistance and culminating in armed conflict carried out by the Kosovo Liberation Army.

TOP

SRNA NEWS AGENCY
May 15, 2003


PRISTINA -- Thursday – The Kosovo Parliament has today ratified a resolution formally recognising the Kosovo people's liberation war for freedom and independence. 

According to the document, the Kosovo people's liberation struggle has been deemed a political fight in all its phases and forms, beginning with peaceful resistance and culminating in armed conflict carried out by the Kosovo Liberation Army.

The resolution recognises the enormous contribution of the international community and also assesses that the fight to free Kosovo from Serb rule and establish a contemporary democratic society was a just conflict.

Before Kosovo-Serb MPs walked out of the session in protest, Return Coalition caucus chief Dragisa Mrstovic said that Serbs could not accept that those who caused so much harm to the Kosovo-Serb people could be proclaimed liberators.

Krstovic said that the document would only have negative consequences for the future of Kosovo and that the resolution equated to an open message to displaced Serbs that their return to homes in Kosovo was not wanted and that coexistence would be impossible.

==============================

RADIO YUGOSLAVIA REPORT:

In the absence of Serb MPs, the Kosovo Assembly has unanimously enacted the Resolution on the Recognition of the Liberation War for Freedom and Independence of the Kosovo People. This document justifies every, and not only armed resistance of Albanians aimed at Kosovo's independence and it is the international community, i.e. NATO, that is stated as the key factor.

Serb POVRATAK coalition MPs left the session, after the head of the MP club, Dragisa Krstovic, had made a speech, as they believe that the enactment of the resolution represents the abuse of the Assembly as a provisional institution of self-government. This resolution sends a message to displaced Serbs that their return to Kosmet is undesirable and that life together is impossible, Krstovic said and announced that Serb MPs would demand the reaction of UNMIK head Michael Steiner. Following the enactment of the resolution, Serb MPs returned to the parliament in order to participate in discussion on other issues.



TOP


SNC KIM: KOSOVO PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION LEGALIZES CRIMES COMITTED BY ALBANIAN EXTREMISTS
The Serb people in Kosovo and Metohija is prepared to support the development of democracy in the Province; however, their vision of democracy and Europe does not include the terrorist Adem Jashari, KLA bands and "Kalashnikov law" but modern concepts of a civil society, the equality of all citizens, democracy and rights that must not depend on ethnic or religious affiliation.

TOP

ERP KIM Info Service
May 16, 2003

PRESS RELEASE

SERB NATIONAL COUNCIL OF KOSOVO AND METOHIJA
GRACANICA


Yesterday's declaration, adopted by a part of the Kosovo and Metohija Parliament, on the so-called "KLA war of liberation" represents a big step backward in the process of interethnic reconciliation and the building of a multiethnic and democratic society in Kosovo and Metohija.

1. The resolution talks about "the values of the war of liberation in Kosovo" waged by the KLA, calling them "the values of all people in Kosovo and the values accepted by the international factor". This statement blatantly falsifies reality and seeks to justify the crimes committed against civilians of various ethnicities. Each and every day new information is becoming available clearly demonstrating that the battle waged by the KLA was not one of liberation, primarily due to the fact that it brought no liberty to the non-Albanian population (especially the Serbs) but new persecution and terror. During and after 1999 KLA extremists committed numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity, and played the chief role in the expulsion of the non-Albanian population, kidnapping, looting and arson, as well as other criminal acts. Supporting these notorious acts as a war of liberation represents open support for terrorism and crime as methods of achieving political goals.

2. It is absolutely incorrect that "the values of the war of liberation" conducted by the KLA are supported by the international factor, which officially intervened in Kosovo and Metohija not only to help the Albanians, but to protect other communities as well, to ensure the rule of law and order regardless of ethnic origin. Although this goal has not been met in the past four years, NATO and the West can never stand behind the crimes committed by the KLA and the reign of terror established by former members of this organization after the war.
The very fact that many former KLA commanders are either in prison, suspended or placed on the black EU/US list additionally shows that KLA was not an organization fighting a just cause.

3. Behind the concept of an independent Kosovo supported by the aforementioned resolution lies the concept of the ethnically cleansed Albanian state where there will be no room for the non-Albanian population, especially the Serbs. This fact has confirmed many times during the past four years, as Serbs, Roma and Goranis were exposed to blatant human rights violations, violence and terrorist attacks. Albanian political leaders as a rule chose to disregard these attacks or even openly praised and planned them. That is why the concept of an independent Kosovo is unacceptable to Kosovo-Metohija Serbs, who wish to live in the democratic and sovereign Republic of Serbia, of which Kosovo and Metohija is an integral and inalienable part.

4. The Kosovo Parliament resolution does not mention the crimes committed during and after the war, not only against non-Albanians but also against Kosovo Albanians who disagreed with the reign of violence by their compatriots. These victims, whose total number probably exceeds the number of victims of war-time conflict, are the surest proof that the war waged by the KLA and affiliated gangs and organizations was not a war of liberation but essentially a terrorist battle whose goal was and remains to ethnically cleanse Kosovo and Metohija of its non-Albanian population and disobedient Albanians, and thus force the international community to recognize this monstrous, quasi-official creation as an already accomplished fact.

Therefore, the Serb National Council of Kosovo and Metohija most strongly condemns this resolution seeking to legitimize the reign of terror and crime, and seriously abuses the Kosovo Parliament for purposes of forcible and extremist secessionism. The ratification of this resolution in fact represents open support for terrorism and violence, and represents encouragement for terrorist acts in areas comprising the Province of Kosovo and Metohija. This resolution also confirms the sad fact that the majority of Kosovo Albanians possesses anachronistic and aggressive concepts of society based on violence, and absence of law and democratic traditions. Instead of leading their compatriots in the direction of Europe, Albanian leaders are turning to the past, to a mythology of blood and revenge, which will necessarily lead to new conflicts and antagonisms.

The Serb people in Kosovo and Metohija is prepared to support the development of democracy in the Province; however, their vision of democracy and Europe does not include the terrorist Adem Jashari, KLA bands and "Kalashnikov law" but modern concepts of a civil society, the equality of all citizens, democracy and rights that must not depend on ethnic or religious affiliation.

GRACANICA, May 16, 2003

TOP


CHIEF OF UNMIK, MICHAEL STEINER, ISSUES DECLARATION ON KOSOVO ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION
Recognizing the sacrifices of Kosovo's people is therefore right and proper. It is, however, equally critical to recognize that Kosovo's future peace and prosperity depends on upholding the principle that was trampled on during the 1990's, that is, respect for the rights and interests of all Kosovo's communities. Failure to understand this lesson of history causes the International Community to question whether Kosovo's leaders have learned the lessons of that conflict.

TOP

UNMIK
May 15, 2003

PRISTINA - SRSG Michael Steiner today a Declaration on the Kosovo Assembly resolution on war values. The Declaration is attached:


Declaration of the SRSG Michael Steiner
on the Assembly Resolution on war values



As I said in my 7 May message to the leaders of the major parties in the Assembly, the International Community intervened in Kosovo in 1999 because of the widespread violations of fundamental human rights, particularly the denial of the rights of Kosovo's majority community. We are fully aware that repression in Kosovo gave rise to its people's struggle for justice.

Recognizing the sacrifices of Kosovo's people is therefore right and proper. It is, however, equally critical to recognize that Kosovo's future peace and prosperity depends on upholding the principle that was trampled on during the 1990's, that is, respect for the rights and interests of all Kosovo's communities. Failure to understand this lesson of history causes the International Community to question whether Kosovo's leaders have learned the lessons of that conflict.

Therefore, the International Community expects the Assembly to act in a manner that builds into the future and does not drag Kosovo into the past. Instead, the resolution adopted today is divisive and is against the reconciliatory spirit enshrined in Security Council Resolution 1244 and the Constitutional Framework. Already, it has had a divisive effect within the Assembly.

I have talked to NATO Secretary-General Lord Robertson, the EU's High Representative, Javier Solana, Stability Pact Coordinator Erhard Busek, the Chairman of the EU Committee on Foreign Affairs Elmar Brok, and international representatives in Pristina. They all share this assessment.

Following these talks, I have to announce that the hosts of the three forthcoming international meetings

–of the NATO Council on 21 May in Brussels,
–of the Stability Pact Parliamentary Conference on 21, 22 May in Brussels,
–of the EU/NATO/OSCE/Stability Pact Regional Conference in Ohrid on 22, 23 May

under these circumstances no longer consider it appropriate that the Provisional Institutions (President, Assembly and the Government respectively) are represented in the UNMIK delegations to these meetings.

Pristina, 15 May 2003

Michael Steiner
Special Representative of the Secretary-General


TOP


POVRATAK COALITION CONDEMNS KOSOVO ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION
the Declaration is to stop many processes that have been initiated and is to devaluate the little that has been achieved in Kosmet in the direction of stabilization, the relief of tension and the creation of conditions for a peaceful life and safety

TOP

RADIO YUGOSLAVIA
May 15, 2003

Members of the Serb POVRATAK coalition in the Kosmet Assembly believe that the adoption of the Declaration on the Recognition of the Liberation War of the Kosovo People is to obstruct dialogue between Albanian political representatives and the Serb coalition.

The head of the POVRATAK MP group, Dragisa Krstovic, reminded that the dialogue had been announced immediately before the enactment of the disputed document. The Declaration is to stop many processes that have been initiated and is to devaluate the little that has been achieved in Kosmet in the direction of stabilization, the relief of tension and the creation of conditions for a peaceful life and safety, Krstovic said.

The enactment of the resolution has also been condemned by other state officials, political parties, organizations and institutions.

TOP


COVIC CONDEMNS KOSOVO PROTECTION CORPS AND UNMIK

TOP

BETA NEWS AGENCY
May 15, 2003



VIENNA -- Thursday – Deputy Serbian Prime Minister Nebojsa Covic has today told the OSCE Permanent Council in Vienna that the Kosovo Protection Corps protects the outlawed Albanian National Army.

Assessing that their unethical activities make it impossible to continue plans to transform the Protection Corps into Kosovo's defence force, Covic insisted that the ANA is dependent on the Corps.

He claimed: "Kosovo's Protection Corps pull out Albanian National Army members from areas after terrorist attacks".

UNMIK Chief Michael Steiner branded the ANA as a terrorist organisation recently, warning that anyone associated with it was engaged in criminal activities.

UNMIK in fear

Covic also assessed that UNMIK and the international community were afraid of the Albanian community and the possibility that their strong anti-Serb sentiment will turn them against UNMIK superintendents.

He continued: "I often wonder why UNMIK behaves the way it does regarding many crucial issues. I think it is a significant consequence of the strong anti-Serb sentiment in Pristina, which naturally grew out of the events of the late nineties.

"How should Kosovo Serbs feel if the international community and KFOR are afraid to take necessary steps because of the possible violent reaction of Albanians?" he asked.

Covic explained: "Young democracy in Serbia needs a partnership-like attitude from the international community and there is one in every aspect, except when it comes to Kosovo. I think we have shown in southern Serbia that we can solve the crucial problem of the area and constructively achieve inter-ethnic reconciliation".   

Covic, head of the Coordination Centre for Kosovo and Southern Serbia, also expressed concern over UNMIK's policy of transferring authority to Kosovo's temporary, mono-ethnic institutions, which he said presupposes a final independent status for Kosovo.

"You take our property, but we pay your debt"

In a scathing attack on UNMIK governor Michael Steiner, Covic said: "Very few of the projects and promises made by the UN Secretary-General's Special Envoy for Kosovo have been fulfilled. UNMIK treats Belgrade as if Milosevic were still in power.

"Serbian property is given away to Albanians in the presence of international observers. Serbian Government property and Serbia's companies are being privatized without any consultation with us."

He pleaded to the OSCE representatives: "Please, bear in mind that Serbia is currently paying interest rates to international financial institutions for Kosovo's $1.5 billion debt, yet UNMIK refuses to even talk about taking responsibility for this difficult burden".

Seeking a way forward, he said: "I search a way out of this, and reconciliation, through talks, but not talks about the final solution for Kosovo. Rather talks should discuss ethical questions which hinder relations between the two ethnic communities".

In a guarded remark about the refusal of UNMIK to transfer violent militant Albanian Shefqet Musliu, Covic insisted that criminals could not be allowed to hide behind national flags and manipulate decisions with patriotic and nationalist feelings.

====================================

REPORT BY RADIO YUGOSLAVIA, May 15

The Kosovo Protection Corps is protecting the illegal Albanian National Army, Serbian Deputy Prime Minister Nebojsa Covic, who is also head of the state Coordination Centre for Kosmet, assessed in Vienna. In his address to the OSCE Permanent Council, Covic emphasized that therefore that unit should not be transformed into defence forces.

According to Covic, UNMIK and the international community fear the possibility of anti-Serbian mood of Albanians to be turned against them. Covic said he was concerned over the fact that UNMIK is transferring authority to undemocratic, monoethnical institutions, whereby, according to him the final solution for the Province is prejudged and tension between Belgrade and Pristina is increased. Not much has been achieved of all the projects and promises by UNMIK head Michael Steiner, which is proved by the fact that there is no safety for non-Albanians in Kosmet, Covic said.

He laid special emphasis on Michael Steiner's regulation on privatization by which, as he specified, Serbian private and state property is presented to Albanians without any consultations with Belgrade. Covic appealed to the OSCE Permanent Council to invest more effort in the return of refugees, the freedom of movement and the solving of the problem of missing persons, as those are key issues for the building of trust and multi-ethnic society.


TOP


COVIC CLAIMS INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT ON KOSOVO

TOP

B92, May 15, 2003


VIENNA -- Thursday – Nebojsa Covic said a short time ago that he had received support from the OSCE for a new approach to the problems of Kosovo.

Covic, who heads Belgrade's Kosovo Coordination Centre, addressed the European security organisation's Permanent Council in Vienna this morning.

He told media later that he had emerged from the meeting with the sense that Serbia and the international community would be partners in dealing with the Kosovo problem.

"In many other areas and problems the international community has helped the new democratic government in Belgrade a great deal, but where Kosovo is concerned it has been as though the former regime were still in power," said Covic.

He said that the Serbian government would ask for an analysis of the performance of UN governor Michael Steiner, adding that the head of the UN administration in the province should not be able to pursue his own personal policies.

"It's a good thing that UNMIK has branded the Albanian National Army a terrorist organisation, but more explicit messages are needed, such as mayors being told clearly that they will lose their posts if they fail to support multiethnicity," said Covic.

TOP


SERBIAN PREMIER AND KOSOVO OMBUDSMAN AGREE THAT IT IS NECESSARY TO PROMOTE HUMAN RIGHTS IN KOSOVO

TOP

Radio Yugoslavia
May 15, 2003

Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Zivkovic and International Ombudsman for Kosmet Marek Novicky assessed in Belgrade that it was necessary to strengthen the activity of all international and local institutions, with a view to the promotion and protection of human rights and the accessibility of institutions for all Kosmet people. As announced from the Government, during talks it was agreed that the honouring of human rights in Kosmet is at a very low level, for which reason the Serbian prime minister emphasized the necessity of the further engagement of the institution of ombudsman in the Province.

TOP


CHIEF EDITOR OF "DEFENSE AND FOREIGN AFFAIRS" SAYS TAHT SERBIA IS COMING INTO TO FOCUS OF US INTERESTS

TOP

INET, May 15, 2003

The Balkans, and especially Serbia, are again coming into the focus of American interest, with Belgrade as the main hub, Gregory Copley, the chief editor of "Defence and Foreign Affairs" magazine, a specialized publication for senior global officials, said in an interview for the Belgrade daily "Vecernje Novosti". Copley claims that negotiations are underway regarding the stationing of U.S. troops in the Balkans, including Serbia. "Negotiations are in progress. If you consider that between 20,000 and 40,000 troops and officers and their families are to be mobilized, then it is clear that there will be a number of military bases. In Serbia discussions involve one base near Kosovo and another near the Danube.

There will be others, as well, in Bulgaria and Romania. These will not be military bases for peacekeepers but normal rotation bases. It is possible that the Albanians will also try to secure a U.S. presence in their ports, which would be logical. The recent visit of U.S. state secretary Colin Powell to Belgrade was hardly coincidental. It represents network building," said Copley, who assessed that the U.S. is already in the process of deciding to have Kosovo remain a part of Serbia.

TOP


MARTIN DICKINSON: SERBIA HAS VALID ARGUMENTS AGAINST PRIVATIZATION PROCESS IN KOSOVO

TOP

Radio Yugoslavia
May 15, 2003

Martin Dickson, professor of international law at Cambridge University, said on the occasion of a dispute between Belgrade and UNMIK Head Michael Steiner regarding privatization in Kosovo that Serbia is in possession of valid arguments on the basis of which it can present the issue before the UN Security Council. Dickson told Radio BBC that the problem lies in item 6 of the 1999 Regulation, according to which the UN special representative has the right to manage all the movable and real property of Yugoslavia and Serbia in Kosovo. The essential question is, therefore, whether the lease of property for the period of 99 years is regarded as property management or misappropriation, Dickson emphasized and concluded that from the legal point of view, it is misappropriation that is at issue here.

TOP


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

Disclaimer:
The views expressed by the authors of newspaper articles or other texts which are not official communiqués or news reports by the Diocese are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of the Serbian Orthodox Church

If you received this message by error or you don`t want to receive our e-mails anymore, please write to us: erpkim@kosovo.net

Our Newsletters are available on our ERP KIM Info-service Web-Page:
/erpkiminfo.html

Additional information on our Diocese and the life of the Kosovo Serb Community may be found at:

Copyright 2003, ERP KIM Info-Service