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March 09, 2004

ERP KiM Newsletter 09-03-04

Bishop Artemije: aerophotogrammatic survey a prelude to revision of land registry books in Kosovo

Kosovo Serbs expect and request that the newly formed institutions of government in Belgrade, the Government of Serbia as well as the Coordinating Center for Kosovo and Metohija, carry out an expert assessment of this decision by the Kosovo provisional government, and adopt an official position with regard to this issue. Can Serbs participate in the aerophotogrammatic survey in Kosovo and Metohija, then, and by doing so will they give legitimacy to the establishment of new land registry evidence and thus contribute to further deterioration of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Serbian state on this part of its territory and, by doing so, endanger the survival of the Serb people on their own land?

The goal of the announced aerophotogrammatic survey of Kosovo's territory is to produce new cadastral records which will make impossible for displaced Serbs to easily prove their property possession once they return to their homes. In fact the new aerophotogrammatic survey is a "legal way" of keeping Serbs out of Kosovo and taking their possession of property for good. Any attempt to retrieve their property rights will be so time consuming for Serb returnees that they would rather prefer to sell the property, which is exactly what most Kosovo Albanians, particularly those who illegally usurped Serb property, want.

Holkeri's unsuccessful attempt to win unconditional support of Belgrade

Editorial ERP KIM Info-Service
Gracanica, March 8, 2004

These days UNMIK officials have launched an intensive campaign to win support of Kosovo Serbs and Belgrade government for further participation of Serb representatives in Kosovo provisional institutions. However, things are not the same as they used to be several months ago. Despite their internal disagreements Serbs are unified in one thing - Kosovo Serbs should not give a carte blanche to UNMIK in finalization of ethnic Albanian state on the sovereign Serbian soil.

The latest elections in Serbia and the general feeling among Kosovo Serbs, particularly in the circles of the influential Serbian Orthodox Church, have demonstrated that further participation in building Kosovo institutions is possible only if the process of institutionalization is returned within the framework of the UNSC Resolution 1244. This is exactly what UNMIK and Holkeri did not expect because the plan of UNMIK is to finish the transfer of powers on Albanian dominated institutions by the end of the year, and immediately open a process of establishing Kosovo's final status.

While on one hand Holkeri and UNMIK officials never blamed Rugova and Rexhepi for spreading their own views of Kosovo's future status, even misusing the capacity of their official functions in so called "multiethnic" Kosovo government, the first time Kosovo Serbs made their clear position that no independence is acceptable a canonade was fired against PM Kostunica and other Serb officials.  Even the vampires of the bloodstained Clinton administration like Holbrooke immediately appeared out of anonymity to say that independence is the only acceptable solution hurling new threats against Belgrade.

However, the solution will be finally reached by the Security Council but only on the basis of an negotiated settlement. In other words Belgrade must agree with the final status settlement otherwise Kosovo's secession will be an open example of forceful change of internationally recognized borders which all members of UN Security Council will hardly support. It is hard to believe that any Government in Serbia will survive a day after signing any kind of Kosovo secession. Therefore, the international community which has been used so far, since Milosevic's arrest, that Belgrade will obediently sell its property for US dollars must understand that a more constructive dialogue with wider variety of options is necessary.

If POVRATAK Coalition nevertheless agrees to participate in institutions without clear concessions and guarantees that would very soon mean the end of the Coalition which will be replaced by other political groups with much less readiness for cooperation.

In his message to Kosovo OSCE chief Mr. Fieschi Bishop Artemije clearly articulated the position of the Church and the vast majority of Kosovo Serbs - We can participate only within the framework of UNSCR 1244 which guarantees sovereignty of Serbia in Kosovo, not formally but practically. Acting as a decoration in the Parliament hall, already decorated with kitchy Albanian nationalist murals, is a scene which no Kosovo Serb representative will be able to politically survive among their own people.

CONTENTS:


BISHOP ARTEMIJE: A press release on announced aerophotogrammatic survey
All this has caused us great worry and forced us to speak publicly, warning of the danger hiding behind this decision, since the aerophotogrammetric survey represents a serious threat to the property, first of all, of the Serbian Orthodox Church, as well as of the Republic of Serbia, and of all expelled Serbs and other non-Albanians.

Prime Minister Kostunica meets Holkeri in Belgrade
Speaking about standards and their implementation, Kostunica expressed doubt that this process can improve the position of Serbs and the respect for human rights in Kosovo-Metohija. He said that the recent activities showed that Belgrade's constructive stance towards UNMIK did not bring about positive changes in this field and therefore both sides should work on the decentralisation of Kosovo-Metohija.

Two Serbs attacked by Albanian mob in Lipljan - one injured
According to Lazic, who was unhurt in the incident, a group of Albanians aged 20 to 25 years attacked them from behind, injuring Doric. Doric was transferred to Simonida Medical Center in Gracanica soon after the incident where he received medical care.

Kostunica on Kosovo's cantonization - In accordance with European ideas
"It might sound strange, but the idea that I explained in the speech about Kosovo and Metohija is not something that has not been mentioned in Europe. Two years ago in the European Council a plan for decentralization appeared through which would have provided additional institutional protection for the Serbs and the other non - Albanian population. That autonomy can be realized through three dimensions, territorially, so the names if is it decentralization or cantons, personally or culturally, are not important.


Svilanovic: Kosovo standards violate Resolution 1244
On Monday, Goran Svilanovic, the Serbia and Montenegro Foreign Minister, evaluated that UNMIK document "Standards for Kosovo" means overstepping authorizations given under resolution 1244 of the UN Security Council, and added that this solution did not take into consideration the key suggestions and amendments recommended by the Serbian government.


Both EU and Kosovo and Metohija
'Holbrook's stance is his private opinion Fortunately, however. Pristina is not deciding about settlement of Kosovo status and if Serbia is going to respect all international obligations, we shall have the possibility to protect our interest in Kosovo and Metohija. Serbia's road to EU is with Kosovo and Metohija', Dusan Petrovic DS vice president said.

Extremists warn international forces
It seams that the Civilian Mission is becoming a bone in the throat for the Kosovo Albanians. Placing explosive devices in front of the UNMIK headquarters, appropriated with political pressures of the Albanians from time to time toward the general secretary of UN and his assistants are everyday.

News from Kosovo and Metohija, 6-8 March

Racak - the battle and the lies (What really happened in Racak)
These liquidated terrorists, who had fought furiously all day, needed to be depicted as "peaceful civilians". Along with the bodies, the terrorists removed the weapons the policemen had not managed to collect because of approaching darkness and the sheer size of the area. The antiterrorist operation in Racak was finished but another campaign, a media campaign full of lies and fabrications, was just beginning.


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Announced aerialphotogrammatic survey - a prelude to revision of land registry books in Kosovo

Consequently, we expect and request that the newly formed institutions of government in Belgrade, the Government of Serbia as well as the Coordinating Center for Kosovo and Metohija, carry out an expert assessment of this decision by the Kosovo provisional government, and adopt an official position with regard to this issue. Can Serbs participate in the aerophotogrammatic survey in Kosovo and Metohija, then, and by doing so will they give legitimacy to the establishment of new land registry evidence and thus contribute to further deterioration of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Serbian state on this part of its territory and, by doing so, endanger the survival of the Serb people on their own land?

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Orthodox Diocese of Raska-Prizren
and Kosovo-Metohija
Gracanica, March 8, 2004

 

PUBLIC COMMUNIQUE
regarding announced aerophotogrammetric survey
of Kosovo and Metohija territory and adoption of law
on registry of real property by Kosovo Parliament

Bishop Artemije concerned

Taking into account that in recent days there has been increasing talk in Kosovo and Metohija regarding plans to carry out a aerophotogrammetric survey, as well as necessary preparations for conducting this survey, namely, marking of territory and informing the public about the aerophotogrammetric survey, an increasing number of our priests have turned to us for help in interpreting this decision. This fact, of course, implies that the priests on the ground, who are in direct contact with the people, are encountering the same question daily, and are at a loss as to how to answer it for their faithful people, and help them to assume a position regarding this decision by the provisional institutions of self-government in Kosovo and Metohija.

Here we will note the fact that in February 2004 an announcement appeared on the territory of the municipalities of Kosovo and Metohija generally issued by the Office for Land Measurement, Registry and Property of the appropriate municipal offices, and addressed to all residents of these municipalities, stating that in March 2004 an aerophotogrammetric survey and registry of  border markers would be conducted. Toward that end, residents were called upon to mark their land parcels, and education of residents for the proper preparation of their land parcels took place at meetings organized by municipal offices in the villages of every municipality.

The deadline for marking property was March 5, 2004.

All this has caused us great worry and forced us to speak publicly, warning of the danger hiding behind this decision, since the aerophotogrammetric survey represents a serious threat to the property, first of all, of the Serbian Orthodox Church, as well as of the Republic of Serbia, and of all expelled Serbs and other non-Albanians.

Is the aerophotogrammetric survey supposed to serve as the basis for creating new evidence for the land registry books that is different from existing ones?

How will people mark their property and how with they indicate the borders of every land parcel when more than 200,000 people were expelled from Kosovo and Metohija and are unable to access their property?

When and in what manner will they be informed of the results of the survey and how will they be enabled to express possible disagreements with survey results?

What will happen to Serb owned property that has been usurped and illegally appropriated by the Albanians?

Will the aerophotogrammetric survey invalidate valid documents of the Republic of Serbia relating to property and land registry books?

How will the land of the Serbian Orthodox Church be marked when our priests and monks still living in Kosovo and Metohija have no ability to access a large part of the territory where church property is located?

How will property confiscated from the Serbian Orthodox Church by the Communist authorities in various moves (the agrarian reform, nationalization, etc.) be marked?

In this manner every sign of church property, both confiscated or presently used, will be lost, as well as the possibility of its ever again being reclaimed by the Church as its own.

How will destroyed and torched churches and Serb owned houses be registered? How will torched and destroyed Serb villages be marked? As fields and meadows?

All these and many other questions emerge and remain unanswered, or perhaps the answer is so horrible that we are afraid to confront it.

Consequently, we expect and request that the newly formed institutions of government in Belgrade, the Government of Serbia as well as the Coordinating Center for Kosovo and Metohija, carry out an expert assessment of this decision by the Kosovo provisional government, and adopt an official position with regard to this issue. Can Serbs participate in the aerophotogrammatic survey in Kosovo and Metohija, then, and by doing so will they give legitimacy to the establishment of new land registry evidence and thus contribute to further deterioration of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Serbian state on this part of its territory and, by doing so, endanger the survival of the Serb people on their own land?

Taking into account that the deadline for marking property was March 5, it is our opinion that until an official position with regard to this issue is adopted, the Government in Belgrade should call on the Serbs not to participate in the aerophotogrammatic survey because doing so would inflict irreparable and irreversible harm to the interests of the Serb people and Kosovo and Metohija's remaining within the Republic of Serbia.

As well, we ask that authorities in Belgrade launch an initiative with competent international institutions (the UN, OSCE, the Council of Europe) to examine the competency of the Kosovo provisional government in carrying out a remeasuring of territory.

Here we wish to emphasize that we do not seek to undermine their decisions and laws but at the same time, we cannot permit further attrition and ruin of the already sufficiently jeopardized Serbian national being and Serbian territory.

On this occasion we would also like to comment on the law on establishment of a registry for rights on real property recently passed by the Kosovo Parliament.

At its session on October 17, 2002 the Kosovo Parliament adopted a law on establishment of a registry for rights on real property. Mr. Michael Steiner gave his acquiescence for the enactment of this law by UNMIK decree no 2002/22 dated December 20, 2002, under the condition that the Kosovo parliament adopt and correctly publish amending regulations providing for the effective informing of the public and other necessary measures for the protection of persons whose rights may be endangered by registration.

At a session on June 26, 2003 the Kosovo Parliament voted to adopt changes and amendments to the aforementioned law, providing for the effective informing of the public as well as other security measures for the protection of persons whose rights may be endangered by registration. After that, the law was enacted by Mr. Harri Holkeri immediately upon his assuming the position of Special Representative of the UN Security General for Kosovo, by UNMIK decree no. 27/2003 dated August 18, 2003.

With respect to this law, too, the first question that poses itself is regarding expelled and displaced persons, i.e., how will they realize their right to real property, when they are largely prevented from accessing their property.

Besides this, from the law itself it is unclear what documentation is necessary for registry of the right to property, just as it is unclear what is the "applicable" law that the law on registry cites.

In article five of the law on registry it is said that "a person who claims that the registry of rights to real property has no legal basis and that his rights are endangered", can lodge "an objection to the right to real property".

"The submission of an objection", however, according to article 5.2, "will not create or reduce the legal rights of any person. Specifically, an objection cannot serve as a hindrance to the sale or transfer of real property".

This certainly means that there is no effective mechanism to prevent transfer in the case of unscrupulous or illegal acquisition of property.

Finally, in the changes and amendments to the law on establishment of registry for real property that were passed for the purpose of effective informing of the public and protection of persons whose rights may be endangered by registration, it is said that this will be provided by posting of requests for registry on a public bulletin board in every municipal land registry office, "at least five working days before a decision permitting registration is made". After this period the municipal land registry office will register the right to real property in its register.

It is a legitimate question whether posting a request for registration on a bulletin board in a local municipal office five working days before making the decision on registration is an effective means of public notice, first of all for persons expelled from their land who have no possibility to access their property (as is the case in Metohija, Drenica, etc.)

On the basis of everything presented above, we believe that the concern of the Diocese of Raska-Prizren and Kosovo-Metohija for its own property and the property of all expelled Serbs and other non-Albanians, as well as for the property of the Republic of Serbia, is clearly justified.

We therefore expect the newly elected authorities in Belgrade to launch an initiative with appropriate international institutions for the review all laws and decisions enacted by UNMIK and the provisional institutions relating to property in order to protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Serbia on the territory of Kosovo and Metohija, as well as enable the survival of the Serb people in this region.

Gracanica, March 8, 2004

Bishop of Raska-Prizren
and Kosovo-Metohija
+ ARTEMIJE
 

Serbian press regarding the announced aerial photographing, March 8, 2004

Beta News Agency, Belgrade
March 6, 2004

Covic: Preparations in progress for filming of terrain in Kosovo

BELGRADE - Coordinating Center for Kosovo and Metohija head Nebojsa Covic informed Serbian prime minister Vojislav Kostunica and minister for capital investments Velimir Ilic of possible negative consequences of the announced aerial filming of the terrain in the province.

This project is being organized and implemented by the Kosovo Cadastre Agency with the acquiescence of UNMIK, the Coordinating Center advised.

The statement notes that Covic advised Kostunica and Ilic of current preparations for aerial filming of terrain in Kosovo and Metohija, and informed them of the "very negative consequences" this could have on "the interests of displaced Serbs, other non-Albanians, the Serbian Orthodox Church and Serbia as a whole".

Covic also informed the ambassadors of the Contact Group and representatives of international organizations involved in the resolution of the Kosovo problem of the announced filming, as well as sending a separate letter to UNMIK chief Harri Holkeri, advised the Coordinating Center.


Goran Bogdanovic on aerial photographing (Vecernje Novosti)

Aerial photographing of the land in Kosovo and Metohija, prepared by the Kosovo Cadastre Agency, with UNMIK's consent, would change the structure of the owners of property and houses, and could legalize ethnic cleansing and expulsion of Serbs from this province. The Minister for Agriculture and Forestry in the Kosovo government Goran Bogdanovic has also been warning about this danger.

"For almost one year now, this initiative was being launched in the Kosovo Assembly, so it came before the government now. I was, of course, against this at sessions, explaining that cadastre books already exist and that new measuring would be catastrophic for Serbs who have, as estimated, records of at least 70% of the property and houses in the province. This would, in fact, be an attack on Serb property, on those who remained to live, and most of all on the expelled since their property would be practically seized from them," warned Bogdanovic.


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Two Serbs attacked by Albanian mob in Lipljan - one injured

According to Lazic, who was unhurt in the incident, a group of Albanians aged 20 to 25 years attacked them from behind, injuring Doric. Doric was transferred to Simonida Medical Center in Gracanica soon after the incident where he received medical care.

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Beta News Agency, Belgrade
March 8, 2004

Lipljan Serbs constantly targeted by Kosovo Albanians while KFOR dismantles checkpoints

LIPLJAN - Marko Doric (19) sustained head injuries in Lipljan today when a group of Albanians from Lipljan attacked him and his friend Marko Lazic (18) with a hail of rocks.

Doric and Lazic were attacked in the afternoon as they were walking through Lipljan on their way from the bus station to their homes, reported Radio Gracanica.

According to Lazic, who was unhurt in the incident, a group of Albanians aged 20 to 25 years attacked them from behind, injuring Doric. Doric was transferred to Simonida Medical Center in Gracanica soon after the incident where he received medical care.

According to on-duty surgeon Dragan Peric, Doric sustained a cut to the head seven centimeters in length. After receiving treatment Doric was released to recover at home.


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PM Kostunica meets Holkeri in Belgrade

Speaking about standards and their implementation, Kostunica expressed doubt that this process can improve the position of Serbs and the respect for human rights in Kosovo-Metohija. He said that the recent activities showed that Belgrade's constructive stance towards UNMIK did not bring about positive changes in this field and therefore both sides should work on the decentralisation of Kosovo-Metohija.

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Serbian Government
Belgrade, March 8, 2004

Kostunica and Holkeri in Belgrade

Belgrade, March 8, 2004 - Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica and UN Secretary-General Special Representative for Kosovo-Metohija Harri Holkeri met in Belgrade today to discuss situation in the province, and highlighted the importance of the dialogue of energy working groups from Belgrade and Pristina that was launched recently.

Holkeri said that it is very important that other working groups also launch negotiations, such as the working groups on the missing and kidnapped persons which will start talks on Tuesday.

However, Holkeri expressed concern over the fact that Serb representatives do not take part in the preparation of the standards implementation plan, which he said is a crucial issue, although it is not related to the issue of the province's status.

Speaking about standards and their implementation, Kostunica expressed doubt that this process can improve the position of Serbs and the respect for human rights in Kosovo-Metohija. He said that the recent activities showed that Belgrade's constructive stance towards UNMIK did not bring about positive changes in this field and therefore both sides should work on the decentralisation of Kosovo-Metohija.

The Serbian Prime Minister said that the territorial, cultural and personal autonomy of the Serb community would help break a deadlock in the field of human rights practices. He also said that changes that will be made to this end should not be related to the issue of Kosovo-Metohija's status.

Kostunica and Holkeri agreed that such meetings should be held in the future.'

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

SRSG Harri Holkeri meets Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica in Belgrade

UNMIK Press Service
March 8, 2004

PRISTINA – SRSG Harri Holkeri today met Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica in Belgrade and briefed him about the developments in Kosovo, including the standards and the Pristina-Belgrade direct dialogue.

Later Mr. Holkeri had a meeting with representatives of the Contact Group and the European Union.

In his meeting with Mr. Kostunica, Mr. Holkeri urged him to encourage Kosovo Serbs to participate in the standards implementation process. He informed him that he couldn't offer a separate consultation process with them or Belgrade. "I will always be, and have been, transparent with them and with you. But to contribute to the process, and to the plan, they must participate in the process."

Mr. Holkeri said "I am serious about the standards process as a genuine partnership between UNMIK and the people and institutions of Kosovo. We are producing the plan together with the government."

On the issue of the direct dialogue, Mr. Holkeri said he was happy that the meeting of the first working group on energy last week had gone well, with both sides adopting constructive approaches. He said he hoped that the participants of all working groups, who are experts discussing technical issues, will not be diverted by political issues.

At the end of the visit, the SRSG addressed the media. Asked about Mr. Kostunica's comments on cantonization of Kosovo, Mr. Holkeri said that neither the cantonization nor the partition of Kosovo is an issue for UNMIK. He said: "On the basis of UNSCR 1244 this kind of ideas or proposals are not on the table. But, of course, we are ready to listen to ideas and views of the Serbian Government."


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Kostunica on Kosovo cantonization - In accordance with European ideals

"It might sound strange, but the idea that I explained in the speech about Kosovo and Metohija is not something that has not been mentioned in Europe. Two years ago in the European Council a plan for decentralization appeared through which would have provided additional institutional protection for the Serbs and the other non - Albanian population. That autonomy can be realized through three dimensions, territorially, so the names if is it decentralization or cantons, personally or culturally, are not important.

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Danas, Belgrade daily
Belgrade, 08 March 2004

PM Dr Vojislav Kostunica

"It might sound strange, but the idea that I explained in the speech about Kosovo and Metohija is not something that has not been mentioned in Europe. Two years ago in the European Council a plan for decentralization appeared through which would have provided additional institutional protection for the Serbs and the other non - Albanian population. On the other side, that idea is present among our people in Kosovo and Metohija as well as among the ones that were expelled from there. I have formulated the way, which expresses their wishes, and every plan that is related to Kosovo, as I swore in the Kosovo Assembly, has to go through parliamentarian examination. The Government's proposal would be presented to the Assembly and that word would be absent", stated the president of the Serbian Government, Vojislav Kostunica, on Saturday.

On the question what his proposal means exactly, which are mentioned cantons and entities, Kostunica responded that "as Resolution 1244 of the Security Council of the UN means essential autonomy of Kosovo and Metohija within Serbia and Montenegro, autonomy is needed also for the Serbian and the other non-Albanian people in Kosovo and Metohija".

That autonomy can be realized through three dimensions, territorially, so the names if is it decentralization or cantons, personally or culturally, are not important.

The idea is all people, including the ones that cannot be seen within some territories where the Serbian population is the majority, to be protected, explained Kostunica.


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Svilanovic: Kosovo standards violate Resolution 1244

On Monday, Goran Svilanovic, the Serbia and Montenegro Foreign Minister, evaluated that UNMIK document "Standards for Kosovo" means overstepping authorizations given under resolution 1244 of the UN Security Council, and added that this solution did not take into consideration the key suggestions and amendments recommended by the Serbian government.

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Free Serbia
Helsinki, March 08. 2004

On Monday, Goran Svilanovic, the Serbia and Montenegro Foreign Minister, evaluated that UNMIK document "Standards for Kosovo" means overstepping authorizations given under resolution 1244 of the UN Security Council, and added that this solution did not take into consideration the key suggestions and amendments recommended by the Serbian government.

In his lecture given at the Alexandreti institute in Helsinki, during his one day visit to Helsinki, Svilanovic pointed out that the main remarks of the Serbian side were related to defining of sustainable return, return of property and property rights, privatization, protection of cultural treasures, and the disbanding of the Kosovo Protection corps.

"In spite all of this we are still ready to support the efforts of the international community in building of multiethnic society in Kosovo and Metohija," said Svilanovic. He also pointed that Serbian and Montenegro is in undeniable need of help and support of the EU in its road to reforming. "I believe that EU is aware that there can be no uniting of Europe without the Balkan countries" stated Svilanovic.

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Both EU and Kosovo and Metohija

'Holbrook's stance is his private opinion Fortunately, however. Pristina is not deciding about settlement of Kosovo status and if Serbia is going to respect all international obligations, we shall have the possibility to protect our interest in Kosovo and Metohija. Serbia's road to EU is with Kosovo and Metohija', Dusan Petrovic DS vice president said.

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Blic, Belgrade daily
Belgrade, 8 March 2004

Former USA diplomat Richard Holbrook said that Serbia was facing a historical choice: to remain where it is today and never join European Union or to choose either Europe or Kosovo and Metohija.

'In case Serbia chooses Kosovo, Serbia will get nothing. Serbs have to accept that Kosovo must have independence', Holbrook said.

'Blic' asked representatives of the most important political parties about their comment regarding the mentioned choice.

'Holbrook's stance is his private opinion Fortunately, however. Pristina is not deciding about settlement of Kosovo status and if Serbia is going to respect all international obligations, we shall have the possibility to protect our interest in Kosovo and Metohija. Serbia's road to EU is with Kosovo and Metohija', Dusan Petrovic DS vice president said.

'I think nothing about Holbrook's statements. Who is Richard Holbrook and why should I comment his statements?', Dragan Marsicanin, DSS vice president asked.

'Holbrook belongs to former USA administration. I think his statements should not be taken very seriously, This Government has to do what the previous one has not. It should solve Kosovo problem in favor of Serbia using diplomacy', Goran Paunovic, G17 Plus official said.
'Want both Europe and Kosovo and Metohija. We want with the help of the international community to keep Kosovo within Serbia. That is the crucial task of our diplomacy', Aleksandar Cotric of Serbian renewal Movement believes.

'Holbrook's statement is a cry of former USA administration. American officials confirmed to me that he was not expressing the official stance of Washington. Serbia should continue to insist on complete implementation of UN SC Resolution 1244 on Kosovo', SPS official Ivica Dacic said.
'Holbrook's stance is not official USA stance. That is his hope. However, this Holbrook's stance might come to life by Carry's victory in presidential elections in USA', Aleksandar Vucic, official of Serbian Radical Party said.


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Extremists warn international forces

It seams that the Civilian Mission is becoming a bone in the throat for the Kosovo Albanians. Placing explosive devices in front of the UNMIK headquarters, appropriated with political pressures of the Albanians from time to time toward the general secretary of UN and his assistants are everyday.

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Glas Javnosti, Belgrade daily
Belgrade, March 8, 2004

Who is UNMIK afraid of - a thick concrete wall encircling the UNMIK HQ in downtown Pristina

Belgrade, 08 Mar (Glas Javnosti) – It seams that the Civilian Mission is becoming a bone in the throat for the Kosovo Albanians. Placing explosive devices in front of the UNMIK headquarters, appropriated with political pressures of the Albanians from time to time toward the general secretary of UN and his assistants are everyday.

Because of this it is not strange why their have been walls surrounding the headquarters of the Civilian Mission in Pristina since this past autumn. On Sunday, a policemen of the Kosovo Police Service found an improvised explosive device placed right outside the UNMIK headquarters.
The office of the chief of UNMIK stated that parallel with the police investigation, there has also been conducted security measures to prevent this kind of attacks in the future.

Is this event not another warning for the international community? Four and a half years ago they (the Albanians) who strive for Kosovo independence welcomed them as liberators now are generally growing intolerant toward the international community. KFOR and UNMIK more and more are becoming occupation forces.

The radical groups do not hide that they are ready to realize their aims by force, and more than 4,000 international and 6,000 local policemen, along with 18,000 KFOR soldiers who their intention to care about the security in Kosovo have turned into observers.

Their (internationals) own weakness, lack of desire or orders were expressed in the summer of 1999 when in their presence a number of crimes against the Serbs were committed, such as usurping of properties, robberies, arson directed against churches and expulsion of Serbs.
The internationals themselves admit that the peace mission in KFOR and UNMIK do not generically take actions against extremists, because they are afraid of massive revenge toward the international organizations.


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News from Kosovo and Metohija, March 6-8

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INET News

KOSOVO AND METOHIJA NEWS

Monday 08 March 2004

20:40 Stojanka Petkovic, a Serb Return Coalition (Povratak) MP in the Kosovo Parliament, said that women of Serb nationality in Kosovo and Metohija are the most endangered in Europe.

20:20 The Pristina Albanian-language daily "Koha Ditore" assessed that the division of Kosovo will be difficult to prevent because this is the "long prepared" strategy of the Belgrade government.

20:00 Dusan Janjic of the Forum for Ethnic Relations assessed that the plan for cantons in Kosovo is actually based on the decentralization of the province, which cannot take place without Belgrade and the Serb community.

19:40 UNMIK chief Harri Holkeri stated that he spoke with Serbian prime minister Vojislav Kostunica regarding the prime minister's proposal for cantonization of Kosovo but added that this option is not foreseen by UN Security Council Resolution 1244 and therefore cannot be a subject of negotiation.

Sunday 07 March 2004

20:00 Dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina between groups of experts for missing and kidnapped persons will begin on Tuesday in Pristina. The meeting will be chaired by the head of the International Red Cross for the U.S. and Europe, Francois Smith (sp?) The five member Belgrade delegation is expected to include three Coordinating Center for Kosovo and Metohija officials, one member of the Association of Families of Kidnapped and Missing Persons from Kosovo and Metohija, and one representative of the Serbia-Montenegro Red Cross.

19:40 Coordinating Center for Kosovo and Metohija head Nebojsa Covic informed Serbian prime minister Vojislav Kostunica and minister for capital investments Velimir Ilic of the negative consequences that may result from announced aerophotogrammetric surveying of land in the province. This project is being organized and carried out the Kosovo Agency for Land Registry with the acquiescence of UNMIK, the Coordinating Center advised.

Saturday 06 March 2004

22:00 His Holiness the Serbian Patriarch Kyr Pavle and Serbian prime minister Vojislav Kostunica appealed to all business organizations, citizens of Serbia and the entire Serbian nation at home and abroad to assist in the restoration of Chilander Monastery.

21:00 The co-minister for repatriation in the Kosovo provisional government Milorad Todorovic expressed satisfaction with the fact that Serbian prime minister Vojislav Kostunica has placed the solution of the Kosovo problem on the list of government priorities.

20:20 Serb National Council of Northern Kosovo president Milan Ivanovic announced that his organization supports the proposal of Serbian prime minister Vojislav Kostunica to divide Kosovo into entities.

20:00 UNMIK chief Harri Holkeri condemned the planting of an explosive device in Pristina as a threat to public safety and expressed regret that extremists are continuing to threaten people in Kosovo and Metohija in this fashion. According to a written statement, members of the Kosovo Police Service found an improvised explosive device on Saturday morning near UNMIK headquarters and a residential building.


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Racak: The battle and the lies - what really happened in the Kosovo village of Racak  

These liquidated terrorists, who had fought furiously all day, needed to be depicted as "peaceful civilians". Along with the bodies, the terrorists removed the weapons the policemen had not managed to collect because of approaching darkness and the sheer size of the area. The antiterrorist operation in Racak was finished but another campaign, a media campaign full of lies and fabrications, was just beginning.

http://www.srpskapolitika.com/kosovo_2/tekstovi/15.html

By a participant in Operation Racak

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Srpska politika.com

The village of Racak, which is located not far from Stimlje, in the foothills of Mt. Jezerska, has 250-300 houses and is located in a valley. At the beginning of January 1999, the village was home to the headquarters of a terrorist brigade of 126 terrorists. Among them was the notorious terrorist family of Mujota (father, two sons and a daughter) responsible for the death of six policemen. The surrounding villages of Petrovo, Luzak and Rance were also under the control of terrorists. In Racak, with the exception of a few old women, there were no other civilians. Police had informed the OSCE so-called verification mission regarding the antiterrorist operation they planned to carry out in Racak. The operation was scheduled to begin at 08,00 hours. At that time on the hill next to the pine forest by the side of the Pristina-Suva Reka-Prizren road there was a Reuters television team.

Approximately 15 OSCE vehicles were lined up along the road toward Racak. Some one hundred policemen blocked the road from Petrovo to the village of Rance. They were spread out along the length of the asphalt road. In the pine forest to the right of the road was an army unit tasked with supporting the police. The police was supposed to set up a blockade, enter the village and rout the terrorists.

The plan for the antiterrorist operation in Racak was for a part of the police force to go around Racak and assume positions above the village and then for the rest of the policemen to move forward from the road. In this way the terrorists would be encircled and routed. Despite the fact that there was an elevation between the village in the valley and the asphalt road, the terrorist had not dug their trenches and bunkers on the elevation but behind the village toward Mt. Jezerska. On the overlapping hills they built two rows of trenches, shelters and bunkers.
The first and second fortified lines were some 200 meters apart. The trenches followed the contours of the terrain and were exceptionally well disguised and invisible. Permanently positioned in the first row of trenches were a 7.62mm machine gun, a 12.7mm Browing machine gun and two handheld missile launchers. From the first line the terrorists controlled the village, the terrain beyond the village and a part of the asphalt road. The hills where the fortified lines were located are covered with low brush.

NIGHT SIEGE The realization of the first part of this very well-planned antiterrorist campaign began at midnight when a part of a special police unit set out to take the fortified positions of the terrorists above the village. This small group of experienced, battle forged policeman, who had always emerged the victors in numerous clashes with terrorists, had night vision equipment which permitted it to move despite the thick darkness. The police advanced in a loosely formed arrow. In front is the head scout, to the left and right the flank scouts. Behind them is the group commander, then the other policemen distributed in zig-zag formation to protect the flanks of the group. They are arranged in four such groups. They are going into the unknown because they do not know exactly how many terrorists there are in the village, where the fortified lines are, whether the terrain is mined. They pass under the bridge along the asphalt road and walk through the stream. They move as if they were walking on needles, in absolute silence, for any sound could reveal their presence. They creep forward, constantly keeping watch because they do not know where the terrorists are. Step by step, at one with the darkness and silence of the night, with guns at the ready and fingers on the triggers, they surmount meter by meter. They use the configuration of the terrain to hide, following recesses, channels, streams, like shadows. Every muscle on the body is tense; senses are maximally alert. After four hours of night advance during which it covers five kilometers, the first group arrives in a place from where it controls the outskirts of the village. The policemen from that group fan out, assuming the best positions. The darkness still remains very thick. They do not see the village but only the outlines of its houses. The night is cold and they are wet.

The second group passes the first, continues on and assumes position. The last man from the first group in position joins the last man from the second group. At this time they discover the trenches, which they enter cautiously and silently. In this part of the trenches there is no one. They spread out in the trenches prepared by the terrorists. The third group is creeping up behind the second. They see that the trenches are long and there are too few of them to cover the entire terrain where the fortified line is located. The last group, headed by the most experienced member, enters the trenches above the village itself. At that time they see a terrorist: a sentry at the top on the hill smoking and coughing next to a Browing machine gun.The policemen, like shadows, approach him. If he sees them and starts firing from the Browing the campaign could fail and they could be killed. They creep forward in bent position, silently moving through the trench which winds like a snake and climbs uphill above the center of the village. They arrive a few meters away from the sentry, who reaches for his rifle. They liquidate him using a silencer. Twenty or thirty meters away, however, a second sentry next to a machine gun hears something happening and approaches the location of the first sentry. Before he can open fire, the policemen liquidate him and take over the first row of trenches over two kilometers in length.

There is exceptionally few of them for an area of this size. They wait until the crack of yet another cold Kosovo and Metohija dawn. At dawn, the Yugoslav Army unit in the pine forest starts up its transporters and the policemen on the asphalt road start their vehicles. The terrorists have been encircled without their knowledge or the knowledge of their protectors and allies, the so-called verifiers in front of the village.

The policemen on the road arrange themselves into battle formation and slowly move toward Racak. Their move is observed by terrorist sentries, who alert the village.

DECISIVE BLOW After the alert is sounded, the terrorists head for the trenches in the hills, not knowing the policemen are there. With rifles in their arms, the terrorists run up in small groups, each heading to a fixed position according to a rehearsed routine. All of them are wearing black or camouflage uniforms. The policemen in the trenches see them.

They do not open fire; they wait for them to get closer. The terrorists are now at 50-100 meters' distance. The outnumbered policemen in the trenches open intense fire from automatic rifles on about one hundred hardened and experienced terrorists who are totally surprised and in shock. They begin to run around in panic and some of them head back to the village. They shout and they scream; after the initial shock, they begin to organize themselves, get down on their bellies and open fire.

Many of them are already dead.

In order to prevent terrorists from the neighboring villages of Rance and Petrovo from heading to reinforce the headquarters of the brigade in Racak, the policemen launched a campaign against them, too, thus preventing them from heading for Racak. The policemen who moved in from the front are increasingly close to the village, which is why the terrorists now make several attempts to break through toward the hills and Mt. Jezerska. They try to break through in groups. Five-six or about ten of them rise, run forward while firing and get down again. They fight fiercely. They fire missiles from handheld launchers at the policemen in the trenches, who are armed solely with automatic rifles.

They try to find a way to get through between the policemen. Several such attempts fail in which they die massively. Also killed in an attempt to break through is a woman terrorist in uniform. The battle lasts all day. At about 15,30 hours, as twilight approaches, the battle begins to wane. That is when one of the policemen is shot in the arm.

The policemen who approached from below enter the village. Dead terrorists are lying scattered over an area two kilometers wide. Only a few terrorists managed to escape through the ravines and low brush. The rest of them got the punishment they deserved for misdeeds and crimes they committed. The police sustained no casualties and only one injury, the policeman shot in the arm.

It was an exceptionally effective and well-executed antiterrorist operation resulting in the destruction of the headquarters of a terrorist brigade. The policemen from the trenches joined their colleagues who entered the village. Some of the weapons of the liquidated terrorists, about 40 automatic rifles, machine guns and handheld missile launchers, were collected before dusk when the policemen who fought the battle with the terrorists in the hills returned to their base, while the policemen who came through the villages assumed control of the trenches where they were to remain overnight. In the meanwhile, AP and Reuters television crews entered Racak, as well as OSCE observers who spoke with two old people near the village mosque. In the center of the village, in the house that served as the headquarters, police found a computer with information about the terrorist brigade and a list of the 126 terrorists based in Racak. Among them were four foreigners with U.S. or British family names. These were foreign special forces instructors.

CORPSES RECLOTHED When the policemen who came through the village began to assume control of the trenches, terrorists from Mt. Jezerska (from Budakovo) and surrounding villages headed for Racak arrived. They opened intense fire from the hills, above the trenches the police were attempting to enter. Because of their intense fire and their own unfavorable position, the policemen abandoned the trenches and left through the village on their way to Urosevac. The terrorists entered Racak. That is when the great lie began that was propagated worldwide as an alleged massacre of civilians by Serbian police. From the streams and ravines they collected the dead terrorists, who were placed on a field where there was not a single corpse, as filmed by one of the foreign TV crews that entered the village with the police. The terrorists the reclothed about 40 corpses in civilian clothes; they ran out of clothes for the rest. The rest were taken in their uniforms in the direction of Budakovo, where they probably buried them. Of course, it was completely against their best interests to allow anyone to see dead terrorists in uniform.

These liquidated terrorists, who had fought furiously all day, needed to be depicted as "peaceful civilians". Along with the bodies, the terrorists removed the weapons the policemen had not managed to collect because of approaching darkness and the sheer size of the area.
The antiterrorist operation in Racak was finished but another campaign, a media campaign full of lies and fabrications, was just beginning.

Translated by www.serbian-translation.com

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