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Belgrade Media Monitoring

Compilation from Belgrade daily newspapers, prepared by editorial staff of the Voice of Kosovo and Metohia

April 17, 2000

  • "Spiegel": The investigation of the UN against Taci and other leaders of "KLA"
  • Magazine "Dani": Albanian mafia and KLA
  • Shooting in Pec
  • New attack on police checkpoint
  • Terrorists burnt down Serbian village
  • 250 Serb houses disappeared in fire
  • Persecution of Serbs by KFOR and Albanians is in the last phase
  • KFOR seized arms from the Albanians
  • Macedonia under the pressure of Albanian terrorists
  • Rugova warns of further conflict in Kosovo
  • Ibrahim Rugova warned that Albanians "will not accept to return in Yugoslavia": Either independent Kosovo or new war
  • Sunday times: Depleted uranium in Kosovo
  • Yugoslav committee delegation for cooperation with UNMIK visited Serb prisoners
  • UNMIK accepted Serb demands
  • US planning return of displaced Serbs to Kosovo
  • Serbs will not participate in civil registration
  • Serb political organizations in Kosovo: No conditions for registration of population
  • SOC will leave the political arena
  • Pristina overrun by rats
  • A fight among KFOR soldiers
  • Kukan for respecting the territorial integrity of the FRY
  • "SPIEGEL": THE INVESTIGATION OF THE UN AGAINST TACI AND OTHER LEADERS OF "KLA"

    (Serbia info, 17. 4. 2000)

    April 16, 2000 - Berlin, April 16th - The UN police in Kosmet is leading an investigation against leaders of the officially dismissed "KLA", because of the committed crimes in the province. One of the main suspects is leader of the Albanian separatists Hasim Taci, says German weekly "Spiegel", citing the appropriate documents from Pristina that they got hold of.

    The accusations are related with the tortures, organized murders and money extortion, says the weekly.

    Hasim Taci, the ex-political leader of the "KLA" and now president of the so-called Temporary Administrative Council of Kosmet, was suspected for murders of the Serbs and Albanians as well, which he accused for being "collaborationists", and his rivals in the "KLA", says German weekly.

    MAGAZINE "DANI": ALBANIAN MAFIA AND KLA

    (Politika daily/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    According to reports of some international organizations, well-known experts and even US Senate, 15 Albanian "families" run organized drug dealing "chain" from Asia to Europe and USA, claims Peter Klebnikov in his article published in Sarajevo magazine "Dani". With help of regional "clans" they control everyday life of Albanians in Kosovo and Metohija. Klebnikov emphasizes that 15 "families" were sponsors of so-called KLA. (*)

    SHOOTING IN PEC

    (B2 - 92, 17. 4. 2000)

    Kosovo, Sunday A 42-year-old Roman male was killed after being shot several times in the market area in Pec yesterday, KFOR Spokesperson Major Frank Benjaminsen told a press conference today. UNMIK Police are investigating the murder.

    Benjaminsen also reported a large weapons find during search operations in the southeastern part of Kosovo and that 5 Serb houses were burned in the town of Prizren last night.

    Beta reports that a further 7 Serb houses in villages near the towns of Pristina and Urosevac were also set on fire last night. One Serbian male was injured in the fires near Pristina.

    NEW ATTACK ON POLICE CHECKPOINT

    (Blic daily, 17. 4. 2000)

    Bujanovac - Armed terrorists of, as said, no more existing "Liberation Army of Bujanovac, Medvedja and Presevo" attacked with five missiles police checkpoint at Lucane-Dobrosin road on Saturday shortly after 9 a.m. The missiles were fired from the direction of Dobrosin. Official confirmation of this attack was not given yesterday.

    On February 2, at this same checkpoint that is 4 km away from Lucane, fire was opened at UN officials Grogen and Azanov.

    TERRORISTS BURNT DOWN SERBIAN VILLAGE

    (Serbia info, 17. 4. 2000)

    April 16, 2000 - Belgrade, April 15th - Albanian terrorists burnt down and with bulldozers levelled to the ground 250 houses in Serbian village Bijelo Polje near Pec today, radio amateurs reported from Kosmet.

    Albanian extremists performed this act in order to prevent Serbs from returning to their homes, whence they had evaded in June last year in fear from Albanian terror, which became harder since KFOR`s arrival in Kosmet.

    Before burning and destroying Serbian houses, Albanian terrorists had robbed them, taking away furniture and other things by 14-15 trucks.

    In Talinovac near Urosevac, the last two Serbian houses were burnt down, reported radio amateurs today. The owners of those houses, Dragan and Vitko Tomic received that information on the phone from their ex-neighbors, Albanians. They were told that there was no reason for them to return to Kosmet, since their houses had been burnt down.

    Albanian extremists and thieves robbed five Serbian houses in Jasenicane district in the village of Gornja Brnjica in Obilic. The owners of the houses, Radomir, Trajko and Koviljka Djordjevic, and Branko and Vlastimir Stolic found their homes in mess. They spent the night at their friends` in the village, where the security was better. Albanian thieves took away big pieces of furniture and house gadgets. Boilers were torn out in the bathrooms, double beds taken away from the bedrooms, and on some houses even the front doors were missing.

    All this is happening after a recent meeting of Serbs with KFOR, who promised greater care and control, especially during the night.

    250 SERB HOUSES DISAPPEARED IN FIRE

    (Blic daily, 17. 4. 2000)

    Belgrade - Albanian terrorists yesterday set in fire and leveled by bulldozers 250 Serb houses in the Serb village of Bijelo Polje near Pec, radio amateurs reported. Prior to that terrorists robbed the houses.

    PERSECUTION OF SERBS BY KFOR AND ALBANIANS IS IN THE LAST PHASE

    (Politika daily/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    Nis, April 16. The leadership of the Serb Assembly of Pristina announced that persecution of Serbs by KFOR and Albanians is in its last phase (*)

    KFOR SEIZED ARMS FROM THE ALBANIANS

    (Serbia info, 17. 4. 2000)

    April 16, 2000 - Pristina, April 15th - Members of the KFOR Peace Forces in Kosmet seized yesterday at the checkpoint 10 kilometers from Gnjilane large quantity of arms, including mines and shells. The arms were transported by Albanians, said today KFOR in Pristina, and western agencies report.

    On that occasion, two Albanian truck-drivers were arrested and put into custody in the American base "Bondsteel", KFOR spokesman, Major Frank Benjaminsen said, as AFP reports.

    According to his words, while searching the truck, Austrian peacekeepers found 77 antitank mines, 40 shells, over 1000 bullets, one semiautomatic gun, two rifles and a machine gun.

    Benjaminsen said there was no information about the destination of the arms.

    The fact that this amount of arms can be found in the possession of those who were "disarmed" long ago, as international forces have been claiming for months now, remains without explanation.

    MACEDONIA UNDER THE PRESSURE OF ALBANIAN TERRORISTS

    (Serbia info, 17. 4. 2000)

    April 16, 2000 - Skoplje, April 15th - Macedonian Minister of Defense, Nikola Kljusev, and leader of the strongest Macedonian oppositional party, Branko Crvenkovski, agree that Macedonia is under severe pressure of Albanian terrorists, who act both from outside the country and from inside of it.

    In his statement to Macedonian information agency, Kljusev said that "rebellious groups of Albanians" are trying to transfer their terrorist actions from Kosmet to southern Serbia so that "Macedonia's turn" would come next.

    "I cannot prove whether KLO exists in Macedonia and in Kosmet, but I know that there are rebellious groups which endanger the peace in this part of the Balkans", the Minister of Defense said adding that the groups in the southern province "are not controlled by Kouchner and KFOR".

    Leader of the Social-Democratic union of Macedonia, Branko Crvenkovski stated in Kocani today that Macedonians keep on deserting their homes under the strong pressure of "Albanian attackers". Crvenkovski said that the followers of Arben Dzaferi, leader of the Democratic Party of Albanians (DPA), which is in the leading coalition together with VMRO, are especially active.

    Macedonian Government does not control western part of the country, he added, and that is why Macedonians are leaving Tetovo, Gostivar and Debar, selling their houses and their land.

    "If we do not wish to lose our country, we have to prevent barbaric acts of militant Albanians. Such thing is impossible to do while VMRO and DPA are in power i.e. leaders of these parties, Dzaferi and Georgievski, who is also President of the Government", Crvenkovski pointed out.

    RUGOVA WARNS OF FURTHER CONFLICT IN KOSOVO

    (B2 - 92, 17. 4. 2000)

    Kosovo, Sunday -- President of the Kosovo Democratic Alliance Ibrahim Rugova warned the international community that their attempts to ensure that Kosovo remained part of Yugoslavia would lead to a new war in the region. In his interview for German daily "Der Spiegel", Rugova said that UN Resolution 1244 did not exclude the independence of Kosovo and that for Albanians from Kosovo any other solution but independence was inconceivable.

    IBRAHIM RUGOVA WARNED THAT ALBANIANS "WILL NOT ACCEPT TO RETURN IN YUGOSLAVIA": EITHER INDEPENDENT KOSOVO OR NEW WAR

    (Blic daily, 17. 4. 2000)

    Bonn - President of Democratic alliance of Kosovo Ibrahim Rugova warned international community that new war would occur if it should try to include Kosovo in any way in Yugoslavia again. In

    His interview with "Spiegel" weekly Rugova said that UN Resolution 1244 "does not exclude independence of Kosovo".

    SUNDAY TIMES: DEPLETED URANIUM IN KOSOVO

    (Glas javnosti/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    London (FoNet) Twelve British soldiers who served in Kosovo plan to sue British Ministry of Defence because of chronic health problems caused by depleted uranium in anti-tank missiles used during the war in Kosovo. Belgium has begun a systematic review of the health of its soldiers, however the main danger is to the local population. (*)

    YUGOSLAV COMMITTEE DELEGATION FOR COOPERATION WITH UNMIK VISITED SERB PRISONERS

    (Politika daily/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    Yugoslav committee delegation for cooperation with UNMIK visited Serbs who are in hunger strike in Kosovska Mitrovica jail since 10th on April and demanded their immediate releasing. Serb prisoners announced that they would continue to refuse food and would break all contacts with jail administration, doctors, lawyers and families unless their claims of anti-Serb bias are properly investigated. (*)

    UNMIK ACCEPTED SERB DEMANDS

    (Politika daily/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    On yesterday's meeting, UNMIK accepted demands of the Serb Forum of Orahovac (SFO). SFO demanded, in eleven items, better treatment of Serb population in Orahovac municipality as well as in entire Kosovo and Metohija province. (*)

    US PLANNING RETURN OF DISPLACED SERBS TO KOSOVO

    (B2 - 92, 17. 4. 2000)

    Washington, Sunday The US is currently planing the coordinated return of displaced Serbs to Kosovo despite UNHCR warnings that they cannot be protected from revenge attacks by Albanians, the Washington Post writes today. The article also said that as many as 700 Serbs could be returned to the village of Ostojane near the town of Istok this summer.

    SERBS WILL NOT PARTICIPATE IN CIVIL REGISTRATION

    (B2 - 92, 17. 4. 2000)

    Kosovo, Sunday -- Serbs will not take part in the civil registration due to begin next week in Kosovo, Serbian National Council from Kosovska Mitrovica representative Oliver Ivanovic told the Head of UNMIK Berenard Kouchner yesterday. In talks which took place in the southern part of Kosovska Mitrovica, Ivanovic demanded that Kouchner increase the protection of Serbs in the northern part of this divided town as well as in the borough of Vucitrn where Serbs live completely cut off from others Serb enclaves, and insisted on the reopening of bus connections to and from this region. Ivanovic also demanded that KFOR control the crossing of Albanians from the southern to the northern part of Kosovska Mitrovica.

    SERB POLITICAL ORGANIZATIONS IN KOSOVO: NO CONDITIONS FOR REGISTRATION OF POPULATION

    (Blic daily, 17. 4. 2000)

    Pristina - There are no conditions for registration of population in Kosovo and Metohija scheduled for the beginning of this week. This is opinion of all Serb political organizations in Kosovo and Metohija.

    "Two-thirds of our population are not in Kosovo. Therefore, we cannot support registration nor can we take part in this action", Father Sava says.

    SOC WILL LEAVE THE POLITICAL ARENA

    (Glas javnosti/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    Gracanica (Beta) High official of the Serb National Forum of Kosovo and Metohija, Rev. Sava Janjic, said that Bishop Artemije and other members of the Serbian Orthodox Church will leave the political arena and stop cooperation with UMNIK if Serb refugees who fled Kosovo do not begin returning within three months. (*)

    PRISTINA OVERRUN BY RATS

    (Politika daily/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    Pristina, April 16. - Bernard Kouchner, the United Nations' top administrator in Kosovo and Gen. Klaus Reinhardt, the German commander of the NATO troops in Kosovo joined hundreds of people in a trash pickup Saturday that highlighted growing health concerns about the province's burgeoning rat population, Reuters reported. Rats have invaded the city and doctors say they see 10 people a day who have gotten sick from diseases transmitted from the rats and rodent droppings. (*)

    A FIGHT AMONG KFOR SOLDIERS

    (Politika daily/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    A fight broke out among KFOR soldiers from United Arab Emirates in the village of Svinjare. A soldier, beaten by his three colleagues, fired in self-defence and wounded them all. (*)

    KUKAN FOR RESPECTING THE TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY OF THE FRY

    (Serbia info/Digest, 17. 4. 2000)

    April 16, 2000 - Bratislava, April 15th (Tanjug) - Slovakian Foreign Minister and the special envoy of the UN General Secretary for the Balkans, Edward Kukan, reported in Paris that the future uniting of Kosmet had to be based on the Security Council Resolution 1244. It also had to result from the territorial integrity of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Kosmet multiethnic features and its wide autonomy.

    Kukan used this opportunity to warn that the Kosmet Albanians are taking advantage of the International Association's support in reaching the goal that is not in concord with the well-balanced and righteous system resulting from the Resolution 1244.

    At the same time, Kukan came out against the rapid search for the solution for Kosmet status, instead of insisting on the faster appliance of the Resolution 1244. This situation only serves the Albanian separatists` and terrorists` purpose.

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