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Compilation from Belgrade daily newspapers, prepared by editorial staff of the Voice of Kosovo and Metohia
April 21, 2000
(Borba daily, 21. 4. 2000)
Kosovska Mitrovica district prison authorities refused Thursday to allow a member of the Yugoslav committee on cooperation with the UN
mission and a team of doctors to visit Serbs and Gypsies in custody who have for days been on hunger strike.
A prison official quoted relevant bodies of the UN civilian mission to Kosovo and Metohija (UNMIK) as saying that the prisoners could only be visited once a week.
According to a report submitted to the committee by a team of doctors, only 12 of about 40 persons in custody were examined on Wednesday, four of whom are in critical condition.
The prisoners went on hunger strike more than a week ago over months' old failure to settle their status and inadequate treatment on the part of the exclusively ethnic Albanian prison authorities.
(Blic daily, 21. 4. 2000)
Nis - Dr. Slavisa Dobricanin, pathologist gave his statement to the court at yesterday`s continuation of court proceedings against Mazreku brothers, Ljuan /21/ and Bekim /21/ accused for torturing and shooting kidnapped civilians in Klecka. On August 29, 1998 in the mountain of Klecka there were found human bones of 6 to 7 people. Before burning, the dead bodies were cut in pieces with an axe.
"We spoke about dead bodies of six persons, four adults and two children of 5 and 10-15 years of age. However, according to the findings in the mountain it is believed that the number of killed people is larger", Dobricanin said yesterday. According to findings of forensic medicine, two months had passed after burning of the dead bodies. Some bodies cut in pieces were found by the place where dead bodies were burnt, waiting for burning.
(Politika/Daily, 21. 4. 2000)
A 15-year-old Albanian assassin, Faton Hajrizi, killer of a Russian soldier has escaped from prison again. (*)
(Blic daily, 21. 4. 2000)
Pristina - UNMIK Police yesterday arrested two persons in Pristina for illegal possession of weapons and ammunition. KFOR soldiers arrested one man from Pantina near Kosovska Mitrovica for illegal possession of ammunition.
Near the village of Svinjare unknown attackers opened fire against KFOR soldiers form United Arab Emirates.
Another incident occurred in Pec the day before yesterday when four KFOR soldiers were injured as well as two persons protesting because of arrival of Serb representative, Father Petar to the meeting with local leaders of Albanian national community. About 500 Albanians gathered in front of the building trying to prevent the Serb priest to return to the monastery. Father Petar returned to the monastery after intervention of KFOR special unit.
One Albanian was injured in the village of Ljumbarda near Prizren after stepping over a mine. Six masked attackers broke into one Albanian house requesting money. They fired 20 bullets in the air, took 20 German Marks and car keys.
(B2 - 92, 21. 4. 2000)
Pristina, Thursday – Four members of KFOR and two Albanian protesters were injured in Pec during a demonstration yesterday. About five hundred Albanians gathered to protest against a meeting between the Serbian Orthodox Church's Father Petar and leaders of the local Albanian community. KFOR spokesman Frank Benjaminson told media that the crowd tried to prevent the Serbian priest returning to his monastery. He was eventually escorted by KFOR special troops.
(Tanjug/Digest, 21. 4. 2000)
Belgrade - Preliminary results of a census of people displaced from the U.N.-ruled Serbian (Yugoslav) province of Kosovo-Metohija show that at least 200,000 of them have found refuge in other parts of Serbia and in the other Yugoslav republic, Montenegro, according to a Yugoslav minister for refugee and humanitarian affairs, Bratislava Morina, on Thursday.
(Serbia Info, 21. 4. 2000)
Kosovska Mitrovica, April 20 - Assistant of Minister of Information of the Republic of Serbia, Miljkan Karlicic, stated in Zvecani today that the announced census, organized by Bernard Kouchner, is an attempt of legalizing current situation in Kosmet after the ethnic cleansing. He expressed his conviction that Serbs would not agree to the census until about 500,000 expelled people return to the province.
He announced the opening of a press center in Pristina and Strpci, and said that building of a transmitter in Kosovsko Pomoravlje was in progress.
Karlicic assessed that the UN members and large part of western officials "are poking around with figures of the expelled very skillfully, minimizing them, and wishing to diminish the failure of their mission".
(Tanjug, 21. 4. 2000)
Pristina - Yugoslav official liaising with the U.N. mission (UNMIK) to the Serbian (Yugoslav) Kosovo- Metohija province Stanimir Vukicevic met in the province's city of Pristina on Thursday with Eurocorps Commander Juan Ortuno.
Ambassador Vukicevic, who chairs the government committee liaising with UNMIK, welcomed General Ortuno to Kosovo-Metohija as an integral part of Yugoslavia and its republic of Serbia, a committee statement said.
Vukicevic stressed the Eurocorps was expected to exert itself for stabilising the security situation and securing conditions for the life and work of all people living in Kosovo-Metohija.
He insisted that the Eurocorps consider it a priority to protect the Serbs and other non-Albanians in Kosovo-Metohija.
He said he hoped the Eurocorps would work to create conditions for enhancing tolerance between the ethnic communities as well as for isolating ethnic Albanian extremists and combatting crime.
He went on to stress the priority importance of the repatriation of displaced people to Kosovo-Metohija, revival of the economy and the production process, protection of the farmers and raising the confidence of the non-Albanian population in the international security force (KFor) and the U.N. civilian mission (UNMIK).
General Ortuno, in turn, said he would work in line with U.N. Resolution 1244 and would intensify the activities for enhancing security.
Pledging to give priority to the greater protection and safety of the Serb community, Ortuno said he would invest efforts for ensuring their freedom of movement and protecting their property.
The Spanish general especially stressed he would work for the return of the displaced Serbs, Montenegrins and other non-Albanians, as well as the displaced ethnic Albanians.
While saying that the borders are already being guarded, he stressed he would nevertheless tighten border security.
General Ortuno, heading the five-nation Eurocorps, took over from Germany's Klaus Reinhardt as head of the international security force (KFor) in Kosovo-Metohija on Tuesday.
(Tanjug, 21. 4. 2000)
Pristina - The top official of an ethnic Albanian party in Kosovo-Metohija said on Thursday that the situation in that U.N.-ruled Serbian (Yugoslav) province was deteriorating.
Sokol Quse, leader of the Democratic Reform Party and member of the Provisional Executive Council of Kosovo-Metohija, said at a party meeting in Pristina that crime, anarchy and lawlessness had peaked, which clearly showed that the U.N. mission had failed.
Threats to human rights and crimes are continuing, directed solely against non-Albanians, according to Quse who added, however, that indigenous ethnic Albanians, too, had lately been targetted if they would not support the terrorists and extremists.
Organised crime in Kosovo-Metohija is also very powerful, and is involved mostly in arms and drug trafficking.
The old codes of conduct in the ethnic Albanian community have been disrupted, and there is no control of the open border to Albania, which creates problems for the indigenous Albanians, according to Quse.
The ethnic Albanian Democratic Reform Party stressed the fact that, before the deployment of the interantional peace mission last June, the ethnic Albanians had enjoyed all rights and had had their legal representatives in the state bodies.
Now, however, their rights had been heavily curtailed, Quse added.
He noted that many ethnic Albaians were exposed to terrorism and even murdered for refusing to recognise the unlawful terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA).
(Glas javnosti/Digest, 21. 4. 2000)
Moscow (Beta) – "Russia will try to find a solution for Kosovo problem with orientation on Kosovo Serbs and not on Belgrade", claims Russian Comersant Daily after the meeting of Igor Ivanov with leaders of the Serb National Forum of Kosovo and Metohija. (*)
(Danas/Digest, 21. 4. 2000)
Pristina – New regional administrator of UN for Kosovska Mitrovica region is American William Nesh. He took up his duties on Wednesday. (*)
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