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Belgrade Media Monitoring

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

May 14, 2001

  • Serb troops enter Oraovica
  • Troops order rebels' surrender
  • Soldiers wounded in southern Serbia
  • Survey of today’s activities of Albanian terrorists
  • NATO gives go-ahead to Sector B return
  • Robertson confirms Sector B return
  • Haekkerup calls November elections
  • ‘Vidovdan’ to vote on ending road blockade
  • Working group discusses return of Kosovo Serbs
  • Serb troops enter Oraovica

    (RTS, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Late afternoon Serb troops control most of the Oraovica village captured yesterday by Albanian terrorists, Radio Television of Serbia reports.

    Troops order rebels' surrender

    (B92, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Bujanovac, Monday – Yugoslav troops have surrounded the rebel-held village of Oraovica and called on the guerrilla forces to surrender. The government-run Bujanovac press centre said it had also urged the village’s civilian population to leave. There have been fierce clashes in the village since it was seized by the rebels on Saturday.

    Soldiers wounded in southern Serbia

    (B92, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Presevo, Monday – Three Yugoslav soldiers have been slightly wounded in heavy clashes in the Presevo valley this afternoon. The government-run Bujanovac press centre said the soldiers had been injured in fighting in mountains west of Vranje. They were around 30 miles from clashes in the rebel-held village of Oraovica, in which rebels used mortars, rocket launchers and sniper rifles against Yugoslav joint security forces.

    Survey of today’s activities of Albanian terrorists

    (Beograd.com, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Yugoslav Joint Security Forces are still under attack of Albanian terrorists, started this afternoon near Oraovica, in the South of Serbia. The attack on the St. Ilija hill near Vranje, in Serbia proper were finished late this evening, while positions of the Yugoslav Joint Force near the village of Cerevajka were attacked by several mortar shells about 17:00 this afternoon. During the attack on the St. Ilija hill Yugoslav forces had casualties – three non-commissioned officers were injured, one of them heavily, and was to be transported to the Belgrade Military Medicine Academy. The other two injured NCOs were hospitalized in Vranje local Medical Center. (YU Info)

    NATO gives go-ahead to Sector B return

    (B92, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Brussels, Monday – NATO has agreed to let Yugoslav security forces return to the final sector of the buffer zone, sources have claimed. Reuters quotes alliance ambassadors who stated that KFOR will oversee a “phased and controlled” return of troops to the volatile Sector B beginning on May 24.

    Robertson confirms Sector B return

    (B92, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Brussels, Monday – NATO secretary general George Robertson has confirmed that the alliance agreed today to allow Yugoslav security forces to return to the last sector of the southern Serbian buffer zone. Troops will start to return on May 24 in a phased process overseen by KFOR, he said. Robertson added that the measure was agreed by the permanent council of ambassadors on the grounds that the buffer zone was now redundant.

    Haekkerup calls November elections

    (B92, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Pristina, Monday – UNMIK head Hans Haekkerup has now named November 17 as the date for the general elections in Kosovo. In a televised address to the people of the province, Haekkerup announced he would also sign the highly disputed temporary legal framework for Kosovo tomorrow. It will be known as the temporary constitutional framework for self-management in Kosovo. Among the stipulations laid down in the document is that the new parliament will have 120 seats, 20 of which will be reserved for representatives of the non-Albanian minorities. Haekkerup pointed out that the document, the result of two months of UNMIK-led negotiations between Serbs and Albanians, would have critics on both sides. He said that the international administration had refused the Albanians’ demand for a referendum, but included a clause ensuring that any discussions about the final status of the province take into account the will of its people. (B92)

    ‘Vidovdan’ to vote on ending road blockade

    (B92, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Merdare, Monday – A decision will be taken today on whether to continue the Nis-Pristina road blockade, Alliance of Kosovo Serb refugees president Caslav Bojovic announced today. The ‘Vidovdan’ group has blocked the road for the past 18 days in a gesture of solidarity for Kosovo Serb protests against UNMIK customs points on the Kosovo-Serbia administrative border. According to Bojovic, some members fear they are endangering Serbs from the village of Strbci who have had to use roads through the volatile areas of Konculj and Cerevajka instead. (Srna)

    Working group discusses return of Kosovo Serbs

    (B92, 14. 5. 2001.)

    Pristina, Monday – The working group for the return of Serbs to Kosovo will meet in Pristina today, Yugoslav Committee member Milena Vasic confirmed this morning. The group consists of officials from UNMIK, K-For and the Yugoslav Committee for Kosovo. Vasic said that the committee would insist on the improvement of basic human rights and that all security conditions are in place to allow the phased return of Serbs. (Srna)

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