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The Information Service of the Serb National Council of Kosovo and Metohija

Daily press briefing of the Serb National Council of Kosovo and Metohija

Gracanica, July 21, 2000

DENIAL OF REPORT THAT SERB REPRESENTATIVES HAVE JOINED THE PRISTINA MUNICIPAL ASSEMBLY

With regard to the news agency information that three Serbs have allegedly joined the Pristina municipal assembly, which was reported by Beta and appeared in the daily papers "Danas" and "Glas Javnosti", the SNC wishes to make the following statement.

Serb representatives Zorica Velic, Trifun Jovanovic and Predrag Vasic are not presently and have never been members of the Pristina municipal assembly. They are working in the newly opened local Serb office in Gracanica and administering relevant activities with the goal of resolving issues of education, industry and community services in the Gracanica region.

Similar offices are foreseen by the Agreement on Understanding between the SNC and UNMIK to open in the near future in several parts of the Province inhabited by Serbs in order to enable the offering of administrative services and the realization of rights of the Serb people in the locations where they live. In these offices local Serb reprsentatives together with the international administrator are expected to resolve key issues of the Serb community. Each office will be composed of several specialized committees, e.g., health, education, refugee returns, community issues, etc.

It is absolutely reponsible from the journalistic standpoint to accept information directly from the Albanian press without previously verifying it and contacting the Serb representatives in question. The SNC, which is working on the opening of these offices and whose representatives are participating in their work, requests that the media publish this denial and explanation.
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SUPPLEMENT:

Beta's report appearing on July 21 in the daily "Danas"

Pristina - After a pause of almost one full year, three Serbs have joined the work of the municipal administrative council in Pristina, Albanian language newsspapers in Pristina reported two days ago. At the meeting of the council two days ago which was chaired by administrator Siegfried Brenke participants included Zorica Velic, who was appointed for education issues in Gracanica; Trifun Jovanovic, responsible for industry and labor; and Predrag Vasic, who will head community services in Gracanica and the surrounding Serb villages. (Beta)
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The Serb delegation continues its participation in the seminar of the U.S. Institute for Peace (USIP) at Airlie House in Virginia. An official statement on this seminar will be published on July 24 after the conference is completed.

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