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Kosova Daily Report #1326, 98-01-23

Kosovo Information Center: Kosova Daily Report Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: Kosova Information Center <>

Kosova Information Center


Prishtina, 23 January 1998


  • [01] Summary from President Rugova's Press Conference
  • [02] Tense Situation Follows Yesterdays Attack in Sk&nderaj
  • [03] Stepped-up Moves of Serb Police and Military Forces in De^an
  • [04] Leaders of Serb Paramilitary Units, 'Arkan' and 'Kapetan Dragan' Lodge in Mitrovica
  • [05] Unidentified Person Found Dead in His Car in Klina
  • [06] Albanian Youth from Klina in Serbian Police Custody Since January 18th
  • [07] Swiss Authorities Send Back 62 Kosovar Albanians

  • [01] Summary from President Rugova's Press Conference

    PRISHTINA, Jan 23 (KIC) - The Thursday's attack of the Serbian police forces at Prekaz village of Skenderaj was a barbarous act to intentionally provoke escalation of the situation in Kosova, the President of the Republic of Kosova Dr. Ibrahim Rugova said today.

    Speaking to reporters in Prishtina President Rugova dedicated most of his remarks to the yesterday's event in Skenderaj municipality, central Kosova, where an ethnic Albanian Hysen Manxholli was shot dead and tow girls were wounded during a Serb police attack on the family of Shaban Jasharaj at Prekaz village. He said he saw it as a dangerous attack which "followed the hysteric Serb regime propaganda proliferated over the last couple of months, so to encourage campaigns of reprisals against the citizens of Kosova".

    Dr. Rugova remarked that such practices are but a proof that the police and military forces are adamant to motivate violence in Kosova through massive provocations. He noted that reports indicate that Serb forces have been making extensive preparations in Nis and Leskovac (Serbia), and that Serbian police has been maneuvering in several place in Kosova such as the villages of Drenica region, central Kosova, in Istog, Balaj of Freizaj, Ajvalia of Prishtina.

    President Rugova appealed on the United States and European Union to undertake concrete steps so to prevent further escalation in Kosova.

    President Rugova said he hoped that President Clinton's envoy to the Balkans, Ambassador Robert Gelbard, and Wolfgang Ischinnger, Political Director in the German Foreign Affairs Ministry will visit Kosova in a near future, expressing his disappointment that they could not travel to Prishtina last week because of inclement weather conditions.

    The President expressed his satisfaction over the continuous concern of Nato and the Contact Group on Kosova. He welcomed an announcement of Ms Sadako Ogatto to pay a visit to Kosova, and he applauded a recommendation made recently by the International Helsinki Federation for a Dayton-like conference on Kosova.

    Dr. Rugova called on the Serb regime to bring to and end the repression and provocations, as well as an increased international presence in the country as preventive step. He reaffirmed that an independent and neutral Kosova, with the guarantees for the Serbs, is the best and most viable solution.

    Touching on the everyday life in Kosova, Dr. Rugova said that the Serb regime repression against citizens of Kosova has continue with impunity. He spoke of numerous cases of Serb police practices, including home raids, ill- treatment, intimidation of ordinary citizens and political activists.

    Referring to an annual report of the Council for the Defense of Human Rights and Freedoms, President Rugova said that during the last year alone 35 Albanians and citizens of Kosova were killed, of whom 12 were victims of fire arms, 5 died of Serb police torture, while 18 were killed in still unsolved circumstances.

    Commenting on remarks of a reporter that armament has been deployed to an Orthodox monastery of Deviq in Skenderaj municipality, President Rugova noted with concern that such reports, though still unconfirmed, have been proliferating. He called on the Orthodox church to refrain itself from involvement in such activities.

    Asked to comment on the remarks of a reporter who said that the Serb forces have been cracking down on citizens in Kosova without any real pretext, president Rugova sad that such practices are in line with programs of the Serb regime for an ethnic cleansing of Kosova.

    President Rugova called once again on all the citizen of Kosova to refrain themselves from violence and provocations, underlining that a peaceful solution to the Kosova issue should be sought.

    [02] Tense Situation Follows Yesterdays Attack in Sk&nderaj

    PRISHTINA, Jan 23 (KIC) - Heavy Serbian police and military forces were deployed early morning in Sk&nderaj, (in Serbian: Serbica), central Kosova, and surrounding areas.

    At ten this morning an army convoy left the Sllatina military base near Prishtina and headed towards Drenica area (central Kosova), witnesses say.

    Other Serbian police convoys with heavy military equipment were seen heading towards Sk&nderaj in other parts of Kosova.

    A telephone conversation this afternoon confirmed that some 300 Serb policemen have stationed in town ready to charge.

    Our source said an army helicopter cruised over the villages of Broja and Runik today at noon.

    Deployment of Serb forces into the region follows yesterday's brutal attack of Serb forces on the Jashari family at Prekaz village near Sk&nderaj. On two female members of the Jashari were wounded, one of them heavily. and an Albanian called Hysen Nezir Manxholli was shot dead while on his way to work.

    Sources say thousands of Sk&nderaj residents, as well as residents from the neighboring areas have gone to participate in the funeral of the late Manxholli at Mikushnica village.

    A delegation of the LDK, headed by vice-chairman Fehmi Agani went in the area, in order to call on the local population for caution and restraint.

    [03] Stepped-up Moves of Serb Police and Military Forces in De^an

    PRISHTINA, Jan 23 (KIC) - There has been an extensive increase of Serb police and army forces presence in De^an municipality - border region with Albania - over the past days, the latest reports from De^an say.

    The LDK Information Commission in De^an said that Serb army convoys, equipped with heavy armament have been moving in the area in the last three nights. Random shootings were heard coming from the police station at Irzniq village on several occasions.

    For over two hours on Thursday evening, Serb police forces were stationed in the streets of Junik. Between 18:30 and 20:30, the police scrutinized, halted and ill-treated scores of local resident who happened to be caught in the streets. Mentor G. Hoxha, Bislim Hebibi are amongst those who have been beaten up severely without any particular reason.

    Serb police units in bullet-proof vests were stationed last night in several places in De^an and Rastavica. Outraged Serb policemen stop and harass everyone in the streets.

    Several Albanians have told our sources that they were halted and threatened by the police who kept their guns pointed at them during the whole time.

    [04] Leaders of Serb Paramilitary Units, 'Arkan' and 'Kapetan Dragan' Lodge in Mitrovica

    PRISHTINA, Jan 23 (KIC) - Two notorious leaders of Serb paramilitary units, Zeljko Raznjatevic known as "Arkan", and Dragan Vasiljevic known as 'Kapetan Dragan [captain Dragan] who fought in Croatia during the last war have settled in one of the hotels in Zve^an of Mitrovica, central Kosova, the Albanian daily Koha Ditore writes today.

    Newspaper sources confirmed their presence in Zve^an, adding they had lodged at the hotel No. 3.

    According to the newspaper the Serb staff of the hotel did not confirm nor denied their presence in the hotel. They told the paper 2"we cannot tell you anything concerning this."

    Mitrovica residents say they fear a possible escalation of the existing tense situation in town or in the area.

    Heavy Serbian police forces conducted an unusual control in Shipkovc village last night. The police were very arrogant and offensive towards the local residents, the newspaper says.

    [05] Unidentified Person Found Dead in His Car in Klina

    A yet unidentified middle-aged person was found shot dead in his Mercedes car at Jashanic& e Ep&rme village - some 10 miles from Sk&nderaj - of Klina (central Kosova), LDK sources in Klina reported.

    According to the witnesses who found the car with the dead body in it the car had been peppered with bullets.

    LDK sources and the local Human Rights Council said that the same person had been seen in the area yesterday afternoon.

    Sources say that the body was laying in the front seat on the right side from the driver seat.

    The report says heavy police forces drove in the direction of Jashanic& village this morning.

    Heavy presence of Serbian police forces was also reported in the small town of Klina today. They have been harassing and intimidating the local residents, the report says.

    [06] Albanian Youth from Klina in Serbian Police Custody Since January 18th

    PRISHTINA, Jan 23 (KIC) - Imer Millaku from Si^eva village of Klina told the Albanian daily Koha Ditore that his son Bashkim Millaku (26) has been arrested and is being held in Serb custody in Peja since 18 January.

    He told the newspaper that his son was on his way home from Montenegro together with his brother, where they have been working.

    They were arrested at Gazivoda (a regular Serbian police check-up in the border with Montenegro), and taken to Serb custody in Peja.

    The Serbian police held Bashkim Millaku and released his brother.

    Bashkim Millaku was detained and tortured severely at the police station in Peja last year, under the charges that he had visited Albanian in 1992 without an exit visa.

    His lawyer, Shefqet Dastani told the newspaper that when he inquired about Bashkim Millaku at the police station, they had told him "they are gathering up those who have visited Albania."

    [07] Swiss Authorities Send Back 62 Kosovar Albanians

    PRISHTINA, Jan 23 (KIC) - The electronic media of Switzerland reported Wednesday that the Swiss authorities sent back 62 Kosovar Albanians who had sought asylum in this country over the last years, Koha Ditore carries a correspondence from Switzerland.

    The 62 Kosovar Albanians were sent back to the Prishtina airport on a spacial flight with JAT (Yugoslav Air Transport) company.

    The Swiss authorities said there were no families among the returnees.

    The Swiss NGO-s have on many occasions opposed the return of the Kosovar Albanians home because of the lack of security in their home country, says the newspaper, adding that there is a likelihood that these individuals may face prosecution upon their return home.

    The Swiss authorities signed last summer an agreement with the "FRY" authorities for the repatriation of the asylum-seekers, mainly the Kosova Albanians.

    Kosova Information Center

    Kosovo Information Center: Kosova Daily Report Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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