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Kosova Daily Report #1446, 98-05-31

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

From: Kosova Information Center <http://www.kosova.com/>

Kosova Information Center
KOSOVA DAILY REPORT #1446
Prishtina, 31 May 1998

First Edition: 15:00 CET
Second Edition: 18:15 CET

CONTENTS

  • [01] At Least Ten Albanians Killed by Serb Forces in Peja and De^an Villages in Two Days
  • [02] Serb Forces Resume Attacks against Gllogovc Villages
  • [03] Huge Serb Forces Reach Peja From Vojvodina via Rozaje (Montenegro)
  • [04] Junik Village Shelled, Traditional Albanian Manors Ruined
  • [05] Serb Forces Shell Albanian Houses in Llausha Sunday Morning
  • [06] Some 100 Kosovars Flee to Albania in the Wake of Serb Attack
  • [07] No Word About Albanian Doctor Detained by Serb Police Since Friday
  • [08] Serb Police Arrests 15 Albanians in Gjakova
  • [09] Many Killed and Wounded Feared in De^an, Bujku Correspondent Says
  • [10] Highly Critical Situation in De^an as Serb Onslaught Continues
  • [11] Serb Forces Kill at Least 15 Albanians, Wound 20 Friday and Saturday in Kosova
  • [12] LDK Condemns Belgrade's 'Genocidal Acts' against Albanians, 'Ethnic Cleansing' of Kosova
  • [13] Drenica in Desperate Need for Help

  • [01] At Least Ten Albanians Killed by Serb Forces in Peja and De^an Villages in Two Days

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - At least ten Albanians have been killed and twice as many wounded since Friday, when huge Serbian forces embarked on a concerted, large-scale military and police crackdown on the Albanian villages in the western municipalities of Peja ('Pec') and De^an, reports coming from the area confirmed today.

    It is since Friday that Serbian authorities have cut off telephone lines in the area, making it all but impossible to learn about the Serb offensive against Albanians in that part of Kosova, which has been sealed off.

    The Kosova Information Center (KIC) obtained today afternoon a more detailed account of the Serbian attacks and the extent of casualty- toll and material damage.

    It is but a very sketchy account, though, sources warned.

    Local Democratic League of Kosova (LDK) sources said Serbian forces launched Friday, 29 May, attacks on the villages of Carrabreg, Beleg, Dranoc, Hulaj, Isniq and Strellc in the municipality of De^an, and the villages of Lubeniq, Kryshec, Vranoc, etc. in the municipality of Peja.

    The Peja and De^an villages have been shelled incessantly by Serb ('Yugoslav') military, paramilitary and police forces.

    Serbian forces have been concentrated in the area stretching from De^an to the village of Raushiq (in Peja) and from there deep inside the valley of Baran (Lugu i Baranit) region, LDK sources said.

    Serbian offensive operations have been met with a fierce resistance by local Albanian defendants, after most of the population - women, elderly, and children - were evacuated.

    There are killed and wounded on both sides, sources said.

    At least three Albanians, two men and a woman, were killed and three others wounded during a Serbian attack on the villages of the Lugu i Baranit (the Valley of Baran) Friday, KIC learned Saturday.

    The casualty toll: killed and wounded The village of Vranovc in Peja was worst hit by Serbian shelling, which lasted for 12 hours (5:30 through 17:30), local sources said.

    Beqir (Rrustem) Krasniqi, Imer (Elez) Ukaj (55) and Faz& (Zenun) Krasniqi (35) were killed, whereas Ismet Krasniqi, Met& Krasniqi and Cuf& Krasniqi were wounded that day.

    KIC learned today (Sunday) that at Carrabreg village Shaqir Dobra and two women, whose names were not revealed, were killed, whereas in De^an Xaj& Curr Kuqi was killed, whereas his brother, Isa, and their mother were wounded.

    Arif Mahmutaj (44) and Rexhep Pavataj were reported killed at Strellc village of De^an, and an unknown number wounded, LDK sources said.

    KIC learned one villager was killed and another died of hearts attack Friday amidst a Serbian attack on the village of Junik in the municipality of De^an.

    Eight Albanians were wounded at the village of Isniq of De^an Saturday afternoon, an adult man (Muhamet Bojku) and a woman, as well as six children, four of whom were said to be Rexhep Bruqi, Burim Bruqi, Arsim Januzaj and Granit Januzaj, aged 8 to 11.

    Demush G&rvalla was reported wounde at the village of Kryshec in the municipality of Peja.

    Details on Serb actions and extent of material damage Some 20 houses have been ruined completely in the town of De^an, may others have been set ablaze by Serbian forces.

    Some 70 Albanians in De^an have been rounded up by Serb forces, their fate and whereabouts unknown.

    The village of Isniq came under a fierce Serb attack, and met with a fierce response from Albanian villagers and the U^K fighters, sources said.

    Heavy fighting occurred today (Sunday) in the village of Isniq, reports said, adding that the small town of De^an is virtually in flames.

    Many houses have been reported ablaze at Strellc village. The combined Serbian military-police assault on this village started on Thursday, 28 May, sources said. Heavy Serb troops equipped with combat equipment first pounded the village from a distance, then advanced into it.

    Six houses were shelled at the Kryshec village of Peja.

    Today The sound of heavy guns and artillery was being heard in the morning today (Sunday) coming from Serb positions at Lubeniq village of Peja, to L&bush&, Strellc and other villages up to town of De^an itself.

    There has been a huge population movement in the wake and amidst the unfolding Serbian offensive against Albanian villages.

    There are virtually deserted villages, or areas where only men have stayed behind, the rest having been evacuated to other safer areas.

    This "safer areas" is to relative a term, because some of the villages like Isniq and Junik which have sheltered evacuees have come themselves under Serb attack this weekend.

    LDK sources said there was an alarming situation with regard to basic necessities and medical supplies.

    The area has been sealed-off, cut off from electricity and telephone lines.

    The movement of people has been restricted, as even back roads have been sealed off by Serb forces.

    Serb snipers have been positioned in houses along the roadway to De^an shooting on people who dare come out.

    Representatives of the population of these areas have been sending dramatic appeals to international fora and humanitarian organizations to step in urgently and save the population.

    [02] Serb Forces Resume Attacks against Gllogovc Villages

    Albanian houses raided and plundered by Serbs look as if hit by a cyclone, witness says PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - The Llapushnik village in Gllogovc municipality, central Kosova, came under renewed Serb shelling today (Sunday) morning, the LDK Information Commission in Gllogovc said.

    Llapushnik and half a dozen villages in the Komoran valley along the Prishtina- Peja highway have been repeatedly shelled from Serb positions during he past three days.

    Serb forces garrisoned near the Ferrous-Nickel "Ferronikeli" plant in Gllogovc fired at least five cannon shells in the direction of Llapushnik at around 8:30. The village was shelled again at around 11:00 from another Serb position at Komoran, the Commission said.

    Virtually all the houses in Llapushnik have been shelled and set ablaze later by the advancing Serb forces in the village on Friday.

    Meanwhile, sources in Gllogovc said that at around 13:15 today, the Serb forces started attacking the Pokleku i Ri village, about two km south of the small town. Serb policemen in seven armored vehicles entered the village, embarking immediately a house-to- house raid, the LDK chapter in Gllogovc said.

    Most of the local residents of Gllogovc and the villages along the road towards Komoran have fled their homes over the past days. At least 3000 people from this area have been reportedly found sheltered in the neighboring municipality of Lipjan.

    The Serb forces have been intruding into the abandoned houses, smashing property and plundering valuables and whatever can be taken away, the LDK Information Commission in Gllogovc said. Some of the houses look as if hit by a powerful cyclone, one of the members of the Commission said.

    Gllogovc is a 99.9 per cent Albanian-inhabited municipality in central Kosova.

    [03] Huge Serb Forces Reach Peja From Vojvodina via Rozaje (Montenegro)

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - Huge Serbian forces, with license plates from the province of Vojvodina, reached the western Kosovar town of Peja from the direction of Rozaje, in the neighboring republic of Montenegro.

    The Prishtina-Peja highway has been closed to traffic for three weeks now.

    Telephone lines with Peja have been cut off by Serb authorities.

    Several villages in the municipality of Peja have been under a fierce Serbian onslaught since Friday.

    Three Albanians were killed, three others wounded at the village of Vranovc alone.

    Community centers, motels, and factories in Peja have been turned into bases for the fresh Serb forces.

    Police have been stationed at the 'Yugoslav' military barracks in Peja, too.

    [04] Junik Village Shelled, Traditional Albanian Manors Ruined

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - Serbian forces have been attacking the village of Junik for a third straight day.

    The villages lies between De^an and Gjakova along the border with Albania.

    Junik is the hugest village in Kosova and treasures many well- preserved traditional Albanian houses built on stones (Albanians 'kulla').

    Reports from Gjakova said 'kulla's were targeted by Serb shelling since Friday.

    Many have of them have been reported hit, some destroyed completely.

    [05] Serb Forces Shell Albanian Houses in Llausha Sunday Morning

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - The Llausha village in the municipality of Skenderaj ('Srbica') came under renewed Serb forces fire today (Sunday) morning.

    Llausha was shelled for hours with cannons and rocket-launchers from Serb forces positioned around the village on Friday and Saturday as well.

    The today's shelling of Albanian farmstead in Llausha lasted from 10 to around 11:30 a.m., an LDK activist in Llausha told KIC by phone. The activist said damage was caused on several houses, but he could not say if there were casualties in the village.

    Meanwhile, sources in Skenderaj reported of increased Serb forces movement in the area. A new Serb police checkpoint has been established between Skenderaj and Polac village, south-east of the small town.

    [06] Some 100 Kosovars Flee to Albania in the Wake of Serb Attack

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - Two groups of Kosova Albanians have fled the border villages and reached Albania, the Office of the Republic of Kosova in Tirana told KIC today afternoon.

    The two groups consisted of some 40 women, children and elderly each, the Office said, quoting Albanian police sources in the northern town of Bajram Curri.

    Albanian sources said the refugees warned larger groups of Albanians from Kosova were on their way to Albania.

    Tens of thousands of Kosova Albanians have been internally displaced since end of February when Serbia embarked on large-scale military and police actions against the Albanian people.

    Ethnic cleansing of Kosova has been the longstanding policy of Belgrade, which has found due confirmation in the recent weeks with entire villages being shelled, houses destroyed or set ablaze by Serbian forces.

    [07] No Word About Albanian Doctor Detained by Serb Police Since Friday

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - Dr. Fehmi Vula, a surgeon with the Gjakova hospital and member of the local LDK presidency in Gjakova, has been held in Serb custody since Friday morning, whereas Ms Besa Arllati, chairwoman of the Gjakova Information Commission since Saturday.

    The two LDK activists have been repeatedly detained for hours by Serb police since Monday in connection with an alleged abduction of two Serb policemen, who according to the police are being held at Smolica village of Gjakova.

    Dr. Vula's brother, Zeki Vula, told KIC today that he fears his brother was liquidated. No one could contact him since Friday, while the Serb police authorities refuse telling a word about his whereabouts.

    Ms Besa Arllati and Dr. Fehmi Vula have been pressed by the police to secure that the two Serbs, allegedly abducted by Albanians in Smolica, be freed. Earlier this week, the two LDK activist were told by police they would be used as human shield in an operation to release the captured policemen. In addition, the police has vowed that their children would be held hostage until the two Serbs are freed.

    LDK people in Gjakova have been consistently denying knowledge about the alleged abduction of Serb police officers.

    An LDK activist in Gjakova told KIC that the two Serbs could have even deserted from the police ranks and fled Kosova already.

    [08] Serb Police Arrests 15 Albanians in Gjakova

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - Serbian police arrested 15 Albanians in Gjakova Saturday afternoon, sources said.

    The Albanians - 7 elderly men, 6 young men and teenagers, and a girl - were arrested in the street, presumably while coming from the affected areas of the municipality.

    LDK sources in Gjakova could not learn the identity of the detained Albanians.

    Reportedly some of the Albanians were released last evening, while the rest are being still held in custody.

    [09] Many Killed and Wounded Feared in De^an, Bujku Correspondent Says

    200 persons held as hostage, 70 caught up in police confinement

    PRISHTINA, May (KIC) - The correspondent of the Bujku newspaper said today there were many killed and wounded Albanians in De^an municipality, including women and children.

    The wounded cannot receive medical help, he said.

    In a report filed by phone today, the Bujku correspondent said some 200 persons - mostly elderly, women and children - have been held as hostages by Serb forces in the compounds of the private "Dekor" firm in the town of De^an.

    Some 70 more have been reported caught up in the house of Gani Komoni.

    Whole neighbourhoods have been shelled in the town of De^an, the Bujku correspondent said, adding that houses have been destroyed or set ablaze by Serb forces.

    The De^an mosque has been hit, too.

    The inhabitants of the municipality have been making all efforts to defend their homes, the Bujku correspondent.

    [10] Highly Critical Situation in De^an as Serb Onslaught Continues

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - The situation in the small town of De^an and surrounding villages in western Kosova continues to be highly critical amidst an unfolding large-scale onslaught of Serb forces against Albanian settlements.

    The villages of Carrabreg i Posht&m, Carrabreg i Ep&rm, Beleg, Drenoc, Rastavic&, Baballo^, Grama^el, Isniq, Strellc, and Dubovik have been intermittently attacked by Serb forces for the third straight day today, LDK and human rights council sources in the area reported.

    The small town of De^an itself has come under fierce fire since Friday. Scores of houses have been reported shelled and ruined or set ablaze by Serb forces.

    Musa Berisha, chairman of the local chapter of the Council for the Defense of Human Rights and Freedoms (CDHRF) in De^an said that Serb forces have been applying a scorched-earth policy in many villages in the area.

    Serb soldiers and paramilitaries have been intruding into the abandoned houses of Albanians plundering whatever they can take away. In some villages, Serbs have been setting ablaze those houses which could survive the shelling, Mr. Berisha said on (mobile) phone.

    De^an and other areas in which Serb attacks have mounted over the past days have been cut off telephone lines.

    Besides fierce attacks by the Serb forces, the local population has been subject to proliferating propaganda and psychologic war.

    Local population, children, women and old people have been fleeing 2their homes in panic, the local CDHRF chairman said.

    Neither the LDK nor CDHRF sources could confirm figures the extent of casualty-toll.

    [11] Serb Forces Kill at Least 15 Albanians, Wound 20 Friday and Saturday in Kosova

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - At least fourteen Albanians, three of whom women, were killed Friday and Saturday in Serbian attacks against villages in Peja, De^an, Gjakova and Skenderaj. At least 20 others were wounded, local sources said.

    Rexhep Sadiku, resident of Nivokaz village of Gjakova, Halit Asllani, resident of Brovina, were killed Friday, and Xhafer Krasniqi was found dead.

    Fatmir Xhemajli was killed Saturday at Kopili^ village of Skenderaj.

    Sami Bogiqi was killed Friday at Vukovc hamlet of Gllogovc.

    An Albanian, whose name has not been made known, was killed at Junik village of De^an.

    Beqir Krasniqi, Imer Ukaj and Faz& Krasniqi (f) were killed Friday at Vranovc village of Peja.

    Shaqir Dobra and two women, whose names remain unknown, were killed at Carrabreg village of De^an.

    Xaj& Curr Ku^i was killed in De^an, whereas at Strellc village Arif Mahmutaj and Rexhep Pavataj.

    Amongst the wounded Albanians are at least seven children and several women.

    [12] LDK Condemns Belgrade's 'Genocidal Acts' against Albanians, 'Ethnic Cleansing' of Kosova

    PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - The leadership of the Democratic League of Kosova (LDK), the main political party in the country, condemned today in the strongest terms the mounting Serbian military and police attacks against Albanians in the villages of Peja, De^an and Gjakova.

    The situation in the villages of Peja and De^an, especially along the border villages with Albania, is "extremely dramatic", the LDK said in a statement, adding the restricted flow of information denotes that Serbian forces have been committing atrocities against the local Albanian population there.

    "There are many killed and wounded people, among whom women and children, as a result of fierce Serb attacks", the LDK said, adding that the town of De^an seems to have been worst hit. Serb forces have been destroyed and set ablaze many houses, the party said, referring to its sources on the ground.

    A large number of people has been on the move from the attacked area in Peja and De^an municipalities, the LDK statement said.

    "Having blockaded the flow of people and goods, especially the basic necessities and medicines, the Serb regime endangering the bare existence and health of a great number of people", the LDK said.

    "With these genocidal acts, Belgrade is carrying its ethnic cleansing schemes in Kosova", the Presidency of the LDK said, calling them "crimes against humanity".

    The LDK urged the international community, first and foremost the United States of America and the European Union, "to take urgent steps to end Serbian aggression and save the unprotected people of Kosova."

    [13] Drenica in Desperate Need for Help

    One killed, two wounded Friday PRISHTINA, May 31 (KIC) - The LDK Information Commission in Gllogovc learned today Sami Bogiqi, in his mid- thirties, resident of Vukovc hamlet, was killed and Fadil Demaku, resident of Obria e Ep&rme village of Gllogovc, was wounded Friday during the Serbian onslaught on a number of villages in the Valley of Llapushnik.

    The Poklek i Ri village, some 2 km away from the small town of Gllogovc, has been raided by Serb forces, Most of the people, women and children, have been fleeing the village.

    Sources from Skenderaj and Gllogovc reported a desperately deteriorating humanitarian situation in the villages of the Drenica region.

    There has been a huge population movement, with people leaving homes running for their lives and swelling the population in temporarily safer areas.

    Some 450 inhabitants fleeing their homes in Kopiliqi i Ul&t, Llaush&, Buroj& and Vojnik villages have arrived at Rezall& village of Skenderaj alone. Skender Fejzullahu, sustained life-threatening wounds during a Serb shelling of his Buroja village Friday afternoon.

    Rrahman Ahmetaj, a local official in charge of emergency care for the displaced people, told KIC the 270 families of the Rezall& village cannot cope with the situation.

    Food and medical supplies are badly needed, Ahmetaj said.

    The village of Likoc faces the same situation, for many fleeing families from other Gllogovc villages have sought shelter there.

    Kosova Information Center

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