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Kosova Daily Report #1685, 99-02-06

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 #1685
Prishtina, 6 February 1999


CONTENTS

  • [01] Kosova Delegation Leaves for Paris, Conference to Be Kicked Off Late Saturday Afternoon
  • [02] 24 American Legislators Oppose Foreign Command of U.S. Troops in Kosova
  • [03] Serbian Forces Shell Podujeva Villages, Loot Albanian Houses
  • [04] The Re^ak Massacre Victims' Bodies to Be Released in Groups, Serb Regime Says
  • [05] Albanian Bar Fired Upon in Prishtina
  • [06] Correction/Numbers of Kosova Daily Report Permutated

  • [01] Kosova Delegation Leaves for Paris, Conference to Be Kicked Off Late Saturday Afternoon

    PRISHTINA, Feb 6 (KIC) - The Kosova delegation to the Rambouillet conference left for Paris, France, today just before 14:00 CET.

    The delegation, headed by President Ibrahim Rugova, departed from the Prishtina airport, 16 km south of the Kosova capital.

    The Kosova conference in Rambouillet, near Paris, is scheduled to start late afternoon today (Saturday). It will be chaired by French and British foreign ministers, Hubert Vedrine and Robin Cook.

    President Jacques Chirac of France is expected to open the conference, in which Kosovar and Serb/'Yugoslav' delegations should be present in the same room.

    The Kosova delegation was due to leave for Paris yesterday (Friday). A French military airplane has been on stand-by in Prishtina to carry the Kosovar delegation to Paris. The Serbian authorities prevented them from leaving yesterday, and backed down today after pressure from the international community.

    The Serbian regime insisted yesterday members of the Kosova Liberation Army (U^K) could not travel from the Prishtina airport.

    The rest of the Kosovar delegation, including President Ibrahim Rugova, refused to leave without them.

    The parties to the talks, Prishtina and Belgrade, will have in the 14th century Rambouillet chateau near Paris negotiate on the basis of a draft interim agreement on Kosova prepared by the Contact Group, which reportedly offers Kosova substantial autonomy within the 'FRY' for an interim three- year-long period.

    The U.S. mediator, Ambassador Chris Hill, who is the main author of the plan, will head the West's negotiating team in the Rambouillet.

    But he will be flanked by the European Union's Kosovo envoy Wolfgang Petritsch and Russian envoy Igor Magorsky.

    The sessions in France are to be "negotiations" only within narrow limits, a senior U.S. official was quoted by The Washington Post as saying. He said the parties will be expected to accept 80 percent to 85 percent of a settlement written by the six-nation Contact Group, and that neither side will be permitted to offer a full substitute plan.

    [02] 24 American Legislators Oppose Foreign Command of U.S. Troops in Kosova

    PRISHTINA, Feb 6 (KIC) - A bipartisan group of congressmen urged President Clinton on Thursday to abandon an administration plan to put U.S. troops under foreign command as part of a peacekeeping force in war-torn Kosova, the Associated Press reported.

    In a letter drafted by Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., the 24 lawmakers told Clinton they are "steadfastly opposed" to having American soldiers under foreign command as part of a NATO peacekeeping force.

    "The American public expects and demands that Americans be in charge when the lives of our men and women in the military are at risk," the letter said.

    If American troops are sent to the Balkan nation, Bachus said, "They should at least be under American command."

    Administration officials have told Congress in a series of briefings this week that they're considering sending several thousand U.S. ground troops to join a NATO peacekeeping force in Kosova, once a peace treaty is agreed to by the warring factions, Kosovars and Serbs.

    NATO is studying the possibility of a European-led peacekeeping force of 25, 000 to 30,000 troops.

    The French Defense Minister Richard has been quoted as saying France could contribute 5,000 troops.

    The British Government has put 8,000 British troops on 72 hours notice to move into the war-torn Kosova.

    The mobile headquarters of Nato's Rapid Reaction Corps led by Lieutenant General Sir Michael Jackson is also being put on stand-by, news agencies reported.

    [03] Serbian Forces Shell Podujeva Villages, Loot Albanian Houses

    PRISHTINA, Feb 6 (KIC) - Last night, Serbian forces shelled for an hour the village of Llapashtic&, near the northern town of Podujeva, local LDK sources said.

    The Serb military forces pounded the village from their positions at Tabet e Llapashtic&s. The sound of heavy shelling echoed in the town of Podujeva, home to some 20,000 inhabitants, 99 percent of whom Albanians.

    Meanwhile, local sources said Serb forces fired today morning in the direction of Sallabaj&, Majanc and Godishnjak villages, on the right side of the Prishtina-Podujeva highway. Godishnjak was targeted also Friday evening, from 18:00 through 19:00 CET.

    Serbian forces have been looting Albanian houses in villages deserted by the local Albanian population amidst a continued Serb crackdown in the Podujeva area since Christmas.

    Some residents who tried to get back home to Lluzhan village, 18 km north of Prishtina, have been brutalized by Serb police, LDK sources said.

    [04] The Re^ak Massacre Victims' Bodies to Be Released in Groups, Serb Regime Says

    Autopsies of 24 Albanians killed in Rogov& still underway

    PRISHTINA, Feb 6 (KIC) - The Serbian press reported today the bodies of the Albanians massacred by Serbian forces on 15 January can be released to the families.

    The bodies of 40 Albanians have been in the Prishtina morgue for autopsies carried out by Serb regime authorities, in which a Finnish forensic team was present also.

    The Serb judge, Danica Marinkovic, is quoted as saying the bodies can be released in groups now.

    The Serb Blic daily said two bodies would be buried by police, because they are reportedly not Kosova citizens.

    Meanwhile, the Serb-installed director of the Institute for Forensic Medicine in Prishtina, Slavisa Dobricanin, said yesterday "autopsies have been completed on 18 out of 24 Albanians killed in Rogov& village".

    Some of the killed Albanians in Rogov& have not yet been identified, Albanian sources said.

    Serb and Byelorussian experts are taking part in the examination of the Rogov& bodies, Dobricanin said.2

    [05] Albanian Bar Fired Upon in Prishtina

    PRISHTINA, Feb 6 (KIC) - Unidentified persons opened automatic weapons fire in the direction of "Ardido Ianda" coffe bar, owned by G&zim Kastrati, in the former Trigllavi street in Prishtina Friday evening.

    There were no injuries, Kastrati said.

    [06] Correction/Numbers of Kosova Daily Report Permutated

    PRISHTINA, Feb 5 (KIC) - The numbers of the three last editions of the Kosova Daily Report have been permutated during computer processing.

    Therefore, Daily Report #1862 (3 February 1999) should have been Daily Report #1682; and, accordingly, Daily Report # 1863 = Daily Report #1683, and Daily Report # 1864 = Daily Report 1684.

    Today's edition is Daily Report #1685.

    Hopefully, this permutation will have been rectified now, and will not confuse KIC's Daily Report's users.

    Kosova Information Center

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