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Kosova Daily Report #1686, 99-02-07

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 #1686
Prishtina, 7 February 1999


CONTENTS

  • [01] Rambouillet Conference on Kosova Launched Saturday
  • [02] Powerful Bomb Kills Three Albanians, Injures Others in Prishtina Saturday Evening
  • [03] 9 out of 25 Albanians Killed Ten Days Ago to Be Buried Today

  • [01] Rambouillet Conference on Kosova Launched Saturday

    President Jacques Chirac of France opens it with a solemn appeal for Albanians and Serbs to answer the call of history

    PRISHTINA, Feb 7 (KIC) - President Jacques Chirac of France opened an international conference on an interim settlement for Kosova in Rambouillet, France, late afternoon on Saturday.

    Chirac began the proceedings in a 14th-century chateau with a solemn appeal for all parties to answer the call of history.

    "There are times when history is in the hands of a few men," President Chirac said in an opening statement, the Associated Press reported. "When you leave Rambouillet, a page in Europe's history will have been turned. I exhort you to let the forces of life overcome the forces of death."

    "The world is watching," the French leader said in a speech broadcast live by Euronews. "The world is waiting."

    The conference in Rambouillet was delayed for more than three hours, because the Serb regime had obstructed travel arrangements involving the Kosovar delegation departing from the Prishtina airport.

    The Kosova delegation arrived by mid-afternoon on two French planes.

    In the end, all parties turned up, for the opening speeches and the brief administrative session that followed.

    The real negotiating started today (Sunday) at 10:00 CET, sources close to the talks said.

    French and British foreign minister, Hubert Vedrine and Foreign Secretary Robin are acting as co-chairmen of the talks on Kosova, based on a framework document prepared by the Contact Group.

    Mediating the negotiations will be Christopher Hill, the U.S. ambassador to Macedonia, who is the main author of the draft interim plan for Kosova. He is joined by Wolfgang Petritsch of Austria, the European Union representative, and Boris Mayorsky, a Russian diplomat.

    The framework document "offers the basis for a democratic self-governing Kosova with control over its own internal affairs," Robin Cook said.

    Crowds of pro-Kosova Albanian demonstrators gathered in the center of Rambouillet, this small central French town, located about 35 miles south of Paris.

    The demonstrators carried red and black Albanian flags and waved banners, some of them reading "Independence, and only Independence", and chanted slogans in support of Kosova, Ibrahim Rugova, the President of the Republic of Kosova, the U^K (Kosova Liberation Army), and Rexhep Qosja, the leader of the opposition bloc to Rugova, all participants in the talks.

    [02] Powerful Bomb Kills Three Albanians, Injures Others in Prishtina Saturday Evening

    PRISHTINA, Feb 7 (KIC) - Last evening, a powerful bomb ripped through a small grocery store in the center of Prishtina, capital of Kosova, killing three Albanians, including a teenage girl.

    Several others were injured in the explosion, sources said.

    The explosion occurred just before 19:00 CET on Saturday in the "Almir" grocery store, owned by Enver Shala, situated alongside the main Prishtina street, near the vegetable produce market in Ulpiana neighborhood.

    UnidentifieD persons tossed the powerful explosive device killing Enver Shala (1947), the store's proprietor, and Vlora Humolli (f, 1981) a passer- bye from Prishtina. Artan Ajeti (20) from Ferizaj, died on his way to the Prishtina hospital, one mile away from the scene of the carnage.

    The scene of the crime was cordoned off by Serbian police today (Sunday) morning, too.

    The Kosova capital has seen a spade of bombings, hand grenade attacks, targeting eating and drinking establishments.

    Saturday's blast appeared to have been caused by a more powerful device, those who saw the scene claim.

    "A leg with the shoe still on and other pieces of mangled bodies were scattered on the city's main road, and a trail of blood ran along the gutter," CNN said in a report from Prishtina.

    OSCE verifiers attended the scene Saturday evening. Ambassador Gabriel Keller, the deputy head of the OSCE KVM, informed William Walker, the U.S. ambassador who heads the mission and is currently attending talks in Rambouillet, France, launched Saturday evening at the time the bomb exploded in Prishtina.

    The Democratic League of Kosova (LDK), President Ibrahim Rugova's, party, condemned in the strongest terms "the terrorist act" which killed three Albanians and wounded a number of others in Prishtina last night. The attack coincides with the start of the international conference on Kosova in Rambouillet, France, the party said, adding that "this is further evidence the Serbian regime is adamant on obstructing a political resolution to the Kosova issue".

    The LDK presidency reiterated the call for NATO ground troops to be committed to Kosova, "as a necessary move to establish peace in this part of Southern Europe region".

    Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Serbian occupation authorities in Kosova added to the already grave and tragic situation by rushing to declare that the shop owner, Enver Shala, "was known to be loyal to the Serbian Republic" and to maintain good relations with local Serbs, "which made him a target for radically-minded terrorists".

    This kind of verbal pyrotechnics has been frequently the pattern of Serbian regime's reaction to killings of Albanians in Kosova: routinely putting the blame on Albanians by declaring killed Albanians "decent" citizens, loyal to Serb authorities, which, in the yes of Kosovars, means Serb collaborators, who would only be killed by 'Albanian terrorists', the argument goes.

    There is no end in sight to Serb criminal regime's outrageous propaganda ploys in the height of the Kosovar tragedy.

    [03] 9 out of 25 Albanians Killed Ten Days Ago to Be Buried Today

    PRISHTINA, Feb 7 (KIC) - Nine out twenty-five Albanians killed by Serbian forces on 29 January will be buried today afternoon in the village of Rogov& e Hasit, in south-western Kosova, local sources said.

    The nine are said to be residents of Rogov&, the place where the 25 Albanians were killed ten days ago.

    It is not known yet whether all the victims - taken for post-mortem examinations by the Serb police forces which had killed them - have been identified.

    The bodies of more than 40 Albanians killed in the Re^ak massacre on 15 January are still unburied, as the Serb regime authorities have refused to release all their bodies at once for a collective burial by the grieving Albanian families.

    Kosova Information Center

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