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Kosova Daily Report #1336, 98-02-03

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

From: Kosova Information Center <kic_pr@zana-pr.ztn.apc.org>

Kosova Information Center

KOSOVA DAILY REPORT #1336

Prishtina, 3 February 1998


CONTENTS

  • [01] President Rugova Receives Ambassadors of OSCE Troika Countries
  • [02] Ten Albanians from De^an in Serb Custody Since Last Week
  • [03] 'Night Watching' Serb Civilians Harass Their Albanian Neighbors
  • [04] Armed and Masked Serbs Attack Albanian Population in Peja
  • [05] Serbian Police and Military on Constant Move in Vushtrri Area

  • [01] President Rugova Receives Ambassadors of OSCE Troika Countries

    PRISHTINA, Feb 3 (KIC) - President of the Republic of Kosova Dr. Ibrahim Rugova received Monday in Prishtina heads of the Belgrade- based embassies of OSCE troika countries, Dr. Slawomir Dabrowa, Ambassador (Poland), Antje Jensen, Minister Counselor and Charge d'Affaires (Denmark), and Jon A. Gaarder, Ambassador (Norway).

    The current situation in Kosova and the region was discussed in the meeting.

    Diplomats of the OSCE troika countries expressed the concern of the OSCE over the escalating tensions in Kosova, noting that they were instructed by their respective governments to regard situation more closely.

    President Rugova noted with concern that the Serb regime repression has continued unabated, recalling that several recent crackdowns of the Serb police forces against Albanian residents in a couple of Kosova municipalities have further deteriorated the already tense situation.

    The President underlined that the people of Kosova have persisted in their peaceful drive for independence by utterly peaceful and democratic means. He recalled that the people of Kosova have opted overwhelmingly for an independent Kosova. Kosova's identity through history and its position as one of the eight equitable members of the now defunct Yugoslav federation have been the factors which qualify it for the right to self-determination, he said.

    Independence and neutrality for Kosova, coupled with all guarantees for the local Serbs and Serb interests in the country, is the only workable solution he said.

    President Rugova urged for an increased international presence in Kosova and real pressure on Belgrade regime so make it engage in a genuine dialogue, mediated by an internationally authorized party, in reaching a negotiated solution for the Kosova issue.

    Heads of the embassies of the OSCE troika countries said their countries and the Organization have been closely watching the developments in Kosova. The OSCE stands for a peaceful resolution of the Kosova issue they said, calling on all the parties concerned to refrain from violent approaches and practices which could fuel tensions.

    [02] Ten Albanians from De^an in Serb Custody Since Last Week

    PRISHTINA, Feb 3 (KIC) - At least ten Albanians from a couple of villages of De^an have been held in Serb police custody since 28 January. Scores of others have been reportedly released after having been held shortly in custody following two brutal crackdowns of the Serb forces at three neighborhoods at Isniq village last Saturday.

    Sources in De^an said that Kamer A. Ahmetgjekaj (23) university student, Arif Tahirsylaj (47), physician, Naser Tahirsylaj (20) Arb&r Tahirsylaj (18), Demush, Memaj, Faik Memaj, Bashkim Memaj, Fatos B. Krasniqi (21), Sali Shoshi (23) and Naser B. Ahmetgjekaj (17) are being held in Serb police custody.

    The LDK Information Commission in De^an could not learn so far the pretext the ten Albanians have been held in detention.

    Early in the morning on Saturday, heavy Serbian police forces, backed up by armored cars and other police vehicles, besieged three neighborhoods at Isniq village of De^an.

    The Ahmetxhekaj, Januzaj and Balaj families were targeted by the police during a several hour campaign of house-to-house raids.

    During the police crackdown, in which there was a lot of smashing up whatever they encountered, the police used tear-gas too.

    Members of these families were subjected to sever harassment, while many others were rounded up to be released later in the day.

    On 28 January, the Serbian police embarked on a large-scale campaign of house raids in the 15 families of the Tahirsylaj neighborhood at the Isniq village. Over a dozen of Albanians of this neighborhood were arrested.

    Last Friday, at around 24:00, the Serbian police arrested four Albanians in the town center in De^an. Six Albanians, on their way from Isniq village to Irzniq village were halted by police at midnight, and had their car searched. Four of them were eventually arrested. Those arrested were named as Sali Shoshi, 23, a university student, native of Dujak& village of Gjakova, Muhamet Dervish ^ekaj, 30, Astrit Murat ^ekaj, 20, and Murat Rruestem ^ekaj, 62, all three from Irzniq of De^an.

    [03] 'Night Watching' Serb Civilians Harass Their Albanian Neighbors

    PRISHTINA, Feb 3 (KIC) - Local Serbs of the Sllatina village of Vushtrri have been carrying out night watch in the streets of the village, harassing their Albanian neighbors, today's Bujku writes.

    They stop the local Albanian population, check their identities, provoke them and assault them on ethnic grounds.

    The local Albanians recognize most of them, and say they are their neighbors.

    Sllatina village is an ethnically mixed neighborhood.

    Sources in Vushtrri reported that the Serbian police, on the other side, have increased the repression against the Albanian population in Vushtrri.

    [04] Armed and Masked Serbs Attack Albanian Population in Peja

    PRISHTINA, Feb 3 (KIC) - On Saturday, 31 January, a group of 15 armed and masked Serb civilians from Drenoc of Klina, an ethnically mixed village at the Prishtina-Peja highway, set up their own check-point harassing and threatening Albanian passersby, Bujku newspaper writes.

    Same night at 1 a.m., the armed gang among others stopped Zymer Shabanaj from Peja. They forced him, Hasim Muriqi (70) and Adem Nurkoviqi (45) out of the car, beat them and asked them to pay off if they wanted to go. The Serb civilians said they were the village guard.

    According to Bujku, they all had been inflicted heavy body injuries. Adem Nurkovic, a Bosniak Muslym from Peja, was fractured his jaw.

    The three men reported their case at the Serbian security in Peja, but were told not to make so much fuss of it.

    Meanwhile, sources in Klina say the situation in this municipality is very tense. The Serbian police have established check-points in all entrances to this small town, whereas all roads leading to neighboring villages have been barricaded. All travelers are scrutinized, Koha Ditore reports.

    A great number of secondary school students do not attend lessons as a result of insecurity.

    The newspaper says the number of the tortured persons in this municipality is very large. People are tortured particularly in remote areas and villages.

    [05] Serbian Police and Military on Constant Move in Vushtrri Area

    PRISHTINA, Feb 3 (KIC) - Since Monday heavy forces of Serbian police and military forces have demonstrated force in the villages of Okrashtic&, Balinc& and Pantin& of the Vushtrri municipality, Koha Ditore reports.

    The military forces have set up a camp at the Sfinjar village of Vushtrri.

    Heavily armed Serbian military forces, with lorries, tanks and anti- aircraft weapons, performed their military preparedness in Okrashtic& village during the whole day Saturday. They blocked the roads leading to Mitrovica and Vushtrri for most of the day, Koha Ditore writes.

    The Serbian military forces withdrew to Sfinjar village, where they set up their temporary base late afternoon.

    Okrashtic&, Balinc& and Pantin& villages are in neighborhood with the Sk&nderaj municipality.

    Kosova Information Center


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