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Kosova Daily Report #1341, 98-02-09

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 #1341

Prishtina, 9 February 1998


CONTENTS

  • [01] President Rugova Discuses Situation in Kosova with Belgian Diplomat
  • [02] President Rugova Receives Representatives of US Humanitarian Organization WVI
  • [03] Luljeta Pula-Beqiri to Run for Kosova's President
  • [04] Constant and Brutal Harassment of Albanians at Kijeva Police Check- point
  • [05] Intensified and Rigorous Inspections on Key Roads Throughout Kosova

  • [01] President Rugova Discuses Situation in Kosova with Belgian Diplomat

    PRISHTINA, Feb 9 (KIC) - President of the Republic of Kosova, Dr. Ibrahim Rugova received today (Monday) Mr. Joris Rouse, First Secretary in the Embassy of Belgium in Belgrade.

    President Rugova and the Belgian diplomat discussed at length the current developments in Kosova.

    Dr. Rugova noted with concern that the situation in Kosova has been rapidly deteriorating and tensions increasing as a result of expanded presence and large-scale campaign of repression of the Serb forces. He said Albanians have been on a daily basis faced with brutal repression, threats and provocations by the Serbian police and army forces, as well as armed Serb civilians.

    The President said that the people of Kosova is, nevertheless, committed to see that their independence is realized through peaceful means and dialogue between Kosovar and Serb leadership under a third internationally authorized party. He underlined the need for an increased international presence in the country as a preventive measure until a solution for Kosova is reached. He noted that real pressure upon Belgrade regime is necessary so to make it engage in a dialogue in search for a settlement for Kosova.

    Mr. Joris Rouse said his government has been following the situation in Kosova carefully and with much concern. Belgium is supportive to a peaceful solution for Kosova, he said.

    [02] President Rugova Receives Representatives of US Humanitarian Organization WVI

    PRISHTINA, Feb 9 (KIC) - President of the Republic of Kosova, Dr. Ibrahim Rugova received today in Prishtina representatives of the U.S. humanitarian organization "World Vision International" (WVI), Mr Richard Venegoni, Operations Director of the Vienna-based Regional Office for Middle East and Eastern Europe, and Ms Elizabeth Hughes and Kevin Cook, field officers. Mr Terry Heselius, coordinator of the Mercy Corps International for Kosova was also attending the meeting.

    Representatives of the WVI said they had come to Kosova to observe the situation and see how the organization could be helpful in the country. The World Vision International is present in over 90 countries of the world, providing humanitarian, social and emergency assistance and services, they said.

    President Rugova noted that the people of Kosova have been going through serious hardships under a harsh Serb regime occupation.

    Apart from very existential problems the Kosovars have ben facing Serb regime discriminational policies, they have been subjected to daily repression and threats.

    The people of Kosova is highly appreciative to the Unites States for the support and assistance it has provided in Kosova over the past years, mainly through the MCI, the President said. He said he is very much supportive of the idea of establishing the presence of World Vision International in Kosova.

    [03] Luljeta Pula-Beqiri to Run for Kosova's President

    PRISHTINA, Feb 9 (KIC) - The Main Board of the Social Democratic Party of Kosova (PSDK) proposed Friday its leader Luljeta Pula- Beqiri to run for the President of Kosova in the upcoming parliamentary and presidential election in Kosova due to be held 22 March.

    Ms. Beqiri accepted to run for the Kosova's President, while the press has quoted her as saying "I am determined to enter the competition. This is also a proof that Kosova Albanian women are ready to take their responsibilities and obligations in these very difficult circumstances for Kosova".

    Ms. Beqiri told Bujku newspaper she was optimistic, and "it is important to offer people an alternative. Let the best win', said Ms. Beqiri, 'the one elected by the people of Kosova".

    Ms. Luljeta Pula Beqiri is a lecturer at the Mitrovica-based Faculty of Technology, of the Prishtina University.

    [04] Constant and Brutal Harassment of Albanians at Kijeva Police Check- point

    PRISHTINA, Feb 9 (KIC) - Some fifteen heavily armed Serbian policemen, always ready to shot, have been intimidating and ill- treating brutally every person that drives through Kijeva, or passes by, the Council for the Defence of Human Rights and Freedoms in Malisheva reported.

    They have established a 24 hour check-point for a week now, at the entrance to Kijeva, a bus stop, and the road leading to five other key municipal centers in western Kosova. The police have been checking every single car and all the buses that drive through.

    Friday evening the police harassed several dozens of secondary school students who were coming back from school in late afternoon, asking provocative questions such as "are you coming from a Serb or Albanian school?!". Those students who could not communicate with them in Serbian were held and harassed, while guns being pointed on them. They were threatened to be killed in case the do not quit education in Albanian.

    The police held and harassed secondary school teachers Mehedin Gashi, as well as the primary school teacher Habib Gashi.

    The police prevented Albanian students of the Prishtina University, and other local residents to wait for the bus at the bus station, which is located at the place where they had established the check- point.

    Witnesses said, one of the policeman intimidated sexually an 17- year-old Roma girl from the neighboring village of Stapanica.

    "You'll have a lot of pleasure if you stay with us," the Serbian policeman had told her.

    On Friday the police tied one Albanian to lamp post and beat him severely, casual passersby said. They too got two young Albanians out of a bus and forced them to hit one another, and if they did not hit hard the police would use clubs against them.

    2The police forced out of the bus a resident from Jashanica village of Klina too, and beat him up severely just because he was Jashanica. In was in Jashanica that a Serb resident from Mitrovica region was found dead in his car fortnight ago.

    Other witnesses said the police have been forcing casual passersby to buy fruit for them and other food in the nearby shop before they let them go.

    Sources in Malisheva reported that armed local Serbs have been carrying out night-watch in the streets of Kijeva.

    Kijeva is an ethnically mixed neighborhood but has no records of any inter- ethnic open conflicts. The two communities hardly communicate since 1987 when the Serbian community of Kijeva demanded, and succeed in closing down the secondary school in this small town, LDK sources said.

    [05] Intensified and Rigorous Inspections on Key Roads Throughout Kosova

    PRISHTINA, Feb 9 (KIC) - Yesterday (Sunday) dozens of heavily armed Serbian police forces set up a check-point at the Prishtina- Mitrovica road, near Vushtrri, scrutinizing every singe passerby and car, LDK sources in Vushtrri reported.

    The police blocked also all the roads leading in and out of Vushtrri, searching and harassing scores of Albanians. Inspections and harassment of Albanians on the road and in the town of Vushtrri have become part of a daily life.

    Sources in Suhareka reported that the Serbian police have likewise harassed, and often beat people on the road at few check-points established on the Prishtina-Prizren road.

    In Qaf& e Duhles, the Serbian police blocked the road with police cars intimidating every single persons and searching every single car on the road, sources in Suhareka reported.

    Traveling in the night has decreased drastically. The free movement of the Albanian population is very limited. There is a total insecurity among the Albanian population throughout Kosova.

    Kosova Information Center


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