Technologies To The People on Tue, 30 Mar 1999 10:41:57 +0100

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Syndicate: Albanian News & Information Network 1/2

Date:         Mon, 29 Mar 1999 10:08:34 -0500
Sender: Albanian News & Information Network
From: Sokol Rama <>
Subject:      [ALBANEWS] News: 29.03.99 - 2
Status: U

____________ALBANEWS: Albanian News and Information Network_________
  KCC (Kosova Crisis Center)
  Kosova Information Center

      ------->   Want to help the people of Kosova??    <-------

	Mercy International USA, Inc.
        United States:  Phone: 1-800-556-3729

NATO: Albanian Negotiator Executed
Kosova Refugees Tell Of Killings
Yeltsin Orders PM On Kosova Peace Trip
Russia Says 1,000 Dead, Vows New Kosova Moves
Embattled Albanians Flee Kosova
NATO Says Campaign Against Serbs Starting To Work
Bombing Spreads
Kosova Exodus Grows
Wave of Refugees Stirs Fears Of a New Balkan Nightmare
Russia accuses NATO of cooperating with Kosova rebels
Kosova E-Mails Show War's Horrors


Monday March 29 8:40 AM ET

NATO: Albanian Negotiator Executed

Monday March 29 9:19 AM ET

By JEFFREY ULBRICH Associated Press Writer

BRUSSELS, Belgium (AP) - NATO said Monday it had reliable reports that
Fehmi Agani, a prominent ethnic Albanian political leader and one of the
negotiators at the Rambouillet and Paris peace talks, has been executed by
Serb forces in Kosovo.

Air Commodore David Wilby, briefing reporters at NATO headquarters, said
Agani, a close adviser to ethnic Albanian leader Ibrahim Rugova, was
executed Sunday. Agani had reportedly just attended the funeral of Bajram
Kelmendi, a human rights lawyer who was taken from his home and killed on

Wilby said four other prominent ethnic Albanians were reported executed on
Sunday, including Baton Haxhiu, editor-in-chief of the Albanian-language
newspaper in Pristina, Koha Ditore.

The newspaper's publisher, Veton Surroi, and Rugova both have gone into
hiding, NATO officials report.

At the daily NATO briefing, spokesman Jamie Shea also said air attacks on
Yugoslavia were effective. He denied the bombing was responsible for an
increase in Serb violence in Kosovo.

``We're on plan, we are on timetable and we are on target,'' Shea told
reporters at NATO headquarters.

He said it appeared the Serb offensive in the province was intensifying
long before the present campaign started.

NATO's assault is aimed at getting Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic to
accept a peace plan that calls for 28,000 troops in Kosovo.

Air Commodore David Wilby, briefing reporters at NATO headquarters, said
the airstrikes had hit one Yugoslav MiG jet, one small Super Galeb plane
and helicopters on the ground.

The NATO raids are intended to force Milosevic to agree to a peace deal
that calls for NATO troops to be based in Kosovo to keep the peace. The
deal has already been accepted by the province's ethnic Albanian majority.

But Milosevic has rejected the plan, saying he does not want foreign troops
on Yugoslav soil.

Monday March 29 6:00 AM ET

Kosova Refugees Tell Of Killings

KUKES, Albania (Reuters) - Thousands of ethnic Albanian refugees arriving
in northern Albania Monday gave harrowing accounts of humiliation and
murder at the hands of Serbian forces.

The exodus occurred as NATO kept up its air strikes on Yugoslavia to force
an end to what some alliance members called ''genocide'' against the
Kosovar Albanians, who said they were being systematically driven out of
Kosovo by Serbian forces.

``Serbian paramilitaries are killing everybody who refuses to leave their
homes,'' Adem Basha, a man from Kosovo's second city of Pec, said after
crossing into Albania at the Morina border post near Kukes, about 250 km
(155 miles) north of Tirana.

``There are lots of unburied people in Pec,'' he told Reuters. ``The Serbs
have settled in the best houses of Pec, which is now 'ethnically cleansed'.
Tell the world!''

Albanian Deputy Prime Minister Ilir Meta said earlier Monday more than
60,000 refugees fleeing the fighting in Kosovo had entered the northern
part of Albania over the last 35 hours.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said
Yugoslavia had closed the Morina crossing, its main border post with
Albania, Monday because its guards could not cope with the flow of ethnic
Albanian refugees.

Basha said Serb paramilitaries had entered Pec Sunday, going on an orgy of
burnings and killings after driving away people from their homes in Zatra
and Kabechtic districts the day before.

``They bundled us into trucks and took us to the village of Zhur from where
we came on foot to the Albanian border,'' Basha added.

There was no way of confirming the stories because foreign correspondents
and observers were forced to leave Kosovo last week.

Bardhyl Kabashi, of Zocissht, said 15,000 displaced ethnic Albanians from
several towns and villages had sought refuge on a hill near the village of
Celline in Kosovo.

``The Serbs came to the hill above Celline at midday yesterday shooting in
the air and telling everybody to sit face down, hands on their heads.

``They shot over their heads, then forced everybody to stand up, raise
their hands in the air to make the Serbian sign with three fingers, thumb,
middle finger and index finger, and chant 'Serbia, Serbia'''

He said he saw one man killed for refusing to chant Serbia while three
other men were pulled away and shot from behind.

``Children screamed as the shooting went on.''

The paramilitaries stole money and jewelry before directing the refugees
toward the Albanian border.

``They told us 'all this is coming to you from America. You wanted greater
Albania, so go and get it there.'''

Meta told BBC radio that previous estimates for the number of refugees
arriving in Albania had been far too low since they did not include many
travelling on little-known routes.

Meta said Albania thought the only way ``to block this genocide'' would be
to send NATO ground troops into Kosovo, something the alliance has refused
to contemplate so far.

In the capital Tirana, the government urged the international community to
help end what it called ``this unprecedented genocide on the civil
population'' in Kosovo. A special committee appealed for gifts of medicine
and food.


Monday March 29 7:11 AM ET

Yeltsin Orders PM On Kosova Peace Trip

By Martin Nesirky

MOSCOW (Reuters) - President Boris Yeltsin ordered top Russian ministers to
fly to Belgrade Tuesday for talks with Yugoslav President Slobodan
Milosevic on finding a political end to the Kosovo crisis, the Kremlin said

NATO member states, in particular France, say Russia holds the key to
persuading its traditional Slav ally Yugoslavia to agree to a peace deal
for the majority ethnic Albanian province of Kosovo and so halt alliance

Yeltsin's spokesman Dmitry Yakushkin told Russian television the president
had ordered Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov, Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov
and Defense Minister Igor Sergeyev to fly urgently to Yugoslavia Tuesday.

``The aim of the trip is to coordinate steps (with Milosevic) which could
help find a political solution to the conflict which has emerged because of
NATO's military action,'' he said.

Russian news agencies said Primakov might visit Bonn after Belgrade, but
this could not be immediately confirmed.

Italy welcomed the Russian initiative and France said President Jacques
Chirac, who at the weekend asked Primakov to intervene, would make an
address on Kosovo at 1900 GMT. It was not clear whether Primakov would take
a message from NATO.

Politicians across the Russian spectrum and the public have been sharply
critical of the NATO raids, although the policy response has been
relatively muted so far.

Three Russian liberal politicians, including ex-premier Yegor Gaidar, are
already in Belgrade for talks. But Ivanov said their trip was not official.
Yugoslav media have described the trio as ``scum and trash,'' portraying
them as U.S. stooges.

By contrast, Primakov is well acquainted with Milosevic and the Balkans
from his days as Russian foreign minister and is likely to be given a warm

While forcing the pace of Kosovo diplomacy, Primakov's government has been
negotiating in Moscow with the International Monetary Fund's managing
director, Michel Camdessus, on billions of dollars of fresh credits to aid
the shattered economy.

Interfax news agency quoted Camdessus as saying he had ''good news'' in
store for Russia but gave no details. Primakov has angrily denied there is
any link between fresh Western loans and Russia's role in the Kosovo

Primakov's mediation trip looks set to upstage Yeltsin, who is scheduled to
deliver his long-delayed state of the nation address Tuesday. Yakushkin
said the address would go ahead.

Earlier, Sergeyev told reporters after a government meeting on Kosovo the
death toll since NATO began its attacks was ''1,000 civilians, 10 times
more than military deaths.''

There was no independent confirmation of the report.

He also said a Soviet-era surface-to-air missile had brought down the U.S.
F-117 stealth fighter-bomber that crashed in Serbia Saturday. NATO forces
rescued the pilot.

Gennady Seleznyov, the Communist speaker of the State Duma, the lower house
of parliament, told reporters ministers would attend a closed session
Wednesday to discuss the armed forces and ``preliminary measures to
increase their combat capabilities.''

Russia's forces are starved of funds and are a far cry from the superpower
status they enjoyed in the Soviet era.

In Moscow, police maintained tightened security after a failed weekend
rocket grenade attack on the U.S. embassy, target of most public rage
toward NATO.


Monday March 29 4:01 AM ET

Russia Says 1,000 Dead, Vows New Kosova Moves

By Martin Nesirky

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia, a traditional ally of Yugoslavia, said Monday
NATO air strikes had killed 1,000 civilians and it would announce new
measures soon to try to halt the bombing.

Defense Minister Igor Sergeyev also told reporters after a regular morning
government meeting on the Kosovo crisis that a Soviet-era surface-to-air
missile had brought down the U.S. F-117 stealth fighter-bomber that crashed
in Serbia Saturday.

Sergeyev said the death toll since NATO began its attacks Wednesday was
``1,000 civilians, 10 times more than military deaths.'' There was no
independent confirmation of the report.

Meanwhile, Interfax news agency, quoting diplomatic sources, said Russian
Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov would make an ''important statement'' on
Yugoslavia later Monday.

Moscow police maintained tightened security at the U.S. embassy after a
failed weekend rocket grenade attack on the mission, target of most public
rage toward NATO. A demonstration was planned there for later in the day,
but early Monday there were no protesters outside the building.

Interfax quoted Foreign Minister Ivanov as telling reporters after the
government meeting headed by Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov that President
Boris Yeltsin would soon announce new measures intended to end NATO

Ivanov did not specify whether the measures would be retaliatory against
NATO states or new peace-seeking initiatives, or even a mix of the two.

Yeltsin, who plans to make his much-delayed state of the nation address
Tuesday, must navigate a cautious course between a tough line against NATO
-- which opposition politicians, in concert with public opinion, want --
and maintaining working relations with the West.

Yeltsin spoke by telephone with the head of the International Monetary
Fund, Michel Camdessus, Monday. Camdessus is in Moscow to discuss billions
of dollars in new credits to help Russia out of its deep economic crisis.

Three prominent Russian liberal politicians and reformers, including former
premier Yegor Gaidar, are in Yugoslavia on a peace mission but
state-controlled media there described them as ``scum and trash.''

Ivanov told Russian news agencies the trio were not acting on behalf of

So far, Russia has kept up a Cold War-style stream of invective against
NATO but has taken a relatively restrained line in its policy response.
Among the concrete measures announced so far, it has expelled the two NATO
representatives in Moscow and vowed to send humanitarian aid to Yugoslavia.

The Russian Emergencies Ministry said it was sending two planes to Budapest
later Monday to begin collecting about 1,000 Russian citizens who had been
evacuated from Yugoslavia.

A spokesman said those to be evacuated included Russian Embassy staff,
family and other Russians who reside in Yugoslavia.


Monday March 29 7:06 AM ET

Embattled Albanians Flee Kosova

By GEORGE JAHN Associated Press Writer

BELGRADE, Yugoslavia (AP) - Tens of thousands of ethnic Albanians streamed
out of Kosovo today while NATO raced against time to smash Serb military
units and ease what officials say is becoming Europe's worst humanitarian
disaster since World War II.

Russia's prime minister, Yevgeny Primakov, announced plans to go to
Belgrade on Tuesday in a new bid to end the Kosovo crisis. Russia has
strongly opposed NATO's air campaign against fellow Slavic Yugoslavia.

But the crisis showed no signs of abating.

About 60,000 Kosovo Albanian refugees have arrived in northern Albania as
of today, the U.N. relief agency said, straining the already desperate
resources of one of Europe's poorest countries.

And thousands more were heading today for Macedonia to the east and
Montenegro to the West.

``Are you American?'' Nejmije Kelmendi, 50, asked an Associated Press
photographer as she trudged up a steep mountain road near Pec in
southwestern Kosovo, accompanied by her two daughters. ``Tell NATO that Pec
is burning, and where are the ground troops?''

Early today, Yugoslav authorities closed at least one crossing point into
Albania, erecting concrete barriers along the main road from the Kosovo
city of Prizren to the Albania town of Kukes. It was unclear if other
crossing points were also sealed.

Along Kosovo's border with Montenegro, about 3,000 Kosovo Albanians were
trying to cross today. Police were charging $60 per car to allow refugees
to enter Montenegro.

Yugoslav officials said NATO's ``shameful'' attack was only inflaming the
ethnic crisis in Kosovo, where ethnic Albanian rebels have been fighting
for independence from Serbia, the main Yugoslav republic. Russian Defense
Minister Igor Sergeyev claimed 1,000 civilians had been killed in
Yugoslavia as the alliance pounded the country for a sixth day.

Belgrade has not announced casualty estimates, although Yugoslav U.N. envoy
Vladislav Jovanovic claimed Friday that hundreds of civilians had been
killed. It is impossible to independently confirm casualty figures.

Early today, Allied warplanes targeted mobile Serb units in Kosovo and
cruise missiles launched from U.S. ships in the Adriatic joined in the
barrage. Air raid sirens sounded again in the Yugoslav capital at

Serbian state-run television repeatedly showed video of a raging fire in
the center of Kosovo's capital of Pristina that it said was set off by a
NATO missile attack on a police building.

Rather than restraining the Serbs, however, the attacks appeared only to
have intensified their anger at the ethnic Albanians, who make up 90
percent of Kosovo's 2 million people inhabitants.

``The pattern that emerges (from their accounts) is paramilitary forces
arriving, rounding people up and telling them at gunpoint to go,'' said
spokesman Kris Janowsky of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees in
Geneva. ``So we are seeing officially sanctioned ethnic cleansing of the
Albanian population in Kosovo.''

A 24-year-old refugee from the Suva Reka are of southern Kosovo, Jeton
Vranovski, told a reporter in Albania that when NATO airstrikes began, Serb
police ``came to our village and told us to go to America, go to NATO and
they will help you.''

But Western leaders insisted the air campaign would continue until its
goals were achieved.

British Defense Secretary George Robertson said the campaign was
intensifying today, focusing on Serb units as the Western alliance rushed
to halt alleged Serb ethnic cleansing before too much damage was done.

``It will only be NATO airstrikes that will stop the violence,'' he told

``Day by day, allied airplanes and cruise missiles have made a huge impact
on the military machine on which Milosevic depends,'' Robertson said.

NATO spokesman Jamie Shea said Sunday the situation is ``on the brink of a
major humanitarian disaster,'' unprecedented since World War II. More than
500,000 Kosovars are now displaced from the crisis, NATO said - the biggest
population shift in Europe since 1945.

But Bratislava Morina, the Serb refugee commissioner, called such
accusations propaganda.

``There is no humanitarian catastrophe in Kosovo whatsoever,'' she said on
state-run Serbian television. ``The fact is that some Albanians are leaving
their home in the regions where NATO is attacking civilian targets, also
because some of their leaders left the country and went abroad.''

Marko Gasic of the government-sponsored Serbian Information Center told
Britain's Sky Television today that ``NATO's role in this crisis is

NATO's assault is aimed at getting President Slobodan Milosevic to accept a
peace plan that calls for 28,000 troops in Kosovo. But Gasic told Sky TV
that while Milosevic will hold discussions if asked, ``he certainly won't
be signing the capitulation that originally started the problem.''

The fifth straight night of airstrikes began Sunday night, according to the
Pentagon in Washington.

About 50 warplanes took off from the NATO air base in Aviano, Italy, just
after dark. Among them were British Harrier jets, who returned to Italy
after successfully hitting Serb targets even though they came under heavy
anti-aircraft fire, said spokesman Group Captain Ian Travers Smith.

The independent Beta news agency, quoting Serb TV, said six missiles hit
the Pristina area, after which ``Albanian terrorists'' in the northern part
of the town began a fierce attack on the police. The report said three
missiles hit the center of the city.

The Tanjug state news agency reported that NATO missiles targeting
Djakovica in western Kosovo hit an army barracks and also damaged ``many
civilian buildings'' including a Catholic church, and that some were
destroyed. Albanian ``terrorist gangs'' repeatedly shot at police patrols
throughout the night, it said.

At least three people were wounded in attacks in the region of Gnjilane
southeast of Pristina, according to Tanjug.

NATO missiles fired at a military airport at Podgorica, capital of the
Yugoslav republic of Montenegro, hit a MiG-21 jet fighter and an army
vehicle, a Yugoslav army source said. A television station in Nis, where a
major military compound is located, reported a missile hit the airport


NATO Says Campaign Against Serbs Starting To Work

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - NATO said Monday the second phase of its air
campaign against the Serbs was beginning to work and had started to disrupt
Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic's forces.

``I can tell you that from yesterday we were getting extremely heartening
news from sources, which said there was evidence that our campaign was
beginning to work and was beginning to disrupt them (the Serbs) and was
beginning to worry them,'' NATO military spokesman, Air Commodore David
Wilby of Britain's Royal Air force, said in an interview with NBC's
''Today'' program.

Speaking from NATO headquarters in Brussels, Wilby said the second phase of
the military alliance's campaign would focus on the Serb military but would
still continue to look at the Serbs' integrated air defense system.

Asked if there were any plans to move NATO ground troops into Yugoslavia,
Wilby said there were none.

Under Phase Two of the military campaign, NATO warplanes will attack
Yugoslav tanks, artillery and other heavy weapons, transporters and mobile
command centers south of the 44th parallel, which runs through the Yugoslav
city of Kragujevac, cutting the country in half.

NATO planes bombed military targets in Yugoslavia for a fifth night with
the fiercest bombing reported by Serbian radio over the Kosovo capital
Pristina. Early Monday, NATO warplanes took off from Aviano air base in
northeastern Italy for what was expected to be the sixth day of attacks.

Saturday, NATO and the United States confirmed the loss of a sophisticated
stealth F-117 warplane, which the Serbs said they had shot out of the sky.

Wilby said he could not confirm that the plane had been brought down by a
missile, but he praised the rescue attempt of the pilot who was returned
safely to Aviano air base.

``The whole of the rescue operation was a tremendous success. It was
extremely well-coordinated, courageously flown and a testament to the
technology at our fingertips,'' said Wilby.

He described the crash as a ``one-off'' event.