REPORT NO. 502
ON THE SITUATION OF
THE HUMAN RIGHTS
AND FREEDOMS IN KOSOVA
FROM JUNE 18
UNTIL JUNE 25, 2000
Extremist and destructive forces
continue with their actions against the stabilization of the situation
and the normalization of life, which is a fundamental right of the citizens
of Kosova. The killing of Sead Muriq (18), a Bosniac, and that of an Albanian
(17) in Peja, the wounding of a Serbian journalist in Prishtina, ill-treatments
and expulsions of Albanian and Bosniac families from their homes in the
northern part of Mitrovica are gross violations of human rights and aim
at instigating interethnic conflicts that would prove that interethnic
tolerance is impossible in Kosova, which is the goal of the citizens of
Kosova and the international community.
Moreover, during last week, KFOR troops and UNMIK premises, as well as vehicles of the international humanitarian associations were attacked in Mitrovica and Shtërpca. The attack in Shtërpca began with the tolling of the church bells and fire weapons. A cameraman was at the “spot” to record the whole event. All this shows that the attack was not spontaneous, but premeditated, prearranged and organised. After the direct attacks exerted on the staff of the international humanitarian organisations and due to insecurity, UNHCR was forced to put on hold its work twice in the northern part of Mitrovica. The violence and human rights violations are not good signs for the assaulters or the victims.
During last week, the number of the killed in Kosova was lower than during the previous weeks. According to the available data, two people were killed (an Albanian and a Bosniac) and several Albanians and Serbs got wounded. An Albanian girl went missing last week, and there was a kidnap attempt against an Albanian child.
On 21 June. – Unidentified
persons killed Sead Muriq (18), a Bosniac, in the vicinity of his house
in the “Dardania” quarter in Peja.
- The corpse of an Albanian (17) was found in Peja.
GJAKOVA: According to UNMIK police, the corpse of an unidentified woman was found in Zhabel.
Mass graves – identifications
RAHOVEC: On 18 June, German
forensic experts of the Hague Tribunal exhumed three corpses in a mass
grave in Brestovc and took them to the morgue in Rahovec. There are other
corpses in this grave. They were killed by the Serbian forces on 24 March
1999. That day, more than 50 Albanian civilians were killed, among them
30 women and children. According to the villagers, there was a 3-year-old
child among the killed.
DRENAS: On 19 June, in Qëndresa (Tërstenik), in the vicinity of the place called Mali i Bazajve, TPO staff found the corpse of an unidentified adult. According to the Sub-CDHRF in Drenas, Serbian forces were stationed at this place and kept hostage 25 Albanian civilians, whose whereabouts are unknown. It is believed that they might have been executed and buried in this place.
PRISHTINA: On 20 June, at about
21.00, unidentified persons wounded Vesna Çukiq, a journalist with
Radio Kontakt, and a Serbian citizen.
GJILAN: On 21 June, at about 21.45, unidentified persons threw a hand grenade at the house of a Serb in the vicinity of the Gjilani Hospital and wounded Vukosava Ivkoviq (78) and caused material damage.
GJAKOVA: On 25 June, unidentified persons threw a hand grenade at a shop in the village of Brekoc. Petrit Ibishi was seriously wounded in an explosion in Gjakova. In Bardhoshan (Bardosan), a person got wounded with fire weapons.
Disappearances and kidnappings
GJILAN: There are no information
on the whereabouts of Nazmie Musli Vllasi (15) a pupil with the “Zenel
Hajdini” Gymnasium, since 14 June. That day, at about 12.30, she left for
school. Later on, it was confirmed that she had not been at school at all.
GJAKOVA: On 22 June, at about 16.30, two unidentified persons tried to kidnap the 9-year-old child E. G. in ”Nëna Terezë” st in downtown Gjakova. Several shop owners noticed this and helped the child. After a while, UNMIK police managed to arrest the suspects.
- On 21 June, the District Court in Pozharevc (Serbia) re-sentenced 12 Albanians from Vranik (Vraniqi) near Theranda (Suhareka) – Hasan Muçaj, Bajram Muçaj, Emrush Muçaj, Besim Llugaxhiu, Osman Llugaxhiu, Jakup Llugaxhiu, Asllan Matoshi, Lum Matoshi, Milaim Matoshi, Gëzim Lushi, Fehim Shehu and Besim Basha – to 1 and 11 months of imprisonment each. They will serve their sentences until 28 August.
Ill-treatments, attacks, provocations
PEJA: On 19 June, at about
midnight, three masked persons threatened with killing an American family
in Peja and looted 1.600 DM from them.
On 25 June, a brothel was discovered in the “Aviano” motel. KFOR Italian soldiers arrested the owner Agron Lajçi (32) and 3 females (two Moldavians and one Ukrainian), dealing with prostitution.
MITROVICA: On 20 June, at about
19.00, in the “Ibri” quarter, a group of Serbs led by Rade Spasojeviq broke
into the flat of Shukri Xheladin Haxhimehmeti (57) and sheltered a Serbian
3 member family from Fushë-Kosova in it. At about 20.30, a group of
Serbs led by Miodrag Raliq and Slavko Mandiq threw stones on the roof of
the house of Rexhep Hiseni (60) in the “Kodra e Minatorëve” quarter
and threatened the family to leave the house within 24 hours, as they were
going to shelter 5 Serbian families from Burim (Istog).
On 21 June, at about noon, a group of Serbs attempted to loot equipment from the Chemical Fertiliser Plant in Mitrovica, but were noticed by the guards. About 100 people gathered to protect the Plant. The UNMIK police intervened. They sprayed the face of Agim Isa Cimili (40) from Melishta (Melenica), sheltered in the “Qendra” quarter in Mitrovica. He had to seek for medical assistance at the Moroccan Hospital.
At about 13.00, in the north of the town, Serbs led by Oliver Ivanoviq, Zharko Kosovac, Miodrag Raliq, Dushko Shilikoviq, Slavko Mandiq etc., attacked the families of Halit Can Bala (67), Muharrem Mehmet Rexhepi (66), Nexhat Kelmendi (62) etc., broke doors and windows and opened fire towards the other Albanian flats. UNMIK police intervened, but were attacked by the Serbs, who set fire to two vehicles of the UNMIK police, one of the Registration Force and one of the Red Cross. They also demolished several other vehicles, among which 8 were vehicles of the UNMIK police. An UNMIK policeman was severely beaten. The crowd of Serbs moved towards the Ibri Bridge and threw stones to the KFOR French and Polish soldiers and then went back to the “Ibri” and “Kodra e Minatorëve” quarters and attacked all Albanian families, set fire to some Albanian houses, ill-treated the Albanians and demolished the doors and windows in the flats of Qenan Abdullah Kastrati (42), Hasim Hajdari (56), Nexhat Rizah Hiseni (27), etc. Spouses Mustafë Miftar Gacaferri (65) and Igballe Ibrahim Gacaferri (60), living in the “Ibri” quarter, suffered heavy injuries. They were taken to the Moroccan Hospital. KFOR reported that its soldiers wounded three Serbs in self-defence. In the “Kroi i Vitakut” quarter, Serbs burned an Albanian house and 2 UN vehicles. They demolished 3 vehicles of the ACTED humanitarian organisation.
On 22 June, at 5.00, in the “Ibri” quarter, Serbs expelled and severely ill-treated Sadik Gllareva (70), his wife Hatixhe (60) and their daughter Lirije (17). Sadik suffered heavy injuries, his teeth got broken. He was taken to the Moroccan Hospital in Mitrovica. A Serbian woman occupied his flat. At about 18.00, seven Serbs severely ill-treated and stabbed Adnan Hasani (19) in front of his house in the “Ibri” quarter.
On 23 June, between 10.00 and 12.00, in the “Ibri” quarter, a group of eight Serbs went into the flats of several Albanians, beat them and expelled them. Elldar Xhelil Bajçinovci (34) and Rukije Azemi (56) were among them.
On 24 June, at about 8.00, five Serbs attacked an UNMIK policeman while he was walking out of the Albanian flat, which he rented two months ago. At 17.00, in the “Kodra e Minatorëve” quarter, three Serbs expelled Sabri Hysen Hyseni (49) from his flat.
Due to violent acts towards the population and workers, facilities of the international humanitarian associations and organisations, UNHCR put on hold the work of these organisations in the northern part of the town.
On 25 June, at about 21.00, in the Bosniac quarter, 4 unidentified persons threw a hand grenade in the yard of a Serbian house. No damages were reported.
PRIZREN: On 20 June, before midnight, in the vicinity of the bus station in Prizren, there was a powerful blast, which caused damages to a café owned by an Albanian – report KFOR sources.
DEÇAN: On 20 June, in the settlement “Dëshmorët e kombit” in the vicinity of Baballoç, unidentified persons demolished 6 houses, which were dedicated to the families of 6 martyrs. The assaulters broke doors and windows and destroyed the electric and water supply systems. The damage is estimated to 60.000 DM.
DARDANA (KAMENICA): On 21 June, at about 22.10, a hand grenade was thrown at the checkpoint of the KFOR Russian soldiers in Dardana, yet no victims were reported.
SHTËRPCA: According to international officials in Prishtina, on 23 June, hundreds of Serbs attacked the UNMIK office in Shtërpca and demolished the windows, set fire to the computers and burned the UN flag. Prior to these violent acts, fire shots and church bells were heard. Later on, they demonstrated and threw stones at the UN vehicles. The crowd was dispersed at midnight. The pretext for all this was the disappearance of an old Serb, who was found safe and sound later on.
SKËNDERAJ: The Department for Education, Science and Culture of Kosova sent a verdict to the Directorate for Education, Culture and Sports of the Municipal Council in Skënderaj to use the names of the villages and settlements according to the list issued in 1964. In this list, there are names of some villages, such as Kralica and Novosella, which have ceased existing for a long time.
DEÇAN: Recently, five
Albanians from the municipality of Deçan were released from the
Serbian prisons: Brahë Beqiraj and Lan Mataj from Baballoç,
arrested by the Serbian forces on 15 December 1998 in Gramaçel;
Mustafë Alimusaj from Strall i Epërm (Strellci i Epërm),
arrested in Peja in June 1998, Erdogan Dautaj from Qarrabreg i Epërm,
arrested in Prishtina on 20 May 1999 and Fazli Rexhaj from Gramaçel,
arrested in Peja.
MALISHEVA: On 23 June, Osman Isuf Hoti from Qaralug (Caralluka), arrested by the Serbian forces on 21 May 1999 in Hajvalia (Prishtina), was released from the prison in Mitrovica e Sremit (Vojvodina).
PEJA: On 23 June, Artan Zenun Rexhaj from Alba (Jabllanica), arrested by Serbian paramilitaries on 13 May 1999 in Alba Mountains, was released from the prison in Nish (Serbia).
Presheva, Bujanoc, Medvegja
BUJANOC: On 20 June, at about
7.00, in the vicinity of Bresiq, a Serbian police squad severely ill-treated
four Albanians from Konçul. Two of them Sadri Osmani (1957) and
Mehmet Osmani (1978) suffered injuries and had to seek for medical assistance.
On 21 June, at about 1.05 after midnight, there were two blasts in downtown Bujanoc, which caused material losses in the building of the Municipal Assembly in Bujanoc and the surrounding buildings, in which Albanians live. Between 13.05 and 14.00, on the northeast to Bujanoc, several blasts were heard. Smoke could be seen from a long distance. According to some sources, blasts took place in the Serbian military depots in Vratagosht.
On 23 June, Serbian police arrested and severely ill-treated for 24 hours 6 Albanians from the village of Maltërnoc (Bujanoc), which has become vacant since the Albanian population has fled. The pretext for this was the disappearance of two Serbs from this village.
PRESHEVA: On 21 June, at about 4.00 am, there was a blast in the District Court in Presheva, due to what the windows of this buildings and those of the others around broke.
KFOR and UNMIK intervention
DARDANA (KAMENICA): On 19 June,
UNMIK administrators in Dardana did not allow people to put the UÇK
emblem on the lapidary of the martyrs Driton Krivaça, Sabri Krivaça
and Agush Isufi, even though this is not prohibited by any of the regulations
or verdicts of the UNMIK administration. Despite the prohibition, some
youngsters put the UÇK emblem on the lapidary, but at that moment,
KFOR Russian soldiers pointed their tanks at them and opened random automatic
fire. Fortunately, all this had no consequences.
At about 19.20, in the centre of Dardana, KFOR American soldiers arrested Rrahim Beqiri (1957) from Koprra (Koperrnica) and Përparim Sylejmani (1978) from Dardana under the suspicion that they had thrown stones to KFOR Russian soldiers. They took them in an UNMIK vehicle to the information centre and released them at 23.10. As it was a curfew, they stated that they were afraid to go out, but they were told, “they would not have any problems”. Yet, on being released, they were attacked and beaten by 30-40 Russian soldiers. Then, they were taken to the Russian base (former Serbian police station), made nude and made lie on the cold floor and were beaten. They were released next day at 5.40 and were threatened to be killed if they would be in the street again. Rrahim and Përparim suffered heavy injuries and are hospitalised in the Gjilani Hospital.
Five other Albanians from Topanica were brought to this place – Bajram Salihu (22), Ramadan Salihu (22), Fisnik Shala (20), Shemsi Zeqiri (19) and Bujar Morina (19). All of them were severely beaten.
On 22 June, international administrator in Dardana, Margarita Roy, dismissed Naim Canaj, coordinator for information in the municipal administration, under the pretext that an UNMIK employee should represent the UNMIK interests and not write against them. Naim stated that he was also prohibited entrance to the premises of the municipal administration, even as a guest.
DEÇAN: Italian organisation
COOB started its work on the new water supply system in Deçan two
months ago. Yet, since 20 June, UNMIK interrupted the work on this project.
UNMIK undertook this under the pretext that “some trees were cut on the
property of the Deçani monastery and that a part of this project
passes through it” – a “gift” from the Assembly of Serbia in 1997.
On 20 June, after midnight, KFOR Italian soldiers raided the house of Bajram Mazrrekaj, took him and kept him at the police station for 3 hours under the pretext that he had attacked the Deçani monastery. Sub-CDHRF in Deçan informed that several private premises were raided in Deçan and that Ramë Bajramaj and Blerim Mushkolaj from Deçan and Adhe Beqiraj from Peja were ill-treated.
MALISHEVA: On 21 June, at about 4.00 am, in Drenoc, four masked UNMIK policemen went into the house of Ymer Bytyçi (45), ill-treated him and caused him injuries, whereas other family members, especially children, suffered traumas.
LYPIAN: According to the daily “Dita” dt. 21 June, yesterday, a KFOR Finnish soldier entered the premises of the post office “in order to pay the phone bill of the Serb Stojadin Jorgiq” and in the presence of a number of citizens, he threatened the employees to remove the Albanian flag, as he “did not want to see it”.
DRENAS: On 21 June, KFOR members stopped in Lypian pupils and teachers with the “Emin Duraku” Primary School in Drenas, who were on excursion, and demanded from them to remove the Albanian flag or turn back. The teachers decided to turn back, but in Fushë-Kosova they were stopped again by KFOR troops. After an hour, 4 persons got out of a car coming from Prishtina and cut the flag with a knife and put it in a tank. But, after a while, the flag was given back to the pupils.
PRESHEVA: On 16 June, at about 18.05, in the “15 Nëntori” st. in Presheva, in the vicinity of the secondary school, Serbian policemen beat and caused injuries to the Albanian lawyer Naser A. Arifi (42). He was also threatened to be killed.
FERIZAJ: On 17 June, at about 21.15, two persons (one of them was masked and armed, the other one had his face veiled and had a hammer in his hand) went into the house of Behxhet Fetahu in the “Vëllezërit Gërvalla” st., when he was not at home and threatened his family members. They threw to the ground his mother Habibe (75). The looters broke the furniture with the hammer, took the documentation of the family and looted 6.100 US$ and 4.500 DM.
Prishtina, 26 June 2000