Monday, March 07, 2005

Kosovo premier heckled at rally marking anniversary of rebel army

In bad, rainy weather, elite units of the TMK [Kosovo Protection Corps, KPC] paraded with a statue of Adem Jashari [commander of the Kosovo Liberation Army, killed in a shootout with the Serbian police forces in 1998] through Prishtina's stadium, to mark the seventh anniversary of the "UCK [Kosovo Liberation Army, KLA] Epic", which commemorates the fall of legendary UCK Commander Adem Jashari and honours all the nation's martyrs.

But for the seventh anniversary of Jashari's heroic fall, the gap between the war wings was very obvious when the mention of Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj's name was followed with whistles and disrespectful shouts by the attendees during his entire speech. The speeches of Hashim Thaci [chairman of the Democratic Party of Kosovo, PDK] and the TMK general were received with ovation.

"Shut up, commanders of Bllace [Blace; area between Kosovo and Macedonia border] [reference to those who fled Kosovo during the 1999 war]...," was Haradinaj's response to the disrespectful whistles of the citizens. Haradinaj began his speech by muttering swearwords at those who heckled him.

"The Kosova Liberation Army was and will always remain glorious, because such was the war and heroism of the UCK fighters; therefore our most recent history has a special moment, the 'Prekaz Epic' which we are remembering today," Haradinaj said. [Passage omitted]

Haradinaj requested those present to work for the independence of Kosova, because, according to him, independence will heal our wounds.

Unlike Haradinaj, Hashim Thaci's speech was received with applause.

"The interest and fate of Kosova should be above every other individual, group, or political interest and fate," he outlined.

Further he hoped that next March could be commemorated together with the imprisoned members of the UCK who are unjustly being kept in prison.

"The people and the institutions of Kosova believe in Fatmir Limaj's [indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, ICTY] innocence. We believe in, and respect international justice, but we request that the process be fair and transparent," Thaci said.

In this regard, he assessed that no court can incriminate the war of the UCK and the people of Kosova. [Passage omitted]

For TMK Commander Agim Ceku, the alignment of TMK members on the seventh anniversary of Adem Jashari's fall is proof that the martyrs' will is alive and that they are determined to completely realize this will.

"The TMK is committed to achieving its strategic objectives and convince the international community that our plan for the future is acceptable," TMK Commander Agim Ceku said at this ceremony. "We are here to make the TMK a protection force of Kosova," he promised.

1 comment:

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