Monday, April 11, 2005

UNMIK, Kosovo delegation visits refugee camp in Montenegro

Security in Kosovo has not been fully guaranteed yet, but it is nevertheless better than a year ago, and so the first large wave of returnees to Kosovo is expected from June to August [2005]. This was said today during an official visit by a delegation of the Kosovo government and UNMIK [UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo] to Berane. Braho Adrovic reports:

[Reporter] General conditions needed for achieving progress in solving individual problems of all internally displaced persons who decide to return have been created, the chief of UNMIK Office of Return and Communities, Kilian Kleinschmidt, said.

[Kleinschmidt in English superimposed by voice of interpreter] These people have the right to their property, the right to education and access to social assistance.

[Reporter] I came to Berane and to Montenegro to invite all displaced persons to use a unique opportunity to return to their hearths in an organized and humane manner, and not to fall for manipulations [as heard] regarding the situation in Kosovo, which is now much better than it used to be, Kosovo Minister of Returns and Communities Slavisa Petkovic said, emphasizing that everyone except [Serbia Prime Minister] Vojislav Kostunica and [Serbian Coordination Centre chief] Nebojsa Covic supported his activities.

[Petkovic] So, I do not belong to any political structure in Serbia. I am chairman of the Serb Democratic Party of Kosovo-Metohija. Yes, am heading the Serb Democratic Party of Kosovo-Metohija, and they [in Serbia] do not support what I am doing, and they block it in unison wherever they can, Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica and [Coordination] Centre chief Nebojsa Covic. Everyone else offers help and support.

[Montenegrin Commissar for Refugees Zeljko Sofranac] Together with the international community, Montenegro must be looking for long-term solutions. When we say long-term solutions, we mean the issues of return, the issues of integration and the issue of travelling to third countries. Through a national strategy, we have found ways to achieve solutions. We have an opportunity which is very open [as heard] as far as Kosovo is concerned to solve that problem, and we primarily think that we must use this opportunity.

[Reporter] The official Kosovo government and UNMIK delegation held a discussion this morning with [Berane] municipality head Relja Jovancevic and his associates, as well as the representatives of the Riverside [Serbian: Riversajd] Roma and [ethnic] Egyptian camp for displaced in Talum [district]. The latter said after the talks that they were not satisfied and that they primarily demanded that conditions for their local integration be ensured.

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