Thursday, October 13, 2005

Belgrade, Pristina won't be able to veto Kosovo talks: US

PRISTINA, Serbia-Montenegro, Oct 13 (AFP) -

The United States wants talks on Kosovo's status to begin within 30 days, a senior US State Department official said on a visit to the troubled province Thursday.

"The situation has to change. The process has to begin in the next 30 days," said US Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns, adding neither Belgrade nor Pristina should be allowed to obstruct the progress of the negotiations.

"... Countries and peoples should talk together about the best way forward," Burns said.

"We don't believe that any of the parties of the negotiations will have a veto over the negotiations. We don't believe that this negotiating train can be stopped. It's got to move forward ... so no vetoes," he said.

Burns was speaking after he met with senior local officials including the president of Kosovo, Ibrahim Rugova, in a diplomatic drive to prepare for the upcoming talks on the disputed province's future status.

Kosovo has been run by the United Nations and NATO since a 1999 bombing campaign by the military alliance forced Serbian forces to stop a crackdown against ethnic Albanian separatists.

"Our hope is that the two last months of 2005 and the first months of 2006 will be months of great change for Kosovo and a strong opportunity for the people of Kosovo to find their own future."

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

US and British officials told us that at least 100,000 were murdered in Kosovo. A year later, fewer than 3,000 bodies have been found - False figues from the Kosovo Liberation Army promulgated as fact - Brief Article

New Statesman, Sept 4, 2000 by JOHN Pilger

After more than a year, the silence of those who wrote and broadcast the propaganda for Nato's "humanitarian war" over Kosovo remains unbroken: they who answered the Prime Minister's call to join "a great moral crusade" against a regime that was "set on a Hitler-style genocide equivalent to the extermination of the Jews during World War Two".

Something had to be done, they insisted. After all, by March last year, 500,000 Kosovar Albanians were missing, feared dead, according to the US State Department. In mid-May, the US defence secretary, William Cohen, said: "We've now seen about 100,000 military-aged men missing... They may have been murdered." Two weeks later, David Scheffer, the US ambassador at large for war crimes, increased the 100,000 figure to as many as "225,000 ethnic Albanian men aged between 14 and 59". The British press took their cue. "Flight from genocide," said the Daily Mail. "Echoes of the Holocaust," chorused the Sun and the Mirror.

As the bombing dragged on, the facade began to crack; British television viewers were shown the ruins of trains and refugee convoys attacked by Nato aircraft, and their victims. "We have a public relations meltdown," said someone at Downing Street. On cue, the then Foreign Office minister, Geoffrey Hoon, announced that, "in more than 100 massacres", about 10,000 ethnic Albanians had been killed, adding that "the final toll may be much worse". Although inexplicably reduced from the original claims of 500,000 and 100,000, this was a substantial and utterly unsubstantiated figure.

By mid-June, with the bombardment over, international forensic teams began subjecting the province to minute examination. The American FBI arrived to investigate what was called the "largest crime scene in the FBI's forensic history". Several weeks later, having found bodies but not a single mass grave, the FBI went home. The Spanish forensic team also returned home, its leader complaining angrily that he and his colleagues had become part of "a semantic pirouette by the war propaganda machines, because we did not find one -- not one -- mass grave".

At grave site after grave site, the story was similar. Reports in the western media, sourced to local people but often traced back to the Kosovo Liberation Army (as with the figures quoted above), became unbelievable. One explanation was that the Serbs had come in the night and taken the bodies away. "Where," wrote Michael Parenti in his review of the investigation, "was the evidence of mass grave sites having been disinterred? Where were the new grave sites now presumably chock-full of bodies?"

Perhaps the most significant disclosure, confirmed by the International Criminal Tribunal last October, was that the Trepca lead and zinc mines contained no bodies. Trepca was central to the drama of the "genocide" investigation: the corpses of more than 1,000 murdered Albanians were presumed hidden there, many of them disposed of in vats of hydrochloric acid, according to Nato and American officials. According to the Mirror, there was evidence of the "mass dumping of executed corpses" and "Auschwitz-style furnaces". Not a single body was found: no teeth, no remains.

Last November, the Wall Street Journal published the results of its own investigation and dismissed "the mass-grave obsession". Instead of "the huge killing fields some investigators were led to expect ... the pattern is of scattered killings [mostly] in areas where the separatist Kosovo Liberation Army had been active". The Journal concluded that "Nato stepped up its claims about Serb 'killing fields"' when it "saw a fatigued press corps drifting toward the contrarian story: civilians killed by Nato's bombs". This propaganda, said the newspaper, could be traced back to the KLA; many of the most lurid and prominently published atrocity reports attributed to refugees and other sources were untrue. "The war in Kosovo was cruel, bitter, savage," said the paper. "Genocide it wasn't." Such honesty was rare.

Nato bombed, according to George Robertson, the then defence secretary, "to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe" of mass expulsion and killing. In December, the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe, whose monitors were in Kosovo until just before the bombing, released its report on the war. This received almost no publicity in Britain. It confirmed that most of the crimes against the Albanian population had taken place after the bombing began: that is, they were not a cause but a consequence of the Nato campaign.

Western gravediggers have found a total of 2,788 bodies, and not all of them war crimes victims. On 7 June this year, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) published a list of 3,368 missing persons whose names had been given to it by families from all communities in Kosovo, spanning January 1998 to mid-May this year. The ICRC says that a substantial number could be alive, among refugees scattered throughout Europe.

What is now beyond doubt is that the figures used by London and Washington, and by much of the media, were ludicrous inventions. The killings in Kosovo were despicable and tragic, but to equate them with genocide and the Holocaust is to mock the truth with profanity. With the exception of the Guardian, almost none of this has been reported in Britain. The Red Cross report was virtually ignored in this country. This is understandable; among the journalists who swallowed Nato's and their government's lies were the truly committed and triumphant, who wrote that "when the mass graves are opened, the opponents of this humanitarian war should apologise".

The defenceless population upon whom Nato's bombs rained down night after night, the 400 to 600 who died, blown up in crowded passenger trains and buses, in factories, television stations, libraries, old people's homes, schools and 18 hospitals, many cut to pieces by the RAF's thousands of "unaccounted for" cluster bombs which fragment into shrapnel, require an apology from the propagandists; because, as Nato's planners never tired of saying at their post-bombing seminars, without journalists "on board", they could never have pulled it off.

Robert Fisk, Britain's greatest war reporter, has called them sheep, gulled by professional manipulators. Take the bombing of the Belgrade TV headquarters and the murder of staff such as make-up ladies. Amnesty International, in a rare departure, called this "a deliberate attack on a civilian object, and as such constitutes a war crime". Shortly before the bombing, the Nato mouthpiece Jamie Shea had given a written assurance that the TV building would not be attacked.

With the media on board, Nato could go forth. At one "private preliminary review by Nato experts" of the bombing (reported in the Daily Telegraph), it was agreed that "any future operation by Nato is likelier to involve heavier, more ruthless attacks on civilian targets ..."

Having taken sides in what was a bitter but low-level civil war on the scale of Ireland in the 1970s, and having deliberately blocked a peaceful solution at the phoney Rambouillet "talks", Nato was able to finish off the west's "strategic concept" of destroying Yugoslavia - without recourse to the United Nations or international law. It was all based on a marriage of lies, thanks largely to those journalists who acted as the handmaidens of great and murderous power.

Kosovo is today, more than ever, a terror state, run by Mafia-style criminals with links to the KLA: the people who last year could call Robin Cook directly on their mobile phones.

More than 200,000 Serbs and Roma have since been driven out, with few headlines here. The Americans have built one of their biggest military bases in the world, Camp Bondsteel, which achieves a long-held strategic aim of Washington to straddle the Balkan transit routes. Stand by for their next humanitarian adventure.

COPYRIGHT 2000 New Statesman, Ltd.
COPYRIGHT 2000 Gale Group

Anonymous said...

Hmmm a lot of Albanophobic comments there. Anti-Clinton, Anti-Blair, Anti-Robertson, may he rest in peace, and, Anti-NATO comments. I've read this article at Serbiana.com before.
Just a lot of crap and propaganda there.

By the way I know Serbs heard nothing about the number of people dead. All of their TV stations were showing the movie " Wag the Dog 24/7" so cut the crap. I must say that I greatly enjoyed the movie.

Anonymous said...

Hmm...! Is Amb. Burns saying that both parties will be negotiating towards a predetermined position?

Anonymous said...

"... Countries and peoples should talk together about the best way forward," Burns said.

Kosovo will be a country.

This guy copying and pasting articles full of crap from Serb ultra-Nazi sites is so annoying!

Anonymous said...

PROPAGANDA????? WHERE?????? show it prove it wrong, prove one point wrong, anytime u albaniacs hear about ur lies about the 100,000 dead u claimed its propaganda, yet saying serbs wanted to kill all of us isnt when tehre is NO proof of that whatsoever! u are lying scum and u know it. PROVE ANYTHING WRONG ABOUT UR LIES AND PATHETIC MUSLIM BEGGING and playing the VICTIM GAME. SCUM, FIGHT UR OWN BATTLES FOR ONCE AND U WONT KNOW WHAT HIT you.

Anonymous said...

is this SERB propaganda as well???? this is from ur BBC LOVING SCUMBAG BROTHERS (bbc moslty owned by ur filthy arab brotehrs who bombed trade center and trained with the KLA and BinLaden) look at the pictures of thes faces, u look like u are from another planet:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/1530781.stm

Kosovo assault 'was not genocide'

The court ruled there was no attempt to destroy the Albanian ethnic group
A United Nations court has ruled that Serbian troops did not carry out genocide against ethnic Albanians during Slobodan Milosevic's campaign of aggression in Kosovo from 1998 to 1999.
The controversial ruling by the UN-supervised Supreme Court in the Kosovan capital, Pristina, has angered Albanians, and some UN officials are reported to be preparing to challenge it.

The decision comes as authorities in Serbia begin the excavation of another mass grave believed to contain the bodies of around 50 Kosovar Albanians.

Four graves have already been investigated, revealing the remains of 340 victims.

UN 'unhappy'

The court, Kosovo's highest legal body, said there had been a "systematic campaign of terror, including murders, rapes, arsons and severe maltreatments".


Slobodan Milosevic has not yet been charged with genocide in Kosovo
Crimes against humanity and war crimes did take place, it said, but "the exactions committed by Milosevic's regime cannot be qualified as criminal acts of genocide, since their purpose was not the destruction of the Albanian ethnic group... but its forceful departure from Kosovo".

However the BBC's Paul Wood in Belgrade says that some UN legal officials are deeply unhappy and have begun a campaign to have the ruling overturned.

The decision was based on the 1948 Geneva convention which defines genocide as the intent "to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group as such".

Milosevic debate

The court, which is comprised of two international judges and one Albanian, was ruling on the case of a Serb, Miroslav Vuckovic, convicted of genocide by a district court in Mitrovica.


Excavations of mass graves have changed public opinion
International officials have raised concerns about the treatment of Serbs by Kosovo's Albanian dominated judiciary.

Mr Vuckovic's conviction has now been overturned and he will face a retrial in Mitrovica.

The decision is likely to reopen the debate on whether Slobodan Milosevic should face genocide charges at The Hague, where he already stands accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The tribunal is currently preparing indictments of genocide against Mr Milosevic in connection with atrocities carried out in Bosnia and Croatia.

Mass grave

Serbian authorities in the western Serbian town of Bajina Basta began on Thursday to excavate a mass grave thought to contain the bodies of Kosovo Albanians.

They are believed to have been transported out of the province in an attempt by Mr Milosevic to cover up atrocities and possible war crimes carried out during his campaign of terror.

Serbian police believe around 800 victims of the conflict in Kosovo have been buried around Serbian territory.

The gruesome revelations of the bodies are credited with changing public opinion in Serbia and increasing acceptance that war crimes were carried out under the Milosevic regime.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, browsing the recycle bins of websites (articles written years and years ago).

Serbs, Kosovo is lost. Please focus your energy on Vojvodina before that one goes away as well.

WARchild said...

If Kosova was full of Serbs and those Serbs migrated north to Vojvodina, Croatia, and Bosnia then return all those lands to their respective owners and then you can get Kosova back. We'll all go back to like we were back in 1300's before Serbs went to the border with Austria-Hungary to get lend for free and help Ottomans protect the border in return.

You can't have both of them, one becuase you supposedly used to live there and the other because you live there now. Just trying to strike a deal here.

In the mean time, under-secretary had something to say, check it out.
http://balkanupdate.blogspot.com/2005/10/burns-announcing-change-of-principle.html>

Prince of Albania said...

I can copy and paste too, look what I found!

Granted I am using current news and not old news like some of the visitors that post on this site, but what the heck, no body asks you how You Were, everyone wants to know How You ARE!

Kosovo independent next year? | 10:24 October 13 | B92

LONDON, PRAGUE -- Thursday – Kosovo will be independent under the condition of international control of democratic standards, Reuters writes.

According to the report, Kosovo could get independence next year, but will remain under international control.

Reuters quotes an unnamed senior European official as saying that while Serbia insists that Kosovo can only be autonomous, the international community wants to begin negotiations aimed at conditional independence.

There is consensus within the international community for this solution, says Reuters’ source.

The unnamed diplomat says that full independence could be offered to the province as soon as the standards imposed by the international community have been met and only when Serbia and the other countries in the region become members of the European Union.

Former US Balkan envoy James Dobbins says that the Contact Group believes unanimously that the time has come for negotiations on Kosovo’s final status.

“I think that every member state of the Contact Group agrees on the importance of beginning talks. Perhaps some are more ready for them than others. But I can say that, in that sense, there is an agreed position within the Contact Group,” Dobbins told Radio Free Europe.

He added that it is obvious that the international community will put conditions on Kosovo’s independence.

“If Kosovo wants to reach this goal, independence, it must offer guarantees and evidence of security for the minority. The international community will be in a position to judge whether the guarantees have been met.,” said Dobbins.

Ferick said...

Please guys, ignore the spammers. Whoever manages this site needs to block the Ip's of people who are spamming. That Serbian dude is really annoying. This part of the bog is called "comments". By all means you are welcomed to post your comments here, but if you want to spam go open your own website dude. You can't even write proper English!
If you are having hard time writing a good argument about what you are trying to say, then go back and take some ESL classes. It’s not a shame, not all of us were born writers.

Editors of this site need to block this guy’s IP right away. He is spamming every article with the same information irrelevant of what the article talks about. In addition to that his comets are very vulgar and no one needs to read them. By the way, I would like to know from him directly, how old is he so maybe I can help him manage his anger….
Cheers,
Ferick

ali_pashai said...

i have to agree with ferick. no matter what the article is about these guys copy and paste whatever they please. I mean sure it says leave your comment but leave your comment about the article.
Now if I may, a piece of advice for the serbian guy. You going all wrong about this my friend. By coming here and coping and pasting it looks to me like you trying to convince albanians that they do not deserve independence. Wrong. Every albanian knows and wants only independence. Now if you still think that the fate of kosova is still questionable you should spam european and american blogs with your bs. After all they'll decide the fate of kosova, no. So be a good boy and get lost because i am sick and tired of reading the same article over and over and over again.

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