KOSOVSKA MITROVICA, Serbia-Montenegro, Dec 27 (AFP) -
Some 1,000 Serbs took to the streets of Mitrovica on Tuesday, voicing their anger after two Serbs were shot and wounded in the ethnically divided town in Kosovo.
"The latest attacks show that ethnic cleansing is happening," shouted protesters at the demonstration in the centre of the mainly Serb-populated northern part of the town.
"If UNMIK (the UN mission in Kosovo) cannot guarantee our security, there is only solution left -- the return of Serbian military and police" to the province of Kosovo, they said.
The gathering was held in response to the shooting of two ethnic Serbs in Mitrovica early Monday. Both victims were taken to hospital, and one of them is recovering from an operation on gunshot wounds to his stomach.
Kosovo has been administered by the United Nations and NATO since June 1999, when the alliance's intervention ended a crackdown by Belgrade-controlled forces against separatist ethnic Albanian rebels.
More than 200,000 ethnic Serbs have since fled the province fearing reprisals from Albanians after the 1998-1999 conflict, according to Serbia's government.
Out of the estimated 80,000 Serbs who remain in Kosovo, some 30,000 live in enclaves in the central part of the province, as ethnic tensions remain high.
Albanians, who outnumber Serbs and other minorities in Kosovo by more than nine to one, are seeking independence from Serbia in the recently opened talks on the province's future status.