Ivo Skoric on Wed, 21 Jun 2000 23:09:12 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> Del Ponte: KLA Under Investigation - Finally.

While, it is obvious to any careful observer of events in the Balkans 
in past two decades that the primary culprit for letting the ancient 
evils leave their historic confinement is Milosevic's regime, the 
international community, which this recent Del Ponte's statements 
clearly shows, is increasingly uneasy with the KLA behavior. 
Western journalists covering the region are saddened and 
embarassed with lending their opinions in the support of the 
struggle of Kosovo Albanians, that now seems to be in hands, or 
worse yet - out of hands, of individuals capable of shooting elderly 
grandmothers and 4 year old children on account of their ethnicity. 
The Kosovo Albanians are repeating the same yadi-yadi-la we've 
heard from Croats and Bosnians upon their 'liberation' - that the 
international community committed its support only for its own 
selfish purposes and not to actually help them. While, of course, 
such a claim may be true, and it is true that NATO armed, used 
and restricted KLA on the ground, it is also true that without NATO, 
KLA would not be able to win the war against Yugoslav Army, i.e. 
although that may have not been the primary intention, they were 
helped by international community in achieving their goals. On the 
other hand, the international community badly miscalculated the 
potential of vindictive urges in the conflict situation of Balkan 
proportions. The wars of Yugoslav succession are characterized by 
four elements, that increase in their weight and proportion with 
every new instance of the conflict: the quantity of destruction, blood-
letting and sick, demented, unspeakable killings; the amount of 
pent up anger in the local population; the proportion of involvement 
of international community in the conflict; the extent of the chaos in 
local public bodies and political structures. By watching how those 
elements expanded exponentially from the war in Slovenia, through 
the war in Croatia to the war in Bosnia,`it shouldn't come as a 
surprise what we see in Kosov@ now. The repression in Kosov@ 
dates back nearly to a year after Tito's death (1981). The bombing 
of Yugoslavia was the largest operation of allied Western forces on 
the European continent since the WW II. KLA basically is an ad-
hoc formed guerilla group without soild organizatioal structure, 
history or enough time to build a solid public support. The ethnic 
cleansing and violence that Kosov@ Albanians faced was above 
and beyond what happened in Bosnia before. So, it was quite 
expectable that the revanshism would be at much higher levels, 
too. What is strange is that the international community did not 
calculate with that in the first place and that it still procrastinates 
with equipping its Kosov@ operation with a decent police force that 
would be able to respond to the primary humanitarian demand of 
the region: stopping the violent crime.


Date sent:      	Wed, 21 Jun 2000 11:25:35 -0700
Send reply to:  	Eric Witte <ewitte@crisisweb.org>
From:           	Eric Witte <ewitte@crisisweb.org>
Subject:        	Re: del Ponte: KLA Under Investigation

Here's more from AP on the KLA investigation.  Del Ponte also said Slobo may
face new charges for crimes in Bosnia and Croatia.  Let's hope so.


Prosecutor: Milosevic not getting a deal, might face more charges

The Associated Press
6/21/00 9:01 AM

PRISTINA, Yugoslavia (AP) -- Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, now
indicted in connection with bloodletting in Kosovo, might face additional
charges for his role in previous Balkan wars, the chief prosecutor of the
U.N. war crimes tribunal said Wednesday.

The prosecutor, Carla Del Ponte, also announced that Milosevic's archenemies
in Kosovo -- the former commanders of the ethnic Albanian Kosovo Liberation
Army, which fought Milosevic's forces until a year ago -- are being
investigated on suspicion of war crimes.

Milosevic is already indicted by the tribunal for his alleged role in
atrocities during the Serb crackdown on Kosovo Albanians that ended a year
ago. Del Ponte's denial that the tribunal might drop the indictment was a
response to news reports that the United States is considering offering
Milosevic safety guarantees in exchange for him stepping down.

"My investigators will continue their forensic work in Kosovo to gather
additional evidence concerning the existing indictment of Slobodan
Milosevic," Del Ponte told reporters. "We have no intention to withdraw this

It is unclear what kind of international pressure could be brought on the
court, which answers to the United Nations, but Del Ponte's comments were an
indication that the court itself was not aware of any kind of deal for

There is no indication in any case that Milosevic is contemplating a deal
that would see him step down in exchange for safety guarantees. While facing
international isolation, he has managed to consolidate his rule by
outmaneuvering a split political opposition.

In her comments Wednesday, Del Ponte said the tribunal is "investigating the
criminal responsibility of Milosevic for (wars in) Bosnia and Croatia."

Milosevic fomented Serb rebellions, first in Croatia and then in Bosnia, in
response to decisions by the non-Serb majorities in those two republics to
secede from Yugoslavia. Hundreds of thousands of people died in those two

Her comments on the Kosovo Liberation Army, meanwhile, appeared calculated
at least in part to dispel Serb criticism that the war crimes tribunal is
biased against Serbs. Serbs have accounted for the majority of those
indicted as a result of the Croatian, Bosnian and Kosovo wars, and no ethnic
Albanian has been publicly indicted for the Kosovo conflict.

"We are investigating KLA activity during the conflict," Del Ponte said.
"Our mandate is always to look at the highest responsibility in the chain of
command, and that is also the case for the KLA."

Serbia has barred tribunal officials from entry since the end of the Kosovo
bloodshed. Del Ponte urged Serb officials to allow them in so they can
interview Serb victims and witnesses of atrocities in Kosovo who later fled
the province.

----- Original Message -----
From: E. Chen <cij25@HOTMAIL.COM>
Sent: Wednesday, June 21, 2000 8:20 AM
Subject: del Ponte: KLA Under Investigation

> The BBC reports that Carla Del Ponte has announced that the KLA is under ICTY
> investigation for war crimes. She made the announcement in Pristina while on
> an official visit to the region.  This is the first official acknowledgement
> by the Prosecutor of ICTY scrutiny into alleged KLA crimes.
> Edgar Chen Coalition for International Justice http://www.cij.org
> _______________________________________________ Wednesday, 21 June, 2000,
> 10:52 GMT 11:52 UK Kosova Albanian soldiers accused of warcrimes
> The chief prosecutor of the international war crimes tribunal for former
> Yugoslavia, Carla del Ponte says the court is investigating members of the
> Kosovo Liberation Army.
> Speaking in the Kosovo capital, Pristina she said the investigation involved
> the alleged murders of ethnic Serbs during last year's conflict in the
> province.
> The tribunal has been working on numerous cases of atrocities committed by
> Serb security forces but this is the first time the court has revealed
> investigations into murders believed to have been committed by the KLA.
> A BBC correspondent in Kosovo says many former KLA members now hold official
> positions and the indictments could have serious repercussions for the UN's
> administration in Kosovo. Exact details of the crimes are not expected to be
> released until the court issues indictments.
> The tribunal says the investigation has been hampered by an inability to gain
> access to Serb victims and witnesses, many of whom are living in Serbia.
> >From the newsroom of the BBC World Service
> ________________________________________________________________________ Get
> Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at http://www.hotmail.com

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