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Serbia's Tadic Calls For Reconciliation In Kosovo

13 February 2005 -- Serbian President Boris Tadic called today for Kosovo's Serbs and Albanians to reconcile.

Speaking in the burned-out Serbian Orthodox church of St Nicholas in the Kosovan capital Pristina, Tadic said there is a history of "hate and destruction" in the Balkans, including Kosovo, and this must stop.

Tadic was making the first visit by a Serbian head of state to the UN-ruled province since the 1999 war. His trip is taking place under tight security for fear of hostility from Kosovo's Albanian majority, who are bitter at a decade of repression under Serbian rule in the 1990s.

Earlier, in the Serbian-populated village of Silovo, Tadic declared that Kosovo province remains a part of Serbia and Montenegro. It's unclear whether Tadic is to meet any of the ethnic Albanian leaders in Kosovo.