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Yugoslavia: Serb Forces Accused Of Atrocities In Kosovo


London/Belgrade; 29 March 1999 (RFE/RL) - British Prime Minister Tony Blair said today that NATO's air campaign against Serbia must be intensified to stop Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic's forces from continuing atrocities against ethnic Albanians in Kosovo. Among a growing list of reported atrocities, NATO officials said today that Serb forces have executed Fehmi Agani, an ethnic Albanian politician in Kosovo who had been a negotiator at the Rambouillet peace talks. British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook told reporters that Serb forces have gathered some 20,000 ethnic Albanians into what he called "concentration areas" in Kosovo. Cook said he expects many more executions.

In Brussels, NATO spokesman Jamie Shea said killings and the burning of villages are part of a systematic ethnic cleansing campaign planned by Milosevic months ago. Shea said Belgrade is repeating policies used in Croatia and Bosnia to re-engineer the ethnic makeup of Kosovo. He said refugees trying to leave Kosovo are being stripped of their documents to prevent their return and future property claims.

Western leaders say evidence of genocide is being gathered against Milosevic and his military officers for future trials at the International War Crimes Tribunal at The Hague.

Nearly 100,000 refugees have arrived at the borders of Albania, Montenegro and Macedonia in the last two days. Albanian Prime Minister Pandeli Majko said he expects an additional 100,000 refugees in Albania in the next few days. The OSCE says the flow of refugees has risen so dramatically today that it can no longer count them all.

In Moscow, the Kremlin said Russian Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov will head a delegation to Belgrade tomorrow in an effort to negotiate a ceasefire. So far, the Kremlin has demanded that NATO first stop its air strikes before it asks Belgrade to halt the Serb offensive in Kosovo.
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