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Yugoslavia: Serbian Forces Retake Strategic Village


Lucane, Yugoslavia; 29 November 2000 (RFE/RL) - Serbian special police units today retook control of a village near the border between Kosovo and the rest of Serbia, which had been partly occupied by ethnic Albanian guerillas last week. Police armed with machine guns and backed by armored vehicles met no resistance as they moved into the village of Lucane. Serbian police had withdrawn from the village last week after ethnic Albanian fighters launched attacks into a buffer zone along the Kosovo boundary and even in Serbia proper, killing at least five Serbian policemen.

A police officer said the Serbian troops had not entered the buffer zone next to the Kosovo boundary. They are banned from the zone under a deal with NATO after last year's war.

The region has a large ethnic-Albanian population, and guerillas say they have taken up arms to protect it from Serbian police. But Serbian authorities say they are terrorists intent on joining the region with Kosovo.

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