War on the Balkans

June 1999 Report from the Balkan Peace Team

The Work of BPT-FRY Following the Outbreak of War in Kosovo

Introduction

In late March, when NATO planes began to bomb Serbian targets, and Yugoslav soldiers began forcing masses of Kosovo Albanians to flee their homes, a number of people asked whether the Balkan Peace Team project in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (BPT-FRY) would end its operations.

Notes from a Belgrade women's activist

Feminists in the refugee camps 3rd June

On the road to Skopje, in front of the border people are standing and waiting to cross. There are 15-20 of them, apparently from the near by town, maybe from Gnjilane. I am wondering when have Belgrade citizens seen citizens from Gnjilane, or have they ever? Serbian or Albanian nationality? Anyway I see them for the first time in my life. They must be Albanians. They are standing in the darkness and waiting to cross the border. On foot. They are silent and I can only hear baby voices.

WRI members

Special section on action over Kosov@


Letter to Albanian Friends from Nongovernment Organisations

Dear friends,

Contacts

To get information about the Kosov@ conflict, apart from the website of WRI, you can check the following:

Women in Black: Documents in English and Spanish from womens point of view.

http://wib.matriz.net

Institution for War and Peace Reporting: Regular reports on the situation in Yugoslavia, many of them from people on the ground.

http://www.ipwr.net

The Transnational Foundation for Peace and Future Research: Excelent reports from the ground, from a pacifist point of view.

http://www.transnational.org

Letter from members of an environmental group, Belgrade

Seizure of NATO bombing relieved us here in Belgrade about the immediacy, but left us in a specific state of vacuum and with a great uncertainty about the future. We are choked by the pictures we receive via satellite TV, dominated by horrible evidence of atrocities by Yugoslav militia and paramilitaries conducted in Kosovo, and withdrawal of YU armoured vehicles with soldiers waving flags and bottles singing (on withdrawal!?).

Communiqué on the Kosov@ war

The Executive Committee of the War Resisters' International meeting in London, 22-24 May 1999 discussed the war in Kosovo@ and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Those of us from NATO countries discussed the situation in our own countries - for instance of the problems of anti-war groups in dealing with peace organisations who support the NATO bombings, or of so-called anti-war groups who repeat Serbian propaganda and refuse to condemn the Serbian ethnic cleansing. Our view is that the primary author of this situation is Slobodan Milosevic.

Letter from Natasa Kandic (Humanitarian Law Centre, Belgrade)

I am now in Belgrade and I plan to remain here a few days before leaving for Kosovo and Montenegro.

I received a letter from Prizren dated 4 May 1999, but it did not reach me until the 20th. It bears a Serbian PTT postal stamp and it was probably mailed by someone who left Prizren. The letter itself is printed in capital letters and unsigned, but it came from a very good friend of mine.

Appeal for the support to peace and democracy in Serbia and Montenegro

An atmosphere of mistrust and expulsion of adversaries is spreading throughout FR Yugoslavia.

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