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Balkans Task Force (BTF)
Situation Report No. 20

UNCHS (Habitat)

Thursday,   2 September 1999
Overview
  • KFOR Officials reported that the overall security situation in Kosovo has improved considerably over the last weeks. Attacks on Serbs decreased for the first time last week, despite several incidents of abductions and intimidation.

  • UNMIK and KFOR announced the reopening of the first schools in Kosovo on 1 September.

  • The BTF Danube technical assessment mission left FRY on 28 August. The biodiversity technical assessment mission will leave for FRY on 7 September.

  • Mr. Agustin Diaz De Mera, Chairman of the Committee on Migration, Refugees and Demography of the Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly called on 31 August the Council of Europe's member states to make a further effort, before winter comes, to increase their humanitarian and relief measures for these people- in close co-operation with international and local humanitarian organisations.

  • The United Nations-supervised Kosovo Transitional Council agreed to form a commission to assist efforts at enhancing security throughout the territory on 1 September. The commission will advise UNMIK and the international security force, KFOR, on how to resolve specific security concerns and to help set priorities for UN international civilian police deployment.

  • Dr. Bernard Kouchner met the new US ambassador to the United Nations, Richard Holbrooke, in Pristina, on 29 August.

  • The Security Council condemned violence against ethnic minorities in Kosovo on 30 August and called on member states to provide the UN mission in the province with the means to do its job.

  • Some 772'300 Kosovars have returned to Kosovo since the peace agreement in June. Around 43'200 refugees and displaced people remain in the region, including 7'700 in Montenegro, 6'500 in Albania, 10'190 in Bosnia-Herzegovina and 18'800 in FYROM. An estimated 200,000 Serb and Roma people who fled their homes in Kosovo have arrived in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, according to figures from the Yugoslav Red Cross and local municipal authorities, including 173'000 in Serbia proper, 23'500 in Montenegro and 3'257 refugees from Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

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