Skip to comments.Ex-Russian PM blames NATO for Kosovo exodus
Posted on 11/22/2004 8:00:05 PM PST by Jane_N
Former Russian prime minister Nikolai Ryzhkov has testified at the war crimes trial of former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic.
Mr Ryzhkov accused the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) of sparking a mass exodus of Kosovo Albanians by bombing the breakaway Serbian province in 1999.
He also alleged that 800,000 separatist fighters from Kosovo's majority ethnic Albanian population were mainly armed by Germany and funded from Europe and the Middle East.
Mr Ryzhkov, who addressed Milosevic as "Mr President", was questioned at length by the defendant in the mammoth war crimes trial, notably about his stint as chairman of the Russian Parliament's commission on Yugoslavia.
The court allowed Mr Ryzhkov to quote parliamentary documents on the situation in Kosovo, despite objections by the prosecution that it had not seen them.
But chief judge Patrick Robinson warned Milosevic about breaking the ground rules laid down on the questioning of witnesses, saying: "We have been fairly lenient with you but the time will come that we will not continue."
Mr Ryzhkov says in 1998 the Russian authorities had noted moves by "Albanian terrorists" in Kosovo towards separatism and the situation there was "escalating".
"According to our information, there were 800,000 mercenaries trained in Albania and in other countries, trained in the Middle East, the financing was partially from Europe and the Middle East, and the weapons were principally supplied by Germany," he said.
Referring to the NATO bombing of Kosovo, aimed at halting a crackdown by Belgrade on Kosovo Albanians, Mr Ryzhkov said: "I didn't see any military target, only civil targets."
"It was an aggression against a sovereign country. It was a punishment. It was not to protect the Albanian population," he said.
The flight of Kosovo Albanians "was the result of the bombing of NATO", he added.
NATO intervened forcefully in Kosovo in 1999 to put an end to what it described as "ethnic cleansing" of the Albanian population by Serb troops acting on orders of Milosevic.
The province is now under UN administration.
Milosevic, 63, is conducting his own defence, after successfully rebuffing attempts by the court to force lawyers on him in September because of his ill health.
He has been on trial since February 2002 on more than 60 charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity during his 13 years in power.
The charges stem from the wars that accompanied the bloody break-up of Yugoslavia, from 1992-95 in Bosnia, 1991-95 in Croatia and 1998-99 in Kosovo.
More than 200,000 people died in the fighting.
According to our information, there were 800,000 mercenaries
Well, your information was wildly wrong. There are only 2 million people total living in Kosovo. 800,000 mercenaries means a force equal to 40% of Kosovo's population and with a land area of 4000 square miles, it also means there were 200 mercenaries camped out in every single square mile of Kosovo. Right. The KLA may have had as many as 20,000 active fighters at its peak in 1999 with perhaps that many again part-timers. Estimates vary, but none quite as wildly as Slobo's most recent "witness."
The flight of Kosovo Albanians "was the result of the bombing of NATO", he added.
Serb talking points. Unfortunately, just like with the Dems, the facts don't back up the mantra. By the beginning of March 1999, prior to the begining of the bombing, the combination of fighting and the targeting of civilians had left an estimated 1,500-2,000 civilians and combatants dead. More than 200,000 Albanian civilians were internally displaced, almost 70,000 Albanians had fled the province to neighboring countries and Montenegro, and a further 100,000 Yugoslav nationals, mostly Kosovar Albanians, had sought asylum in Western Europe. By March 19th, still before the bombing, a total of 443,000 or 22% of Kosovo's mostly Albanian population had been displaced.
So your assumption that Milosevich was the cause is not correct. Kosovars would rather live here in NOrway on welfare and partake in criminal activity than perform productive work and build up Kosovo.
Then why did everybody go back as soon as Milosevic's Serb forces were kicked out of Kosovo?
" ...there had been a mass return of refugees at a scale and speed that is historically unprecedented. Between mid-June and the beginning of August 1999, almost 90% of the Kosovar Albanians who had fled the province since March 1998 returned. Around 750,000 have returned from neighboring countries and further afield, and returns continue at a daily average rate of about a thousand people."
Get real, Mr. oilfield. Close to a million Albanians didn't burn down their own houses and walk over the mountains with what little they could carry so they could annoy you in Norway.
Amen to that!
No, he would be wrong--like you... First Ryhzkov commits a court-room eye-roller by testifying that there were 800,000 mercenaries in Kosovo. Then after the court has already established that there were hundreds of thousands of refugees before the bombing even began and that the common circumstance of Albanain flight was the appearance of Serb forces who removed them at the point of a gun, Rhyzkov then says it was NATO bombing that caused the refugees. It was credibility hari-kari. Even Slobo had to cringe.
Faith is the basis of religious belief. Unless--and having been on the balkans threads for a while I do not rule this out--it is part of your religion that Slobo is innocent, then you may want to actually look at the facts of the case instead of giving your "amen" to unsubstantiated assertions.
Everyone agrees on that. However, most civilian killings were apparently perpetrated by the KLA against other Albanians for various political or personal reasons. Classic Gheq Albanian tribalism, traditionally among the most violent in Europe, now deadlier as it is enforced by the No.1 heroin mafia in Europe. The chaos of the war that they provoked gave them a first class opportunity to dispose of a thousand or so unfaithful Albanians before March '99 and of even higher numbers afterwards.
"By the beginning of March 1999 ... More than 200,000 Albanian civilians were internally displaced, ..."
Well, this is from the Soros-controlled "human rights watch" and, as such, is not worth the paper it is written on. Not even Clinton's CIA moles in the KVM talked about such numbers. Nevertheless, in a clannish society driven by blind loyalty (i.e. fear) to powerful leaders/warlords, such numbers of internally displaced are not so hard to achieve for someone like KLA's Commander Remi. And of course who among those poor villagers would dare not to blame the dastardly Serbs for their displacement?
" 100,000 Yugoslav nationals, mostly Kosovar Albanians, had sought asylum in Western Europe. "
For obvious propaganda purposes of hrw, this number (whether or not accurate) is of course blamed on Milosevic. The banal reality, however, is that the vast majority of those migrated for financial reasons, the same reasons that prompted them or their parents to migrate from destitute northern Albania to Yugoslav-subsidised Kosovo. When the Yugo cash cow went dry, they left.
You are really an albanian shill. Keep at it, and dont try to convince me that the criminal midgets are so wonderful, I am half Serbian American and proud of it.
The article was about the killings and refugees from Kosovo before the bombings even took place. Your link was about some revenge killings that took place after the war was over. It is irrelevant to the point that it was the Serbs that caused the massive refugee flow, not NATO bombs. The bombs were not yet falling and there were 1,500-2,000 dead and 463,000 people were already forced from their homes.
The 463,000 figure is from the UNHCR, not "George Soros", LOL.
Any number using percentage of total Kosovo population is bogus -there was no census in Kosovo since 1981 because Albanians BOYCOTTED 1991 census. All population figures are ESTIMATES. And very curious.
MSM reports throughout 1990's claimed that Kosovo is province of 2,000,000 whose 90% Albanian population seeks independence. The number was uniform throughout the years, regardless of the fact that Albanians have birth rate of 2.7% (yes, two point seven percent)
Population of 2 million and 90% is perhaps correct TODAY, AFTER Albanians ETHNICALLY CLEANSED 300,000 Serbs, Roma, Croats and others and 400,000+ citizens of Albania settled illegally in Kosovo with NATO's blesssing.
To unsuspecting observer, the numbers fit. That was the aim of 2 Million figure in the 1990's. Anyone with basic understanding of statistics will figere there is something very wrong with the numbers.
Just to remind you that settlilng population during occupation is a war crime per Geneva convention.
Speaking of "The bombs were not yet falling and there were 1,500-2,000 dead" how many were murdered by KLA terrorists?
The KLA was busy killing dissenting Albanians both before and during NATO's war (and after too). Serbian authorities had compiled and presented detailed info with names and dates. On the contrary, allegations of Serb atrocities have invariably been poor on detail and rich in speculation and reliance on obscure sources, usually traceable to the KLA propaganda machine. Most of the numbers you quoted are from the Soros hrw link. The 463k prewar (and even pre - March 19) displaced was indeed from a UNCHR spokesperson (assuming that the quote of your link is accurate), but it was directly contradicted even by the CIA-infiltrated KVM and never officially promoted, let alone supported by real data. That number is as valid as William Cohen's "100k dead".
Let's get the number straight in the thirs attempt :-)
In fact Ryzhkov talked about "800 to 1,000" mercenaries.
It will be interesting to see how presstitutes will twist and ridicule testimony of Gen. Ivashov
Walker had already said on February 12, 1999, in answer to my question of what the chances looked for a peaceful resolution to the Kosovo crisis, that there would be an inevitable military intervention in the spring and that Serbs had no business in Kosovo, said Ivashov.
The Russian General Staff Headquarters had information about 11 camps in Kosovo and northern Albanian were terrorists were being trained. We passed this information to General Wesley Clark with the intention of together putting an end to the Kosovo Liberation Armys terrorist activities.
Unfortunately General Clark said that NATO had no good intelligence reports to confirm this, which was simply not true,
Ivashov also told the court that Russian military leaders had spoken to the ambassadors of fifteen Islam countries about the training of terrorists and that the Iranian ambassador had confirmed the participation of Taliban and Al-Qaida members in Kosovo.
Your "facts" do not impress me. Sorry.
Great, a third world, lying, anti-American swarm instead of a fascist, billionaire, lying anti-American, fanatic...quoted like it was a serious element of discussion...LOL.
As to religion, it's been a matter of religion on my part that the intervention in 'FRY' was wrong, period. Wrong when no one had threatened the USA, every piece of information the public had was hopelessly biased (lies) and every neighboring state had a hand in the dissolution of Yugoslavia. And now wrong that a grand inquisition is enthroned and conducting a self-righteous judicial satire in order to assure that history is written so as to absolve the sins committed by Yugoslavia's neighbors and one time allies.
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