YUGOSLAVIA: SHOWDOWN IN KOSOVO PROVINCE

Created: 2/27/1989

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

in Kosovo Province

ethnic Albanians from Kosoro Prorince and prorirtcial leaden were unable to reachw^^" weekend,

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officials, including berbian-oackea provincial patty0 Albanian protesters in support cm^yorr^ virtually closed down many towns in Kosovo.| JJ

yesterday.the terms offered by thetheir protests. Thedemanding written confirmation of the resignation of keyincluding Serbian-backed provincial party leader

Yugoslav collective presidency announced on Saturday it had sent an unspecified number of new federal security police to Kosovo and reiterated threats of military intervention. Ethnic Serbs and Montenegrins in Kosovo have appealed to Belgrade lo deploy troops against demonstrators to end the protests. Unsubstantiated Western media reports indicate armored personnel carriers and tanks are outside Pristlna^hc provincial capital; there are no reports of

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Federal leaders arc backing the Serbian position that protesters are playing into the hands of Albanian nationalists and separatists. Statements from more liberal Slovenia and Croatia are supporting the protesters and calling for restraint

_ The miners and local authorities may still come lo terms It nonetheless seems likely, should the protests continue, that officials may impose repressive measures, which could lead to violence. These steps might include curfews, bans on meetings, and jailings of strike leaders. Although military force would be used onlyast resort, officials probably hope the heightcncd*|isibiliiy of lanks and other equipment will intimidate protcticifl B

Slovenia's and Croatia's statements in support of the Albanians will further aggravate their strains withrackdown on tbe demonstrators would lead to further charges of human rights abuses, increasing Albanian'grievances and fueling instability.^

Original document.

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