- 19 August
Skopje, August 20th
Unstable truce, no major incidents.
Incidents in the Tetovo and Jazhince region. The
Ministry of Defense announced that on August 13, the day of signing the
frame agreement, the extremists in the Tetovo region violated the truce.
They aimed at the positions of the security forces on Popova Shapka, Belovishte
and Vratnica. The extremists fired from their positions in the higher
Shar Planina and Shipkovica regions, and near Tetovo, as well as from
Poroy and Odri. In the village Belovishte a citizen, an ethnic Macedonian,
was injured from a granade. Three houses belonging to ethnic Macedonians
were incinerated in Leshok. Furthermore, the Macedonian-American textile
factory "Matex" was burned to the ground, where 250 citizens
from the nearby villages had worked. The Tetovo-Jazhince road is not safe
A murdered police officer. During the attack
on a police position on Augustt 16, near the Tetovo barracks a sniper
shot spelled the death of a member of the security forces. Contradictory
information. The media in Albanian say that the truce had been violated
by the Macedonian security forces and they have contrary reports on the
incidents. A tortured priest. On the Tetovo-Jazhince road an orthodox
priest (an ethnic Macedonian), who served in the villages in the Vratnica
township, was kidnapped and tortured by the extremists in the village
of Odri. He was afflicted with heavy corporal damage and has been hospitalized
in Skopje. Fighting in Radusha. Unofficial sources confirm of fighting
in the Radusha region in the period 16-18 August, of which there is no
information in any media whatsoever.
Preparations for "Indispensable Harvest".
NATO experts in Macedonia. A group of 15 military NATO experts,
who will try to support the ceasefire, have arrived in Macedonia on August
14. Before disposing alliance troups in Macedonia it is necessary to sign
a technical agreement with the so-called NLA to voluntarily surrender
their arms, and the disarmament process will proceed on a parallel with
the ratification of the political consensus in the Parliament. In the
NATO mission "Indispensable Harvest" 3,500 soldiers will be
involved, with a mandate lasting for thirty days in order to gather the
The first soldiers from the operation "Indispensable
Harvest" have arrived. The first of the NATO forces that are
to take participation in the extremists' disarmament operation have arrived
in Skopje. An advance guard of 120 Czech soldiers has arrived, and they
will secure and protect the headquarters, which will estimate the field.
Fifty British soldiers have arrived as well. The decision for disposing
alliance troops in Macedonia has been put off. The NATO Council on August
17 postponed the decision whether to dispose all 3,500 soldiers to collect
arms during this week.
Contradictory claims for nine casualties from Ljuboten.
Two members of the Macedonian Parliament, ethnic Albanians, regarding
the nine casualties from the village Ljuboten on August 12 say that they
have been killed by the police reserve force from the adjacent village
Ljubanci (this is the birthplace of two soldiers that were killed immediately
before that in a mine incident on August 10). The OSCE mission confirmed
that a certain number of bodies have been discovered. Police sources say
that the extremists sometimes disguise as civilians. The representatives
of the district attorney and the investigating judge have not been allowed
by the villagers of Ljuboten to perform an investigation and identify
Blocked border passage to Kosovo. About
one hundred Macedonians from the Tetovo villages of Leshok, Tearce and
Neproshteno, organized by the World Macedonian Congress (WMC), block the
border passage to Kosovo ever since August 18. Vehicles belonging to the
Macedonian Army and Police, as well as emergency hospital vehicles are
allowed to pass only. All vehicles of international organizations are
forbidden to enter or exit Macedonia. Some displaced persons from the
Tetovo villages already dissociate themselves from this kind of protesting.
Peace agreement signed.
President Boris Trajkovski and the leaders of the
four political parties involved in the dialogue have signed the frame
agreement for constitution alterations in the presidential residence at
Vodno. The document was signed as well by the two special emissaries of
the USA and the EU, James Perdue and Francoas Leotare. The ratification
was attended by the NATO Secretary General George Robertson, the high
representative for common security policy of the EU, Javier Solana, the
current chairman of the Union, the chief of Belgian diplomacy Louis Michelle,
as well as the OSCE chairman Mirchea Joana. The document ratification
was welcomed by all domestic and foreign relevant factors.
Signed agreement for disarmament of the so-called
NLA. On August 14 in Shipkovica an agreement
for the disarmament of the so-called NLA was signed by the political leader
Ali Ahmeti and the NATO representative Piter Faith. The so-called NLA
agrees to demobilize in 30 days, and to surrender weapons and uniforms
to the NATO forces or to KFOR.
Extremist Amnesty. President
Boris Trajkovski on June 15 announced a notification of the intention
to pardon members of the so-called NLA that will voluntarily surrender
their arms and who have not committed crimes.
Phases of implementation of the constitution alterations.
The implementation of the frame agreement in the
Parliament will proceed in three stages, parallel with the extremists'
disarmament by NATO. The first stage is that the President lodges a proposal
(August 15) to the Parliament for the commencement of constitution alterations,
which parliament bodies are to view within 15 days. After a third of the
weapons are collected, the Parliament chairman will call a session (set
for August 31) to bring a decision to approach constitution alterations
with two thirds majority from the overall number of parliament representatives.
The second stage proposes setting draft amendments, probably by experts
of the President, but after NATO collects two thirds of the so-called
NLA's weapons. The concluding stage for adopting the amendments will come
to life after the Parliament Chairman receives a confirmation from the
President that all of the so-called NLA'a weapons have been seized and
MRTV with no information broadcasts in Albanian. The
abortion of the information broadcasting programs in Albanian on MRTV
is still on ever since August 8. The Albanian does not accept that programs
have to be approved by the editor in chief of MTV.