Header
Updated: 18 May 1999 Press Conferences

NATO HQ

Brussels

Press Conference

given by NATO Spokesman, Jamie Shea
and SHAPE Spokesman, Major General Walter Jertz

(Presentation Photo)

Jamie Shea : Ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon, welcome to today's briefing. I will begin and then in the usual fashion will hand over to General Jertz for the military update of the last 24 hours.

Ladies and gentlemen, let me inform you that this afternoon at 5.00 pm the Secretary General will be receiving the Chairman in Office of the OSCE, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Mr Knut Vollebaek, the Norwegian Foreign Minister, as you well know, and there will be a brief press opportunity at the main entrance with both the Secretary General and the Chairman in Office at around 5.30 pm.

This meeting will focus on three topics: first of all the Secretary General will brief the Chairman in Office on NATO's ongoing operations, Operation Allied Force; secondly, they will discuss the respective roles of NATO and the OSCE in a future peace implementation arrangement in Kosovo where obviously both organisations will have key roles to play; and thirdly, they will exchange their initial thoughts on the comprehensive strategy for the reconstruction of the south eastern Europe region, in which obviously again both organisations will have a key role to play - NATO in terms of developing confidence among the military forces of the area, exploiting the Partnership for Peace and building a dialogue among the states on security issues; the OSCE of course in its well known areas of helping with democratisation, organising free elections, promotion of human rights and democratic standards. So that will be at 5.00 pm.

I should also inform you that the Secretary General had a lengthy conversation with President Ahtisaari of Finland this morning in order to be briefed and to share views on the latest diplomatic initiatives.

As you all know, Chancellor Schroeder of Germany is going to be with us tomorrow. We are looking forward very much to this visit. The Chancellor will arrive at around 9.25 am. At 9.30 am he will have a meeting with the Secretary General. At just after 10.00 am he will have a briefing with the Chairman of the Military Committee, Admiral Venturoni, and SACEUR, General Clark, on the Kosovo Operation. And then at 11.15, for about 30 minutes he will give an address to the North Atlantic Council, to the 19 nations in the North Atlantic Council, and he will then be joined by the Secretary General here at 11.45 tomorrow morning for a press conference, to which of course you are all cordially invited.

A few things to run through with you today before I hand over to General Jertz. The first thing is that NATO continues to add reinforcements to Operation Allied Force to maximise the intensity of our air campaign. You have seen that 18 A10s will be deployed in Italy, due to be there by 20 May. 72 F15s and F16s will be deployed to Turkey, due to be operational on the last day of this month.

On the humanitarian front, we are watching with close interest the humanitarian mission of the United Nations under the Under Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs, Mr Viera De Melo. I note today that in Belgrade he said that he wished to spend more time in Kosovo for his mission and to be allowed to also visit Prizren, the city in the south to which I referred at length yesterday, and of course we very much hope that Belgrade will give full access to Kosovo by that important mission so that it can establish the true facts of the situation on the ground in the most objective and thorough way.

We are concerned by the stories that refugees arriving in the neighbouring countries continue to tell of harassment and hunger and indeed we have been informed over the last 24 hours of yet another group of internally displaced persons, this time south west of Kosovska Mitrovica.

In the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia yesterday only 150 refugees arrived, but we learned of two trains being turned back from the border near Jankovic, with only the elderly allowed to disembark and the others, some 1,000 refugees, being turned back into Kosovo. We also are still looking very carefully at the situation in Montenegro, particularly the reports of the closing of the frontiers, for example also with Croatia on 14 May the frontier was closed, and we have reports from the Montenegrin authorities of young men, military aged men, being stopped along the roads, being taken off buses, having their papers checked with a view to conscription and that is something of course that I have reported on already.

However, in the camps in Albania and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, NATO forces continue to do everything to make the lives of the refugees as comfortable as possible, particularly by providing water supplies and medical facilities, sanitation, so that they can have three meals a day and hot showers. And in this respect I often like to feature the efforts of individual allies to cope with the refugee situation. I referred to the British cooks a few days ago and now I would like to tell you that France, from the beginning of April, has supplied to the refugee assistance effort, both in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and in Albania, over 1 million prepared meals, 1,500 tons of freight, has devoted 12 permanent cargo planes, Transair Hercules to the mission, has stationed over 1,000 personnel in Albania and has carried out over 10,000 vaccinations at Kukes since April. The French troops have also been involved in the construction of 4 camps for the refugees. And one thing that the French have done, which I believe others may well want to adopt, is that in the camp which the French have recently constructed at Koce in Albania, they have set the camp up in such a way that the villages from where the refugees come are recreated in the way in which the tents are disposed so that they are not in lines but in their own village communities. They can keep their tractors and even have their own village schools in those camps.

I would like also to mention that yesterday President Milosevic announced that he had established a Ministry of Refugees and Humanitarian Issues in order to "allow all the refugees to return to Kosovo". I think that this is probably one of history's greatest examples of closing the stable door after the horse has bolted, particularly when you consider that there are 950,000 Kosovar Albanians who have left, 500,000 who are internally displaced persons, and 1.5 million - 90% of the population - that have been expelled from their homes. So it will be interesting to see to what degree this Ministry of Refugees and Humanitarian Issues will be able to normalise the situation as President Milosevic promised to do in creating such a Ministry. If it takes its task seriously it will be one of the most overwhelmed institutions in the history of government.

Yesterday we received reports of two demonstrations in two different towns in Serbia against the deployment of troops in Kosovo. The first was in a town called Alexandrovac where 1,000 people gathered to bid farewell to reservists who had been on short leave from Kosovo, but this quickly turned sour when people demanded that the Mayor, Mr Zevota Chekovic, should prevent their departure and allow them to stay. And when the Mayor responded by giving them the party line, there were scuffles with police.

Secondly, in another town in Krusevac, over 3,000 took to the streets for 3 hours demanding an end to the war and calling for the return of reservists from the area. Parents of soldiers who had been killed in Kosovo carried pictures of their lost sons. They stoned the Town Hall during this incident and their slogan was "We want sons, not coffins."

So I believe that these two incidents, which are largely inspired by the fact that many of the conscripts are forced to serve longer than their statutory one year shows that the spirit of protest is far from lost in Serbia today. Indeed it shows that ordinary Yugoslav men are more interested in fatherhood than fatherland. And indeed if I listen to members of the Yugoslav opposition I detect in what they are saying an increased spirit of fatigue and war weariness among the Yugoslav population. Pesnar Pesic for example told Liberation just a couple of days ago: "Weariness is more and more obviously settling in. Wages are no longer being paid. Fear is mounting. People are beginning to turn against the regime and call it to account." And Zoren Gingic, the former Mayor of Belgrade and a leader of the Democratic Party, said on 17 May: "Milosevic should direct a verifiable withdrawal of troops, allow the return of all refugees and accept the presence of an international force." But of course he has paid a price for saying that because as you know this morning, for the second time in 10 days, the offices of his Democratic Party were vandalised in Belgrade.

The last point that I would like to make today is that there are now indications that the Belgrade authorities are beginning to take the International War Crimes Tribunal seriously. And that is to say that in two cases that we have been monitoring, they have tried to hide evidence of mass graves. On 14 May Serb forces exhumed 50 ethnic Albanian bodies from a mass grave near the ferro-nickel plant in Glogovac. Another mass grave containing ethnic Albanian civilians killed on 18 April near Lipvlan has also been exhumed and the villagers of the locality were obliged to rebury the bodies as individual graves. We also have reports of efforts to rebury bodies from mass graves at sites where NATO bombing has occurred, and also to rebury bodies in areas that were formerly controlled by the Kosovo Liberation Army.

But if the Serbs really want to destroy the evidence, all of the evidence, then they are going to have to accumulate a lot of overtime in the next few days, because as fast as they try to destroy the old evidence, new evidence is being created. We have learned of 80 Kosovar Albanians killed in Lubinik on 1 April. On 2 May we have learned of 40 killed and then buried in a mass grave north of Glogovac near Dobrosevac. We have learned of another summary execution of 40 young men at the same place, Dobrosevac, after being separated from a group of 150 held in a mosques. And as Ambassador Scheffer in his briefing on war crimes this morning pointed out, we have very strong indications of mass graves now in a number of areas - Drenica, Malesevo, Pusto Selo, Rezalia, Djakovica, Polek, Gornja Klina, Izbica and in the Pagarusa Valley.

All of this, i.e. the attempt to destroy the evidence, the belief that you can dig up the crime if you dig up the body, reminds me of the scene in Act II of Macbeth, where you remember that having committed his crime, Lady Macbeth says to Macbeth: "Go get water and wash this filthy witness from your hand". And Macbeth replies: "Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood clean from my hand?" And Lady Macbeth replies: "Out damned spot, out I say, here's the smell of blood still. All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand. What's done cannot be undone." And I would like to send those lines to the authorities in Belgrade so that they realise that no matter how much they may exhume mass graves, the Tribunal will be on to them in due course.

Major General Jertz : Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.

Yesterday NATO aircraft continued their attacks on the Serb Army, special police forces and paramilitary units in Kosovo. Elsewhere in Serbia, NATO aircraft hit 3 highway bridges on important resupply routes into Kosovo. They also attacked the main TV and radio transmitter for the Kosovo region at Kopaonik. NATO also hit one of Yugoslavia's main military airfields at Batanic, just south of Belgrade again. A MiG 29, Milosevic's most advanced fighter, and 1 MiG 21 were destroyed in the strike.

Due to our actions the Yugoslav Air Force is becoming increasingly ineffective. Currently the military airfields of Sombor, Sernitza, Nis and Obrva are still out of action mainly because of the damage to runways and taxiways. NATO also carried out a number of strategic strikes, including against the Cacak ordnance repair facility, used for servicing artillery and ammunition, and the three following videos were taken during the attack on this facility.

In Kosovo, NATO aircraft continue to strike Milosevic's heavy army also. A number of tanks, armoured personnel carriers and mortar positions were hit around Prizren, Junik and Podujevo. In particular we struck two tanks while refuelling, the refuelling truck was also destroyed. Some of these vehicles were dug in or camouflaged.

Yesterday also some results against Milosevic's artillery in Kosovo. NATO aircraft struck artillery at several locations, including those involved in shelling across the border into Albania. NATO forces also spotted and struck 3 helicopters. This is important of course because Milosevic has been using these helicopters to resupply his hard pressed forces in the Junik area. Despite the usual reports to the contrary in the Serbian state media, all NATO aircraft returned to their bases safely.

In recent days NATO has been able to locate an increasing number of military targets around Prizren, Junik and Podujevo. These are the areas where Serbian units are concentrating their actions. Elsewhere in Kosovo, Serbian forces have restricted their activities to avoid detection and also to conserve fuel.

Units in the area stretching from Rosovac via Junik along the Albanian border have been forced, however, to break cover and to mount operations against the Kosovo Liberation Army in order to try and cut their resupply corridor into Kosovo. Given the level of fighting in mentioned areas, this contradicts Belgrade's declaration of victory over the KLA.

Milosevic's ethnic cleansing has created a growing army of volunteers ready to join the ranks of the KLA. In a separate raid yesterday afternoon, NATO struck a surface-to-air missile launcher and its associated radar.

As you can appreciate, these are highly valued targets for our pilots because Serb forces cannot replace them easily. Each surface to air missile system that we hit further reduces Milosevic's remaining defensive shield. NATO's pilots are growing increasingly familiar with Kosovo's terrain and with the tactics of the Serbian Armed Forces on the ground. Pilots are more familiar with the valleys, the forests, the roads, the cities and they increasingly know where Milosevic's forces are concentrated. This of course explains the change in the tactics of Milosevic's forces. They are operating in smaller and smaller units to make them harder to detect from the air. The downside for the Serbian forces is that this makes them increasingly vulnerable to KLA ambushes, and in addition to that, which is very important, it also makes Serb forces less mobile to the benefit of those Kosovars still living within Kosovo.

This, ladies and gentlemen, concludes my part of the briefing.

Julie: A question for both of you actually. Italy is mounting support for a peace plan that would institute a pause in the bombing campaign and if Milosevic doesn't respond then they advocate going in. We have heard a lot about how the air campaign is a race between destruction and reconstruction but if you have done as much damage as is represented here, what is wrong with a pause?

Jamie Shea : First of all, let me say again we welcome all of these efforts now to give vigour to the diplomatic process, that is extremely important and I was very pleased to note that when Prime Minister d'Alema and Chancellor Schrder met in Bari yesterday and today they said that they would want that UN Security Council resolution to be based on the five key conditions of the Alliance, that it is very important that it reflect those five conditions.

We want to keep up this air operation until Milosevic meets those five conditions, we don't want obviously to give him any opportunity to escape from his obligations nor any opportunity to regroup and refresh his forces ahead of any new offensive that he might wish to carry out but we have made it clear that as soon as Milosevic indicates clearly that he is going to accept those five conditions and shows us some concrete proof in terms of the withdrawal of his forces, then the air operations will stop. We don't want to drop one bomb more than is absolutely necessary but not one less than is necessary either.

Major General Jertz : On the military part of this question, as I already indicated at the beginning, yes, the campaign works very well. However, there is the capability of Milosevic's forces to re-supply and to restructure military assets and that is why we have to attack them over and over again to keep him on the ground especially against airfields.

Jamie Shea : But Julie, I just want to make it clear we are not rejecting any diplomatic proposal, I want to make that crystal clear, we welcome all of these diplomatic efforts, they are very important at the moment particularly to get a UN Security Council resolution through that would be very instrumental in not only binding the international community behind a concrete plan to implement a peace settlement in Kosovo but also showing Milosevic just how isolated he is politically and putting him under additional pressure to accept the five key conditions.

Freddie: I have got one for you, Jamie, and one General Jertz for you.

The one to you is about the diplomatic initiative and you mentioned of course that the Secretary General will be briefed by the Finnish President tomorrow. Are any facts known about this latest diplomatic initiative?

Jamie Shea : Well Freddie, I can answer that. Obviously, a great deal of diplomacy has to remain confidential because it is more likely to succeed and you know this fully well, it is a fundamental law of diplomacy, the person to impress is not the international media, it is President Milosevic, with the seriousness of the proposals and I understand that Mr. Chirnomyrdin, the Russian envoy, will be visiting Belgrade tomorrow and after his contacts with the European Union, with President Ahtisaari, with the US Deputy Secretary of State, I am sure he is going to take a very firm message with him to Belgrade that the international community is not going to give in on this and that Milosevic really has to make more movement than he has made thus far and that the five principles, the G8 principles which Russia has also endorsed, are the only basis for settling this conflict. We have to show Milosevic that he is being increasingly isolated and that the international community instead of dividing is coming closer and closer together. The moment that Milosevic realises that he is not going to divide the international community no matter how long he tries, then I think it is the moment when he will finally accept those conditions.

Freddie: General Jertz, you mentioned that the Yugoslav Air Force was becoming increasingly ineffective which is something in fact you have been saying for a number of days and also Mrs. Albright in her article yesterday said that the air defence was destroyed, the air defences were eliminated virtually or words to that effect. In view of that, you must be able to quantify the amount of air defence left, what is the possibility of NATO pilots going lower and doing low-level ground attacks and therefore more effective ground attacks on the one hand and the use of the Apache helicopters, which I know are not yet under NATO control, but are they not likely to be able to be committed if the air defences no longer exist virtually?

Major General Jertz : First of all, let me tell you that tomorrow you will get an update on the achievements we have done to Milosevic's ground forces and also the air forces so just give me a chance to elaborate a little more tomorrow.

On the altitude question, in the past I think I always mentioned that altitude is not a real factor for the execution of a mission because we are using precise weapons as you know and NATO aircraft do have the ability to really operate at all altitudes. Of course, we do choose all types of munitions and all types of aircraft and the types of weapon are also based on factors which include altitude, the weather and we do choose the right mix for the right target and we were successful in the past and we will be successful in the future.

Mark Laity (BBC): Two points. One of the Greek ministers has suggested a 48-hour pause, I think it is. Is there any comment on that and is it always not somewhat concerning that there seems to be an increasing move by some nations to seek a pause which you have always rejected?

On the question of President Ahtisaari, he is not your envoy so do you fully back him, is he carrying your word and are you happy to see him representing in effect NATO even though you have not appointed him?

Jamie Shea : Mark, first on the pause idea, we listen to any ideas put forward by allies, of course we do and the result is that this operation continues, all allied governments are fully behind that, all of them, and that is the way it has been and I think that is the way it will stay.

Of course, all allies are also interested in the diplomatic solution and putting ideas on the table for how we are going to get to that diplomatic solution but they all agree that keeping up the military pressure on Milosevic is a key part of having that diplomacy work. We have seen in the past with Milosevic that diplomacy without force is, as Frederick the Great of Prussia used to say, like music without instruments, it hasn't got us very far and so keeping up the military pressure is key while in tandem seeing how we can put together a UN Security Council resolution and move towards a clear road map for implementing a diplomatic solution.

President Ahtisaari, if he chooses - because I don't think he has made any public announcement yet - to take on the role as a key envoy of the international community, yes, he will have the support of the Alliance, let there be no doubt about that. He has been approached in the first place because he is somebody who, with all of his experience as a senior official in the United Nations, is a tough negotiator although I want to point out it is not that he has to negotiate with Milosevic, he has to convince Milosevic so let me say that he is a tough convincer as well as a tough negotiator. He has been in a lot of difficult situations in his time as a UN senior official, he now carries the full weight of somebody who comes from a country that is about to occupy the Presidency of the European Union in just a few weeks' time, he is of course a President in his own right and he is probably one of the best people on the international scene today to play that role in conjunction of course with the Russian envoy, Viktor Chirnomyrdin, who clearly also has a crucial role to play but the diplomacy has to get Milosevic to accept the five conditions, not offer him some way out of those five conditions.

Eric: General Jertz, can you comment a little bit on the use of helicopters by the Yugoslav forces now, can you also say what shot down those three that you noted today?

Major General Jertz : They were on the ground, they didn't fly, the ones we destroyed. Normally they are used when they know that NATO aircraft are not in the air so that is one of the reasons why of course they still can use the air space if you are not close to them. It is very difficult to detect them from the air because they do fly very low and of course they do fly only short distances so against helicopters one of the primary tasks is to find them, to detect them on the ground and destroy them.

Eric: To re-supply as opposed to attacking?

Major General Jertz : That is exactly it but once again only short distances and they take advantage of the bad weather. We realise every time the weather is bad, when there are low clouds, they tend to be used more often but you will see tomorrow that we detected quite a few of them and we destroyed quite a few of them.

George: Last night, the Russian Foreign Minister Ivanov remained quite firm on the point that NATO should first stop bombing without implementing any agreement which shows that there is no change in respect of the Russian position. What is your comment, do you see any chance to have a compromise at this point without which the whole G8 agreement will be illogical?

Jamie Shea : George, I looked closely at what Mr. Ivanov said and he said that, you are right but he said that despite that position Russia was prepared to work on drafting a UN Security Council resolution and was therefore not making a formal linkage between the two. I find that very encouraging and I think it shows that co-operation with Russia is going forward and we will do everything from our side to ensure that co-operation with Russia goes forward.

Antonio: Concerning the visit of Dr. Rugova, he has not been very keen on keeping Kosovo as part of Serbia, he repeated that yesterday. The KLA as well mentioned that the G8 proposal is not acceptable so how can you combine now what is going on in the work of the Political Directors to be presented in New York and the position of one of the sides in the conflict?

General Jertz, do you have any more information about human shields being used in Kosovo now and has this prevented NATO from one attack in recent days?

Jamie Shea : Antonio, it is true that Dr. Rugova again said here today that the long-term aspiration is for independence and the position of the international community is that of autonomy, as you well know but I think that here we have to use that French phrase which is very wise which is: Donnez le temps au temps! Why? Well, it is clear that when a people have been very badly oppressed within their own country they probably see that the only solution is independence but if Serbia were to be a democratic Serbia, a Serbia based on pluralism, a Serbia which would give certain rights to its ethnic groups like most other European countries do, a decentralised type of Serbia with a market economy and in which different ethnic groups had a role in politics, then I think the situation would look very different and it is true that autonomy generally works only in democratic societies because democratic societies are willing to make the type of compromises to make this work so I think we should not rush to any conclusions at the moment particularly given the bitterness of a terrible human tragedy.

What happened was that at Rambouillet the Kosovar Albanians agreed to a provisional arrangement and agreed to review that arrangement after three years in an international conference and agreed that autonomy would be the basis and I think we will have to come back to that and let, as I say, the general evolution of the situation over time give us answers to problems that may be rather intractable at the moment particularly if we have the long-term goal of democracy within Serbia itself. Certainly, the transitional authority, the NATO role, in a peace-keeping force are all things that the Kosovar Albanians want. If you look at Rambouillet, what it gives to the Kosovar population is a very developed form of autonomy, it is really the most autonomous autonomy that I have seen in any constitutional arrangement in recent times and were that to be implemented, I believe it would go a very long way towards meeting the aspirations of the Kosovar people, the problem is that none of it has been implemented yet because Milosevic simply hasn't wanted it that way but that will change, that is not the situation for ever.

Major General Jertz : On the second part of your question, let me make three firm statements first. First of all, it is perfide to use humans as human shields. Secondly, it completes our military mission. As you can imagine, we do have to discriminate much more in our attacks and we have to have much better intelligence-gathering and validation just prior to the attacks. The third statement is that there will never be 100 per cent safety in the event that we do attack.

With regard to your question of whether we have received evidence in the last 24 hours, no, we did not have any evidence that human shields have been used but it has been used before as we all remember.

Thomas: In the last days there has not been too much information on the oil embargo. Is it widely respected and can you give us some information and is there any intelligence information on how it has affected the economic position, public transport, public life, in Yugoslavia?

Jamie Shea : Certainly we know that the oil shortages have had a crippling effect on public transport, bus services cancelled, petrol rationed for cars, the Yugoslavs who like to go off on a Sunday picnic with their cars are probably finding that more difficult now that they have 20 litres a month only for their cars. Milosevic again wants to make sure that whatever happens the military are spared any inconvenience in his society, the last people to make sacrifices will be the military as far as he concerned.

Having said that, yes, a large number of countries have signed up, as you know, to the oil embargo, well over 30, and we continue of course to solicit others to come forward and join us and the EU in that oil embargo but we are always, Thomas, going to have problems with smuggling - particularly when the price goes sky high because there is a shortage, there will always be people who will be interested in smuggling activities particularly using the Danube and benefiting from the fact that the Danube is an international waterway under treaty but we are obviously looking at that very closely.

I have never pretended, by the way, that we would be able to completely shut down the supply of oil to Yugoslavia but what we are doing is making it much more difficult for Milosevic to get it, increasing the price exponentially and also making him make very unpopular choices socially between either giving it to his people, keeping the economy running or giving it to the military and so far he seems to prefer the military, that will be the last thing to go.

Greg: Jamie, two things. First, could you clarify. There are talks going on now to figure out how to implement the G8 peace plan, there are talks going on right now to come up with a UN Security Council resolution. Are those talks one and the same, are they going parallel, does one come before another? Could you clear that up first and then I have a follow-up please.

Jamie Shea : Certainly. As you know, the G8 Political Directors are meeting in Bonn tomorrow to carry on the work of taking the seven key principles based on the five conditions of NATO that the G8 promulgated a couple of weeks ago and starting the work of seeing how these would be put into a UN resolution, what that resolution would say, how specific it would be, what it would call on Milosevic to do - basically accept the five conditions is what I am anticipating as you can imagine and starting to look ahead a little bit at the modalities of issues that have to be grappled: what would be the shape of an international security force based on a NATO core? What kind of mandate would it have under the UN charter?

Secondly, the transitional authority, what would it look like, how long would it go for, who would run it, the various candidates, what type of other roles would be given to humanitarian organisations or to other international organisations? There is a lot of work to be done but as I said before, behind the scenes this is all going ahead in a rapid way and the fact that the Political Directors are meeting tomorrow as the G8 suggests that they are now ready to start putting things down on paper.

Greg: And how does that relate to the Security Council resolution?

Jamie Shea : Basically, the idea is to try to put as much of this as possible into a Security Council resolution, to have not a general resolution but something which is very detailed so that Milosevic, as I have said before, cannot perform his celebrated Harry Houdini act. Remember, Houdini the great escapologist, who could escape from almost anything? Well Milosevic is somewhat similar but we want a resolution which will be so tight, so specific in terms of what he would have to do, that he would have no escape hatches. Even Houdini failed to escape at the end of his career as you well know and we want Milosevic to have to undergo the same fate.

Greg: And Jamie, just a second question. It was very interesting the comments you made about the re-digging of graves, that is placing the bodies elsewhere. That is the first time I have heard that, it is a new development.

Jamie Shea : But we saw this all in Bosnia.

Greg: I mean in Kosovo.

Jamie Shea : In Kosovo yes but it doesn't surprise me at all Greg because we saw this in Bosnia towards the end of 1995 when Dayton was coming close where there was a great deal of digging up of graves and attempts to move bodies and destroy all of the evidence in the mistaken belief that somehow the crimes would be expunged along with the bodies and I think the activities of the Tribunal have shown that as for Macbeth, it was a dream but an illusion as well.

Greg: Is the placement of bodies in areas where NATO has been bombing a concern of yours, is it a worry that Kosovo might be so beaten up necessarily by the NATO bombing that it will cover up a lot of these crimes?

Jamie Shea : As I said, Greg, the Serbs seem to be creating as many new ones as they are trying to destroy old ones so I don't think the Tribunal is going to lack work when it goes in.

Everybody, thank you very much and don't forget 11.45 tomorrow morning, the Secretary General and Chancellor Schrder and 5.30 this afternoon the Secretary General and the Chairman-in-Office of the OSCE.

Go to Homepage Go to Index