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Updated: 5 August 1999 KFOR Press Updates

Pristina,
Kosovo

21 July 1999

KFOR Press Statement

Delivered by Lt-Cdr Louis Garneau

EARLY THIS MORNING MNB WEST, REPORTED IT HAD CONFISCATED A NUMBER OF WEAPONS AFTER CONDUCTING A SEARCH OPERATION IN GORAZDEVAC (A PREDOMINANTLY ETHNIC SERB VILLAGE) AND POSESCE (A PREDOMINANTLY ETHNIC ALBANIAN VILLAGE). ITEMS CONFISCATED INCLUDE 20 RIFLE GRENADES, 3000 CARTRIDGES , 10 HAND GRENADES, 150 ANTI PERSONNEL MINES AND 8 RIFLES. THE SEARCH WAS CONDUCTED AS A RESULT OF INCREASED ACTS OF VIOLENCE BETWEEN THE TWO COMMUNITIES.

TODAY, THE FIRST RUSSIAN RAIL ELEMENTS WILL ARRIVE AT LESKOVAC RAIL STATION. THE EQUIPMENT WILL BE OFF LOADED TODAY.
FURTHERMORE, AT 0900 A RUSSIAN CONVOY OF 16 VEHICLES (ARMORED PERSONNEL CARRIERS) ARE MOVING FROM PRISTINA TO KAMENICA IN MNB EAST.

THE FIRST SIGNIFICANT DEADLINE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE TERMS OF THE UCK UNDERTAKING WAS 28 JUN OR K+7. BY THAT DATE THE UCK VACATED THEIR FIGHTING POSITIONS, CLEARED MINEFIELDS AND BOOBY TRAPS, ESTABLISHED SECURE WEAPONS STORAGE SITES AND ALL UCK PERSONNEL MOVED TO ASSEMBLY AREAS

TODAY IS K+30, AND AS SUCH MARKS THE SECOND SIGNIFICANT DEADLINE ACCORDING TO THE UCK UNDERTAKING FOR DEMILITARISATION.

BY MIDNIGHT TONIGHT THE UCK IS EXPECTED TO HAVE PLACED IN THE SECURE WEAPONS STORAGE SITES ALL PROHIBITED WEAPONS AND 30% OF THEIR AUTOMATIC SMALL ARMS. FURTHERMORE, AMMUNITION FOR THE REMAINING WEAPONS SHOULD BE WITHDRAWN AND STORED AT AN APPROVED SITE AUTHORIZED BY COMMANDER KFOR

FOR CLARIFICATION PURPOSES PROHIBITED WEAPONS INCLUDE, AS PER PARAGRAPH 5(D) OF THE UNDERTAKING: ANY WEAPON OF A CALIBER OF 12.7 MM OR LARGER, ANY ANTI-TANK OR ANTI-AIRCRAFT WEAPONS, GRENADES, MINES OR EXPLOSIVES, AUTOMATIC AND LONG BARRELED WEAPONS.

AUTOMATIC SMALL ARMS INCLUDES WEAPONS SUCH AS PISTOLS AND AK-47s

FURTHERMORE, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE UNDERTAKING ,
BY MIDNIGHT TONIGHT, ALL UCK PERSONNEL NOT OF LOCAL ORIGIN ARE TO BE OUT OF KOSOVO.

TOMORROW AT 15:30, GENERAL JACKSON AND GENERAL CHECU WILL BE MAKING STATEMENTS FOLLOWING THE JOINT IMPLEMENTATION COUNCIL MEETING.

TO REMIND EVERY ONE OF THE TIMELINES AHEAD FOR THE DEMILITARISATION OF THE UCK IN ACCORDANCE, WITH THE UNDERTAKING. WITHIN 60 DAYS OF THE SIGNING OF THE UNDERTAKING OR BY MIDNIGHT 20 AUGUST, 60% OF ALL AUTOMATIC SMALL ARMS MUST BE PLACED IN SECURE WEAPONS STORAGE SITES.
BY MIDNIGHT 19 SEPTEMBER, THE UCK IS EXPECTED TO BE FULLY DEMILITARIZED. THIS INCLUDES THE STORAGE IN WEAPONS STORAGE SITES OF ALL AUTOMATIC SMALL ARMS AND CEASING TO WEAR MILITARY UNIFORMS AND INSIGNIA.
MEDIA EVENTS AHEAD

THERE IS A MEDIA OPPORTUNITY FOR THE DEMOLITION OF A ROAD BRIDGE IN LOZICA, IN MULTI-NATIONAL BRIGADE WEST, ON THE 22 JULY AT 1130.THE BRIDGE IN ON THE ROAD TO PEC. ROAD TRAFFIC WILL ALSO DIVERTED DURING THAT PERIOD. THE DAMAGED WHICH HAD BEEN DAMAGED DURING THE CONFLICT WILL BE REPLACED BY A MILITARY BRIDGE. FOR MORE DETAILS OF THIS MEDIA OPPORTUNITY PLEASE SEE THE NOTICE BOARD OUTSIDE OR SPEAK WITH OUR MNB WEST LIAISON OFFICER, COL TESSARIS.

RESPONSE TO QUERY

THE UNDERTAKING IS A VOLUNTARY COMMITMENT BY THE UCK FOR ITS FULL DEMILITARISATION IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE TERMS OF PARA 15 OF UN SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTION 1244.

THERE ARE 14 WEAPONS STORAGE SITES AND 41 ASSEMBLY AREAS. SOME WSS ARE IN THE AA AND OTHERS ARE OUTSIDE OF THE ASSEMBLY AREAS.

UP TO NOW THE WSS ARE BEING GUARDED BY UCK. AS OF TOMORROW THEY WILL BE JOINTLY GUARDED BY UCK AND KFOR. AND AS OF 20 SEPT , OR WITHIN 90 DAYS OF THE UNDERTAKING,THEY WILL BE GUARDED BY KFOR SOLDIERS ONLY.

UCK COMPLIANCE REMAINS GENERALLY GOOD. THERE ARE FEW REPORTS OF ARMED OR UNIFORMED UCK ON THE GROUND. THE UCK IS ASSISTING KFOR WITH MINE CLEARANCE. WEAPONS STORAGE SITES HAVE BEEN ESTABLISHED AND MANY WEAPONS HAVE BEEN HANDED.

THE UNDERTAKING IS THE UCK COMMITMENT TO DEMILITARIZATION IN ACCORDANCE WITH UNSCR 1244. COMMANDER KFOR RECEIVED THIS UNDERTAKING. THE UNDERTAKING IS NOT AN AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE UCK AND KFOR.

ALL WEAPONS HELD OUTSIDE THE ASSEMBLY AREAS WILL BE CONFISCATED. COMMANDER KFOR HAS MADE EXCEPTION FOR 13 SENIOR KLA LEADERS AND THEIR BODYGUARDS SO THAT THEY MAY TRAVEL BETWEEN THEIR HEADQUARTERS, ASSEMBLY AREAS AND KFOR HQ FOR JOINT IMPLEMENTATION COUNCIL MEETING HELD ONCE A WEEK (NORMALLY MONDAYS).

AFTER MIDNIGHT 20 JULY, NO UCK MEMBER CAN CARRY NON-AUTOMATIC LONG-BARRELED WEAPONS UNLESS AUTHORIZED BY COMMANDER KFOR.

KFOR EXPECTS THE LEADERSHIP OF THE UCK TO EXERCISE ITS AUTHORITY OVER THE RANK AND FILE TO ENSURE THAT THEY COMPLY WITH THE TERMS OF THE UNDERTAKING.

KFOR IS BROADLY SATISFIED WITH THE LEVEL OF COMPLIANCE WITH THE UCK UNDERTAKING.

THE KFOR MANDATE IS TO MONITOR, VERIFY AND, WHEN NECESSARY ENFORCE COMPLIANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF THE MILITARY TECHNICAL AGREEMENT AND THE UCK (KLA) UNDERTAKING.


KKOR IS A RIGOROUS IN ITS ENFORCEMENT OF THE UNDERTAKING AS IT WAS IN ENFORCING THE WITHDRAWAL OF FRY FORCES.

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