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At UN, As Serbia Complains of Telecom Cut in Kosovo, Few Are Listening

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 12 -- While the UN's reports on Kosovo and the resulting public Security Council sessions, 18 speeches and out, have become routinized, there are still interesting factoids which emerge. In the meeting of November 12, Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic complained that in late September

armed teams of ethnic Albanians brought down Serbia Telecom's mobile and fixed telephony network in South Kosovo... immediately affect[ing] approximately 100,000 South Kosovo Serbs, disrupting their ability to communicate beyond their enclaves - a serious breach of contemporary humanitarian norms... with hospital officials in Gracanica ascribing several fatalities to the inability of patients to call for help.”

  When the meeting was over, Inner City Press asked Jeremic to go to the stakeout area on camera and take questions on this and other matters. He declined, indicating that the session was routine.

  When another journalist asked him to respond to the charge by US Deputy Permanent Representative Rosemany DiCarlo that Serbia is calling for boycotting elections in Kosovo, he quipped, how can one call for a boycott of a country which doesn't exist?

DiCarlo, on the other hand, said that 71 countries have now recognized Kosovo, and that its sovereignty and borders can no longer be questioned.

Telecom, routine UN Security Council session not shown

  Kosovo's representative Vlora Citaku said these are no longer the subject of negotiation.

One wonders if South Sudan will go this way. Watch this site.

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Kosovo Minister Tells Other Secessionists, You're On Your Own, Solidarity is Only Emotional, Is Talking with Spain

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, July 29 -- Kosovo's Foreign Affairs Minister Skender Hyseni, at the UN on Thursday, was asked if he saw Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence, and its upholding by the International Court of Justice, as a precedent for others seeking independence.

  “No one should tie this to any other situation in the world,” Hyseni replied. He is in New York lobbying non-recognizing states, including five in the European Union, to now recognize Kosovo.

  Inner City Press asked Hyseni, given his arguments about what Kosovars suffered from Serbia, if Kosovo is in solidarity with other peoples which feel they have a historical right to their own state.

  “I'm getting your point,” Hyseni cut in. “I'm not going to mix my actions as Foreign Affairs Minister with my feelings and emotions.”

  If the response means that Hyseni personally feels such solidarity for other suffering peoples, but the Kosovo's foreign policy includes no such solidarity, it is problematic.

Hyseni (previously) at UN, solidarity not shown

Inner City Press asked Hyseni about Ukraine and Spain, which have said post-ICJ that they will not recognize Kosovo, and beyond Spain about four other EU members: the Slovak Republic, Romania, Greece and Cyprus.

Hyseni said “I am not aware of Spain saying it will not recognize... I am not aware of the statement on the part of Ukraine.” Both statements are on the record, as a Spanish journalist later pointed out.

Hyseni said he “discusses recognition” with his Spanish counterpart Miguel Angel Moratinos, but not in Spain, and as to the other four EU non - recognizers that “we do get encouraging signals from those countries.” He said he did not want to say more, to make Serbia's foreign minister Vuk Jeremic's lobbying job easier.

Footnote: Inner City Press asked for an update on the violence in Mitrovica in early July, which Hyseni previously blamed on ethnic Serbs. Nearly a month later, does he have the evidence? “The investigation is going in precisely that direction,” Hyseni said. We'll see.

Click here for Inner City Press March 12 UN debate

Click here for Inner City Press' Feb 26 UN debate

Click here for Feb. 12 debate on Sri Lanka

Click here for Inner City Press' Jan. 16, 2009 debate about Gaza

Click here for Inner City Press' review-of-2008 UN Top Ten debate

Click here for Inner City Press' December 24 debate on UN budget, Niger

Click here from Inner City Press' December 12 debate on UN double standards

Click here for Inner City Press' November 25 debate on Somalia, politics

and this October 17 debate, on Security Council and Obama and the UN.

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These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

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