Last week I mentioned that a Serb returnee camp in the village of Zac was fired upon. It happened again there just a few days ago, and there are legitimate questions as to whether the KPS and NATO (at least the Slovenian contingent) allowed it to happen. Below are three reports. The first two come from the Serbian new agency Tanjug, for which there is no English link.

Bogdanovic: Zac incident is part of planned violence campaign

BELGRADE, May 20 (Tanjug) - Serbian Minister for Kosovo-Metohija Goran Bogdanovic stated Thursday that the latest attack on Serb returnees in the village of Zac is part of a premeditated violence strategy that is aimed at another exile of the village inhabitants who have returned to their homes.

“EULEX cannot and should not watch violence and only condemn it. How come the incidents keep happening in this village, if the returnees are protected by the Kosovo Police Service (KPS),” Bogdanovic stated and underscored that EULEX, as well as KFOR, have to explain why the KPS has not identified perpetrators of any of the incidents and whether that implies that the KPS is an accomplice in the attacks.

According to him, the incident that took place in the village of Zac on Wednesday evening proves that KFOR cannot entrust the protection of Kosovo Serbs to the KPS.

“I urge EULEX and KFOR to react, find those who attacked the returnees in Zac and offer full support and security to the village inhabitants. I also urge KFOR to assume responsibility for the Zac inhabitants from KPS. I insist that the international community and the legitimate international presence should secure the return of the expelled to the province, that is persistently hindered by Pristina, which does not shrink from using violence,” Bogdanovic said.

Fire was opened from an automatic weapon near a Serb returnee camp in the village of Zac, near Istok, on Wednesday evening, although according to the returnees, police were at the entrance to the camp.

This is the second shooting in the last ten days that occurred close to the camp, which is now home to 22 Serb returnees.

Shooting near Serb returnee camp in Zac

ZAC, May 20 (Tanjug) - Serb returnees told Tanjug that fire was opened from an automatic weapon near a Serb returnee camp in the village of Zac, near Istok, on Wednesday evening.

“Fire was heard about 21:45 p.m. It was very close to the tent in which we are sleeping. Police were at the entrance to the camp, but obviously nobody minded,” said one of the returnees, who wished to stay anonymous.

This is the second shooting in the last ten days that occurred close to the camp, which is now home to 22 Serb returnees.

“Fortunately, there were no injuries in either shooting. There are visible bullet traces on a demolished house within the camp that we use for cooking,” the returnees said, adding that they are in fear since there is no one who could put a halt to such incidents.

The police searched the area after the shooting, but did not manage to identify the perpetrators.

Local ethnic Albanians are against Serbs’ return to Zac, since they believe that some of the returnees committed crimes during the war.

The returnees refute the ethnic Albanians’ allegations, saying that no crimes took place in Zac and that in case any of them had committed such crimes, they would not have returned to their land.

The report for which we do have a link comes from the Kosovo Compromise website. Note the logo:

http://www.kosovocompromise.com/img/Kosovo_2008_veliki.jpg

We have here half of an Albanian flag and half of a Serbian flag. Such is the uber-fair nature of Serbs, who are obviously the ones running any site that would have the word “compromise” in it relating to Kosovo. (Though I would dearly love to hear that there is at least one Albanian among the staff of this website.)

New shooting near Serb returnee camp

There has been a new armed incident near a tent camp set up by Serb IDPs who returned to their homes in the village of Zac in Kosovo. “This is a textbook act of terrorism and the very fact that it has repeated twice, while there was no efficient action on the part of police, must worry everyone,” Serbian Ministry for Kosovo State Secretary Oliver Ivanovic said.

(KosovoCompromise Staff) Thursday, May 20, 2010

They say that on Wednesday, around 21:45 CET, fire was opened from an automatic weapon.

“Police were at the entrance to the camp, but obviously, nobody minded,” said one returnee who wished to remain anonymous.

This is the second such incident in the past ten days that occurred close to the camp that is now home to 22 returnees. No one was hurt in either shooting.

The returnees also said that there were visible bullet traces on one of their houses nearby.

Kosovo police, KPS, said that they searched the area, but could not find out who the shooter was.

Ever since the Serbs returned to their homes after a decade in exile earlier this year, they faced protests, and stoning incidents, organized by local ethnic Albanians, who claim that war criminals were among them.

But returnees reject those claims, saying that in case any of them had committed crimes, they would not have returned to their property.

The returnees went back to the village on their own, but UNHCR provided them with tents pending repair works on their destroyed houses.

Serbian Ministry for Kosovo State Secretary Oliver Ivanovic described the shooting as an act of terrorism, and called on the EU mission in the province, EULEX, “to act at last”.

“This is a textbook act of terrorism and the very fact that it has repeated twice, while there was no efficient action on the part of police, must worry everyone. EULEX must get involved and start doing its job at last,” he told FoNet news agency in Belgrade on Thursday.

Ivanovic explained that EULEX stood back “expecting that local police can handle it”.

“I spoke to KFOR too. They too ought to start an investigation, because their members were involved in the previous incident. Slovenian contingent soldiers were in the tent when the shooting occurred,” said he.

Ivanovic warned that the returnees in the village of Zac, who now live in tents next to their destroyed homes, came under attack late on Wednesday despite the fact that a Kosovo police, KPS, patrol was deployed there 24 hours a day.

“One wonders how that’s possible? If Kosovo police are not providing protection and safety for Serbs, if they did not discover the perpetrators of the previous attack, then it’s quite justified to ask whether they have been, through their inaction, protecting the assailants,” Ivanovic was quoted as saying.

The state secretary added that with all the incidents, “there can certainly be no return of Serbs to speak of”, and once again rejected claims by ethnic Albanians that war criminals were among those who earlier this year decided to return to their homes in Zac.