SERBIA: MUSLIMS IN SANDZAK REGION STRIVE FOR AUTONOMY

Novi Pazar, 23 Oct. (AKI) - Encouraged by Serbia’s breakaway southern province of Kosovo’s drive for independence, Muslims in the neighboring Sandzak region have taken steps towards regional autonomy. On the initiative of Sandzak mufti Muamer Zukorlic, five Sandzak Muslim political parties at the weekend signed a declaration demanding from Belgrade authorities to ’start a dialogue to solve the status of Bosniacs (Muslims) in Serbia and the status of Sandzak region.’

Now, take a gander at the language used in this paragraph:

Serbs claim a radical Islamist wahabi movement, financed with Saudi money, has been active in the region lately, contributing to ethnic tension there. Serbs say that Saudis have been paying Muslim women to wear Islamic robes and veil in public - contrary to the region’s traditions.

Serbs claim, Serbs say…Just like Israelis claim, Israelis say… Are we getting the picture yet? Israel’s and Serbia’s self-evident concerns are dismissed as concocted, while the concocted concerns of Kosovars/Palestinians/Bosniaks/fill in the Muslim blank can only be real.

This is the second time this year that we’ve gotten news from Novi Pazar. Here is the first:

NOVI PAZAR — Ten young men donning long beards, short pants and white hats broke up a concert of the Balkanika orchestra. The hooligans were dressed like members of the vehabit movement. They climbed up onto the stage and threw around the instruments that were set up for the musicians to play. One of the young men took the microphone and told those attending the concert: ‘Brothers, go home, they are working against Islam here. This is Satan’s work.’ He then threw the microphone, which was damaged, as were the speakers, mixing board and some of the lighting.

Four police officers were present at the concert in Novi Pazar and used force to get the youths off of the stage and stop them from coming back. The concert was organised by the Novi Pazar municipality and the Serbia Culture and Sport Ministry…The vehabit is a radical Islamic group founded in Saudi Arabia. It is hard to give an estimate on how many supporters the group has in the Sandžak area, but what is sure is that the numbers have increased greatly in recent years.

Gee, we didn’t see this coming in ‘99, did we? First Kosovo, then the Albanians moved on to Macedonia, then Montenegro and now parts of southern Serbia, including Sandzak. And that’s not even mentioning the Hungarians in Serbia’s Vojvodina region, who have gotten ideas about independence as well. All because Bill Clinton had us bomb a multi-ethnic European nation in 1999 “to keep the conflict from spreading.”

Indeed, no conflicts here. Just lie prostrate, Serbs.