KOSOVO ALBANIANS FAKED POISON GAS ATTACK IN 1990
www.slobodan-milosevic.org - February 23, 2005
Written by: Andy Wilcoxson
Slobodan Milosevic re-examined Vladislav Jovanovic on Wednesday. During cross-examination Jovanovic had claimed that “the KLA was NATO’s infantry.” The prosecutor met this claim with skepticism. During re-examination Milosevic exhibited a newspaper interview with Ramush Haradinaj in which the former KLA chief says, “NATO and the KLA are the same army.”
Throughout the cross-examination Mr. Nice accused the Bosnian Serbs of pursuing a policy of ethnic cleansing. To refute this claim Milosevic exhibited the orders issued by Radovan Karadzic in August 1992. Karadzic’s orders called for the scrupulous protection of the civilian population, and they required the soldiers of the Bosnian Serb Army to respect the Geneva Conventions at all times.
The re-examination also dealt with Srebrenica. It was Mr. Nice’s contention that the witness was aware, in July of 1995, of what had supposedly happened in Srebrenica. The witness, for his part, denied having any idea that anything bad had happened there. To demonstrate that the witness could not have had knowledge, Milosevic exhibited documents issued by the UN in July 1995 that stated that there had been no physical mistreatment of anybody at Srebrenica. Also exhibited was an August 1995 memo from the Secretary General of the UN asking that an inquiry be conducted to determine what had happened in Srebrenica.
The Tribunal did not allow Milosevic to complete his re-examination of this witness. Because they cut him off prematurely he could not deal with all of the matters that arose from Mr. Nice’s cross-examination.
Milosevic vehemently objected to being cut-off. His objections were of no consequence. The Tribunal quite simply would not allow him to fully re-examine his witness.
After Jovanovic was sent home, the tribunal expressed its view regarding the use of time. The Judges accused Milosevic of making inefficient use of the court’s time. They suggested that he use Rule 89(F) and 92 bis to introduce witness testimony into evidence without having to orally examine the witness.
Milosevic rejected the idea of using witness statements since that would conceal the witnesses’ testimony from the public. Since Slobodan Milosevic is innocent it is in his interest for the public to be as well informed about his trial as possible.
Unlike the prosecution, whose case is largely hidden from public view because of the use of secret witnesses, closed sessions, and confidential written statements, Milosevic’s defense has been open and transparent.
Milosevic’s defense has been fully visible to the public. There have been no secret defense witnesses, nobody has testified via written statement, and there have only been two closed sessions both were less than five minutes long and they were both aimed at protecting the identity of Kosovo Albanians who opposed the KLA.
The next witness to testify was Dr. Vukasin Andric, M.D. Dr Andric, was born and raised in Kosovo. He has worked as a medical doctor, a university professor, and as the Health Secretary in the Kosovo-Metohija Provisional Executive Council.
The indictment against Milosevic alleges that the Serbian authorities fired Albanian medical workers from their jobs en-masse during 1990 and 1991.
Dr. Andric, as the Health Secretary in the province, compiled statistics regarding the ethnicity of persons working in the field of health services in Kosovo. According to the data he compiled, on December 31, 1998 there were 12,599 people were employed in the field of health services: 5,591 Serbs, 5,301 Albanians, 455 Montenegrins, 420 Muslims, 196 Turks, 69 Gorani, 316 Romanies, 18 Yugoslavs, 14 foreign nationals, and 219 others.
Obviously the Albanians were not fired from their jobs in 1990 and 1991 if there were 5,301 of them working in Kosovo’s hospitals and clinics at the end of 1998.
While the Albanians were not fired, a number of them did leave their jobs. Dr. Andric said that they were under pressure to leave from the Albanian secessionists. He said that the secessionists wanted them to leave their jobs in the state institutions so that they could establish their own parallel institutions.
According to his testimony, the families of Albanians who worked in the state health system were threatened. He based his testimony on his own contacts with his Albanian co-workers.
Dr. Andric testified that Albanians were not denied medical treatment at state health facilities in Kosovo. He said that 90% of his patients were Albanians, and that many of them had not been able to obtain proper medical treatment at the parallel Albanian medical centers set-up by the secessionists.
Dr. Andric gave some very interesting testimony regarding an alleged “poison gas” attack that the Albanians accuse the Serbs of unleashing against them in March of 1990.
In March of 1990 several thousand Albanian teenagers were brought to hospitals and clinics across Kosovo. Andric said that they were brought to the medical centers en masse with great urgency, and with great publicity.
The Albanians claimed that the Serbs had poisoned the teens with gas while they were attending school. According to press reports, between 4,000 and 7,000 ethnic Albanian teenagers were admitted to hospitals in Kosovo complaining of a mysterious illness.
Dr. Andric said that the sudden flood of Albanian teenagers forced the hospitals to discharge existing patients some of whom were seriously ill. Dr. Andric testified that toxicology tests performed on the teens revealed no traces of poison gas in their blood or urine.
Dr. Andric, who was a doctor treating these people, noted that the alleged illness became more severe when TV cameras were around. He said that the Albanians would be up walking the hospital corridors when there were no cameras, but as soon as the press would show up they were suddenly struck ill and had to return to bed.
It was Dr. Andric’s conviction that these Albanian teenagers were faking. He based his conviction on the fact that no Serbian students, who were studying in the same schools at the same time, fell ill. It was exclusively Albanians who were effected.
Dr. Andric is not the only one who believes that the Albanians were faking. The Yugoslav Government conducted an inquiry into this event. The government commission was led by doctors from Zagreb and Ljubljana. The commission determined that there was no poison gas, and that the Albanian teenagers were all faking illness for political purposes.
Dr. Andric said that several Albanian doctors also believed that the illness was fake, and condemned the incident. To bear this out he listed the names of several Albanian doctors who condemned this fraudulent incident. He was forced to give their names to the court in closed-session in order to protect them from reprisals by the KLA.
In October of 1998, Dr. Andric was an eyewitness to another case of mass-Albanian deception. On October 29, 1998, approximately 25,000 ethnic Albanian civilians were trucked to the courtyard of a mosque near Vucitrn. They demanded to see Mrs. Sadako Ogata who was the UN high commissioner for refugees at the time.
This crowd of Albanians told her that they were refugees and that they had been forced from their homes by a savage campaign of Serbian repression. Several minutes after Mrs. Ogata and the international media left the scene, so did this crowd of Albanians. After they told her their story they all simply went back home.
Dr. Andric, as the public health secretary, dealt with the various humanitarian agencies that operated in Kosovo. For the most part they operated above board but some of them, according to Andric, were engaged in nefarious activities.
Doctors Without Borders was singled out as an NGO that did not conduct itself properly. According to Andric those doctors would only treat Albanians, and all other ethnicities were refused treatment. Dr. Andric pointed out that such conduct violated the Hippocratic Oath.
Dr. Andric testified that the KLA recruited Albanians to work for Doctors Without Borders. He mentioned one case in particular when an ethnic Albanian doctor, who worked for a state hospital, refused the KLA’s invitation to quit his job and go to work for Doctors Without Borders. According to Andric, the KLA killed that Albanian doctor for refusing their demand.
Dr. Andric was in Kosovo during the NATO bombing. He testified that he was in Pristina when the bombing started. He said that everybody, not just Albanians, fled from the NATO bombs.
Dr. Andric was recruited by the government to oversee the distribution of humanitarian assistance to the population of Kosovo during the NATO aggression.
It was Dr. Andric’s task to provide aid to the refugees and to convince them to remain in their homes if he could. Most refugees ignored his advice and fled from Kosovo anyway.
One unfortunate group of Albanian refugees from Djakovica decided to heed his advice and return to their homes. To assist them in their return Dr. Andric went to fetch busses to transport them, but while he was gone getting the busses, NATO launched an attack against their convoy, killing scores of the refugees.
Dr. Andric said that he never saw the Army or the police mistreating the Albanian population. To bear this out Milosevic played videotapes of interviews with Albanian refugees who were leaving Kosovo. The refugees said that they were fleeing because of the NATO bombing and the fighting between the KLA and Yugoslav forces.
The videotapes Milosevic played were from an Albanian-language newscast dating from the first part of April 1999. The refugees on the videotapes said that nobody had mistreated them.
Dr. Andric said that NATO regularly bombed civilian targets including hospitals, churches, cemeteries, refugee centers, and private homes. A NATO bomb even killed Dr. Andric’s mother in law while she was in her home.
exhibited numerous videotapes and photographs of the destruction caused by the
NATO bombing in Kosovo through this witness. President Milosevic is expected to
conclude Dr. Andric’s examination-in-chief on Thursday.
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