24 March 2006

Suspension of telecommunication links in Kosovo-Metohija endangers Serb population



Source: Government of Serbia

Date: 01 Feb 2006


Belgrade, Feb 1, 2006 - The Serbian Ministry of Capital Investment stated that today on February 1, it was reported that telecommunication links in Kosovo-Metohija have been suspended, which particularly endangers the Serb population.


The statement says that head of the working group of the Serbian government for the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue in the areas of transport and telecommunications, and State Secretary for Capital Investment Dragana Curcic, expressed sincere regret at the newly arisen situation and the inhuman conditions in which the non-Albanian population of Kosovo-Metohija lives.


The deliberate suspension of telecommunication links has taken place for the second time during a short period and comes directly before the meeting of the working group for the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue which has been formed in accordance with international directives, with the aim of improving communications and transport.


In this context the question arises if these actions have been taken with the intention to delay or to make dialogue impossible The Serbian delegation is ready for dialogue which it considers very important for improving living conditions in Kosovo-Metohija.


Due to continued premeditated violation of human rights in Kosovo-Metohija and refusal to enable Serbia-Montenegro to protect its rights, the Serbian Ministry of Capital Investment will strongly protest through the organs of the state union of Serbia-Montenegro before the International Telecommunication Union to protect its interests.


We are pointing out that UNMIK neither prevented nor tried to remove negative consequences after the incident. It is inconceivable that UNMIK representatives didn't find it necessary to immediately and directly inform the Serbia-Montenegrin competent authorities of the incident.


We recall that the World Summit on the Information Society was held in Tunisia in November 2005, under the auspices of the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who personally attended the meeting together with representatives of 174 countries of the world. The Summit confirmed that the right to communication belongs to everyone in the world, regardless of their ethnic affiliation.


There is not a single case today that citizens of a country are purposely being deprived of their right to communicate, and it is even more tragic that something like this is happening in Kosovo-Metohija which is a UN protectorate.


That is why UNMIK is urged to immediately take all necessary measures to prevent such things from happening in the future, the statement adds.