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US

Kosovo conflict maims Albanian-American fighter

Dervisholli
Dervisholli, posing in his KLA uniform, top, was hit by a grenade while fighting in Kosovo and the lower part of his right leg was amputated

 ALSO:

U.S. Marines come under fire in Kosovo; gunman killed

European foreign ministers pledge unity in Kosovo

Clinton leaves Balkans hailed a hero by Kosovar Albanians

 MESSAGE BOARD:

Rebuilding Kosovo

 

June 23, 1999
Web posted at: 7:43 p.m. EDT (2343 GMT)

NEW YORK -- (CNN) Like ethnic Albanians refugees from Kosovo, Albanian-Americans who fought in the latest Balkan conflict are returning home. And some of them are bringing back permanent physical reminders of the experience.

Haxhi Dervisholli, 29, is one of them. In April, he joined about 300 other Albanian-American volunteers in a Yonkers, New York, parking lot where they said goodbye to their loved ones before departing to fight for the Kosovo Liberation Army.

In Kosovo, Dervisholli said he was in charge of heavy machine guns for the ethnic Albanian guerrilla group.

Now he is back home in New York, with a strong sense of pride, but without the lower half of his right leg.

"A grenade fell right near my foot and blew it away," he said. He was hit about three weeks ago and taken to a field hospital where his leg was amputated just below the knee.

He is now undergoing rehabilitation in New York and will soon be fitted with a prosthesis, which his doctor said will enable him to participate in most normal activities.

Dervisholli, who was a construction worker before the war, said he has no regrets about fighting. "I am proud of what I did," he said. "I'm happy. I hope the war is over and we get our freedom."

Dervisholli added that he dreams that his family members who are now in Albania will one day return to Kosovo.

Correspondent Gary Tuchman contributed to this report.



RELATED STORIES:
Attacks on Serbs reported; anti-Milosevic protests planned
June 22, 1999
Kosovo refugees find haven at Georgia retreat
June 21, 1999
First group of U.S. warplanes, crew heading home
June 21, 1999
Blast kills 2 British peacekeepers in Kosovo
June 21, 1999
Clinton arrives in Slovenia to herald 'success story'
June 21, 1999

RELATED SITES:
Related to this story:
  • Volunteer killers
  • Barksdale Air Force Base
  • Minot Air Force Base

Yugoslavia:
  • Federal Republic of Yugoslavia official site
      • Kesovo and Metohija facts
  • Serbia Ministry of Information
  • Serbia Now! News

Kosovo:
  • Kosova Crisis Center
  • Kosova Liberation Peace Movement
  • Kosovo - from Albanian.com

Military:
  • NATO official site
  • BosniaLINK - U.S. Dept. of Defense
  • U.S. Navy images from Operation Allied Force
  • U.K. Ministry of Defence - Kosovo news
  • U.K. Royal Air Force - Kosovo news
  • Jane's Defence - Kosovo Crisis


Resettlement Agencies Helping Kosovars in U.S.:
  • Church World Service
  • Episcopal Migration Ministries
  • Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society
  • Iowa Department of Human Services
  • International Rescue Committee
  • Immigration and Refugee Services of America
  • Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service
  • United States Catholic Conference

Relief:
  • World Relief
  • Doctors without borders
  • U.S. Agency for International Development (Kosovo aid)
  • Doctors of the World
  • InterAction
  • International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
  • International Committee of the Red Cross
  • Kosovo Humanitarian Disaster Forces Hundreds of Thousands from their Homes
  • Catholic Relief Services
  • Kosovo Relief
  • ReliefWeb: Home page
  • The Jewish Agency for Israel
  • Mercy International
  • UNHCR


Media:
  • Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
  • Independent Yugoslav radio stations B92
  • Institute for War and Peace Reporting
  • United States Information Agency - Kosovo Crisis

Other:
  • Expanded list of related sites on Kosovo
  • 1997 view of Kosovo from space - Eurimage
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