ad info
   middle east

 custom news
 Headline News brief
 daily almanac
 CNN networks
 CNN programs
 on-air transcripts
 news quiz

CNN Websites
 video on demand
 video archive
 audio on demand
 news email services
 free email accounts
 desktop headlines

 message boards





World - Europe

NATO troops ordered into Kosovo

russian troops
Russian peacekeeping troops moved through Yugoslavia on Friday toward Kosovo  
Peace Plan Interactive Guide
Timetable for Kosovo transition

Serb troop withdrawal

Proposed NATO troop sectors
related videoRELATED VIDEO
CNN's Jamie McIntyre looks at the pros and cons of the air war (June 10)
Windows Media 28K 80K

CNN's Tom Mintier reports on the arrival of NATO peacekeeping troops to Macedonia (June 10)
Real 28K 80K
Windows Media 28K 80K

       Windows Media Real

       28 K 80 K
Russia says relations with NATO 'frozen'

U.S. won't help reconstruct Yugoslavia until Milosevic out of power, Clinton says

Winners and losers: Analysis of the Kosovo conflict

Number, whereabouts of Kosovo refugees
Crisis in Kosovo
Focus on Kosovo

Small Russian force enters Yugoslavia

June 11, 1999
Web posted at: 12:07 p.m. EDT (1607 GMT)

In this story:

Moscow troops await agreement

KFOR works on details for entering Kosovo

Fleeing Serbs accompany Yugoslav army


SKOPJE, Macedonia (CNN) -- NATO peacekeepers got orders to enter Kosovo on Friday, moving in behind a Yugoslav army pullout in the wake of the alliance's suspension of air raids.

Helicopters carrying British airborne troops and some U.S. forces were poised to move into Kosovo from Skopje, Macedonia. The bulk of the force was expected to follow on Saturday.

Friday's order came after a small contingent of Russian troops crossed from Bosnia into Yugoslavia. The Russians were awaiting an agreement with NATO to enter Kosovo, the Serbian province the Yugoslav army is leaving after a 79-day NATO bombing campaign.

NATO's expected entry into Kosovo was part of a cease-fire agreement worked out over the past week, culminating in Thursday's suspension of NATO airstrikes as the Yugoslav army began to withdraw.

And with talks on possible Russian participation in a Kosovo peacekeeping force stalled Friday, a small Russian force moved into Yugoslavia -- to the apparent surprise of Western officials.

A U.S. envoy made a quick return to Moscow to discuss the action, and British officials said their 13,000 troops in Macedonia were put on "ready" status as a result of the Russian move.

NATO estimated the Russian force at roughly 200 troops, which came from Moscow's peacekeeping mission in Bosnia. They moved into Yugoslavia on Friday morning in a convoy of 15 light armored vehicles and 25 trucks.

The vehicles bore the name of the Kosovo peacekeeping force - - KFOR -- in hastily painted letters. But the Russians have not yet entered Kosovo, the Serbian province the Yugoslav army is leaving after a 79-day NATO bombing campaign.

Moscow says troops await agreement

Moscow told U.S. officials they will wait for an agreement on the peacekeeping force before moving into the province.

"We've been given absolute assurances that they won't move into Kosovo," Vice President Al Gore said.

Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov spoke to U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright about the matter Friday, telling Albright the Russians' mission was to scout for a staging area that would be used for later Russian elements of KFOR.

Western officials were not the only ones caught by surprise: Some Russian officials appeared to have been in the dark as well. Russia's Defense Ministry initially would not confirm that Russian peacekeepers were moving from Bosnia to Yugoslavia.

Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott had left Moscow on Friday after unsuccessful talks with Russian officials about the makeup of KFOR. But he quickly headed back to the Russian capital, his plane turning around in mid-flight.

Talbott said Friday that Russia and NATO would "move forward together."

"That isn't to prejudge what the nature and arrangements will be for Russian participation in KFOR, nor has Russia decided categorically that it is going to be part of KFOR," Talbott said. But he warned that a unilateral Russian move would be "potentially quite dangerous."

KFOR works on details for entering Kosovo

In Macedonia, where tens of thousands of NATO troops had massed to move into Kosovo behind the outgoing Yugoslav army, NATO and Yugoslav commanders met again Friday at a coffee shop on the border.

NATO officials in Brussels said most of the Kosovo peacekeeping force would move into Kosovo on Saturday, with British and French forces leading the way. Brig. Jonathan Bailey said the talks would help coordinate "the movement in and the movement out."

The coffee shop was where initial talks on the withdrawal were held last week.

The mission of the peacekeepers will be to "monitor, verify, and, when necessary, to enforce compliance" with the agreement Yugoslavia accepted last week, said British Lt. Gen. Michael Jackson, KFOR's commander.

"What we do in Kosovo will be both robust and completely even-handed," Jackson said Friday.

Ethnic Albanian refugees mark time as they await word when they can return home to Kosovo  

Fleeing Serbs accompany Yugoslav army

In Kosovo, meanwhile, the Yugoslav army's exodus from Kosovo continued: Trucks, troops and civilians streamed out of the battered province while NATO troops prepared to move in.

Yugoslav armor and mobile anti-aircraft weapons moved northward, along with private cars full of Serbs fleeing the province. The Serbs fear reprisals by Kosovar Albanians, hundreds of thousands of whom are expected to return over the next three months.

An estimated 40,000 armed Serbian troops or special forces in Kosovo are scheduled to withdraw from the province. The pullout must be complete by June 21, according to a NATO- backed peace deal approved by the United Nations Security Council on Thursday.

The war began after Yugoslavia rejected a peace agreement for Kosovo similar to one it accepted last week. The accords were aimed at ending a year of ethnic conflict in the mostly ethnic-Albanian province of Yugoslavia's dominant republic of Serbia.

NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana warned that NATO could resume its bombardment if Yugoslavia reneged on its agreement to withdraw. And he added that separatist rebels of the Kosovo Liberation Army must also stand down during the withdrawal.

"Violence or noncompliance by any party will not be tolerated," he said.

KLA leader Hassim Thaci said on Thursday his group would demilitarize and develop a political organization. Thaci said the KLA will "not attack Serbian troops that are withdrawing, but we reserve the right to defend ourselves."

Moscow Bureau Chief Jill Dougherty and Correspondents Walter Rodgers and John King contributed to this report.

Russians move into Yugoslavia ahead of NATO peacekeepers
June 11, 1999
Russia says relations with NATO 'frozen'
June 11, 1999
NATO set to enter Kosovo on Saturday
June 10, 1999
U.S. won't help reconstruct Yugoslavia until Milosevic out of power, Clinton says
June 10, 1999
Winners and losers: Analysis of the Kosovo conflict
June 10, 1999
Russians push for separate sector in Kosovo peace force
June 10, 1999
Milosevic proclaims victory with end to Kosovo conflict
June 10, 1999
NATO, aid agencies gear up for Kosovo refugees' return
June 10, 1999

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

  • Kosova Crisis Center
  • Kosovo - from

  • 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

  • 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

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

  • Expanded list of related sites on Kosovo
  • 1997 view of Kosovo from space - Eurimage
Note: Pages will open in a new browser window
External sites are not endorsed by CNN Interactive.

Enter keyword(s)   go    help

Back to the top   © 2001 Cable News Network. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.