A SPECIAL EDITION OF HUMANITARIAN INFORMATIONS
INFORMATORI HUMANITARISSUE NR. 3
THE IOM ABOUT THE DEMILITARIZED FIGHTERS
The International Organization For Migration (IOM) notifies that the registering of the UCK members who would support the reintegration services for those who will incorporate in the civilian life was successfully completed on the 7th of August 1999. The number of the fighters previously registered is 8939. From 23rd of July to the 7th of August 1999 five mobile IOM teams traveled in the 49 official municipalities of Kosova in the five KFOR zones covered by the multinational brigades. In a close cooperation among KFOR, UNMIK and the demilitarized structures of UCK, the registration process was completed without any bigger difficulties. The registering aims the fulfilling of questions. A document for assisting the reintegration of every demilitarized soldier was also issued. These documents will give the demobilized and registered fighters right to apply for assisting in reintegration through the Notary Service of the Information Council. This service operates in the whole region through the IOM offices in Prishtina, Prizren, Gjakova, Peje, Ferizaj, Gjilan and Mitrovica. The program also aims its recognition and the fulfillment of the reintegration needs of the former fighters, including the registration, consulting, preparation, employment and other offered opportunities.
According to the Resolution N 1244 of the United Nations Security Council, IOM is authorized by KFOR and UNMIK to act as a main center in preparing and implementing the reintegration program for the former UCK fighters who will be reincorporated in the civilian life. A deadline is set as a key point in the development of the reintegration program. This date was set for the development of the social economic and demographic profiles that will serve in helping the demilitarized fighters return to civil life.
THREE MONTHS NEEDED FOR SWEEPING THE MINES OF GERMIA PARK
While some Prishtina inhabitants are headed towards Germia Park in search for fresh air, Kevin Person and his team are clearing the area from the explosive devices.
"At the moment we are working in Germia. The reason we are doing this is that this is the only place local inhabitants use for rest," says Person. "Unfortunately, we are suspecting that there is a huge number of explosive devices in the park, so there is a great danger for the visitors .The fact that we have found up to 100 bombs until now confirms our suspicion. We will continue with our work here, but we assume that at least two or three months will be needed until the whole area is cleared. I want to use this opportunity to ask all those who find bombs mines or other explosive devices to inform KFOR or UNMIK immediately"
INTERNET SOON IN KOSOVA
Some weeks from now Kosova inhabitants will have the opportunity to use the Net again through the seven centers placed in main Kosova cities.
" IOM, IRC and two other organizations are working in providing the necessary equipment for connecting with the satellite as soon as possible. After connecting Prishtina we will continue with other Kosova cities," says Michael Burton, responsible for IOM public affairs. "Besides the connection, we will also organize basic computer courses for the citizens. Our aim is to cover the whole territory of Kosova, starting with Prishtina, and then Peja, Gjakova, Gjilan and Mitrovica. I want to point out that the service for connection in the Net will be free of charge."
SHELTER FOR EVERYBODY BEFORE WINTER COMES
One of the most important issues for the international community is securing shelter for every person in Kosova before winter comes. But still there is much to be done. In the frames of the project "Fast help for the villages" coordinated by UNHCR the situation in 450 villages was observed and more than 50000 destroyed houses were registered. The American Agency of Maps And Photographs during the months of May and June made a review of the territory and found out that more than 67000 homes were totally destroyed or damaged. The European Union and The Group for International Management in their review of 1383 villages report that about 78000 homes were destroyed.
Most of the houses that need only reconstruction will be finished before first snow falls. The lack of time and shortage of logistic support and construction materials give small hope for those whose homes were totally destroyed. UNHCR with its partners ECHO and OFDA are trying to help these people in adapting at least one or two rooms before the winter arrives. These organizations will provide plastic windows, plastic covers, wood, tools, heating wood and other materials. UNHCR and other organizations will also provide over 78000 parts for sheltering objects and 15000 winter tents. But this aid wont brig the definite solution to the problem of the destroyed houses. Lots of returnees will be forced to live in other peoples houses or in the organized shelters until the complete rebuilding of their homes.
"WELL GROW OUR OWN FOOD," KOSOVA FARMERS SAY
Kosova farmers started collecting last years crops, despite the danger from the explosive devices that might be planted on their fields. The great desire to enjoy the fruits of their hard work overwhelms the problems that the farmers are presently facing.
" For three days now we are on our fields harvesting. Although lots of humanitarian aid is arriving we are obliged to try and produce our own food. But we also fear different explosives that might be planted in our fields," say Rahim Bekolli and Shefqet Gashi, whom we met working in their fields.
The teachers are also working hard. In the village of Truda we met Nebi Shala, a local teacher. "Last autumn I managed to plant 3.500 squared meters with wheat and now, as you see, Im harvesting. I never believed that I would forget the fear from the mines, but now Im determined to collect everything and to help others that want to do so. I want to secure my own food produced by my own sweat as my parents taught me."
In a conversation with another farmer we found out that he managed to collect about 3 tons of wheat. He was very proud of that, because now he has even more than he needs, so he could help those in need.
The farmers work in these circumstances gives hope that the harvesting will finish in time.
GJILAN IN NEED FOR MEDICINE
The distribution of medicine in
Gjilan is done through two state and two private pharmacies. But the number of those in need is huge, so the people feel the shortage of medicine. The distribution of medicine is done solely by the humanitarian organizations like Pharmacists sans Frontiers, who are the main donors of medicine in Kosova. The amount of medicine distributed by this organization is far below the amount that this municipality with more than 100000 inhabitants needs.
AN EMPLOYMENT PROGRAM IN CHABER
The European Commission and UNDP promoted a rebuilding and employment program in the village of Chaber. This village is the only one completely destroyed in the municipality of Zubin Potok. This program will positively influence the economy of this village, since it will employ about 100 people who will be able to support their families.
THE RETURN OF THE REFUGEES FROM THE WESTERN COUNTRIES CONTINUES
The refugees eagerness for returning home is exceeding even the highest optimists expectations. A number of refugees placed in USA, Canada, Australia and in the Western European countries, inpatient to wait their organized return, are returning to Kosova by themselves.
Most of the governments that took care of the refugees are giving them a certain amount of money, which would help the refugees to restart their life in Kosova.
THE NEW SCHOOL YEAR STARTS IN SKENDERAJ
Nine primary and two secondary schools started working in the municipality of Skenderaj. The school year didnt start in some of the villages where the school buildings were heavily damaged and in the places with a small number of returned people.
The pupils of the schools that started their work were very happy with the start of the new school year.
The Directory of Education in cooperation with KFOR will disinfect some of the schools. Some tents, basic inventory and salary for the employed will also be provided.
Representatives of UNHCR, UNMIK and other organizations promised to do their best in providing all thats necessary for developing the educational process.
KFOR DOCTORS HELPING THE CITIZENS
The royal Irish guards were posted in the former police building in Prishtina, after British paras left. The main task of this regiment is to provide the public peace in the city of Prishtina. "We hope that by doing our job we will secure peace for all those living here. Besides this, we are also engaged in some other important activities for the citizens of Prishtina. In cooperation with some other organizations, we have financed the reopening of several shops. And the most important thing is that our doctors will continue giving aid to the Prishtina people," says Captain Simon Shirley.
" Im interested in giving aid to these people. I think that they need medical help, especially first aid. I want to say that we will continue to offer assistance in the hospitals and ambulances, and if needed we can also offer them help directly in their homes. Our help will be offered to all the people regardless their nationality," says Major Mike Hood. According to Major Hood, patients mainly suffer from acute infections, high blood pressure, rheumatism etc.
The Irish guards in cooperation with a British organization DFID also work on developing and normalizing the work of Prishtina main hospital.
BUILDING MATERIAL ARRIVES
17 wagons of wood material arrived in Prishtina some days ago. It will be distributed in the most damaged areas. The material is consisted of roof constructions and other materials for house rebuilding.
TELECOMS SANS FRONTIERS CONNECTING KOSOVARS WITH THE WORLD
The French NGO "Telecom Sans Frontiers" arrived in Mitrovica in June, equipped with 13 satellite phones. Their main task is to enable local inhabitants establish contact with friends and relatives still living their refugee life in the foreign countries. " People living outside Kosova need to know what is going on in their native land," says Julienne Milanesi, one of the logistic workers in this NGO. "Most of the people want to know in what condition are their homes, so they could prepare themselves for the return." The people can call free of charge and get in contact with their relatives and give them the telephone numbers of the Telecom sans Frontiers so the refugees abroad can call them back.
80 up to 90 percent of all the calls come from Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Sweden. The Kosovars can also use the telefax for free.
The French NGOs workers visit lots of villages in Mitrovica area daily.
" We also do food distribution offer different kind of help to the people, like aid transportation so it can reach their families in time. We do 400 up to 500 calls per day," Milanesi says. In the week to come this organization is planning to expand its operations throughout Kosova.
Inhabitants of Mitrovica can use their help in the Telecom sans Frontiers Center, which is situated near Mitrovica s main bridge, every day from 0900 to 1900 hrs.
62 PARENTLESS CHILDREN STILL IN MACEDONIA
According to the agreement with UNHCR and UNICEF, the ICRC have made a research on all the reports of the missing children and parentless children of the refugees still staying in Macedonia and have completed all the data about these cases.
UNICEF has organized psychological counseling for these children before them leaving Macedonia. The UNHCR, UNICEF and ICRC are closely working with the embassies of the different countries so they can reunite the separated families, including those who live abroad.
ICRC has reported about 62 cases of parentless children at the moment staying in Macedonia, most of them without any company at all. In lots of cases parents find their missing children. From 18 children aged from 11 till 18 still living in the camps, some of them are without both their parents and relatives of any kind. There is hope that soon the whereabouts of their families will be known.
In two specific cases the children aged 16 and 17 refused to join their families despite the established contact from the ICRC.
In another specific case a forgotten child was found in a camp and is now living with an Albanian family in Macedonia. Until now it is not known whether this child is from Kosova or Macedonia.
DIFFICULTIES WITH THE POWER SUPPLY
Some days now there has been a shortage and anomalies in the power supply of Kosova. Representatives of the Kosova Power Company say that the malfunctioning is due to the broken high power distributor in village of Krajkova near Gllogovc, which is also the main knot where the power coming from Albania is connected. The power company workers can not go and repair the broken distributor because of the mines and cassette bombs, which are reportedly placed in the area.
The UN mission started distributing the salaries for 25 judges and 14 customs officers. During the next week salaries for doctors, teachers, firemen and other public workers will also be distributed.
Late September the verifying of the identity for the people of Kosova will start with the aim of creating one main Kosova I.D Register. First I.D cards will be issued by UNMIK in the beginning of October.
Gjakovas old town will soon resume its old look. USAID, an American State agency will contribute in building this 400 old part of Gjakova. This organization will try to put this very valuable historic location in a rank with the similar world monuments, which are under the care of UNESCO.
In the five zones of Kosova forms were distributed in order to register the newly born, the newly wed and the dead people. The forms will be in Albanian and Serbia language and will have the UN emblem on them.
According to KFOR, technicians from the Italian contingent will start building an airport in the region of Peja. The construction will start by mid August and will finish till the end of this year. The runaway would be 1500 meters long, which would enable its use by the transport and military planes. This airport will provide logistic support for the Italian contingent but will also contribute to the economical growth and rebuilding of the region.