APPEAL BY THE BELGRADE NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS
Deeply disturbed by NATO destruction of our country and the ordeal of
Kosovo Albanians, we, the representatives of non-governmental organizations
and Trade Union Confederation "Nezavisnost" (Independence), strongly demand
from all those responsible for this tragedy to immediately create ground
for the renewal of the peace process.
The most powerful military, political and economic powers of the world are
for two weeks incessantly killing people and destroying not only military
but also civilian objects, blowing up bridges, rail tracks, factories,
heating plants, warehouses and basins... At the same time, in fear of the
bombing campaign and military actions by the regime and KLA, hundreds of
thousands of Kosovo Albanians, in an unprecedented exodus, forced to leave
their devastated homes and look for salvation in the tragedy and
uncertainty of fleeing.
It is obvious that this is a road to catastrophe, and the peaceful and fair
solution to the Kosovo problem, through international mediation we have
supported for years, is now more distant than ever.
The past activities of our organizations in the field of democratization,
development of civil society and acceptance of FR Yugoslavia into all
international institutions have been under constant pressure and
intimidation by the Serbian regime.
We, as members of civil society associations have courageously and
rationally fought against war and nationalistic propaganda and in support
of human rights. We emphasize that we have always raised our voices against
the repression against Kosovo Albanians and demanded the respect of their
liberties and guarantees for their rights. We have also requested the
return of the autonomy of Kosovo. We stress that the only connection and
co-operation of Serbs and Albanians during all these years have been
preserved among civil society institutions.
NATO military intervention has undermined all results we have achieved and
endangered the very survival of the civil sector in Serbia.
Faced with the tragic situation we have found ourselves in, and in the name
of human ideas and values, as well as in accordance with all our past
activities, we are demanding:
· immediate stop to the bombing campaign and all armed movements;
· resuming of the peace process with international mediation at the
regional (Balkan) and European level, as well as in the framework of the
· share of the responsibility between the European Union and Russia, and
their contribution to the peaceful solution of the crisis;
· end of the ethnic cleansing process and immediate return of all refugees;
· support to the citizens of FR Yugoslavia to preserve peace and stability,
solve serious consequences of the refugee catastrophe and resume with the
democratic processes that are underway;
· we demand that the Serbian and international media inform the public in a
professional manner and not spur media war, incite interethnic hatred,
create irrational public opinion and glorify force as the ultimate
accomplishment of the human mind.
We cannot meet those demands by ourselves. We expect from you to support
our demands and in your initiatives and actions help their implementation.
· Association of Citizens for Democracy
· Belgrade Circle
· Belgrade Women Studies Center
· Center for Democracy and Free Elections
· Center for Transition to Democracy - TOD
· Civic Initiatives
· EKO Center
· European Movement in Serbia
· Forum for Ethnic Relations
· Group 484
· Helsinki Committee for Human Rights in Serbia
· NEZAVISNOST Trade Union Confederation
· The Student Union of Yugoslavia
· Union for Truth About Anti-Fascist Resistance
· VIN - Weekly Video News
· Women in Black
· YU Lawyers' Committee for Human Rights
Belgrade, 6 April 1999
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