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NATO TOOK military action only after many months of intense political and diplomatic effort had failed to persuade President Milosevic to stop the violent repression of Kosovo. By March 1999, a quarter of a million Kosovo Albanians had already been made homeless. International observers confirmed that families were being forcibly uprooted and driven from their homes, and whole villages burned. Around 2,000 people had died in the province since the summer of 1998.
The negotiations at Rambouillet and Paris showed that we were prepared to go the extra mile for peace. But Milosevic rejected diplomacy. While pretending to negotiate at Rambouillet, he assembled 40,000 troops and 300 tanks to attack Kosovo.
ALL WE DID BY BOMBING WAS ALLOW THE SERBS TO ESCALATE THESE ATROCITIES. MANY MORE PEOPLE WERE HURT BECAUSE OF OUR INVOLVEMENT.
WHAT WOULD OF HAPPENED HAD NATO JUST TURNED AWAY AND ALLOWED THE SERBS AND THEIR 40,000 TROOPS AND 300 TANKS TO ATTACK THE KOSOVOS?
HOW LONG WILL WILL BE PAYING FOR THIS. WE HAD NO NATIONAL INTEREST.
FACT 5 11-10-99
U.N. investigators have exhumed more than 2,000 corpses in Kosovo to date, but the true number of ethnic Albanian victims may be much higher, the chief U.N. prosecutor Carla del Ponte said. Giving the first concrete figures on deaths in Kosovo, Del Ponte told the U.N. Security Council that forensic experts had found the 2,108 bodies in a third of 529 grave sites that reports indicated might contain up to 4,256 bodies.
FACT 6 12-9-99
The State Department released a catalogue of killing, looting and rape in the agency's effort to document Serb human rights abuses in Kosovo. The full extent of atrocities may never be known, the report said. From March through June, an estimated 10,000 Albanians were killed, 1.5 million expelled from their homes, tens of thousands of homes in 1,200 cities damaged or destroyed and summary executions held at 500 sites across Kosovo, according to the report condemning Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic. Others internationally have offered the same estimate, but the new 100-page report provides in catalogue-style the locations and details of 500 towns where atrocities occurred.
What about the hundreds of thousands of victims mentioned at Nato briefings?
These figures related to those believed to be missing - some of whom were assumed to be dead. Nato estimates of those missing ranged from 100,000 to more than 400,000 Kosovar Albanians. Many of them were indeed "missing", hiding in forests.