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UNHCR/OSCE release fourth minority report: Situation remains precarious

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(Pristina, 11 February 2000) - OSCE and the UNHCR issued today their fourth joint assessment on the situation of minorities in Kosovo, covering the period November 1999 through January 2000. The last assessment published on 3 November 1999 concluded that the overall situation of ethnic minorities remains precarious. Regrettably, three months later this statement still holds true. Kosovo continues to be volatile and potentially dangerous, with ethnicity often remaining a determining factor in the risk of falling victim to crime.

The report provides a breakdown of minorities by municipality, illustrating how each community has fared during the period under review. Overall, with some limited exceptions, the situation has not improved since the last report was issued and in many instances deteriorating conditions were noted. Minorities remain vulnerable to attack and they do not enjoy the same quality of life experienced by the majority. However the experience has not been uniform for all the minority communities. For the Kosovo Serbs and Muslim Slavs, there are few signs of improvement, while for other communities such as the Roma, Ashkaelia and Egyptian there are some examples of progress having been achieved.

PA OMIK 13/00

For further information contact Roland Bless, OSCE Spokesperson, tel. +381 38 500 162 ext. 260, mobile: + 389 70 250 576, or by e-mail: Information on the OSCE Mission in Kosovo: