INTRODUCTION: The Yugoslavian government is continuing attempts to resolve political difficulties in the Southern province of Kosovo following serious rioting in April.
GV PAN Town of Pristina.
LV & CU Monument Square of Brotherhood and Unity and Mosque (2 SHOTS)
SV Road sign.
LV & CU University building and sign outside Philosophy Faculty. (2 SHOTS)
LV Students restaurant.
SV Students walking.
SV & CU Portrait of former President Tito in shop window.
SV Woman in traditional dress.
SV Pedestrians in street.
SV Obituary notices pinned on trees.
LV Customs point.
CU & LV Number plate and coach with people moving their own luggage to customs post. (4 SHOTS)
SV & CU Truck being stopped and searched. (2 SHOTS)
CU Sign on truck and customs officer continues checking. (2 SHOTS)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: INTRODUCTION: The Yugoslavian government is continuing attempts to resolve political difficulties in the Southern province of Kosovo following serious rioting in April. At least nine people died in the riots - more than 250 were injured. Yugoslav authorities are focusing efforts on providing economic aid for the region, one of the nations's poorest, and cracking down on Albanian nationalists who they blame for much of the trouble. But reports from the region suggest they face a tough task.
SYNOPSIS: Pristina ... The capital of Kosovo, Yugoslavia's only non-Slavic region. Here antagonism between the Albanian majority and the Serbes who inhabit their ancient homeland has always existed. Two months ago, violence broke out. By the time it was over, at least nine people had died, and there had been up to 2,000 arrests. There was also widespread destruction of Serbian property and monuments.
The unrest started in the University of Pristina. Students protesting about living conditions were joined by workers demanding higher salaries. Soon the protests took on a nationalist colour, and the Yugoslavian authorities claims were openly encouraged by the Albanian government.
Officials in post-Tito Yugoslavia were initially at a loss to explain the trouble. Kosovo is only one of several ethnically mixed provinces. It is largely autonomous with almost complete independence in its internal affairs. Belgrade blamed Albania for the trouble, but sources quoted by Reuters said that apart from public statements from Tirana, there was little evidence of direct Albanian involvement.
Economic problems have also been blamed. Despite considerable growth Kosovo remains well behind Yugoslavia's other provinces, with high unemployment and a per capita income well below the rest of the country. This been aggravated by general economic problems that depressed real wages last year by eight per cent. To alleviate the problem, Federal investment in Yugoslavia is being increased still further.
Many Yugoslavs suggest another cause -- the behaviour of the local Communist Party organisation, where a purge of the ranks is now underway. It has admitted the party is guilty of "bureaucratism, elitism, and careerism". Sources quoted by Reuters said that during a recent party meeting, many speakers called for a serious effort to revitalise the party organisation, None blamed Albania. Meanwhile security in the province has been a stepped up, with constant patrols and police checks. But reports say activists are still distributing pamphlets and trying to arrange demonstrations.