Serbs Release 23 Ethnic Albanians
May. 30, 2000
PRISTINA, Yugoslavia (AP) _ Serb officials on Tuesday freed 23 ethnic Albanians just outside of Kosovo in the largest single release of such prisoners in weeks, the International Committee of the Red Cross said.
The prisoners, including two women, walked from Serbia to Kosovo across the Merdare border. They were accompanied by Red Cross officials, who took them to meet family members in the Kosovo capital, Pristina.
It was unclear whether the prisoners had been tried and sentenced, or had been awaiting trial.
Serb troops arrested hundreds of ethnic Albanians while in Kosovo, and transferred them to the dominant Yugoslav province of Serbia when NATO bombs drove them to withdraw nearly a year ago.
Ethnic Albanians have repeatedly demonstrated for the prisoners' release, and promised no peace in Kosovo until they were all freed.
So far, 911 prisoners have been released, but 1,188 remain imprisoned by Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic's government.