HeadLine: ALBANIAN ARMY GETS READY FOR ANOTHER SERB ATTACK.
Daily Record, 22/04/1999, P17.
By: Jamie Macaskill and Shaun Milne, on the Kosovo border
ALBANIAN soldiers are massing on the border with Kosovo for an anticipated attack by the Serbs.
Units have been deployed near the main checkpoint at Morina after increased shelling in the area.
Troops armed with rocket launchers and anti tank missiles have taken up posts only a mile from Serbian positions across the border.
The major in charge of the men said: “We have no doubt the Serbs will attack. My men are here to fight, to push them back.
“We are ready, we have a lot of personnel not just here but right along the border. We will fight to defend our country from them.”
One soldier said: “We are not frightened. We are at war. We will not allow the Serbs to do to Albania what they have done in Kosovo.”
Dozens of soldiers were lying in wait in and around concrete bunkers near the main Albania-Kosovo route.
Their weapons were trained on Serb positions including those on two hills overlooking the checkpoint area.
Albanian troops held around 200 Serb soldiers during a six hour gun battle in northern Albania.
The Serbs units pushed over the border under the cover of night before withdrawing after the fighting which was set to have resulted in casualties on both sides.
The major added: “We expect them to try the same thing here at Morina to test our defences.”
Russian made cluster bombs fired into Albania near Krume exploded yesterday. They were the same as those fired at the Kosovo Liberation Army training camp on the outskirts of Kukes two days before.
There were reports the KLA were conscripting recruits despite the wave of those returning from overseas to enlist.
And yesterday, they appealed to Albanian people all round the world to join them or face being punished “in accordance with war laws”.
It came after a new wave of heavy fighting erupted in the province with the KLA reporting heavy casualties.
Meanwhile, the 24-storey headquarters of Milosevic’s Socialist Party in Belgrade was in flames yesterday after being struck by at least four cruise missiles in day and night air raids.
NATO believed the headquarters was a vital link in Serbia’s air defence network.
Defence Secretary George Robertson said: “We are now striking at the very heart of Milosevic’s blood-stained regime and we’ll do so again and again.”