HeadLine: KLA PLEA FOR APACHES TO BLAST SERBS.
Daily Record, 26/04/1999, p16
By Shaun Milne
THE Kosovo Liberation Army last night urged NATO to send in Apache helicopters to halt the Serb killing machine.
They also pleaded for arms and supplies to be airlifted to KLA troops currently fighting the Serbs.
A hastily-arranged news conference was held in Kukes, Albania, chaired by Kosovo Minister of Information Gani Sylaj alongside a KLA spokesman.
The KLA’s spokesman said: “Things which we urgently need from our NATO allies are modern arms supplies while at the same time asking our NATO allies to start using Apache helicopters against the Serb war machine in Kosovo.
“We are also asking for close contact between the KLA and NATO ground troops to go into Kosovo together so the KLA can help NATO minimise any casualties.”
He said the KLA still had strongholds in Kosovo but admitted they sustained heavy casualties in fierce fighting across the country but also claimed victories.
He also said they had information of mass graves and abuses of women.
He said that the KLA had moved out of Kukes so it was less of a target to Serbs
Information Minister Sylaj backed his calls for NATO to arm the KLA.
He demanded that NATO to send in ground attack craft and troops to speed up the liberation of Kosovo.
He said: “This is something I hope for Kosovo. And the KLA to help the 500,000 displaced people of Kosovo overcome the life in front of them.
“We are grateful for the help we have had but need those other things.”
The meeting coincided with the arrival of the Supreme Allied Commander Europe, General Wesley K Clark, in Kukes aboard a Chinook helicopter, fuelling speculation that six Apache helicopters would soon be stationed there close to NATO forces.