Kosovo still "potential hotbed of crisis", says NATO officer as arms depot found

Published on October 4, 2006, BBC Monitoring Service

Category: Violence Against Christian Serbs and Their Holy Places

Text of report by Montenegrin Mina news agency Vienna, 4 October: Austrian soldiers serving within the international force in Kosovo (Kfor) have found in the woods near Malisevo [in eastern Kosovo, near the border with Macedonia] a large, hidden arms depot, says a statement by the Austrian Defence Ministry. "We found in the depot a total of 68 anti-tank mines, 92 land mines, 20 hand grenades, 1,200 bullets of 7.26 mm calibre and 500 kg of explosives," said Johan Kras, commander of the Austrian mine-clearance unit. Kfor's Austrian contingent commander Herbert Pahinger said that the existence of arms depots clearly demonstrates that there are still large amounts of arms and combat equipment around and that Kosovo still remains a potential hotbed of crisis. The Defence Ministry said that the found arms and ammunition had been confiscated and taken to the [Austrian] Cassablanca military camp near Suva Reka, agencies have reported. "The latest discovery of an arms depot proves the importance of the role played by Austrian troops in Kosovo's security," said Austrian Defence Minister Guenther Platter. Source: Mina news agency, Podgorica, in Serbian 1308 gmt 4 Oct 06 BBC Monitoring

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