Annan Appoints Envoy To Probe Kosovo Violence
Wednesday, June 16, 2004 1:40 PM

U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan has appointed Norwegian Ambassador Kai Eide to investigate ethnic violence that rocked Kosovo in March, leaving 19 people dead and hundreds injured and driving 3,000 people — mostly Serbs — from their homes.

Eide will examine the political and cultural implications of the violence between the Serbs and ethnic Albanians and recommend ways in which the two groups can live in peace.

Meanwhile, Harri Holkeri, who stepped down last month as head of the U.N. Mission in Kosovo, warned Sunday "there may still be difficult days ahead" for the province and urged the people to "reject extremism, reject division and listen to their responsible leaders."

Reflecting on his 10 months of service, Holkeri said that while the March violence was "a big setback" to peace and reconstruction in the region, much progress had been made before the clashes.

"Kosovo had no functioning institutions when the U.N. arrived here (in 1999), but since then, three elections have been organized and Kosovo now has a functioning government and an elected assembly," he said (, June 14).

Cited from U.N. Wire, June 15 2004, available here. Copyright, National Journal Group, 2004.