Roma refugees from Kosovo

awaiting to enter FYR Macedonia

Kumanovo , 23.09.1999
Roma refugees from Kosovo waiting to enter Macedonia

Roma from the camp Krusevac near Obilic considering the bad situation in
the camp started with preparations to leave the camp on Monday, 20/09/1999.
A group of over 500 Roma went toward the Macedonian border -Blace. There
were small children, pregnant women, invalids, old persons. While walking
on the road people had unwanted contact with a group of revolted Albanians
and few Roma got hurt. After 6 hours walking they arrived in the village
Ljaplje- Serbian settlement ,but they were not allowed to take a rest and
were welcomed with the same hostility. They finished their trip at one gas
station owned by Albanian and spent the night there. Tomorrow morning they
took a bus to the border provided by UNHCR-Kosovo. At 16 o'clock they
arrived at the border and when they tried to pass they were sent back by
the Macedonian authorities with the explanation that Macedonia can not
accept them, the war is over, their lives are not in danger and KFOR is
responsible for their security in Kosovo. And so the Roma refugees were
forced to stay at the borderline by the buses they arrived with and to
improvise their own tents. On Wednesday, 22/09 the situation maintained the

The private TVs and the independent newspapers in Skopje informed about the event. On Thursday ,Sep. 23rd at 14.00 with the help of Mr.Jan- a representative of OBSE-Macedonia and with the understanding of Mr. Blagoja Kotev , the representative of the Macedonian police at Blace, the members of RCC"DROM"Kumanovo (Ramis Osmanovski, Martin Demirovski and Asmet Elezovski) were allowed to visit the Roma refugees on the no man's land between Macedonia and Serbia. We were informed about everything mentioned above. We recorded some of their stories :

Mevluda Krasnici from Obilic, maried, pregnant in her 9th month, felt terrible pains and she was taken to hospital in Pristina on Sep. 17th, Friday.That day she was given a medical treatment by dr.Jemail and the pain stopped. On Sunday doctors find that the child is dead.On Monday she was treated by the surgents, and after that she leaves the hospital in very bad situation, frightened and maltreated by the hospital personnel.The mother claims that the doctor killed their child. Now she is with the other Roma on the border. We asked help from the Greek organization "Doctors without boundaries".They did everything to help her and she recovered soon. Small children (they can't speak and hear) were crying and one of their relatives said that their father died heavily wounded by a group of Albanians.

He was taken to the hospital, passed away there but nobody knows where he was burried.Roma people talked in fear for their troubles in Kosovo saying : " We didn't start the war but now we are persecuted from our homes, KFOR is not able to give us full protection , we are facing everyday pressures and maltreatments by the Albanians , because of the impossibility for survival we had to get away.If we stay there we will have to wait our death. There is no way back. Believe us that the only rule there is the rule of the weapons and hate . Most of the refuges had such statements (Rahman, Ramis, Baskim, Skender, Emina , Gjusefa ).

They came mostly from Pristina, Obilic, Kosovo Polje, Crkvena Vodica, Kosovo B and Kosovo A, places where Roma people were living and now everything is burned and destroyed. For the last two days they received humanitarian help from UNHCR from Kosovo.

After the situation was considered the representatives of RCC"DROM"Kumanovo gave information for the Roma NGO network in Europe. The representatives of DROm left the place and after two hours they were back with humanitarian help-nutrition articles. The organization provided bread, milk, juices and food for the children for two or three days with the means donated by Roma and non-Roma organizations and individuals from Australia, USA, England, Switzerland. First organization that joined us was Karitas-Essen-Mr. ilija,some considerable amount of cans (fish and pastes), the mayor of Suto Orizari -Nezdet Mustafa provided mineral water.CRS-Skopje provided baby food and fruits. The consignment was given to the refugees' leaders. Leaving the borderline (where KFOR is situated) the Roma refugees asked the whole world to be informed about their situation. In the realization of the help for the Roma refugees were engaged the representatives of RCC"DROM" Ramis Osmanovski, Ahmet Jasarevski, Samir Demirovski, Toni Vuckovski, Martin Demirovski, mayor Nezdet Mustafa and Asmet Elezovski. The requests of RCC "DROM" for the improval and solving of this situation are:

1. UNHCR to inform the world about the real events and the situation of the Roma from Kosovo and to provide medical help for the refugees on Blace border place.

2. KFOR to give bigger protection to the Roma and to stop the further maltreatments by the Albanians

3. KFOR, UNHCR and the International organizations to be more engaged in the informing and looking for solution of the current problem of the Roma people (We therefore ask the European Institutions, OBSE, UN, is it so difficult for them to find a solution for this problem when they could solve the problem of the bigger number of Albanian refugees during the war in Kosovo.)

Our message to the world in this moment is

Our message to the world in this moment is



Stopanska Banka a.d.-Skopje
Konto 727150-11174-13

Elezovski Asmet
Ljube Gacev 6

Read the updated report of Roma Refugees situation

Links about situation of Roma from Kosovo


Text: Asmet Elezovski and other members of Roma Nacional

Web design: Francisco Javier Bernal