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Russia had big plans for post-war Kosovo — Report

WASHINGTON: Russia's surprise capture of the Pristina airport was the first step ahead of airlifting at least 1,000 Russian soldiers to K...

WASHINGTON: Russia’s surprise capture of the Pristina airport was the first step ahead of airlifting at least 1,000 Russian soldiers to Kosovo, US media reported here. Western intelligence analysts disagree over whether the move was designed for Russia to carve out its own sector of Kosovo, or to reinforce the 200 troops who took the airport on June 12 and strengthen their bargaining position, the Washington Post reported on Friday.

The plan failed when Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania — urged by the United States — refused to grant the Russians overflight rights to send in the reinforcements. On Sunday, June 13, US officials furiously lobbied Russian leaders by telephone “at ungodly hours” to warn that their military move seriously jeopardised the goodwill generated by their role in reaching the Kosovo peace agreement, according to the Post.

First published on: 26-06-1999 at 12:00:00 am
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