Peter Rebernik on Sat, 17 Apr 1999 13:07:06 +0100


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Re: Syndicate: Refugees


Please, could you get me in touch with Daoud Sarhandi? I will be in Skopje
from coming Tuesday, April 20, for some weeks. I would like to meet him.
Thanks and greetings from Vienna.
Peter Rebernik

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-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
Von: Vesna Manojlovic <becha@xs4all.nl>
An: syndicate@aec.at <syndicate@aec.at>
Datum: Samstag, 17. April 1999 12:59
Betreff: Syndicate: Refugees


>[ daoud was working for connect (http://www.connectbooks.com/ ) in bosnia
since after
>srebrenica; last year he finished the book 'hearts and minds' - posters
from war in bosnia;
>last three months was living with me in amsterdam and last week went to
macedonia to work
>with international medical corpes. i don't know yet to what other list to
post this.. becha]
>
>   Subject:
>         Refugees
>   Date:
>         Fri, 16 Apr 1999 19:52:33 PDT
>
>daoud sarhandi wrote:
>
>> I got here Sunday night but it wasn't until Thursday/Friday that the full
weight
>> of this reality hit me.  We work in 24-hour shifts in the camps and on
the
>> border.
>>
>> So Thursday morning I was on the border and in charge of one shift.
There were
>> 3-4000 refugees up there when I arrived in Jazince, an hour's drive from
Skopje.
>> It's hard to find words to describe the scene - a scene from hell.
Babies,
>> children,  pregnant women, the old, disabled, mentally retarded,
crippled,
>> dragging their sad suitcases with whatever they can pack in ten minutes.
Some
>> still in their pajamas, slippers.  Many had been living in fear in the
mountains
>> for two weeks, all had witnessed the most hellish atrocities you can
imagine,
>> and then all were forced to sit in no man's land - a strip of mud sodden
ground
>> 500 metres wide between Kosovo and Macedonia under the hateful eyes of
the
>> Macedonian guards - as bad as the Serbs, who feel no pity, no shame, no
humanity
>> - little Nazis one and all.
>>
>>  And so we did our best.  We have brilliant Kosovar doctors.  We had 350
>> patients in 24 hours.  I did my best with the local Red Cross to keep the
people
>> fed and with water and to keep them together.  In crowds and panic like
that,
>> and especially when the buses arrive,  it's not easy and the Macedonians
don't
>> give a shit if children are seperated from mothers, grandparents from
their
>> relatives.  It's insane. It's barbaric.  It's unbelievable.  The whole
scene
>> would make you feel totally ashamed just to a part of the human race if
it were
>> not for the dignity amid this catastrophic chaos - among these refugees.
I
>> could go on and on and I will write about this if I can - about the smell
of
>> blood and tears and sweat and fear.  About the sound of 1000 children
crying.
>> About the Macedonians who actually force these people to go through
'customs'
>> before they pack them onto buses and a new 'life'.  This is ethnic
cleansing.
>> And then just when you've finished with one group of heaving sighing
screaming
>> humanity you see another group - a whole village or part of a town move
down the
>> road and into no-man's land - now covered with the deris of these
unwanted peole
>> - with their debris and excrement.  And so you have to begin again.
>>
>> So far 800,000 have been ejected in this way.  One million to go.  If we
don't
>> succeed in stopping it.
>>
>> You may have heard that some refugees were mistakenly killed by NATO
rockets.
>> Well it may be true.  Some of the survivors were among our group
yesterday.  But
>> don't worry too much about that.  All those we spoke to were agreed that
the Serbs treat
>> them 10, 100X worse.  At least this was just a mistake.  The last thing
these
>> people want is for NATO to stop or they know they'll never go home.
>>
>> ______________________________________________________
>> Get Your Private, Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com
>
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