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A War Chronology
- Date: Sat, 29 May 1999 02:10:58 -0400 (EDT)
Agence France Presse May 28, 1999
65 DAYS OF WAR IN THE BALKANS: A CHRONOLOGY
PARIS - Following is a chronology of events in the Kosovo crisis in
the 65 days since NATO launched air strikes against Yugoslavia:
March 24: NATO launches air campaign, with the goal of
crippling the Serbian war machine in Kosovo and enforcing
compliance with the international peace plan drawn up at
March 26: The first of a massive tide of refugees arrive in Albania.
March 27: A US F-117 Nighthawk Stealth fighter is lost near
Belgrade but the pilot is recovered.
March 28: NATO begins directly targeting Yugoslav armed forces.
March 31: Three US soldiers are snatched by Serb forces after an
incident on the Macedonian border.
April 1: Moderate Kosovar leader Ibrahim Rugova is shown on
Serb television talking with Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic
and apparently calling for a "political solution" to the conflict.
April 13: Yugoslav forces mount a cross-border attack on a village
in northern Albania.
April 14: Yugoslavia claims that rockets fired by allied jets killed 75
people in two separate refugee columns. NATO later admits
accidentally hitting a civilian vehicle.
April 16: The UN refugee agency UNHCR warns that the Serbian
province of Kosovo could soon be completely emptied of its ethnic
April 20: Russian President Boris Yeltsin says Moscow "cannot
break with leading world powers" over Kosovo. Twenty-four US
Apache attack helicopters arrive in Albania.
April 21: Two NATO missiles smash into the headquarters of
Yugoslavia's ruling Socialist Party.
April 22: NATO raids destroy Milosevic's official Belgrade
April 23: NATO bombs the headquarters of Serbian state television.
NATO leaders in Washington rebuff as inadequate an offer by
Milosevic to accept an "international presence" in Kosovo.
April 28: Yugoslav Deputy Prime Minister Vuk Draskovic is
dismissed after he accuses the country's rulers of "lying to the
May 1: Forty-seven bus passengers are killed when NATO bombs a
bridge in Kosovo.
May 2: Three captured US soldiers are released into the custody of
US civil rights leader Jesse Jackson.
May 3: NATO blacks out most of Serbia with an attack on the
power system using so-called graphite bombs.
May 5: NATO suffers its first losses when the two-man crew of a
US Apache attack helicopter die in a crash in Albania. Rugova is
released by the Yugoslav authorities and flies to Rome.
May 6: Foreign ministers from the Group of Eight (G8) agree on a
framework for a peace plan which calls for the return of all refugees
and the deployment of an international "security" force in Kosovo.
May 8: The Chinese embassy in Belgrade is hit by NATO missiles
which kill three people. Tens of thousands of Chinese take to the
streets of Beijing, stoning the US embassy. NATO describes the
bombing as a "tragic mistake" caused by "faulty information."
May 10: Yugoslavia begins proceedings before the UN
International Court of Justice in the Hague, accusing NATO of
genocide. Belgrade says it has begun pulling troops out of Kosovo.
May 12: Yeltsin warns that Moscow could pull out of international
efforts to find a peaceful solution to the Kosovo crisis.
May 13: NATO dismisses as insignificant a reported pullout by 250
May 14: At least 79 people are killed and 58 wounded when NATO
missiles hit Korisa, a village in southern Kosovo.
May 19: Milosevic and Russia's Balkans envoy Viktor
Chernomyrdin back a settlement of the Kosovo conflict within the
framework of the United Nations, and a role for Belgrade in
working out a G8 peace plan.
May 21: Russia says mediation efforts with the West are
deadlocked over the make-up of an international military force in
Kosovo. A NATO bomb kills 10 inmates in a Pristina jail.
May 22: A UN humanitarian mission visits Kosovo, as NATO
admits bombing a position held by the KLA.
May 23: Fighting flares on border between Serb forces and
Albanian police. President Bill Clinton says he no longer rules out
"other military options".
May 24: A UN mission to Yugoslavia says it has seen enough
evidence to confirm ethnic cleansing in Kosovo.
May 26: NATO agrees to boost the number of troops in a future
Kosovo peacekeeping mission from 28,000 to 45,000, reviving
speculation that the alliance is eyeing a ground offensive.
May 27: Milosevic and four other top officials are indicted for war
crimes by the International Criminal Tribunal in The Hague.
May 28: NATO said it has bombed electricity installations near
Belgrade and struck hard at Serb forces in Kosovo in the heaviest
24 hours of bombing. Alliance warplanes flew a total of 792 sorties,
of which 402 were strike sorties. Chernomyrdin arrives in Belgrade
for fresh talks with Milosevic, but says he sees no early end to the
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