Last modified: 2009-03-21 by ivan sache
Keywords: kosovo | eagle: double-headed (black) | uck | liberation army of kosovo | ushtria clirimtare e kosovoes | liberation army of preshevo medvedja and bujanovac |
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Flag of UÇK - Image by Muhamed Mesić, 15 December 1998
UÇK (Ushtria Çlirimtare e Kosovës), aka KLA, the Kosovo Liberation Army, is a movement fighting for the independence of Kosovo.
The Bosnian daily newspaper Dnevni Avaz showed a photo of a tank with this flag, presumably of the UÇK being mounted on it. The flag is red, with the Albanian eagle, a yellow stripe and above it the letters UÇK.
Muhamed Mesić, 15 December 1998
Another flag of UÇK - Image by Ivan Sarajčić, 3 February 1999
The UÇK emblem on a red background is used as a mini-flag on the sleeves of their uniforms.
Ivan Sarajčić, 3 February 1999
An image from Yandex Photos shows demonstrators celebrating the proclamation of independence of Kosoavo carrying the same flag.
Antonio Gutierrez, 23 March 2008
The flag of the 134th Brigade of UÇK, as seen on a photograph, is a red flag, apparently fringed in gold, with the Albanian eagle in the centre; above it are placed the UÇK initials, to the left of it the word BRIGADA and to its right 134. Beneath the eagle are clasped hands.
Jan Mertens, 3 December 2006
The Liberation Army of Preševo, Medveđa and Bujanovac (Albanian: Ushtria Çlirimtare e Preshevës, Medvegjës dhe Bujanovcit - UÇPMB) was a guerrilla group fighting for independence from Serbia for the three municipalities: Preševo, Medveđa and Bujanovac, home to most of the Albanians of inner Serbia, adjacent to the province of Kosovo and Metohija. UÇPMBs uniforms, procedures and tactics mirrored those of the disbanded KLA. The UÇPMB operated from 1999 to 2001.
After the end of the Kosovo war in 1999, a three-mile "Ground Safety Zone" (GSZ) was established between Kosovo (still Serbian territory, but governed by United Nations) - and inner Serbia and Montenegro. Yugoslav army units were not permitted to patrol the area, only lightly-armed police forces. The exclusion zone included the predominantly Albanian village of Dobrosin, but not Preševo.
Former KLA guerrilla soldiers quickly established bases in the demilitarized zone, and Serbian police had to stop patrolling the area to avoid being ambushed. In January 2001, the UÇPMB killed three Serbs in Mucibaba, near Preševo. In Bujanovac, four bombs were detonated in February, one near an elementary school, two in a Gypsy neighbourhood and one next to a cinema. Attacks were also made on Albanian politicians opposed to the KLA, including the murder of Zemail Mustafi, the Albanian vice-president of the Bujanovac branch of Slobodan Milošević's Socialist Party of Serbia.
Seeing that the situation was getting out of control, NATO allowed the Yugoslav army to reclaim the demilitarized zone on May 24th 2001, and at the same time giving the rebels the opportunity to turn themselves over to KFOR. KFOR promised to just take their weapons and note their names before releasing them.
More than 450 UÇPMB members took advantage of KFOR's screen and release policy, among them Shefket Musliu, the commander of the UÇPMB, who turned himself over to KFOR at a checkpoint along the GSZ just after midnight May 26.
Forwarded by Esteban Rivera, 8 May 2005
The Spanish newspaper El Pais published on 3 January 2001 an article about the Liberation Army of Preševo, Medveđa and Bujanovac, showing a picture of that group's leader, Shefket Musliu, with two other members at a press conference. Behind them appeared an Albanian flag and the flag of UÇPMB, apparently red with the group's seal in the middle.
Santiago Dotor, 15 March 2001