KFOR commander, message to injured soldiers/"You prevented a large number of civilian casualties"

2023-06-01 20:36:37, Kosova & Bota CNA

KFOR commander, message to injured soldiers/"You prevented a large number

The commander of KFOR, Major General Angelo Michele Ristuccia, visited on June 1 the injured Italian soldiers at the Villagio Italia camp in Peja, where he congratulated them for the work they had done during the May 29 clashes in the north of Kosovo.

"Be proud of what you did, you acted in full compliance with UN Security Council Resolution 1244 of 1999, intervening between two opposing sides and preventing a clash that would have certainly led to a large number of civilian victims", said Ristuccia to the injured soldiers, according to the KFOR announcement.

The injured Italian soldiers will return to Italy during the following days for recovery, according to the announcement by the Italian Minister of Defense, Guido Crosetto.

Meanwhile, the day before, Ristuccia together with Admiral Stuart B. Munsch, commander of the Allied Joint Forces Command in Naples, had also visited the injured Hungarian soldiers.

On May 29, KFOR intervened against Serbian protesters in Zveçan, after they initially disobeyed calls to disperse.

Protesters clashed with KFOR troops, and in addition to 30 injured soldiers, it has been reported that dozens of protesters were injured.

On Tuesday, KFOR announced that three of the soldiers received gunshot wounds, while the other 27 soldiers have various injuries, but that all of them have non-fatal wounds.

During his visit to KFOR, Admiral Munsch met the injured Italian and Hungarian soldiers and "praised them for their professionalism, courage and self-control in addressing the violence".

KFOR said it intervened in Zveçan "to avoid clashes between the parties and to minimize the risk of escalation" and that the peacekeepers "prevented threats to the lives of Kosovo Serbs and Kosovo Albanians".

Since May 26, tensions have increased in the north of Kosovo, since that same day, the new leaders of Zveçan, Leposaviq and Zubin Potok - all Albanians - entered the municipal buildings under the escort of the Kosovo Police./ VOA

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