Thursday, November 18, 2004

1990s Greco-Serbian scheming: what really happened

/ balkans / rearrangements / proposed /
On Tuesday, former Greek foreign minister Antonis Samaras, who served in this capacity during the early nineties, revealed what Milosevic really proposed to the Greek government in 1991. This is a quick and rough translation from the Athens daily Eleftherotypia:

Antonis Samaras interviewed on TV, revealed an offer made by former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic in 1991. The ex-foreign minister claimed that Milosevic offered to move 100.000 Serbs then living in Tetovo [a region of what is now the Republic of Macedonia with a large Albanian majority] towards the Greek borders so that Greece might have immediate borders with Serbia.

He also revealed that Milosevic was planning to give to Albania a strip of Kosovo, so that local Moslems could move there in order that "Pristina might breathe a little, since 90% of its inhabitants are Moslem". Milosevic, in fact, asked Mr. Samaras, according to the Greek politician's claims, if Athens would be interested in him asking Albania to give in return a comparable strip of land in Vorios Epirus [a region of Southern Albania where a sizable Greek Minority lives] to Greece. Mr. Samaras stated that he told Milosevic that Greece had recently signed the CSCE [Conference for Security and Cooperation in Europe] treaty, which expressly forbids any changes of borders. When he returned to Athens he informed [then Greek Prime Minister] Mitsotakis. He accuses the former prime minister of giving a misleading interview a while later, where he claimed that Milosevic had offered to carve up Skopjie [that's how most Greeks call the RoM]. Mr. Samaras claims that the offer had to do with moving Serb populations and not with the division of the neighbouring country.

This in a sense being a follow-up on a previous post.

1 comment:

talos said...

old comments

Josh Narins:

I'm not entirely sure about the borders in Europe, but outside there, we must never touch the borders imposed on Africa, Southern Asia and the New World by the European Imperialists.

To do otherwise would be something suggesting just.


Force the Albanians to learn Serbian to get along in their "own" country. Force Palestinians to learn Hebrew to get along in their "own" country! Force Russian on the Chechens! Force Chinese on the Uyghur! Force Hindi and Urdu on the Dravidian speaking Tamil.

Can I get a neo-con think-tank job now?

2004-11-25 04:13

Careful though! While in Africa the colonial borders are completely arbitrary, in the Balkans they are fiercely contested. Each square kilometer in vast areas of the region was fought for, and people were displaced in huge numbers from their homes, since no one wanted too many minorities inside their border.

Border changes around here historically mean massive death tolls, which is why I'd rather keep them as they are and find a way to accomodate minorities.

2004-11-25 10:26