Milosevic says UN finances 'terrorism' in Kosovo

BELGRADE, Mar 16, 2000 -- (Reuters) Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic accused the United Nations of financing "terrorism" in Kosovo on Wednesday and said its mission should leave the province, the state news agency reported.

"We are now facing a situation where the terrorism is not only happening under their auspices, but is also financed from U.N. funds," Tanjug quoted Milosevic as saying to top army officials at an annual meeting to asses army capabilities.

"Such a mission has to come to an end as soon as possible," he added.

"Our army and security forces are capable of providing security to all citizens of Kosovo. It is not only in their best interest, but also in the interest of peace and stability in the region," Milosevic told the generals.

Army Chief of Staff General Nebojsa Pavkovic told the meeting that the troops' recent combat experiences were a valuable basis for setting up priorities in improving the army, Tanjug said.

The remarks were made amid rising tensions on the Serbian side of the administrative border with Kosovo and worsening relations with Montenegro, Serbia's pro-Western partner in the Yugoslav federation.

Western officials have warned Belgrade to keep its hands off Montenegro and cautioned it against massing troops east of Kosovo, an area mostly populated by ethnic Albanians.

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