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The following dispatch from Tanjug, news agency of the Yugoslav government, is based on a statement by the management of the Zvecan Smelter. The statement was written prior to the seizure of Zvecan by NATO troops on Mon., Aug. 14, 2000, as authorized by Kosovo UN boss Bernard Kouchner. (1)

Tanjug (8-14-00)

[Emperor's Clothes]

The UN is spreading disturbing untruths about pollution from the Trepca mining complex in order to put Trepca out of commission, according to a statement from Trepca on Sunday.

The sole purpose of UNMIK's allegations about high levels of pollution in Kosovska Mitrovica is "to prevent Trepca, which gives their livelihood to a large number of people in Kosovska Mitrovica and beyond, to go on working", the statement said.

The statement was prompted by a recent UNMIK pamphlet distributed in Pristina and alleging excessive air, water and soil pollution with lead from the Trepca smelting plant in Zvecan, in the Yugoslav republic of Serbia's U.N.run KosovoMetohija province.

"We call this a pamphlet, because UNMIK offered untruths and false care for our health and our fate instead of giving the true facts", said the statement, addressed by the mining, chemical and metallurgical complex to the people in divided Kosovska Mitrovica.

The Zvecan lead smelting plant has been in operation since 1939, not 1991, as claimed by UNMIK, and has stopped work only for occasional overhauls and during NATO's aggression from March to June 1999.

The 306 metre smokestack, built in 1972, as well as equipment and installations for purifying waste gases, in which more than 10 million German marks have been invested, are best evidence that the people's health was a consideration long before UNMIK's deployment.

Thousands of Trepca's employees workers, experts and executives work at and live in the immediate vicinity of the Zvecan lead smelting plant, and they certainly care much more about their own health than UNMIK ever could, the Trepca statement said.

Daily sampling of the air, water and soil shows that these are protected from pollution by lead, gas and dust and that there is no reason for UNMIK's socalled "concern".

In its statement, Trepca quoted results of tests for the presence of heavy metals in the air at several checkpoints in Kosovska Mitrovica in the JuneJuly period.

According to these results, there was .12 milligrams of lead per cubic metre (permitted level .15 mg), .019 mg of zinc (permitted level .4 mg), copper .004 mg (permitted level .01 mg), iron .002 mg (permitted level .2 mg), etc.

"If UNMIK experts are concerned for the children and pregnant women in Kosovska Mitrovica, they should take care of the waste gases from their own heavyduty vehicles that throng our roads at all hours and poison the people", the statement said.

On the other hand, it is a well known fact that NATO's merciless bombing of KosovoMetohija last year and use of banned weapons, such as depleted uranium and cluster bombs, have caused an environmental disaster with unforeseeable longterm consequences, it added.

Regrettably, UNMIK has shown not the least concern for the people suffering the consequences of the horrors of war strewn all over our land, Trepca said in Kosovska Mitrovica.

Further reading:

(1) Hollywood Invades Kosovo: An Analysis of the NATO Trepca Takeover by Richard Hugus at http://emperor.vwh.net/articles/hugus/surgical.htm

(2) 'Trepca Takeover: According to Script' at http://emperor.vwh.net/analysis/inthewee.htm

(3) The following lists the companies to whom the UN is 'giving' the Zvecan smelter: 'You Can Help - Oppose the Trepca Mining Takeover!' at http://emperor.vwh.net/act!/youcan.htm

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