Balkan Special Report
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  Time Lines
NATO Peacekeeping: June 10 to Present | NATO Airstrikes: March 24 to June 9
Peace Negotiations: January to March 23 | Kosovo Background: 1980s to 1998

1999
 

June
9: The United States, Russia and six other world powers agreed on the text of a U.N. Security Council resolution to end the conflict in Kosovo.

8: Foreign ministers from the seven leading industrial democracies and Russia were close to agreement on a draft U.N. Security Council resolution on Kosovo, reviving prospects for a Serbian withdrawal and NATO bombing halt under a peace settlement that could take effect this week.

7: Talks to implement the Kosovo peace plan collapsed after Yugoslav military leaders refused to endorse the terms of an agreement accepted last week by the Belgrade government.

6: NATO commanders presented Yugoslav military officers with detailed plans for the withdrawal of Serb-led Yugoslav forces from Kosovo, but the five-hour meeting ended inconclusively and the two sides agreed to resume talks on Sunday.

5: Military commanders from both sides prepared to meet Saturday to hammer out a detailed timetable for a withdrawal of Yugoslav troops from Kosovo and an end to the NATO bombing campaign.

4: Yugoslavia accepted an international peace plan for ending the Kosovo conflict today, bowing to NATO demands for the withdrawal of all army and police forces from the province and the deployment of a NATO-led peacekeeping force.

3: Russian and Western envoys presented a plan to end the Kosovo conflict to Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

2: Kosovo rebels engaged in a major offensive have received their first know NATO air support in an unsuccessful bid to seize Serbian territory along the Albanian border, according to U.S. intelligence and military officials.

1: In the latest diplomatic moves to end the war in Yugoslavia, European Union foreign ministers decided to send their official envoy to Belgrade this week.


May
31: NATO missiles hit a bridge in central Serbia crowded with traffic and pedestrians, killing nine people and injuring at least 17, the official Yugoslav news agency Tanjug said.

30: Refugees arriving in Kukes, Albania report that Serb paramilitary forces massacred at least 20 men and set fire to dozens of homes in an assault on a neighborhood in Prizren.

29: Moscow refused to endorse NATO's core demands and to persuade Yugoslav President to accept them.

28: The war crimes tribunal detailed the charges against Yugoslavia's president and four other. Russia's envoy criticized the indictment.

27: The international war crimes tribunal announced that Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic had been indicted for his role in atrocities and mass deportations carried out by military forces under his command in Kosovo.

26: NATO announced plans to send a total of 50,000 troops to Macedonia and Albania as part of a peacekeeping force that will await orders to move into Kosovo and help ethnic Albanian refugees return to their homeland.

25: NATO airstrikes on Yugoslavia's power grid left millions of people without electricity or water service.

24: The commander of NATO's air war against Yugoslavia says he believes the Serb forces will be destroyed or chased out of Kosovo by bombing raids alone within two months.

23: NATO acknowledged that its planes bombed a barracks used by the Kosovo Liberation Army.

22: NATO bombs and missiles struck in and around a prison holding mainly ethnic Albanian convicts in this western Kosovo town. Some of the inmates belonged to the Kosovo Liberation Army.

21: NATO spokesman Jamie Shea said a bomb intended for a military barracks overshot its mark, but he offered no details. Yugoslav officials say it struck a hospital, killing four people.

20: NATO leaders clash on the topic of using ground troops in Kosovo, illustrating the growing strains within the alliance over the course of its military and diplomatic strategy to resolve the conflict.

19: President Clinton declared for the first time that he would consider sending ground troops to Kosovo if he becomes convinced that NATO's airstrikes will not bring victory.

18: Leading European NATO allies staked out different approaches to ending the war in Kosovo. Britain pushed for a buildup of ground troops, while Germany and Italy meanwhile advocated a temporary bombing halt.

  • Post/ABC News Poll: Americans Want Negotiations

    17: NATO continued targeting Kosovo as bombers roared over Prizren and near Korisa, where scores of refugees were killed days earlier. Defense officials also said they had decided to release two Serb POWs being held in Germany.

    16: NATO said that two laser-guided bombs might accidentally have killed ethnic Albanian refugees who had camped out next to a Yugoslav special police command post.

  • Post Analysis: NATO Strategy Comes Under Fire

    15: Allied jets bombed a group of refugees who had settled down for the night in Kosovo, killing at least 79, Serb officials and survivors said. NATO was investigating.

    14: Russian president Boris Yeltsin renewed his threat to withdraw from Kosovo negotiations as Kosovar refugees continued to move to camps even further from Kosovo.

    13: Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic publicly acknowledged that the airstrikes had caused significant losses among his country's police and military forces.

  • Post Analysis: NATO Pilots Stalk Wiley Prey

    12: After visiting Chinese leaders, Russian envoy Viktor Chernomyrdin aligned himself with China's demand for an unconditional halt in NATO's bombing campaign.

    11: The Yugoslav government announced a partial withdrawal of troops and special police units from Kosovo. The United States and its allies dismissed the move as insufficient.

    10: Thousands of demonstrators massed in front of the U.S. Embassy in Beijing for a second day, trapping the ambassador and 13 other staff members.

  • Post Analysis: A Protest Beijing Can Endorse

    9: NATO officials blamed an "intelligence failure" for causing Friday night's accidental bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade.

  • Post Analysis: Capitol Hill Gives Mixed Signals on War

    8: NATO missiles plowed into the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade during a ferocious allied bombardment that left at least three dead and 20 wounded.

    7: The United States and its allies reached agreement with Russia on a set of principles for resolving the Kosovo conflict.

  • Post Analysis: Ambiguity Wins in Agreement

    6: U.S. officials said that Russia appears ready to endorse using an armed military force to protect ethnic Albanians once the fighting ends in Kosovo.

  • Post Analysis: Albania Hopes to Capitalize on Conflict

    5: The U.S. suffered its first casualties when an Apache helicopter crashed on a training mission in Albania. Meanwhile, NATO's air assault on Yugoslavia has accelerated to an around-the-clock, 600-sortie-a-day pace.

    4: President Clinton said he would support a "bombing pause" in Yugoslavia if he was convinced the country's forces were ending their crackdown against Kosovo guerrillas and civilians and beginning to withdraw from the embattled Serbian province.

    3: Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen said that Yugoslavia's release of three U.S. prisoners of war would not prompt a lull in NATO bombing in the Balkans.

    2: Three U.S. soldiers captured by the Yugoslav army on March 31 were formally released to the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson. Meanwhile, a U.S. F-16 was downed in Serbia near the Croatian border, but the pilot was rescued and safe at a NATO base.

    1: NATO rejected Yugoslavia's new peace proposal because it would not permit an armed peacekeeping force in Kosovo.

  • Post Analysis: Contrast Between the Balkans and the Gulf

    April
    30: NATO airstrikes intensified, wreaking devastation on President Slobodan Milosevic's hometown, a Belgrade military headquarters and Montenegro's main airfield.

  • Post Analysis: Djakovica Site of Worst Atrocities

    29: Yugoslav Deputy Prime Minister Vuk Draskovic, a maverick critic of President Slobodan Milosevic who called for use of armed U.N. peacekeepers in Kosovo, was fired. Meanwhile, refugees said Yugoslav troops executed more than 100 men fleeing Kosovo.

    28: NATO bombs hit a residential area in a town southern Serbia today, killing at least 16 and marking the deadliest allied attack on Serbian civilians since NATO airstrikes against Yugoslavia began.

    27: Yugoslavia allowed the head of the Red Cross to meet with three American soldiers captured along the Macedonian border last month.

  • Post Analysis: Warnings of Air War Drawbacks

    26: Concluding a three-day summit meeting shadowed by war in the Balkans, NATO leaders vowed to lead a major reconstruction effort to help restore stability to southeastern Europe once the Kosovo conflict is resolved.

    25: NATO leaders gave their military commanders broad new authority to strike politically important targets throughout Yugoslavia – including some that primarily affect civilians – without going through the cumbersome process of gaining approval from all 19 NATO members.

    24: Yugoslavia signaled that it has no intention of bowing to minimum Western demands of allowing the presence of armed foreign soldiers on its territory to enforce a possible peace agreement in Kosovo.

    23: NATO missiles slammed into the headquarters of Serbia's state-run television network and blasted a Belgrade residence of President Slobodan Milosevic.

    22: NATO Secretary General Javier Solana said that he has authorized the alliance's military command to revise and update plans for a possible ground invasion of Kosovo.

    21: About 80 percent of NATO alliance airstrikes have been at Yugoslavia sites targeted at least once before, Pentagon officials said Tuesday.

    20: The refugees' plight appeared to worsen as Yugoslavia once again closed refugee escape routes to other countries and NATO admitted their bombs may have killed scores of refugees.

    19: On the most intensive day of strikes since the bombing began, alliance spokesmen reported that the attacks have eliminated Yugoslavia's oil refining facilities and made substantial progress toward the destruction of its feared air defense system.

    18: The pace of refugees streaming out of Kosovo stepped up, with tens of thousands of ethnic Albanians fleeing to Macedonia and Albania.

  • Post Analysis: NATO Struggles to Make Progress From the Air

    17: The Serb-led government accelerated its campaign to expel ethnic Albanians from the country.

    15: Scores of ethnic Albanian refugees were reported killed when warplanes struck tractors and wagons at two sites in southwestern Kosovo. NATO confirmed the attack the following day.

    14: Yugoslav forces raided a village in northern Albania and fought an hour-long skirmish with Albanian troops, stoking fears that the Kosovo conflict could spill into neighboring Balkan countries and drawing stern warnings from the United States.

    13: NATO's 19 foreign ministers launched a diplomatic offensive to convince Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic to halt military action in Kosovo before the bombing raids destroy his country. Meanwhile, at least ten people were killed in NATO's most deadly attack involving civilians since the strikes began.

    12: Western diplomats expressed guarded optimism that there could soon be negotiated movement in the Kosovo crisis. Meanwhile, Masked gunmen shot and killed Slavko Curuvija, one of Yugoslavia's most prominent independent journalists.

  • Post Analysis: The Serb offensive was carefully planned.

    11: The United States and its NATO allies boosted the number of allied warplanes deployed for the Kosovo conflict to more than 600.

    10: U.S. officials accused Serb soldiers of raping and murdering ethnic Albanian women and vowed continued NATO strikes despite Russian threats.

    9:NATO’s airstrikes almost completely cut off Kosovo from the rest of Serbia according to U.S. officials.

    8:NATO's top military commander pressed for a dramatic increase in firepower, reflecting concern that the bombing has been too slow and too limited

    7:Macedonia expelled thousands of ethnic Albanian refugees and 11 civilians were killed the worst single report of civilian casualties since beginning of NATO airstrikes.

    6:Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic declared a unilateral cease-fire in Kosovo but the United States and its NATO allies dismissed the gesture as meaningless and pressed on with the bombing campaign.

    5: NATO warplanes launched what alliance officials said were the most extensive airstrikes since the bombing began 13 days ago.

    4: The United States and its allies announced that they will airlift up to 100,000 ethnic Albanian refugees out of the Balkans and offer them temporary shelter abroad.

    2: Seven cruise missiles fired by two U.S. warships struck at the heart of Belgrade. Yugoslavia began criminal proceedings against three U.S. soldiers captured on the border with Macedonia.

    1: The three captured U.S. soldiers were scheduled to face a Yugoslav military court and international relief officials expressed alarm for ethnic Albanians left in Kosovo.

    March
    31: Three U.S. army soldiers were captured by Yugoslav forces and later appeared bruised but alert on Serb television.

    30: NATO allies agreed to expand the bombing campaign to target the center of Belgrade as allied bombing fails to stop Serb violence against ethnic Albanians.

    29: NATO commanders prepared to launch around-the-clock attacks on Yugoslavia after the strikes not only failed deter the Yugoslav military, but have strengthened the domestic political power of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

    28: NATO warplanes broadened their assault against the Yugoslav military in an attempt to cut off their supplies, while thousands of refugees fled Kosovo.

    27: The United States rescued the pilot of a downed jet and the Yugoslav rampage grew in Kosovo.

  • Post Analysis: Allies face the limit of air power.

    26: The United States and NATO expanded attacks, two Yugoslav jets were shot down and Russia expelled two NATO officials.

  • Post Analysis: The United States and allies weigh the use of ground forces.

    25: Kosovo ground fighting spred, and crowds of pro-Serbian protestors attacked the U.S. embassy in Macedonia.

  • Post Analysis: NATO is unlikely to alter its war-strategy to pressure Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic.

    24: The United States and its NATO allies launched a punishing wave of air attacks on Yugoslav military forces, targeting defensive facilities and attempting to halt a Serbian offensive in Kosovo.

  • Post Analysis: Humanitarian officials fear the war will provoke Serbs to commit atrocities against civilians in Kosovo and intensify the exodus of refugees in the region.

  • NATO Peacekeeping | NATO Airstrikes: March 24 to June 9
    Peace Negotiations: January to March 23 | Kosovo Background: 1980s to 1998

    © Copyright 1999 The Washington Post Company

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