Copyright 1987 Reuters   
                                    The Reuter Library Report 

                                 August 16, 1987, Sunday, PM cycle 

LENGTH: 260 words 



About 5,000 Serbs and Montenegrins staged a protest rally in Yugoslavia's ethnically-divided Kosovo province against alleged attacks by the region's Albanian majority, Tanjug news agency reported.

Yesterday's protest followed a series of incidents, including an attack on an 11-year Serbian boy who was hit by a brick thrown by an Albanian teenager, and the burning of a Serbian Orthodox cemetery in the village of Gornje Dobrevo.

Tanjug said that Zoran Sokolovic, secretary of the Serbian party's central committee, promised the crowd at Kosovo Polje that ethnic Albanian separatists will be dealt with severely.

The Belgrade newspaper Vecernje Novosti said Sokolovic was frequently interrupted by hecklers who shouted that no action had been taken since the Yugoslav ruling party plenum in June on the troubles in the province.

Others protested at the absence of the Yugoslav state president and Yugoslav and Serbian party chiefs who had been invited to the rally.

Sokolovic urged the crowd to have confidence in the communist party and assured them a decisive blow would be struck at Albanian separatists, Tanjug said.

The June plenum pledged action against Albanian nationalists and seperatists and to see that Serbs and Montenegrins who had been forced to abandon their land and property and leave Kosovo province returned home.

Serbs and Montenegrins are outnumbered eight to one by Albanians in Kosovo, Yugoslavia's poorest province bordering Albania. Tension has been high since riots in 1981 killed at least nine people were killed.

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