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Elsevier: Serbia - the only multiethnic country within the former SFR Yugoslavia
October 05, 1999

Rotterdam, October 5th (Tanjug) - Although western propaganda associated the Serbs with 'ethnic cleansing', the facts prove that all former Yugoslav republics remained ethnically clean, except Serbia, the only real multiethnic part of former Yugoslavia, reports the Elsevier in its latest issue.

Elsevier presents evidence that national minorities in Slovenia never reached a significant number, that Croatia expelled 100.000 Serbs, Bosnia-Herzegovina was divided into three ethnically clean territories by force, and that the Albanians expelled 90 percent of non-Albanians from Kosovo-Metohija. Furthermore, there are 26 nations, nationalities and minorities living in Serbia.

According to still unpublished evidence of the Federal Bureau of Statistics, one third of the non-Serb population in Serbia are Albanians, one forth Slavic Muslims, 350.000 are Hungarians, 150.000 Rumanians, and furthermore, Gypsies, Vlachs, Croats, Slovaks, Macedonians, Montenegrins and Gorani, writes Elsevier and adds that "during the years when every Serb pore was being systematically destroyed... Croats could live and work peacefully in Serbia."

Serbs have been undeservedly demonized by the media and in spite of being dragged four times into war during the last ten years and targeted twice with NATO bombs, it resisted the wave of nationalist hatred and managed to keep the only multiethnic community in the region. The Elsevier further quoted a Muslim, Idriz Krahimirovic, a hairdresser from Novi Pazar saying that it is easier to be a Muslim in Serbia than a Serb in Sarajevo.

Minorities were never isolated in ghettos, but lived together in Serbia, writes the daily adding that it was also the case in Kosovo until recently.

The Croatian vocabulary has been cleansed, while it was never done in Serbia, although many words are of Turkish origin. Serbian youth is much more open than anyone could presume, writes the daily.

Although the whole world believes that Serbs are 'aggressive' people who recognize only their culture, the most popular Belgrade music shop sells CDs of a Croatian band called 'Magazin' and a Muslim named Haris Dzinovic, reports the daily adding that it is 'dangerous to life and limb' to listen to Serbian music in Croatia.

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