NIS, Yugoslavia, May 7 (AFP) -
Despair and rage overwhelmed Serbia's second largest city Nis on Friday
after a hospital and a marketplace were hit in daytime NATO air raids which
left at least 15 dead and 70 injured.
Nine people were killed when cluster bombs fell on a street leading to the
market in the center of Nis, while three died in a raid on the hospital
area, several blocks away, hospital officials told reporters.
Three more people died of their wounds after being hospitalised, doctor Ceda
Kutlesic, head of the Nis medical center, said.
Jovan Zlatic, head of the local alert center, said that 50 of the 70 wounded
were seriously injured.
Petar Bosnjakovic, deputy director of the Nis hospital, told reporters that
"two explosions were heard 12 minutes after noon... as smoke was seen above
A dozen burnt out cars were still smouldering in the hospital parking lot,
where witnesses said most of the bombs had exploded. All the building's
windows were smashed.
Debris and broken glass could be seen in the hospital entrance hall, with
the smell of burning pervading the area five hours after the reported
The road leading to the hospital complex was full of potholes, apparently
caused by bomb fragments, with one corner house half destroyed.
A pair of slippers, with traces of blood, lay on the pavement near a burnt
car in Ljube Nenadovica street.
The body of an old man, said to be 84-year old Gerasim Jovanovic, still lay
in a yard near the hospital. Reporters were warned by rescue workers to walk
in the middle of the street, since there were many unexploded cluster bombs
A yellow bomb, with the inscription CP FRAG BLU 97/AB, was visible in
another yard, while two more lay in front of houses in the street.
Near the market, in the center of Nis, people stood in shock, crying or just
silently watching as rescue workers combed the area.
"It is obvious who killed these people; the
NATO alliance," Nis mayor Zoran Zivkovic told reporters near the city
Three dead civilians, one of them a woman, could be seen lying on the ground
several meters (yards) from the market.
The body of an old man in a gray suit lay in front of an egg shop, while, on
the other side of the street, the body of a woman was seen next to a plastic
bag full of carrots.
A Few meters further on, towards the market, another body was covered with a
Smilja Djuric, 73, said she had survived the NATO attack because she "hid in
a room" in her house, in front of which two victims were killed.
"If I had been in the street, I would be dead. I survived World War II, but
I haven't seen anything like this," Djuric said, sobbing.
Witnesses said that a waitress at a nearby restaurant was also killed.
Bomb shrapnel marks could be seen on the
walls of the houses, while fragments of cluster bombs were strewn across two
streets near the market.
In Sumatovacka street a house and the car in front of it were partially
burnt, while the windows of all nearby buildings whose windows were smashed.
The raid was the third on the town, located 220 kms (130 miles) south of
Belgrade, on Friday.
Around 4 a.m. (0200 GMT), an industrial area to the northwest of the city,
already targetted 13 times since the start of NATO bombing campaign on March
24, was also attacked.
But several missiles fell on the Nis suburb of Medosevac, where most of the
houses along one street were destroyed.
Dejan Ciric said that four of his neighbours were injured in the raid,adding
that more than 20 bombs had fallen in the area.
Some thirty houses were almost completely destroyed, while a two-meter
(six-foot) deep, seven-meter (20-foot) wide crater could be seen in the
middle of the street.
Radmila Mitrovic, 59, dressed in black, was sitting in front of what was
left of her house.
"I can not even hang my clothes out. What have they done to us?" she said,
Medosevac suburb is situated some 150 meters (yards) from Nis airport, the
apparent target of NATO air raids.
NATO said Friday it was investigating the reports of civilian deaths.
Nis: Market hit. "quick, to the hospital!" "Yes please, I don't want to miss
the next bombing!" (From "Il Manifesto, May 7, 1999")
Serbia Info News.
Using cluster bombs, NATO aggressor hits in broad daylight downtown of Nis
where there are no military or police facilities, killing at least 11 people
and wounding several dozens.
Aggressor's atrocious crime
Nis, May 7, 1999 (Tanjug) -
Aggressor's NATO aviation and its commanders committed today an atrocious
crime over the civilian population in Nis, by bombarding it's center with
cluster bombs. This weapon has been forbidden by the international
conventions. Moreover, in the Nis downtown there are neither military nor
According to the information received so far, at least 11 persons were
killed and several dozens wounded. It is feared that the casualty toll is
not final and that the number of killed persons in this bloody genocide
feast of the aggressor in Nis is even higher. The damage is enormous
The citizens of targeted central Nis are constantly being warned not to
leave their shelters and apartments for the danger of small bombs left
behind from the cluster bombs. The rough estimations show that there are
several hundred of small cluster bombs scattered all over the town.
The part of the town hit most roughly is the part around Velika Pijaca (Big
Market) where the density of people is the highest during the day. There is
a Vice-chancellor's Office, a Health Care Center "12 Februar" and a Bus
The news that the enemy used cluster bombs in bombing the health care
center, at first shocked the citizens of Nis. Unfortunately, the news was
confirmed and the casualty toll is rising every hour.It was the 14th attack
on the town, and the third in the last ten hours and the first one in the