TIRANA, Albania, April 13 -- Albanian television reports say Yugoslav soldiers crossed from Kosovo into Albania in Kamenica, a village close to the border. After the Albanian government held an urgent meeting on the border incident, President Rexhep Meitani said he has order Albanian troops to respond to any gunfire with fire. 'Some 100 Serb solders crossed the Albanian border in Kamenica, but after the Albanian border guards and citizens responded to them with guns, they withdrew,' Foreign Ministry spokesman Sokol Gjoka told UPI. However, Nebojsa Vujovic of the Yugoslav Foreign Ministry told CNN the Albanian report contains 'absolutely false accusations.' Vujovic said the accusation that Yugoslav troops crossed the border is 'a pretext launched by the Albanian propaganda machine' and that, in fact, it was the Albanians who were trying to cross into Kosovo. Gjoka said that two days ago, Serbs shelled the Albanian villages of Padesh, Kamenica and Zogaj killing three Albanian citizens and wounding about 12 others. The Albanian official said the Serb forces who crossed into Albania today withdrew when Albanian troops arrived from Tropoja, a small town some 9 miles (15 km) from the border. 'The Albanian forces are observing the situation,' Gjoka said. He said there were no victims in today's incident, but three houses were destroyed. On Monday, Albanian Foreign Minister Paskal Milo asked NATO to send troops to Albania as a soon as possible 'because the situation is going to deteriorate' along the border with Kosovo. Earlier, Belgrade warned Albania not to support the Kosovo Liberation Army, and not to attack Yugoslav troops from Albanian territory.
'Albania and the terrorist group, which are under Tirana's protection, would be responsible for the consequences of a possible war outbreak in the Balkans,' said a Serb radio report quoting a military statement issued in Pristina over the weekend. Albania considers the recent border incident part of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic's strategy to destabilize the Balkan region. On Monday, Milo said Albania had no choice but to respond to Serb attacks, but he ruled out attacking Yugoslavia. Some 300,000 ethnic Albanian refugees expelled from Kosovo over the past three weeks have sought refuge in Albania. The latest group of 7, 000 crossed the Albanian border this morning in a heavy rain. Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe field officer Pier Gonggrup told CNN the Yugoslav forces crossed into Albania from Kosovo today. He said they attacked a border patrol and burned two houses. In Oslo, Norway, U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said the United States has not been able to confirm the reports. But she said if any forces cross into the countries bordering Kosovo, it 'would have serious consequences.' Albright was speaking at a news conference following her meeting in Oslo with Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov. ---
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