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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rugova Pays Visit to Rome




ROME -- Kosovo's prominent ethnic Albanian leader, Ibrahim Rugova, arrived Wednesday in Rome, Italian sources said.


Western governments believe Rugova has been under virtual house arrest in Yugoslavia, and the visit is his first abroad since NATO airstrikes began March 24.


He was greeted by Italian Cabinet undersecretary Marco Minniti, the prime minister's office said in a statement. "The authorities in Belgrade agreed with his desire to come to Italy," it added.


About 90 minutes after Rugova arrived, Prime Minister Massimo D'Alema went to meet him, Italian news agency ANSA said.


Rugova and his family are guests of the Italian government, the statement said.


Rugova held meetings recently with Serbian officials, purportedly to work on a political settlement, basically on Belgrade's terms.