Thursday, April 29, 1999

Ethnic cleansing targeted


Local governments urged to speak out

BY CINDY SCHROEDER
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        FORT MITCHELL — While he is only one voice, a Northern Kentucky man has started a campaign to prod governments throughout the country into opposing the genocide in Kosovo.

        Within the past two weeks, John Ellenbogen has persuaded Fort Mitchell City Council and Kenton and Boone fiscal courts to adopt resolutions condemnning ethnic cleansing.

        “I would like to see every community in Greater Cincinnati and hopefully communities throughout the United States pass such a resolution,” Mr. Ellenbogen said. “This is not a partisan matter. It's a matter of humanity. It could be your child, your husband, wife, brother or father being shot, simply because of who they are.”

        Born in Europe just before World War II, Mr. Ellenbogen said he repeatedly lost his home. “I was a refugee, just like the children I now see on TV,” he said.

        But while Mr. Ellenbogen was once a refugee like those he is now trying to help, he maintains that it is his moral values, and not his personal experience, inspiring him to undertake this campaign.

        Fort Mitchell Mayor Tom Holocher said he couldn't pre dict what effect a small city's plea would have on Washington.

        In his model resolution, Mr. Ellenbogen asks governments to condemn ethnic cleansing, as well as the use of brute force against innocent civilians and unarmed men, women and children in Kosovo. It also expresses support of basic human rights.

        Mr. Ellenbogen recommends that governments send copies of the resolution to their governors, President Clinton, the secretaries of the United Nations and the NATO alliance, as well as to Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic in Belgrade.

       



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