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Life in North Mitrovica

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Uploaded on Mar 7, 2007

Rolling Caption:
In Northern Mitrovica and Zvecan, people live on 95euros a month on average. Most of this comes from public money -- 60% from Belgrade, and 23% from Pristina... and social inequalities are widening...

Caption:
Northern Mitrovica

Ivan Radić
Medical Student
(Interviewed in Zvečan, in English)

I am a student in Northern Mitrovica now. Actually, I started to study in Pristina 9 years ago. And then I was supposed to graduate, but the war started. After the war I became an IDP (internally displaced person). I started to work and I never passed the last few exams which left . So I decided now to take them and graduate and become a medical doctor.

Many people opened those small shops, especially IDPs and people who used to live in this part of the city. Those who worked in Trepča; they are in a very hard position. There is...the Serbian government is paying very good salaries for the health and education system here in Kosovo. There are many students, also many foreigners, internationals who live in northern part of city. People rent their places to them and some income comes from there.

Unlike central Serbia, here in Kosovo everyone who works in health system or in schools they get 200% of the normal salary in central Serbia, so that makes life much easier here.

You never know for how long this will last. If it lasts next ten years, it will be great, but how realistic that is I am not sure...

Slavica Lalatović
Shop Worker
(Interviewed in Lux store, North Mitrovica, in Serbian.)

My name is Slavica Lalatović. I lived in Prvi Tunel, a place near the Stari Trg mine. Now we are here in Mitrovica. After the bombing everybody moved out -- there's nobody left there. Some went to Serbia, some stayed here. I work in Lux. They didn't even give us salaries before the bombing, now nothing. We survive somehow, life is difficult. I have been working for 28 years now. I am here now, my mother and son are with me. We live off my mother's pension. My son works occasionally. He used to work in Trepča. His stipend is 30 Euros, and we don't have anything. I live in the common space of an apartment building. I added one wall, but there is no water, no bathroom...

I can't talk. I can talk about politics, but if it is about me, I can't...

There is nothing to look forward to, when there is simply no one to complain to, no place to go, nobody to give you anything. Nobody asks you if you have a salary, how you live, nobody comes to see how you are. Neither UNMIK nor Serbia cares what happens to us.

Common citizens don't have anyone to complain to, to say if they have money for bread or not. I do not know what can be improved here. Even God can't help us, as far as I can see.

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