Protestors hurl stones at UN building in Pristina.

United Nations police in Kosovo fired tear gas Tuesday to disperse protesters who overturned a concrete barrier shielding the UN headquarters in the capital Pristina.

Some five thousand ethnic Albanians rallied outside the building to protest ongoing talks with Serbia on the future of the province, which is currently part of Serbia but under UN administration.

Before reaching the UN premises protesters pelted the provincial government's building with stones and splashed red paint, symbolizing blood, on its walls. No injuries or arrests were immediately reported.

The demonstration was called by a group known as "Self-determination" that is opposed to UN brokered negotiations between Kosovo leaders and Serbia's officials.

Members of "Self-determination" have vandalized UN vehicles and the headquarters building in the past.

The head of the group, former student leader Albin Kurti, has been apprehended several times.

Recently, Kurti held rallies in Kosovo's rural areas calling for an end to the status talks, claiming that decentralization - a central part of the negotiations aimed at improving the rights of minorities - would split the province into an ethic Albanian part and a Serb-controlled part.

[Source: MakFax, Macedonia, Pristina, 28Nov06]

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