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Kosovo Refugees Adjust to America, Despite Haunting Memories

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FORT DIX, NJ — Almost 1,000 Kosovar refugees are now out of harm's way. Fort Bragg soldiers are helping them settle into their temporary home at Fort Dix in New Jersey.

The Albanian refugees says they greatly appreciate their temporary home and donated clothes, but the memories of what happened in their homeland still haunt them.

"The Serbian police came to my home and forced me to leave," says refugee Zaim Hysenaj. "They also beat us, and then we left towards Macedonia."

"The military police came to our home, and told us we have to leave at that moment," says refugee Emine Visolea.

Most of the refugees were separated from their family members, and they can only hope their loved ones are still alive.

"Everyone is coping pretty good with it, even the children," says refugee Hamlet Fazliv. "Some of the children are missing their fathers, and they are asking where they are."

While the refugees are dealing with their personal loses, Fort Bragg soldiers are helping them to adjust to America.

"When I came off the aircraft yesterday and saw the U.S. military there, I felt comfortable and saw they were very friendly," says refugee Arsim Kaili, "that made me feel even more secure."

The ethnic Albanians will stay at Fort Dix for two to three weeks. They will then be sent to sponsor families throughout the United States.

Anyone who would like to host a refugee can call theU.S. Agency for International Developmentat1-800-872-4373.

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John McDonnell, Reporter
Lynn French, Photographer
Jason Darwin, Web Editor

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