Thursday, June 17, 1999 Published at 14:17 GMT 15:17 UK
Serbs 'killed more than 10,000'
A UK soldier stands guard in the torture centre
The UK says the full scale of the atrocities committed by Serb forces in Kosovo appears to be much worse than it originally believed.
His warning came as war crimes inspectors moved in to examine a suspected torture and rape centre discovered by UK troops at a building that was the headquarters of the Serb military police in Pristina.
Nato has also revealed that there have been reports, some confirmed, of fresh atrocities being committed by withdrawing Serb forces.
MPs are debating the latest developments in the Kosovo crisis on Thursday afternoon.
'Final toll may be much worse'
"According to the reports that we had gathered mostly from the refugees it appeared that around 10,000 people had been killed in more than 100 massacres. The final toll may be much worse," he said.
He went on to describe some of the grisly discoveries made inside the five-storey torture centre.
"The British forces have found knives, rubber and wooden batons, baseball bats with Serb slogans carved into them, a wooden crate full of knuckle-dusters, savage pornography and drugs, presumably used to sedate victims," he said.
More UK police officers and forensic scientists were being sent to Kosovo to assist in investigations that could lead to war crimes trials, he said.
Mr Cook told MPs: "I want those who ordered the murders, the brutality, the tortures to know that we will spare no effort to bring them to justice."
Refugees warned against revenge
Mr Hoon urged the returning refugees not to try to take the law into their own hands.
"We appeal to Kosovo Albanians to show restraint despite the appalling discoveries that they are making as they return to the ghost towns and burned-out villages without the loved ones who were killed by the Serb forces.
"We appeal to them not to go home to seek revenge. We want decent, ordinary peace-loving Serb families to stay so that Kosovo can be come a demonstration to the rest of Serbia of a modern multi-cultural society."
However, the UK chief of joint operations said that while the Kosovo Liberation Army appeared to behaving "responsibly", Serb forces were carrying out further violence as they withdrew.
"There have been several reports of atrocities being committed as the Serbs withdraw, not all of which we have been able to confirm.
"Retreating Serbs have been burning houses, some people have been shot, and our forces remain alert to the possibility of booby traps.
"The picture overall is of Serbs trying to make it as difficult as possible for Kosovars to return safely to their homes."
By contrast, he said, some KLA fighters had disarmed and there were reports that some had begun clearing landmines.
He also believed that the KLA was close to agreeing to wider demilitarisation of its forces.
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