Pristina: United Nations police fired tear gas during clashes with ethnic Albanians protesting in the Kosovo capital yesterday against a UN plan on the fate of the breakaway Serbian province.

Hospital officials said they had treated at least 20 people, after protesters waving sticks tried to break through a police barricade and were met with tear gas.

Reuters reporters saw dozens of people arrested as Kosovo Albanian and UN riot police advanced on hundreds of demonstrators who were hurling stones and bottles.

A UN plan unveiled this month by former Finnish president Martti Ahtisaari would sets the territory on the path to independence, eight years after Nato bombs drove out Serb forces and the UN took control.

But some among Kosovo's 90 per cent Albanian majority are angry at the plan's provisions for a powerful European overseer and broad self-government for the areas 100,000 Serbs. Ten thousand Albanians died and almost one million were expelled in Serbia's counter-insurgency war.