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Voice of America, 25 & 26 May 1996

Voice of America Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Voice of America <gopher://gopher.voa.gov>


CONTENTS

  • [01] ALBANIA ELECTION (L) BY WAYNE COREY (VIENNA)
  • [02] BULGARIA/KING (L ONLY) BY WAYNE COREY (VIENNA)
  • [03] TURKEY/POLITICS (L ONLY) BY AMBERIN ZAMAN (ANKARA)

  • [01] ALBANIA ELECTION (L) BY WAYNE COREY (VIENNA)

    DATE=5/26/96
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-197753
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE POLITICAL SITUATION IN ALBANIA IS UNCERTAIN AFTER THE GENERAL ELECTION SUNDAY. OPPOSITION PARTIES SAY THE VOTE WAS NOT FREE AND FAIR AND SHOULD BE CANCELLED EVEN BEFORE THE RESULTS ARE KNOWN. ALBANIAN PRESIDENT SALI BERISHA DENIES THERE HAVE BEEN SERIOUS IRREGULARITIES AND SAYS THE LARGEST OPPOSITION GROUP, THE SOCIALIST PARTY, SIMPLY FEARS IT WILL BE DEFEATED. V-O-A'S CENTRAL EUROPEAN CORRESPONDENT, WAYNE COREY, REPORTS.

    TEXT: THE ALBANIAN PEOPLE VOTED SUNDAY IN THEIR THIRD GENERAL ELECTION SINCE THE FALL OF COMMUNISM IN THEIR COUNTRY IN 1990.

    DESPITE HOPES FOR AN ORDERLY ELECTION PROCESS THAT WOULD STRENGTHEN DEMOCRACY IN ALBANIA, OPPOSITION PARTIES SAY THE BALLOTING WAS MANIPULATED AGAINST THEM.

    THE SOCIALIST PARTY, OR FORMER COMMUNISTS, SAYS THE ELECTION WAS HELD IN A CLIMATE OF TERROR, CREATED BY THE RULING DEMOCRATIC PARTY AND BY THE POLICE.

    IN A BRIEF COMMENT ON ALBANIAN TELEVISION, PRESIDENT SALI BERISHA SAYS THE SOCIALISTS WANT THE PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION CANCELLED BECAUSE THEY KNOW THEY WILL SUFFER A MASSIVE DEFEAT. THE ELECTION IS BEING HELD IN TWO STAGES.

    MR. BERISHA SAYS ALL VOTES ON SUNDAY WILL BE COUNTED HONESTLY. HE EARLIER EXTENDED VOTING HOURS BECAUSE SOME PEOPLE ENCOUNTERED DELAYS IN CASTING THEIR BALLOTS.

    THE FIRST SIGNIFICANT, OFFICIAL ELECTION RESULTS ARE EXPECTED TO BE KNOWN SOME TIME ON MONDAY.

    INTERNATIONAL OBSERVERS IN ALBANIA, ONE OF EUROPE'S POOREST COUNTRIES, HAVE NOT YET COMMENTED ON WHETHER THEY NOTICED ANY SIGNIFICANT ELECTION IRREGULARITIES.

    ONE GROUP OF OBSERVERS DID SAY, THOUGH, THAT VOTING PROCEDURES APPEARED TO BE BADLY ORGANIZED IN SOME PLACES.

    THE RULING DEMOCRATIC PARTY CAMPAIGNED ON THE STRENGTH OF ITS WESTERN-ORIENTED POLICIES. THOSE INCLUDE ECONOMIC REFORMS THAT HAVE BROUGHT TANGIBLE BENEFITS TO THE CAPITAL, TIRANA.

    THE SOCIALIST PARTY PROMISED KINDER AND GENTLER ECONOMIC REFORMS IF IT IS RETURNED TO POWER. THE SOCIALISTS ALSO CAMPAIGNED AGAINST ALLEGED OFFICIAL CORRUPTION. (SIGNED)
    NEB/WC/SKH
    26-May-96 6:46 PM EDT (2246 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

    [02] BULGARIA/KING (L ONLY) BY WAYNE COREY (VIENNA)

    DATE=5/26/96
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-197750
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: HUGE CROWDS HAVE GREETED 58-YEAR-OLD KING SIMEON THE SECOND OF BULGARIA ON THE FIRST FULL DAY OF HIS RETURN TO THE COUNTRY AFTER A HALF CENTURY IN EXILE. V-O-A'S CENTRAL EUROPEAN CORRESPONDENT, WAYNE COREY, REPORTS.

    TEXT: THERE IS GREAT PUBLIC INTEREST IN KING SIMEON'S VISIT TO BULGARIA. HE IS GENERALLY LIKED AND RESPECTED AS A PERSON.

    BUT OPINION POLLS SHOW LITTLE POPULAR INTEREST IN RESTORING THE MONARCHY, AND THE SOCIALIST PARTY OF FORMER COMMUNISTS, WHICH CONTROLS PARLIAMENT, IS IGNORING THE ROYAL ENTOURAGE.

    DURING THE FIRST FULL DAY OF WHAT MAY BECOME A TRIUMPHAL IF TEMPORARY RETURN HOME, SIMEON HAD LUNCH ON SUNDAY WITH BULGARIA'S ANTI-COMMUNIST PRESIDENT ZHELYU ZHELEV.

    THE LUNCH WAS HELD IN A PRIVATE RATHER THAN OFFICIAL SETTING BECAUSE OF SIMEON'S DISPUTED STATUS.

    SIMEON AND HIS FAMILY WERE FORCED INTO EXILE AFTER WORLD WAR TWO WHEN A PRO-SOVIET COMMUNIST REGIME WAS INSTALLED IN SOFIA. A REFERENDUM ON THE MONARCHY WAS HELD, AND A REPUBLIC WAS DECLARED.

    THE EXILED KING HAS SAID HE NEVER ABDICATED AND THAT THE REFERENDUM WAS RIGGED BY THE COMMUNISTS. HE HAS HELD OPEN THE POSSIBILITY THAT HE MAY TRY TO RESTORE THE MONARCHY OR RUN FOR PRESIDENT.

    SIMEON IS FLUENT IN FOUR LANGUAGES. HE HAS BEEN A BUSINESS CONSULTANT FOR MANY YEARS WHILE LIVING IN MADRID WITH HIS ARISTOCRATIC SPANISH WIFE, MARGARITA.

    HE FLEW TO SOFIA ON SATURDAY FOR HIS FIRST VISIT IN 50 YEARS ON A ROUND-TRIP TICKET WITH AN OPEN DATE FOR HIS RETURN TO SPAIN.

    IN ADDITION TO SOFIA, SIMEON APPARENTLY PLANS TO TRAVEL TO PLOVDIV, BULGARIA'S SECOND LARGEST CITY, VARNA ON THE COUNTRY'S BLACK SEA COAST AND POSSIBLY A FEW OTHER CITIES.

    HE MAY SPEND TWO OR THREE WEEKS IN BULGARIA. BUT, AWARE THAT SOME MAY CONSIDER HIS VISIT PROVOCATIVE, HE SAYS HIS HOSTS, A GROUP OF INTELLECTUALS, WILL DETERMINE HOW LONG HE SHOULD STAY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/WC/SKH
    26-May-96 5:51 PM EDT (2151 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

    [03] TURKEY/POLITICS (L ONLY) BY AMBERIN ZAMAN (ANKARA)

    DATE=5/25/96
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-197718
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: TURKISH PRIME MINISTER MESUT YILMAZ IS RESISTING CALLS FOR HIS RESIGNATION FOLLOWIING FRIDAY'S ANNOUNCEMENT BY HIS COALITION PARTNER TANSU CILLER THAT SHE WAS WITHDRAWING FROM THE TWO-MONTH OLD GOVERNMENT. AMBERIN ZAMAN REPORTS FROM ANKARA THAT MRS. CILLER DESCRIBED THE COALITION AS " LEGALLY AND PRACTICALLY FINISHED."

    TEXT: MRS. CILLER'S ANNOUNCEMENT PROMPTED A FRESH ROUND OF SPECULATION OVER THE FATE OF THE COUNTRY'S FRACTIOUS COALITION FORMED IN MARCH BETWEEN HER CONSERVATIVE TRUE PATH PARTY AND MESUT YILMAZ'S CENTER RIGHT MOTHERLAND PARTY.

    MRS. CILLER SAID HER DECISION WAS BASED ON A CONSTITUTIONAL COURT DECISION EARLIER THIS MONTH WHICH STATED THAT FOR TECHNICAL REASONS A PARLIAMENTARY VOTE OF CONFIDENCE IN THE GOVERNMENT WAS INVALID.

    BUT OBSERVERS SAY THE REAL REASON FOR MRS CILLER'S WITHDRAWAL IS LINKED TO A SERIES OF CORRUPTION CHARGES BROUGHT AGAINST HER IN PARLIAMENT. RELATIONS BETWEEN MRS. CILLER AND MR. YILMAZ TOOK A SHARP TURN FOR THE WORSE AFTER HE JOINED THE MAIN OPPOSITION PRO-ISLAMIC WELFARE PARTY TO BACK THE MOTIONS AGAINST HER. SHE IS ACCUSED OF MISAPPROPRIATING STATE FUNDS DURING HER TIME AS PRIME MINISTER.

    OBSERVERS PREDICT MR. YILMAZ WILL EVENTUALLY HAVE TO RESIGN. THIS IN TURN WILL TRIGGER A FRESH ROUND OF MANEUVERING BETWEEN TURKEY'S POLITICAL LEADERS TO FORM A NEW COALITION.

    ///REST MAY BE CUT TO MAKE SHORT///

    OBSERVERS SAY THE ISLAMISTS, WHO MADE A STRONG SHOWING IN LAST LAST YEAR'S GENERAL ELECTIONS, COULD YET SHARE POWER IN A NEW GOVERNMENT.

    IT REMAINS UNCLEAR, HOWEVER, WHETHER THE ISLAMISTS CAN SUCCEED IN FINDING A POLITICAL PARTY THAT WOULD RISK A PARTNERSHIP WITH THEM. THEY STRONGLY OPPOSED BY THE STRONGLY SECULARTURKISH MILITARY AND THE COUNTRY'S PRO-WESTERN BUSINESS COMMUNITY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/AZ/DWSD
    25-May-96 11:29 AM EDT (1529 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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