Browse through our Interesting Nodes of International Mass Media Read the Convention Relating to the Regime of the Straits (24 July 1923) Read the Convention Relating to the Regime of the Straits (24 July 1923)
HR-Net - Hellenic Resources Network Compact version
Today's Suggestion
Read The "Macedonian Question" (by Maria Nystazopoulou-Pelekidou)
HomeAbout HR-NetNewsWeb SitesDocumentsOnline HelpUsage InformationContact us
Tuesday, 17 May 2022
 
News
  Latest News (All)
     From Greece
     From Cyprus
     From Europe
     From Balkans
     From Turkey
     From USA
  Announcements
  World Press
  News Archives
Web Sites
  Hosted
  Mirrored
  Interesting Nodes
Documents
  Special Topics
  Treaties, Conventions
  Constitutions
  U.S. Agencies
  Cyprus Problem
  Other
Services
  Personal NewsPaper
  Greek Fonts
  Tools
  F.A.Q.
 

Voice of America, 97-12-15

Voice of America: Selected Articles Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] BOSNIA FRANCE (L-ONLY) BY JULIAN NUNDY (PARIS)
  • [02] CLINTON / IRELAND (S-ONLY) BY DEBORAH TATE (WHITE HOUSE)
  • [03] CLINTON/BOSNIA (L) BY DAVID GOLLUST (WHITE HOUSE)
  • [04] CZECH POL UPDATE(L ONLY) BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)
  • [05] E-U / U-S BEEF (L ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)
  • [06] E-U TURKEY (L-ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)
  • [07] EURO STOCKS (S-ONLY) BY PAUL FRANCUCH (LONDON)
  • [08] N-Y ECON WRAP (S & L) BY MAX RUSTON (NEW YORK)
  • [09] MONDAY'S EDITORIALS BY ANDREW N. GUTHRIE (WASHINGTON)
  • [10] TURKEY/US BY LAURIE KASSMAN (WASHINGTON)
  • [11] YEARENDER: E-U EXPANSION '97 BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)
  • [12] YEARENDER: ROMANIA REFORM '97 BY KYLE KING (BUCHAREST)

  • [01] BOSNIA FRANCE (L-ONLY) BY JULIAN NUNDY (PARIS)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224132
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: FRANCE PROTESTED MONDAY TO THE PROSECUTOR AT THE YUGOSLAV WAR CRIMES TRIBUNAL OVER CHARGES SHE MADE ALLEGING THAT FRANCE IS NOT COOPERATING WITH THE HAGUE COURT. JULIAN NUNDY REPORTS FROM PARIS.

    TEXT: LOUISE ARBOUR, THE CANADIAN PROSECUTOR AT THE INTERNATIONAL TRIBUNAL, MADE SEVERAL COMMENTS TO THE FRENCH MEDIA OVER THE PAST FEW DAYS ALLEGING THAT FRENCH TROOPS IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA REFUSE TO ARREST BOSNIAN SERBS WANTED FOR WAR CRIMES.

    THE FRENCH FOREIGN MINISTER HUBERT VEDRINE HAD CANCELLED A PLANNED JOINT PRESS BRIEFING WITH MRS. ARBOUR. HIS SPOKESWOMAN SAYS HE TOLD MRS. ARBOUR, THAT THE FRENCH AUTHORITIES WERE DEEPLY SHOCKED BY HER STATEMENTS.

    IN BRUSSELS, JAVIER SOLANA, THE SECRETARY-GENERAL OF NATO, PRAISED FRANCE'S TROOPS IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA FOR WHAT HE CALLED "AN OUTSTANDING JOB."

    //OPT//

    FRANCE HAS LOST 70 MEN IN BOSNIAN PEACE-KEEPING OPERATIONS. IT WAS FRENCH TROOPS THAT KEPT SARAJEVO AIRPORT OPEN DURING SOME OF THE WORST MONTHS OF THE CIVIL WAR. FRANCE CURRENTLY HAS A FORCE OF 35-HUNDRED TROOPS IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA.

    //END OPT//

    MRS. ARBOUR'S ALLEGATIONS FOLLOW REMARKS LAST WEEK BY FRENCH DEFENSE MINISTER ALAIN RICHARD THAT FRENCH TROOPS WOULD NOT BE ALLOWED TO TESTIFY TO THE WAR CRIMES TRIBUNAL IN OPEN COURT.

    THE DEFENSE MINISTER DISMISSED THE WORK OF THE TRIBUNAL AS "SHOW JUSTICE." THE DAILY "LE MONDE" SAID THIS DEMONSTRATED THAT FRANCE WAS RELUCTANT TO COOPERATE WITH THE HAGUE COURT.

    MRS. ARBOUR TOLD THE FRENCH DAILY "LIBERATION" THAT, IN HER VIEW, THE DEFENSE MINISTER'S WORDS BETRAYED AN ATTITUDE THAT WAS NO LESS THAN "CONTEMPTUOUS" TOWARD THE WORK OF THE COURT.

    MRS. ARBOUR SAID BOSNIAN SERB SUSPECTS FELT SAFE WITHIN THE FRENCH SECTOR. SHE REFERRED TO A TELEVISION REPORT IN FRANCE SHOWING TWO FRENCH OFFICERS IN THE SAME BAR AS A SUSPECTED WAR CRIMINAL.

    MRS. ARBOUR DID NOT COMMENT ON HER TALKS WITH THE FRENCH FOREIGN MINISTER. MEANWHILE, THE FRENCH DEFENSE MINISTRY HASTILY SCHEDULED A MEETING WITH HER TO EXPLAIN THE POSITION OF THE FRENCH MILITARY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/JN/PCF
    15-Dec-97 10:57 AM EST (1557 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] CLINTON / IRELAND (S-ONLY) BY DEBORAH TATE (WHITE HOUSE)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224136
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: IRISH PRIME MINISTER BERTIE AHERN, WHO MET WITH PRESIDENT CLINTON AT THE WHITE HOUSE MONDAY, IS CALLING ON THE LEADER OF NORTHERN IRELAND'S LARGEST PROTESTANT PARTY TO RECONSIDER HIS DECISION NOT TO MEET WITH THE HEAD OF THE POLITICAL WING OF THE IRISH REPUBLICAN ARMY. V-O-A WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT DEBORAH TATE REPORTS.

    TEXT: MR. AHERN EXPRESSED REGRET THAT DAVID TRIMBLE, THE LEADER OF THE PRO-BRITISH ULSTER UNIONIST PARTY, REFUSED MONDAY TO MEET WITH GERRY ADAMS, THE HEAD OF THE I-R-A'S POLITICAL WING, SINN FEIN.

    AFTER MEETING WITH MR. CLINTON TO BRIEF HIM ON DEVELOPMENTS IN THE PEACE PROCESS, MR. AHERN WARNED THAT PROSPECTS FOR A COMPREHENSIVE PEACE AGREEMENT IN NORTHERN IRELAND WILL DISAPPEAR IF THERE IS NOT MORE PROGRESS IN THE TALKS NOW UNDERWAY IN BELFAST.

    /// AHERN ACT. ///

    I DO HOPE THAT WE WILL QUICKLY REACH THE TIME WHEN EVERYBODY WILL BE TALKING TO EACH OTHER, AND WILL BE WORKING TOGETHER FOR A COMPREHENSIVE SETTLEMENT, BECAUSE IT IS ONLY BY EVERYONE TALKING TO EVERYBODY ELSE THAT WE CAN ACTUALLY FRAME A COMPREHENSIVE SETTLEMENT, AND THIS IS THE TIME TO DO IT. WE CANNOT WAIT AROUND INDEFINITELY. IT WILL DRIFT AWAY IF WE DO NOT SERIOUSLY WORK THIS AGREEMENT OUT.

    /// END ACT ///

    FOR HIS PART, MR. CLINTON VOWED TO CONTINUE TO STAY PERSONALLY INVOLVED IN THE PEACE PROCESS IN WHATEVER WAY HE CAN BE HELPFUL. (SIGNED)
    NEB/DAT/SP
    15-Dec-97 12:31 PM EST (1731 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [03] CLINTON/BOSNIA (L) BY DAVID GOLLUST (WHITE HOUSE)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224153
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: PRESIDENT CLINTON MAKES A BRIEF PRE-CHRISTMAS TRIP TO BOSNIA NEXT MONDAY. HE'LL MEET U-S TROOPS IN THE FIELD BUT ALSO HAVE TALKS ON A FOLLOW-ON INTERNATIONAL MILITARY PRESENCE AFTER THE CURRENT NATO-LED FORCE LEAVES NEXT JUNE. V-O-A'S DAVID GOLLUST HAS MORE FROM THE WHITE HOUSE.

    TEXT: IT WILL BE MR. CLINTON'S SECOND VISIT TO BOSNIA. AND LIKE THE FIRST ONE NEARLY TWO YEARS AGO, THE MAIN PURPOSE WILL BE TO PAY TRIBUTE TO THE AMERICAN SOLDIERS TAKING PART IN NATO-LED PEACEKEEPING OPERATIONS THERE.

    BUT MR. CLINTON WILL MEET SENIOR BOSNIAN POLITICIANS, INCLUDING MEMBERS OF THE FEDERATION PRESIDENCY AND PERHAPS ALSO BOSNIAN SERB LEADER BILJANA PLAVSIC. AND THE MEETING WILL FOCUS NEW ATTENTION ON THE GROWING LIKELYHOOD THAT NATO WILL EXTEND ITS PRESENCE BEYOND THE JUNE 1998 WITHDRAWAL DEADLINE FOR ITS 30-THOUSAND-MEMBER STABLIZATION FORCE.

    WHITE HOUSE SPOKESMAN MIKE MCCURRY SAYS THERE IS A DEVELOPING INTERNATIONAL CONSENSUS ON THE NEED FOR A FOLLOW-ON FORCE TO PRESERVE THE PROGRESS MADE SINCE NATO FORCES FIRST ENTERED THE COUNTRY AT THE END OF 1995.

    THE PROSPECT OF A PROLONGED U-S STAY IN BOSNIA IS DRAWING CRITICISM FROM REPUBLICAN LEADERS IN CONGRESS. BUT WHITE HOUSE SPOKESMAN MIKE MCCURRY INSISTS THERE IS A RECOGNITION AMONG LAWMAKERS THAT THE SITUATION IN BOSNIA MUST NOT BE ALLOWED TO UNRAVEL:

    ///MCCURRY ACTUALITY///

    MEMBERS OF CONGRESS RECOGNIZE THE POSITIVE GAINS THAT HAVE OCCURRED IN BOSNIA, THE FACT THAT THE WAR THERE HAS BEEN ENDED, AND THAT THERE HAS BEEN PROGRESS TOWARDS RE-ESTABLISHING CIVIL SOCIETY, ALTHOUGH BY NO MEANS A COMPLETE JOB. AND (THERE IS) SOME RECOGNITION THAT THAT IMPORTANT WORK THAT'S BEEN DONE NEEDS TO CONTINUE IF WE'RE TO AVOID BACKSLIDING INTO THE KIND OF CHAOS AND ETHNIC STRIFE THAT CHARACTERIZED THE WAR PERIOD.

    ///END ACT///

    BRITAIN AND FRANCE, THE OTHER LEADING CONTRIBUTORS TO THE STABILIZATION FORCE, HAVE ALREADY MADE CLEAR THEY WOULD PULL THEIR TROOPS OUT OF BOSNIA UNLESS THE UNITED STATES COMMITS ITSELF TO STAYING FOR A LONGER PERIOD. MR. MCCURRY SAID NATO FOREIGN MINISTERS, WHO MEET THIS WEEK IN BRUSSELS, WILL BEGIN A MORE FORMAL REVIEW OF OPTIONS FOR A POSSIBLE REPLACEMENT FORCE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/DAG/PT
    15-Dec-97 3:48 PM EST (2048 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [04] CZECH POL UPDATE(L ONLY) BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224137
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:
    // EDS: UPDATES WITH MORE MEETINGS, LIKELIHOOD OF DECISION ON NEW P.M. WILL BE LATER THIS WEEK //

    INTRO: THE GOVERNMENT STANDOFF CONTINUES IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC, WHERE PRESIDENT VACLAV HAVEL EARLIER SAID HE HOPES TO APPOINT AN INTERIM PRIME MINISTER TOMORROW (TUESDAY). BUT POLITICIANS SAY THAT'S NOT POSSIBLE. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ART CHIMES REPORTS FROM PRAGUE.

    TEXT: LEADERS FROM THE THREE COALITION PARTNERS HAVE AGREED THE COUNTRY SHOULD HAVE A NON-PARTISAN PRIME MINISTER TO HEAD AN INTERIM GOVERNMENT UNTIL EARLY ELECTIONS IN SIX MONTHS OR SO.

    OUTGOING PRIME MINISTER VACLAV KLAUS AND THE HEADS OF THE TWO OTHER COALITION PARTIES MONDAY AFTERNOON SAID THEY ARE STILL WORKING ON A LIST OF NAMES TO CONSIDER. //BEGIN OPT// CIVIC DEMOCRATIC ALLIANCE HEAD JIRI SKALICKY SAYS HE WANTS TO PROPOSE LIST OF POSSIBLE CANDIDATES TO PRESIDENT HAVEL, BUT MR. KLAUS SAYS THEY SHOULD AGREE ON A SINGLE NAME. //END OPT//

    THE POLITICAL LEADERS SAY NONE OF THEM WANTS TO DELAY THE APPOINTMENT OF AN INTERIM PRIME MINISTER, BUT ADDED IT WOULD NOT BE POSSIBLE TO HAVE IT DONE AS SOON AS TUESDAY. EARLIER, PRESIDENT HAVEL SAID HE HOPED TO MAKE THE ANNOUNCEMENT ON TUESDAY.

    //BEGIN OPT//

    PRESIDENT HAVEL LAST WEEK APPOINTED JOSEF LUX, HEAD OF JUNIOR COALITION PARTNER THE CHRISTIAN DEMOCRATS, TO ORGANIZE THE NEW GOVERNMENT. //END OPT//

    THE GOVERNMENT COLLAPSED LATE LAST MONTH AROUND A FUND-RAISING SCANDAL IN THE CIVIC DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF PRIME MINISTER KLAUS. TALKS ON FORMING A NEW GOVERNMENT WERE DELAYED UNTIL NOW, TO ALLOW MR. KLAUS TO GET A NEW ENDORSEMENT FROM HIS PARTY. HE GOT IT ON SUNDAY, WHEN THE PARTY OVERWHELMINGLY RE-ELECTED HIM CHAIRMAN, EASILY BEATING OUT INTERIOR MINISTER JAN RUML FOR THE LEADERSHIP.

    // REST OPTIONAL //

    AFTER FIVE YEARS AT THE HEAD OF THE CZECH GOVERNMENT, VACLAV KLAUS WAS THE LONGEST-SERVING PRIME MINISTER IN THE FORMERLY-COMMUNIST COUNTRIES OF EUROPE. HE ATTRACTED SUBSTANTIAL ATTENTION FOR HIS AGGRESSIVE PROGRAM OF ECONOMIC REFORMS. NOW, LIKE SO MANY GOVERNMENTS ELSEWHERE, HIS HAS FALLEN TO A FUND-RAISING SCANDAL. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ART/PCF
    15-Dec-97 1:05 PM EST (1805 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [05] E-U / U-S BEEF (L ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224138
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE EUROPEAN UNION IS PROTESTING A DECISION BY THE UNITED STATES TO BAN IMPORTS OF EUROPEAN BEEF AND LAMB. AS JOHN FRASER REPORTS FROM BRUSSELS, U-S OFFICIALS SAID THEY ACTED AMID FEARS THAT "MAD COW" DISEASE -- AND SIMILAR INFECTIONS IN SHEEP -- ARE SPREADING ACROSS EUROPE.

    TEXT: THE DECISION BY THE UNITED STATES CAUGHT EUROPEAN UNION GOVERNMENTS OFF GUARD, AS THEY WERE FOCUSED ON SUMMIT TALKS IN LUXEMBOURG. E-U OFFICIALS ALSO SAID THEY WERE CONCERNED BECAUSE LITTLE INFORMATION WAS AVAILABLE ON WHY THE BAN WAS BEING IMPOSED, AND THERE HAD BEEN NO WARNING IT WAS IMMINENT.

    E-U OFFICIALS ADMIT THAT THERE HAVE BEEN NEW CASES OF THE MAD COW DISEASE B-S-E IN LUXEMBOURG AND BELGIUM -- AND THERE HAS BEEN CRITICISM IN THE MEDIA THAT THESE HAVE EITHER BEEN HUSHED UP OR SPOTTED TOO LATE. HOWEVER, E-U OFFICIALS ALSO SAY THERE ARE PLANS TO INTRODUCE NEW SAFEGUARDS TO REDUCE THE RISK OF B-S-E ACROSS EUROPE, AND THEY SAY E-U BEEF AND LAMB ARE SAFE.

    AN E-U SPOKESMAN DESCRIBED THE AMERICAN BAN AS A VERY EXTREME MEASURE -- WHICH HE SAYS IS NOT WELL-FOUNDED. HE SUGGESTED THERE MAY BE A HIDDEN MOTIVE BEHIND THE MEASURE.

    THERE ARE PROBLEMS BETWEEN THE E-U AND THE UNITED STATES OVER THE IMPACT THAT PROPOSED ANTI B-S-E MEASURES MIGHT HAVE ON IMPORTS OF AMERICAN PHARMACEUTICALS. THESE MAY BE CAUGHT UP IN AN E-U BAN ON PRODUCTS DERIVED FROM BEEF.

    U-S OFFICIALS ALSO ARE SAID TO BE FURIOUS AT AN E-U BAN ON MEAT FROM THE UNITED STATES WHICH HAS BEEN PRODUCED WITH THE HELP OF ARTIFICIAL GROWTH HORMONES.

    EUROPEAN OFFICIALS SAY BEEF AND LAMB EXPORTS TO THE UNITED STATES AMOUNT TO JUST TWO-MILLION DOLLARS A YEAR -- A VERY SMALL SUM IN RELATION TO TOTAL TRADE. HOWEVER, THEY ARE ANNOYED BY THE NEW AMERICAN BAN AND MAY DECIDE TO CHALLENGE IT AT THE GENEVA-BASED WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION.

    E-U OFFICIALS SAY THEY HAVE ASKED FOR URGENT CONSULTATIONS WITH THE UNITED STATES TO TRY TO CLARIFY THE REASONS FOR THE BAN, AND TO EXPLORE WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE TO GET IT ENDED. (SIGNED)
    NEB/JF/JWH
    15-Dec-97 1:01 PM EST (1801 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [06] E-U TURKEY (L-ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224128
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE EUROPEAN UNION HAS APPEALED TO TURKEY TO RE-THINK ITS REACTION TO THE OUTCOME OF THE E-U SUMMIT WHICH ENDED SATURDAY. SUMMIT LEADERS AGREED THAT TURKEY SHOULD TAKE PART IN A PAN-EUROPEAN STANDING CONFERENCE ON ENLARGING THE E-U -- BUT THE TURKS WERE TOLD IT WILL BE DECADES BEFORE THEY WILL ACTUALLY QUALIFY FOR MEMBERSHIP. JOHN FRASER REPORTS FOR VOA NEWS FROM BRUSSELS.

    TEXT: THE EUROPEAN UNION LEADERS AGREED AT THEIR LUXEMBOURG SUMMIT MEETING TO OPEN NEGOTIATIONS WITH SIX APPLICANTS, AND TO HELP A FURTHER FIVE TO PREPARE FOR MEMBERSHIP. HOWEVER, DESPITE A LONG-RUNNING REQUEST BY TURKEY FOR ADMISSION INTO THE WORLD'S LARGEST TRADING BLOC, THE CONSENSUS AMONG THE 15 E-U LEADERS WAS THAT THERE IS NO IMMEDIATE PROSPECT OF THIS. THEY CITED THE COUNTRY'S ECONOMY AS BEING TOO BACKWARD, AND ITS HUMAN RIGHTS RECORD IS POOR.

    BUT AN OLIVE BRANCH WAS OFFERED TO THE TURKS, WITH AN INVITATION TO TAKE PART IN A STANDING CONFERENCE ON E-U ENLARGEMENT, WHICH WILL BRING TOGETHER LEADERS FROM THE CURRENT E-U STATES, AND REPRESENTATIVES OF THE APPLICANTS.

    THIS OFFER HAS BEEN DISMISSED BY THE ANKARA GOVERNMENT AS INADEQUATE. IN ANKARA MONDAY, TURKEY'S FOREIGN MINISTRY REJECTED THE INVITATION TO JOIN THE STANDING CONFERENCE. LUXEMBOURG'S PRIME MINISTER JEAN-CLAUDE JUNCKER RESPONDED, SAYING HE HOPES TURKEY WILL RECONSIDER THE INVITATION.

    TURKEY ALSO SAID IT WOULD NOT DISCUSS THE CYPRUS ISSUE WITH THE EUROPEAN UNION, SAYING THE ISSUE WAS OF "NO CONCERN" TO THE ORGANIZATION.

    CYPRUS IS ONE OF THE SIX NATIONS WITH WHICH THE E-U LAUNCHES MEMBERSHIP NEGOTIATIONS NEXT YEAR.

    THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION HAS APPEALED TO THE TURKISH GOVERNMENT TO THINK AGAIN.

    A COMMISSION SPOKESMAN SUGGESTS THAT IF THE TURKS STUDY MORE CAREFULLY THE MESSAGE FROM THE SUMMIT, THEY WILL SEE THAT IT SETS A FRAMEWORK FOR THE EVENTUAL E-U MEMBERSHIP OF TURKEY -- IF THE COUNTRY CAN MEET THE SAME CONDITIONS AS APPLY TO ALL OTHER CANDIDATES.

    //REST OPT//

    HE NOTES THAT E-U COMMISSION PRESIDENT JACQUES SANTER HAS DESCRIBED THE OFFER AS SERIOUS AND CONSTRUCTIVE, AND HE HOPES THAT TURKEY'S CONSIDERED RESPONSE WILL BE SIMILARLY SERIOUS AND CONSTRUCTIVE. HOWEVER, HE ADMITTED THAT UNLESS THE TURKS TAKE PART IN THE CONFERENCE, IT WILL DIMINISH THE VALUE OF THE EXERCISE.

    THE E-U COMMISSION ADDS THAT NEGOTIATIONS WITH CYPRUS WILL CONTINUE, WHETHER OR NOT THE TURKISH CYPRIOTS ARE INVOLVED.

    THE AIM IS FOR UNITED-NATIONS SPONSORED NEGOTIATIONS ON THE RE-UNIFICATION OF CYRUS TO RUN IN PARALLEL WITH THE E-U ENLARGEMENT DIALOGUE, SO THAT THE CYPRUS WHICH EVENTUALLY JOINS THE EUROPEAN UNION IS A UNITED, FEDERAL, ISLAND STATE.

    THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION HAS STRESSED THAT IT IS IN THE INTERESTS OF THE TURKISH COMMUNITY IN CYPRUS TO BE INVOLVED IN THE MEMBERSHIP DISCUSSIONS. THESE WILL COVER SUCH ISSUES AS THE USE OF THE TURKISH LANGUAGE IN E-U MEETINGS AND IN OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS, THE NUMBERS OF TURKISH CYPRIOT MEMBERS OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, AND NUMBERS OF CIVIL SERVICE POSTS IN THE E-U COMMISSION FOR TURKISH CYPRIOTS.

    E-U DIPLOMATS SAY EFFORTS WILL NOW BE MADE TO BETTER EXPLAIN TO TURKEY THAT EFFORTS ARE BEING MADE TO MAKE IT FEEL PART OF THE EUROPEAN FAMILY OF NATIONS, AND TO ASSURE THE TURKS THE DOOR REMAINS OPEN FOR THEIR EVENTUAL ACCESSION TO THE UNION. (SIGNED)
    NEB/JF/PCF
    15-Dec-97 9:40 AM EST (1440 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [07] EURO STOCKS (S-ONLY) BY PAUL FRANCUCH (LONDON)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224141
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK MARKETS IN WESTERN EUROPE BEGAN THE WEEK ON A MIXED NOTE. PAUL FRANCUCH HAS CLOSING FIGURES FROM OUR OFFICES IN LONDON.

    TEXT: THE STRONGER U-S DOLLAR APPEARED TO BE A TONIC FOR INVESTORS IN PARIS. HERE IN LONDON, BANK MERGER SPECULATION WAS CITED BY ANALYSTS AS THE DRIVING FORCE BEHIND AN ADVANCE ON THE "FOOTSIE." THAT INDEX, THE "FINANCIAL TIMES" 100, ADVANCED 77 POINTS AT THE CLOSE -- A PERCENTAGE-AND-A-HALF GAIN FOR THE DAY. THE PARIS "CAC 40" INDEX CLOSED UP JUST OVER EIGHT POINTS MONDAY. BUT IN GERMANY, FRANKFURT'S KEY "DAX 30" STOCK INDEX WAS DOWN 22-AND-A-HALF POINTS.

    THE U-S DOLLAR CLOSED THE TRADING DAY RELATIVELY UNCHANGED AGAINST THE GERMAN MARK AND THE BRITISH POUND.

    GOLD IN LONDON CLOSED AT 284-DOLLARS-75 CENTS AN OUNCE -- UP TWO DOLLARS FROM THE CLOSE ON FRIDAY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/PCF/SP
    15-Dec-97 1:22 PM EST (1822 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [08] N-Y ECON WRAP (S & L) BY MAX RUSTON (NEW YORK)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224157
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK PRICES IN THE UNITED STATES ENDED THE DAY (MONDAY) HIGHER, AMID SIGNS OF STABILITY IN THE TECHNOLOGY SECTOR. V-O-A'S MAX RUSTON HAS THE LATEST FINANCIAL NEWS FROM NEW YORK.

    TEXT: THE DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE ENDED THE DAY UP 84 POINTS AT 79-HUNDRED-23. THAT INCREASE OF MORE THAN ONE PERCENT HELPED IT RECOUP ABOUT ONE THIRD OF ITS LOSSES FROM LAST WEEK.

    THE BROADER STANDARD AND POOR'S 500 INDEX ROSE 10 POINTS TO CLOSE AT 963.

    ANALYSTS SAY THE INCREASE WAS FUELED BY A "FLIGHT TO QUALITY," CAUSED BY CONCERNS ABOUT THE TECHNOLOGY SECTOR AND PESSIMISM ABOUT THE ECONOMIC SITUATION IN ASIA.

    TECHNOLOGY STOCKS BEGAN THE DAY SHARPLY LOWER, IN A CONTINUATION OF LAST WEEK'S DOWNTURN. BARGAIN HUNTERS THEN STEPPED IN, STABILIZING PRICES. TRANSPORTATION AND UTILITY STOCKS WERE AMONG THE DAY'S BIGGEST GAINERS.

    /// REST OPTIONAL FOR LONG ///

    THE MARKET'S BEST KNOWN STOCKS, KNOWN AS "BLUE CHIPS," WERE ALSO HIGHER. INVESTMENT FIRM J-P MORGAN, ENERGY GIANT GENERAL ELECTRIC, AUTOMAKER GENERAL MOTORS AND ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY DISNEY ALL POSTED STRONG GAINS.

    COMPUTER MAKER COMPAQ WAS AMONG THE DAY'S LOSERS.

    IN CORPORATE NEWS, SOFTWARE GIANT MICROSOFT APPEALED A U-S DISTRICT COURT RULING THAT BARS IT FROM REQUIRING COMPUTER MAKERS TO USE ITS EXPLORER INTERNET BROWSER. MICROSOFT DISPUTES CHARGES THAT IT IS BEING ANTI-COMPETITIVE IN ITS METHODS OF DISTRIBUTING SOFTWARE PRODUCTS. THE PRICE OF MICROSOFT STOCK WAS DOWN EARLY IN THE TRADING DAY BUT RALLIED ON NEWS OF THE APPEAL.

    THE SECOND LARGEST STEEL COMPANY IN THE UNITED STATES -- BETHLEHEM STEEL CORPORATION -- SAYS IT HAS AGREED TO ACQUIRE ONE OF ITS BIGGEST RIVALS, LUKENS INCORPORATED. THE DEAL WILL COST BETHLEHEM ABOUT 650 MILLION DOLLARS. BETHLEHEM SAYS IT WILL RESULT IN A SIGNIFICANT BOOST IN ITS ANNUAL SALES AND SHIPMENTS. STOCK IN BETHLEHEM STEEL ENDED THE DAY SHARPLY HIGHER.

    AND THE U-S CENTRAL BANK RELEASED FIGURES SHOWING CONTINUED STRENGTH IN THE U-S ECONOMY. THE FIGURES SHOW A SURGE IN U-S MANUFACTURING ACTIVITY DURING NOVEMBER. THE AUTO INDUSTRY IS CREDITED WITH PUSHING INDUSTRIAL OUTPUT UP ALMOST ONE PERCENT, SIGNIFICANTLY HIGHER THAN PREDICTIONS, TO ITS HIGHEST LEVEL IN MORE THAN TWO YEARS. (SIGNED) NEB/NY/MPR/LSF/PT
    15-Dec-97 4:47 PM EST (2147 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [09] MONDAY'S EDITORIALS BY ANDREW N. GUTHRIE (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST
    NUMBER=6-10488
    TELEPHONE=619-3335
    EDITOR=ASSIGNMENTS
    CONTENT=

    (UNEDITED)

    /// EDITORS, PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS PERISHABLE MATERIAL AND BECOMES DATED AFTER 10 P-M E-S-T TODAY!! ///

    INTRO: U-S NEWSPAPERS ARE EDITORIALIZING ON A WIDE RANGE OF TOPICS AT THE MIDPOINT OF DECEMBER. COMMENTARYV SUBJECTS INCLUDE LEADERSHIP IN KOREA AS THE ECONOMIC CRISIS CONTINUES; DEREGULATION OF JAPAN AIRLINE RULES; A LOSS FOR MICROSOFT IN THE COURTS; A TERRORIST ATTACK IN PANAMA; AND THE GLOBAL WARMING CONFERENCE AND THE DEBATE YET TO COME.

    HERE WITH SOME EXCERPTS IS ___________________ WITH TODAY'S EDITORIAL DIGEST.

    TEXT: THE "WALL STREET JOURNAL" CONTINUES TO WATCH THE ECONOMIC PROBLEMS IN ASIA, ESPECIALLY IN SOUTH KOREA, WITH ANXIETY, AND VOICES CONCERN ABOUT THE CURRENT LEADERSHIP IN SEOUL AS KOREANS PREPARE FOR A PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION THIS WEEK.

    VOICE: AS SHOCK WAVES FROM SOUTH KOREA'S WORSENING ECONOMIC CRISIS BATTERED HONG KONG AND TAIWAN AT WEEK'S END, RATTLING WINDOWS IN EUROPE AND ACROSS THE ATLANTIC, WE COULDN'T HELP THINKING THAT SEOUL'S POLITICAL BUSINESS IS NOW EVERYBODY'S BUSINESS. THAT IS TO SAY, WHILE NO ONE CAN TELL SOUTH KOREANS HOW TO VOTE IN THIS WEEK'S PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, THE ISSUE OF LEADERSHIP HAS BECOME A MATTER OF LEGITIMATE INTERNATIONAL CONCERN. FINANCE AND ECONOMY MINISTER LIM CHANG-YUEL SAYS HE IS SURE KOREA'S NEXT PRESIDENT WILL RISE TO THE CHALLENGE, AND MEET THE TERMS OF AN I-M-F RESCUE PACKAGE. CAN ANYONE BELIEVE THAT? THE KOREAN PEOPLE HAVE BEEN FED SO MUCH NONSENSE ABOUT 'HUMILIATION' THAT VOICING SUPPORT FOR THE PLAN MAY HAVE HURT RULING PARTY CANDIDATE LEE HOI-CHANG. EVEN SEEN THROUGH THE CURRENT GLOOM, THE ASCENT OF MODERN KOREA IS ONE OF THE GREAT INSPIRATIONAL STORIES OF OUR TIME. BUT KOREA, LIKE EVERY NATION, NEEDS A STATESMAN AT THE HELM; AND NOW MORE THAN EVER.

    TEXT: REGARDING ANOTHER ECONOMIC ISSUE IN THE REGION, JAPAN'S CONTROL OF ITS AIRLINE BUSINESS, AND ITS UNWILLINGNESS TO OPEN IT TO FOREIGN COMPETITION, DRAWS THIS RESPONSE FROM "THE LOS ANGELES TIMES."

    VOICE: U-S GOVERNMENT NEGOTIATORS ARE IN TOKYO THIS WEEK FOR A NEW ROUND OF TALKS AIMED AT INCREASING THE NUMBER OF U-S AIRLINES AND FLIGHTS ALLOWED INTO JAPAN. THE PROSPECTS? ROUGH WEATHER AHEAD. THE GOAL IS TO GET TOKYO TO LIFT RESTRICTIONS AND EVENTUALLY COMMIT TO AN 'OPEN-SKIES' POLICY THAT WOULD FREE AIR ROUTES FROM GOVERNMENT REGULATION. OPEN COMPETITION WOULD BENEFIT TRAVELERS ON BOTH SIDES OF THE PACIFIC -- ESPECIALLY THE JAPANESE, WHO PAY INFLATED PRICES FOR AIR TRAVEL IN THEIR CONTROLLED MARKET. IF JAPAN DOES NOT GET MORE SERIOUS ABOUT OPEN SKIES, THE CLINTON ADMINISTRATION MAY HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO BYPASS JAPAN AND NEGOTIATE SUCH AGREEMENTS WITH ITS NEIGHBORS. THAT'S BAD BUSINESS FOR A JAPAN SEEKING TO REMAIN ASIA'S LEADER.

    TEXT: SEVERAL PAPERS ARE COMMENTING ON A JUDGE'S RULING REGARDING THE HUGE COMPUTER SOFTWEAR COMPANY MICROSOFT. THE RULING BY FEDERAL DISTRICT JUDGE THOMAS PENFIELD JACKSON COMPELS MICROSOFT TO STOP FORCING COMPUTER MAKERS TO USE ITS INTERNET BROWSING SOFTWEAR IF THEY WANT TO USE THE COMPANY'S HUGELY POPULAR WINDOWS 95 SOFTWEAR IN THEIR MACHINES. "THE NEW YORK TIMES" AGREES WITH THE VERDICT.

    VOICE: THE JUDICIAL DECREE IS A SMART STEP THAT PRESERVES THE COMPETITIVE STATUS QUO WHILE THE COURT REVIEWS THE ANTITRUST SUIT BROUGHT BY THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT [AGAINST MICROSOFT] IN OCTOBER. THE INJUNCTION IS NEEDED, JUDGE JACKSON POINTEDLY WROTE, BECAUSE THE PROBABILITY THAT MICROSOFT WILL, THROUGH ITS LICENSING PRACTICES, REINFORCE ITS OPERATING SYSTEM MONOPOLY AND ACQUIRE YET ANOTHER MONOPOLY IN THE INTERNET BROWSERS MARKET "IS SIMPLY TOO GREAT TO TOLERATE INDEFINITELY UNTIL THE ISSUE IS FINALLY RESOLVED". THE RULING SIGNALS THE COURT'S INTENT TO EXAMINE CLOSELY EFFORTS BY MICROSOFT TO CONQUER OTHER SOFTWARE MARKETS AS WELL BY COMBINING MORE APPLICATIONS WITH WINDOWS.

    TEXT: CALLING THE CASE A "TANGLED WEB" "THE WASHINGTON POST" ADDS:

    VOICE: JUDGE JACKSON'S DECISION IS BOTH THOUGHTFUL AND WELL-REASONED. MICROSOFT SHOULD NOT BE ABLE TO OVERWHELM THE BROWSER MARKET BEFORE IT ESTABLISHES THAT ITS LEGAL POSITION IS CORRECT, SO THE INJUNCTION IS A PRUDENT STEP.

    TEXT: TURNING TO EVENTS SOUTH OF THE BORDER, "THE WASHINGTON POST'" ALSO COMMENTS ON HOW A CASE INVOLVING THE KILLING OF A U-S SOLDIER IN PANAMA WAS HANDLED. THE PAPER SAYS ACQUITTING THE SON OF A POLITICAL LEADER BODES ILL FOR A CONTINUED MILITARY PRESENCE IN THE REGION WHEN THE CANAL IS TURNED OVER TO PANAMA.

    VOICE: WHAT IS CLEAR ENOUGH NOW IS THAT AMERICAN SOLDIERS CANNOT POSSIBLY STAY ON IN THE CONDITIONS ATTENDING THE RECENTLY CONCLUDED CASE OF PEDRO MIGUEL GONZALEZ. HE IS ALMOST CERTAINLY THE MURDERER OF AN AMERICAN SOLDIER IN 1992. SERGEANT ZAK HERNANDEZ, IN UNIFORM, WAS KILLED AND A COMPANION WOUNDED IN A DAYLIGHT AMBUSH. A SUSPECT IDENTIFIED BY WITNESSES FLED AND EVADED CAPTURE FOR TWO YEARS, EVENTUALLY TO SURRENDER -- NOT TO THE POLICE, BUT TO THE THEN-PRESIDENT. HE TURNED OUT TO BE A SON OF THE MAN NOW PRESIDENT OF BOTH THE PANAMANIAN CONGRESS AND A FACTION OF THE GOVERNING PARTY CRITICAL OF THE UNITED STATES, GERARDO GONZALEZ. NOT LONG AGO THE SON AND TWO OTHERS WERE ACQUITTED BY A JURY AND SET FREE. A RANDOM SHOOTING IS A MISFORTUNE. THE FLAGRANT POLITICAL FAVOR SHOWN A WELL-CONNECTED SUSPECT IS AN OUTRAGE.

    TEXT: THE U-S GOVERNMENT'S RECENT DECISION TO ALLOW THE IRRADIATION OF RED MEAT TO KILL HARMFUL ORGANISMS THAT CAUSE FOOD POISONING, DRAWS THIS COMMENT FROM "THE BOSTON GLOBE."

    VOICE: PUBLIC HEALTH CONCERNS AS WELL AS ECONOMIC BENEFITS JUSTIFY PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS OF THE METHOD ON A SCALE LARGE ENOUGH TO TEST CONSUMER ACCEPTANCE. ENORMOUS STRIDES HAVE BEEN MADE IN PROTECTING CONSUMERS FROM THE DANGERS OF MISHANDLED FOODS. IRRADIATION IS ONE MORE TOOL IN THE FOOD PROTECTION SYSTEM -- BUT ONLY ONE IN A RANGE OF DEVICES AND METHODS VITAL TO GOOD FOOD HEALTH.

    TEXT: REGARDING THE GLOBAL WARMING TREATY PROTOCOL SIGNED IN JAPAN LAST WEEK, "THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR" PLEADS FOR MORE RATIONAL THOUGHT AND LESS RHETORIC ON THE ISSUE.

    VOICE: EARLY NEXT YEAR AMERICANS ARE IN FOR A BOMBARDMENT OF OPINION-MOLDING ON THE DEAL STRUCK LAST WEEK IN KYOTO. THE TEMPTATION WILL BE STRONG FOR TREATY BACKERS TO SCARE FLORIDIANS WITH VISIONS OF IMMINENT SUBMERSION AND IOWANS WITH TALES OF FRIED CORNFIELDS. THE TEMPTATION WILL BE EQUALLY STRONG FOR INDUSTRY SPOKESPERSONS TO FRIGHTEN CONSUMERS WITH SCENARIOS OF SKY-HIGH PRICES, FRIGID HOMES, AND WORSE-THAN YUGO CARS AT BEEMER [SLANG FOR THE EXPENSIVE GERMAN B-M-W] PRICES. MOST OF THIS IS EITHER PREMATURE, EXAGGERATION, OR NONSENSE. WHILE CLIMATOLOGISTS MOVE CAUTIOUSLY TOWARD BETTER UNDERSTANDING, THE OTHER ACTORS HAVE PLENTY TO DO THAT IS SENSIBLE IN ITS OWN RIGHT. LET'S KEEP RHETORICAL HEAT OUT OF THAT PROCESS.

    TEXT: ON THAT NOTE, WE CONCLUDE THIS BRIEF SAMPLING OF EDITORIALS FROM MONDAY'S U-S PRESS. NEB/ANG/DOH/
    15-Dec-97 10:52 AM EST (1552 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [10] TURKEY/US BY LAURIE KASSMAN (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-38412
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: TURKISH PRIME MINISTER MESUT YILMAZ ARRIVES IN THE UNITED STATES WEDNESDAY FOR A FOUR-DAY VISIT. HE MEETS PRESIDENT CLINTON FRIDAY. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT LAURIE KASSMAN REPORTS THE TRIP MR YILMAZ WILL BE LOOKING FOR A REAFFIRMATION OF TURKEY'S STRATEGIC TIES AFTER THE EUROPEAN UNION AGAIN REJECTED TURKEY'S 30-YEAR PUSH FOR MEMBERSHIP.

    TEXT: PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ NEEDS A POLITICAL BOOST AFTER THE BAD NEWS FROM EUROPE. TURKEY COUNTS ON EUROPEAN MARKETS FOR HALF ITS TRADE, BUT THE EUROPEAN UNION'S LATEST REJECTION ELIMINATES TURKEY'S ABILITY TO INFLUENCE EUROPE'S TRADE POLICIES.

    GRAHAM FULLER OF THE RAND CORPORATION SAYS THE E-U DECISION ALSO REFUELS THE TUG-OF-WAR BETWEEN SECULARISTS AND ISLAMISTS OVER TURKEY'S POLITICAL DIRECTION.

    // FULLER ACT //

    THIS DECISION DOES VINDICATE THE ISLAMISTS' POSITION ALL ALONG THAT THE EUROPEANS REALLY DO NOT WANT THEM IN. THE EUROPEAN DECISION WAS ALSO PARTICULARLY DISMAYING BECAUSE THEY DID NOT REALLY GIVE ANY FACE SAVING MEASURES TO THE TURKISH GOVERNMENT.

    // END ACT //

    MR FULLER SAYS THE END OF THE COLD WAR ALSO HAS ALTERED HOW EUROPE VIEWS TURKEY'S STRATEGIC ROLE.

    // FULLER ACT //

    TURKEY IS NOW INVOLVED IN THE BALKANS AND THE CAUCASUS AND CENTRAL ASIA ALL OF WHICH ARE AREAS OF POTENTIAL CONFLICT, AND OF COURSE WITH IRAQ AND THE KURDISH SITUATION, THE EUROPEANS SEE THE INCLUSION OF TURKEY BRINGING IN ALL THESE POTENTIAL GEOPOLITICAL PROBLEMS WITH IT. SO THE EUROPEANS SEE THIS AS SOMETHING THAT MAKES THEM NERVOUS.

    // END ACT //

    THE EUROPEAN UNION ALSO COMPLAINS ABOUT TURKEY'S HUMAN RIGHTS RECORD AND ITS CONTENTIOUS RELATIONS WITH GREECE. TURKEY'S ISLAMISTS LABEL EUROPE A CHRISTIAN CLUB AND SAY TURKEY WILL NEVER BE ALLOWED TO JOIN SIMPLY BECAUSE IT IS A MUSLIM STATE.

    THE ISLAMISTS GAIN POPULARITY WITH SUCH ARGUMENTS AT A TIME WHEN THE GOVERNMENT IS TRYING TO BAN THEIR POLITICAL PARTY. TURKEY'S SECULAR LEADERSHIP IS ALSO UNDER FIRE FROM MUSLIM ALLIES WHO SHARPLY CRITICIZE ITS MILITARY LINKS WITH ISRAEL.

    DIRECTOR OF TURKISH STUDIES AT THE CENTER FOR STRATEGIC AND INTERNATIONAL STUDIES IN WASHINGTON, BULENT ALIRIZA, SAYS TURKEY'S LONG-TERM POLICY OF TRYING TO BRIDGE EAST AND WEST MAY NO LONGER BE EFFECTIVE.

    // ALIRIZA ACT //

    IN THIS CASE, TURKEY CLEARLY HAS A PROBLEM WITH THE WESTERN COMMUNITY -- AT LEAST THE EUROPEAN PORTION OF IT AND CLEARLY HAS A PROBLEM WITH THE ISLAMIC WORLD. TURKISH FOREIGN POLICY NOW HAS TO BE RESTRUCTURED TO DEAL WITH THIS REALITY.

    // END ACT //

    ANALYST SAY TURKEY'S ALLIES ALSO HAVE TO DEAL WITH THE NEW REALITY.

    WASHINGTON ALWAYS ENCOURAGED ANCHORING TURKEY IN EUROPE THROUGH ITS NATO MEMBERSHIP AND CLOSE TIES TO THE EUROPE. PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ NOW THREATENS TO CUT OFF DIALOGUE WITH EUROPE AND WILL BE LOOKING TO WASHINGTON TO HELP NEUTRALIZE THE SETBACK.

    THE SOURED RELATIONS WITH EUROPE ALSO PUTS PRESSURE ON U-S EFFORTS TO FIND A POLITICAL SETTLEMENT IN CYPRUS. THE ISLAND IS SPLIT BETWEEN GREEK CYPRIOTS IN THE SOUTH AND TURKISH CYPRIOTS IN THE NORTH.

    WHILE THE EUROPEAN UNION REJECTED TURKEY'S BID FOR MEMBERSHIP, IT AGREED TO PUT THE GREEK-CYPRIOT GOVERNMENT ON A FAST TRACK TOWARD E-U MEMBERSHIP. TURKEY'S PRIME MINISTER NOW WARNS NEGATIVE DEVELOPMENTS ON THE ISLAND SHOULD BE BLAMED ON EUROPE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/LMK/RAE
    15-Dec-97 3:08 PM EST (2008 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [11] YEARENDER: E-U EXPANSION '97 BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-38402
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE EUROPEAN UNION THIS PAST YEAR COMMITTED ITSELF TO ITS MOST AMBITIOUS EXPANSION DRIVE EVER, WITH A PLEDGE TO BEGIN TALKS WITH A NUMBER OF WOULD-BE NEW MEMBERS. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ART CHIMES REPORTS FROM PRAGUE, WHERE THERE IS EAGERNESS TO BE PART OF AN EXPANDED EUROPEAN COMMUNITY.

    TEXT: AFTER THE 1989 "VELVET REVOLUTION" THAT TOPPLED FOUR DECADES OF COMMUNIST RULE, THE CZECHS ALMOST LITERALLY TURNED AROUND.

    UNDER SOVIET DOMINATION THEY, LIKE THEIR WARSAW PACT NEIGHBORS, LOOKED EAST. NOW, WITH DEMOCRACY FIRMLY ESTABLISHED AND THE ECONOMY MOVING TOWARD A FREE MARKET, THE CZECHS -- LIKE MANY OF THEIR NEIGHBORS -- ARE EAGER TO JOIN WESTERN INSTITUTIONS.

    NATO IS LIKELY TO EXTEND AN INVITATION TO POLAND, HUNGARY AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC IN THE NEXT COUPLE OF YEARS, AND THE EUROPEAN UNION WILL BE NEGOTIATING WITH A LARGER GROUP OF COUNTRIES, ALTHOUGH MEMBERSHIP WILL NOT BE GRANTED UNTIL AFTER THE TURN OF THE CENTURY.

    THE PROBLEMS ARE DAUNTING. COUNTRIES SUCH AS ESTONIA AND HUNGARY HAVE MADE MUCH PROGRESS, BUT ECONOMICALLY THEY ARE WELL BEHIND CURRENT E-U MEMBERS. REVAMPING LEGAL SYSTEMS TO CONFORM WITH EUROPEAN UNION STANDARDS WILL TAKE YEARS. A BID BY CYPRUS IS CAUGHT UP IN THE CONTINUING DISPUTE BETWEEN GREECE AND TURKEY OVER THE DIVIDED ISLAND.

    NEGOTIATIONS ABOUT HOW TO NEGOTIATE WITH THE NEW MEMBERS HAS ITSELF BEEN DIFFICULT. THERE WAS SOME SUPPORT, LED BY SWEDEN, FOR TALKS WITH ALL CANDIDATES AT ONCE. NOW, HOWEVER, THERE WILL BE TWO TIERS OF WOULD-BE MEMBERS NEGOTIATING FOR ADMISSION.

    SIX COUNTRIES WILL BE IN THE FIRST GROUP -- ESTONIA, THE CZECH REPUBLIC, HUNGARY, POLAND, AND SLOVENIA -- COUNTRIES WHICH HAVE MADE THE MOST PROGRESS IN THEIR POST-COMMUNIST YEARS -- PLUS CYPRUS. MEMBERSHIP FOR THIS GROUP COULD COME AS EARLY AS 2002.

    A SECOND GROUP IS BEING PUT ON A SLOW TRACK IN RECOGNITION OF PROBLEMS EACH OF THEM FACES. BULGARIA, LATVIA, LITHUANIA, ROMANIA, AND SLOVAKIA ARE CONSIDERED EVENTUAL CANDIDATES WHO ARE LAGGING IN THEIR REFORMS PROCESS, AND E-U MEMBERSHIP IS STILL SOME YEARS DOWN THE ROAD.

    /// OPT ///

    E-U LEADERS STILL DO NOT QUITE KNOW WHAT TO DO ABOUT TURKEY, WHERE HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUES, THE KURDISH MINORITY, AND DOMINATION OF NORTHERN CYPRUS REMAIN BARRIERS TO MEMBERSHIP. THE RECENT E-U SUMMIT IN LUXEMBOURG ISSUED A CONDITIONAL INVITATION TO A CONFERENCE ON THE ENLARGEMENT PROCESS, WHICH TURKISH LEADERS QUICKLY REJECTED. /// END OPT ///

    THE PROSPECT OF A LARGE NUMBER OF POORER COUNTRIES JOINING THE EUROPEAN UNION WILL HAVE A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ON THE ORGANIZATION'S INTERNAL DYNAMICS. BENEFITS NOW FLOWING TO THE E-U'S LESS-DEVELOPED COUNTRIES, SUCH AS GREECE AND SPAIN, COULD BE DIVERTED TO NEWER MEMBERS THAT NEED IT MORE. THE EUROPEAN UNION IS LIKELY TO FACE DEMANDS FOR AN OVERHAUL OF ITS CONTROVERSIAL AGRICULTURAL POLICIES.

    THOUGH EUROPE REMAINS A LONG WAY FROM ANY SORT OF POLITICAL UNITY AS SOME KIND OF "UNITED STATES OF EUROPE," ECONOMIC UNIFICATION IS PROCEEDING. THE COMMON CURRENCY -- THE "EURO" -- APPEARS ON TRACK TO BE LAUNCHED A YEAR FROM NOW, ALTHOUGH ONLY A FEW COUNTRIES ARE LIKELY TO PARTICIPATE AT FIRST.

    AND THE EUROPEAN UNION IS TAKING ITS FIRST STEPS TO CHANGING THE VERY MEANING OF ITS NAME, FROM A COLD WAR-DEFINED GROUP OF STATES IN WESTERN EUROPE, TO A CONSTELLATION OF COUNTRIES THAT MORE ACCURATELY MIRRORS THE SWEEP OF AN ENTIRE CONTINENT. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ART/JWH
    15-Dec-97 6:02 AM EST (1102 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [12] YEARENDER: ROMANIA REFORM '97 BY KYLE KING (BUCHAREST)

    DATE=12/15/97
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-38401
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO:THE GOVERNMENT IN ROMANIA WANTS TO PRESS AHEAD WITH PLANS TO PRIVATIZE MONEY-LOSING STATE INDUSTRIES, DESPITE THE PAIN THAT ECONOMIC REFORMS HAVE INFLICTED ON MANY ORDINARY ROMANIANS. MONTHS OF POLITICAL TURMOIL SLOWED THE PACE OF REFORMS IN 1997, BUT AS VOA'S KYLE KING REPORTS FROM BUCHAREST, MANY PEOPLE APPEAR READY FOR A NEW PUSH TOWARD A FREE MARKET.

    TEXT: YOU DON'T HAVE TO GO FAR IN ROMANIA TO FIND PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN HARD HIT BY THE COUNTRY'S TRANSITION TO A FREE MARKET ECONOMY.

    // MAN COMPLAINS IN ROMANIAN, FADE UNDER //

    AT THE MOMENT THE SITUATION IS EXTREMELY DIFFICULT, THIS MAN SAYS AS HE WAITS IN LINE OUTSIDE A BUCHAREST BREAD SHOP. THE MONEY HAS NO VALUE TODAY, AND EVERYTHING IS EXPENSIVE. THERE IS NO GUARANTEE FOR TOMORROW.

    ALTHOUGH EXPERTS SAY THINGS NOW ARE BETTER, ROMANIA'S ECONOMY WAS ON THE VERGE OF COLLAPSE EARLIER THIS YEAR. INFLATION AND PUBLIC SPENDING WERE OUT OF CONTROL AND THE ROMANIAN CURRENCY SUFFERED A 50 PERCENT DROP IN VALUE.

    FOR MANY PEOPLE, LIKE THIS WOMAN WHO LIVES ON FARM OUTSIDE THE CAPITAL, EVEN WITH GOVERNMENT HELP THERE WAS BARELY ENOUGH TO MAKE ENDS MEET.

    // WOMAN IN ROMANIAN, FADE UNDER //

    I'M FROM A FARM, SHE SAYS, AND FUEL IS VERY EXPENSIVE. WE DON'T MAKE ENOUGH FROM THE LAND TO PAY FOR FUEL AND THE MECHANICAL THINGS WE NEED. THE GOVERNMENT HELPS WITH FOOD COUPONS, BUT SHE SAYS IT'S NOT ENOUGH.

    GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS ARE NOW OPTIMISTIC THEY ARE STEERING A COURSE THAT WILL SLOWLY BRING GREATER PROSPERITY TO THE COUNTRY. ANALYSTS SAY THERE HAS BEEN A LOT OF ECONOMIC PROGRESS IN THE PAST YEAR

    IONUT POPESCU (YO NUTZ POPESQUE) CHIEF EDITOR AT (CAPITAL) ROMANIA'S LEADING ECONOMIC WEEKLY MAGAZINE, SAYS TOUGH MEASURES TAKEN TO REDUCE SPENDING AND STABILIZE THE CURRENCY HAVE WORKED.

    // 1ST POPESCU ACT IN ROMANIAN, FADE UNDER //

    IF YOU LOOK AT THE LAST NINE MONTHS ALONE MR. POPESCU SAYS, THE AMOUNT OF FOREIGN INVESTMENT IN ROMANIA HAS BEEN EQUAL TO ABOUT ONE QUARTER OF WHAT HAS COME IN OVER THE PAST SEVEN YEARS. THAT HE SAYS, IS THE GOOD NEWS. BUT, ACCORDING TO MR. POPESCU, EFFORTS TO PRIVATIZE INDUSTRY AND RESTRUCTURE GOVERNMENT RUN ENTERPRISES HAVE BEEN SLOWED IN THE PAST YEAR BY GOVERNMENT RELUCTANCE TO ACT.

    // 2ND POPESCU ACT IN ROMANIAN, FADE UNDER //

    ALL THESE HESITATIONS HAVE MADE FOREIGN INVESTORS HOLD BACK, MANY ARE NOW WAITING FOR MORE REFORMS, MR. POPESCU SAYS. WHEN THAT HAPPENS THINGS WILL IMPROVE FURTHER.

    ROMANIAN PRESIDENT EMIL CONSTANTINESCU SAYS THE NEW COALITION GOVERNMENT WILL DO ITS BEST TO PRESS AHEAD WITH PRIVATIZATION IN THE COMING MONTHS. INTERNATIONAL LENDING OFFICIALS WILL BE WATCHING CAREFULLY TO SEE THE RESULTS.

    HAVING LAID THE FOUNDATIONS FOR SOLID REFORMS, THE PRESIDENT SAYS THE PACE OF THE WORK WILL NOW HAVE TO BE STEPPED UP. DESPITE COMPLAINTS ABOUT THE DIFFICULTIES THAT LIE AHEAD, MANY ORDINARY PEOPLE SAY THEY UNDERSTAND THE NEED FOR PAINFUL MEASURES. (SIGNED)
    NEB/KBK/DW
    15-Dec-97 4:56 AM EST (0956 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    Voice of America: Selected Articles Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
    Back to Top
    Copyright © 1995-2022 HR-Net (Hellenic Resources Network). An HRI Project.
    All Rights Reserved.

    HTML by the HR-Net Group / Hellenic Resources Institute, Inc.
    voa2html v2.03a run on Tuesday, 16 December 1997 - 17:38:09 UTC