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Voice of America, 98-05-25

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

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] NORTHERN IRELAND (NEWS ANALYSIS) BY ANDRE DE NESNERA (BELFAST)
  • [02] BELFAST BOMB (S-ONLY) BY ANDRE DE NESNERA (BELFAST)
  • [03] TURKEY / ISLAMISTS (L ONLY) BY AMBERIN ZAMAN (ANKARA)
  • [04] MONDAY'S EDITORIALS BY ANDREW N. GUTHRIE (WASHINGTON)
  • [05] EURO STOCKS (S ONLY) BY JACK HUIZENGA (LONDON)
  • [06] E-U ARMS CODE (L-ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)

  • [01] NORTHERN IRELAND (NEWS ANALYSIS) BY ANDRE DE NESNERA (BELFAST)

    DATE=5/24/98
    TYPE=NEWS ANALYSIS
    NUMBER=5-40483
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: AFTER AN OVERWHELMING "YES" VOTE IN A REFERENDUM IN FAVOR OF A POLITICAL AGREEMENT, PEOPLE IN NORTHERN IRELAND AND THEIR POLITICIANS ARE PREPARING FOR THE NEXT STAGE ON THE ROAD TO A LASTING PEACE: ELECTIONS TO A NEW ASSEMBLY NEXT MONTH. IN THIS REPORT FROM BELFAST, V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ANDRE DE NESNERA LOOKS AT THE RESULTS OF THE REFERENDUM AND WHAT LIES AHEAD IN NORTHERN IRELAND WITH JOHN ALDERDICE, LEADER OF THE NON-SECTARIAN "ALLIANCE" PARTY.

    TEXT: LEADERS FROM AROUND THE WORLD HAVE SENT CONGRATULATORY MESSAGES TO THE BRITISH AND IRISH GOVERNMENTS -- AS WELL TO SOME NORTHERN IRELAND POLITICIANS -- FOLLOWING THE OVERWHELMING "YES" VOTE IN A REFERENDUM FAVORING A POLITICAL AGREEMENT.

    MORE THAN 80 PERCENT OF THE ONE-POINT-TWO MILLION ELIGIBLE VOTERS CAST BALLOTS IN FRIDAY'S REFERENDUM -- A RECORD TURNOUT FOR ANY ELECTION HERE. AND OF THOSE MORE THAN 71 PERCENT BELIEVED THE BEST WAY TO GUARANTEE A BRIGHTER AND MORE PEACEFUL FUTURE WAS TO SUPPORT THE ACCORD.

    JOHN ALDERICE IS LEADER OF THE NON-SECTARIAN ALLIANCE PARTY WHICH BRINGS TOGETHER UNIONISTS AND NATIONALISTS, PROTESTANTS AND CATHOLICS. A MEMBER OF THE HOUSE OF LORDS, HE WAS ONE OF THE POLITICAL LEADERS WHO NEGOTIATED THE AGREEMENT -- AND HE WAS A STAUNCH ADVOCATE OF A "YES" VOTE.

    BUT EVEN HE WAS STUNNED BY THE EXTENT OF THE FAVORABLE RESPONSE.

    //1ST ALERDICE ACT //

    I REALLY DID NOT THINK THAT WE WERE GOING TO GET IN EXCESS OF 71 PERCENT. I HAD THOUGHT UP UNTIL A FEW DAYS AGO THAT WE COULD PROBABLY MAKE 65 PERCENT, AND THEN IN THE LAST FEW DAYS THE "NO" PEAKED, THE "YES CAMPAIGN" TOOK OFF AND I SENSED THINGS WERE MOVING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. WE HAD A LITTLE CHAT -- SOME OF US IN THE HOUSE OF LORDS, THOSE OF US WHO ARE INTERESTED IN THE NORTHERN IRELAND SITUATION -- AND I PUT MY MONEY ON 68 PERCENT. I THOUGHT WE COULD JUST ABOUT MAKE 68 PERCENT. IN THE END IT WAS MORE THAN 71 PERCENT, AND IN THE ISLAND AS A WHOLE, 85 PERCENT. NOW THESE ARE ABSOLUTELY STAGGERING FIGURES IN ANY DEMOCRATIC SOCIETY. BUT IN ONE SO DEEPLY DIVIDED AS OURS HAS BEEN, CERTAINLY OVER 30 YEARS DIVIDED IN VIOLENCE, IN FACT A DEEPLY DIVIDED SOCIETY FOR A VERY, VERY LONG TIME, THESE ARE EXTRAORDINARYJ FIGURES. THIS IS NOT A MERE AGREEMENT. THE SIZE OF THE VOTE MAKES IT A SETTLEMENT.

    //END ACT //

    MR. ALDERDICE URGED VOTERS TO ENDORSE THE AGREEMENT, SAYING A VOTE IN FAVOR WAS A VOTE FOR HOPE AND A VOTE AGAINST WAS A VOTE FOR DESPAIR. HE SAYS IN THE END, THE PEOPLE OF NORTHERN IRELAND DECIDED THERE WAS NO FUTURE IN VOTING FOR DESPAIR.

    // 2ND ALDERDICE ACT //

    THEY HAVE HAD IT UP TO THEIR TEETH (ARE FED UP) WITH SAYING "NO" AND WITH NEGATIVE POLITICS -- AND, OF COURSE, WITH THE VIOLENCE. AND SO TO THOSE (POLITICIANS) WHO SAID "NO" BECAUSE THEY HAVE ALWAYS REJECTED EVERYTHING, THE PEOPLE HAVE BEEN SAYING: "LOOK. WE HAVE HAD IT UP TO HERE WITH YOU. LET US GET ON WITH OUR LIVES, LET US HAVE A LIFE HERE IN NORTHERN IRELAND, BECAUSE WE CAN DO SO MUCH." THEY HAVE ALSO SAID TO THE PEOPLE WHO HAVE IN THE PAST ESPOUSED VIOLENCE -- AND SOME OF THOSE WHO EVEN OVERNIGHT HAD BEEN USING MORE VIOLENCE -- THEY ARE ALSO SAYING TO THEM: "YOUR DAY IS PASSED. WE WANT NO MORE VIOLENCE."

    // END ACT //

    MR. ALDERDICE SAYS POLITICIANS ARE NOW TURNING THEIR ATTENTION TO THE NEXT ELECTION ON THEIR AGENDA: THE JUNE 25TH BALLOT FOR THE NEW NORTHERN IRELAND ASSEMBLY WHICH WILL GIVE PEOPLE HERE MORE SAY IN RUNNING THEIR OWN AFFAIRS.

    // 3RD ALDERDICE ACT //

    I SUSPECT THAT A MOMENTUM HAS BEEN CREATED BY THE AGREEMENT, BY THE CAMPAIGN, BY THIS EXTRAORDINARY VOTE AND I THINK YOU ARE GOING TO FIND, BY THE END OF THIS WEEK, PARTIES ARE GOING TO BE INTO ELECTION CAMPAIGNING MODE. I THINK YOU HAVE A BANDWAGON ROLLING THERE AND IT IS NOT MOVING IN A NEGATIVE DIRECTION. IT IS MOVING IN A POSITIVE DIRECTION.

    // END ACT //

    THE LEADER OF NORTHERN IRELAND'S NON-SECTARIAN "ALLIANCE" PARTY SAYS THE AGREEMENT OVERWHELMINGLY ENDORSED BY VOTERS REPRESENTS ONLY A FOUNDATION FOR A LASTING PEACE.

    // 4TH ALDERDICE ACT //

    THE WHOLE EDIFICE OF PEACE MUST BE BUILT UPON IT, AND IT WILL HAVE TO BE BUILT BRICK BY BRICK BY BRICK. IT IS GOING TO BE A LONG PROCESS. WE STILL HAVE A DEEPLY DIVIDED SOCIETY, HUGE SUSPICIONS AND HOSTILITY IS THERE. THE EXPERIENCE WHICH IS A VERY PAINFUL ONE ON ALL SIDES IS DEEP IN PEOPLE.

    // END ACT //

    JOHN ALDERDICE SAYS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IS TO BUILD TRUST BETWEEN THE NATIONALISTS AND UNIONISTS -- AND MAYBE, JUST MAYBE, FRIDAY'S REFERENDUM PROVIDED THE FIRST IMPORTANT STEP IN THE HEALING PROCESS THAT MUST TAKE PLACE IN ORDER TO BRING ABOUT A LASTING PEACE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ADEN/DW/MMK
    24-May-98 1:51 PM EDT (1751 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] BELFAST BOMB (S-ONLY) BY ANDRE DE NESNERA (BELFAST)

    DATE=5/24/98
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-232717
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: DESPITE SATURDAY'S OVERWHELMING SUPPORT FOR A POLITICAL AGREEMENT, PEOPLE IN NORTHERN IRELAND HAVE BEEN STARKLY REMINDED THERE ARE TERRORISTS WHO STILL BELIEVE VIOLENCE IS THE ONLY WAY FORWARD. V-O-A'S ANDRE DE NESNERA REPORTS FROM BELFAST.

    TEXT: BELFAST POLICE SAY A CRUDE, IMPROVISED DEVICE PARTIALLY EXPLODED LATE SATURDAY UNDER A RAILROAD BRIDGE IN THE SOUTHERN PART OF THE CITY AS THE DEVICE WAS BEING EXAMINED BY THE ARMY. NO ONE WAS INJURED, AND TWO PEOPLE HAVE BEEN TAKEN INTO CUSTODY.

    THE LOCAL COUNCILLOR -- CARMEL HANNAH -- TOLD RADIO ULSTER SHE STRONGLY CONDEMNS ANY ATTEMPT AT TERRORISM.

    // HANNAH ACT //

    I AM APPALLED TO THINK THAT ANYONE WOULD PLANT A DEVICE, PARTICULARLY AFTER THE GOOD NEWS YESTERDAY. THIS COULD HAVE SERIOUSLY INJURED SOMEBODY AND WE COULD EVEN HAVE HAD A LOSS OF LIFE.

    // END ACT //

    EARLIER, TWO MEN WERE ARRESTED IN THE IRISH REPUBLIC AS THEY WERE DRIVING CARS FILLED WITH 450 KILOGRAMS OF EXPLOSIVES. POLICE BLAME DISSIDENT REPUBLICANS FOR THE ACTION. MEANWHILE, MANY POLITICIANS HERE SAY THE OVERWHELMING SUPPORT FOR THE POLITICAL AGREEMENT MEANS THE PEOPLE OF NORTHERN IRELAND HAVE REJECTED THE MEN OF VIOLENCE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ADEN/DW /MMK
    24-May-98 8:18 AM EDT (1218 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

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

    DATE=5/25/98
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-232752
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: A SPECIAL SECURITY COURT IN TURKEY HAS DEMANDED THE CLOSURE OF THE COUNTRY'S SECOND LARGEST BUSINESS GROUP ON CHARGES THAT ITS ACTIVITIES AND LEADER ARE UNDERMINING TURKEY'S SECULAR GOVERNMENT. AMBERIN ZAMAN IN ANKARA REPORTS THE GROUP'S LEADER, EROL YARAR, IS FACING UP TO THREE YEARS IN PRISON ON CHARGES HE INCITED HATRED IN A SPEECH HE MADE LAST YEAR.

    TEXT: IN THE SPEECH LAST OCTOBER, MR. YARAR CRITICIZED A NEW EDUCATION LAW THAT HAS RESULTED IN THE CLOSURE OF HUNDREDS OF RELIGIOUS TRAINING SCHOOLS. THE LAW IS PART OF A BROADER MILITARY-BACKED CAMPAIGN TO CRACK DOWN ON THE SPREAD OF RADICAL ISLAM IN TURKEY.

    MR. YARAR'S GROUP ALSO HAS BEEN ACCUSED OF PROVIDING FUNDS FOR RADICAL ISLAMIC ORGANIZATINS -- A CHARGE HE DENIED IN A TELEPHONE INTERVIEW WITH V-O-A.

    THE BUSINESS GROUP -- THE INDEPENDENT BUSINESSMEN'S ASSOCIATION, OR MUSIAD -- HAS THREE-THOUSAND MEMBERS WHO BY THEIR OWN ADMISSION ARE MOSTLY PIOUS MUSLIMS.

    MR. YARAR SAID THE COURT'S DECISION TO PROSECUTE HIM AND TO SHUT DOWN HIS ASSOCIATION HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH POLITICS. HE INSISTS THAT THE CAMPAIGN AGAINST MUSIAD IS BEING -- IN HIS WORDS -- ORCHESTRATED BY THE OLD ESTABLISHED BUSINESS CONGLOMERATES IN ISTANBUL. MR. YARAR SAYS THESE BUSINESSES RESENT THE COMPETITION COMING FROM SMALL AND MEDIUM SIZED BUSINESSES WHICH HAVE SPRUNG UP IN RECENT YEARS IN THE ASIAN PART OF TURKEY -- BUSINESSES WHICH HE SAYS ARE ALL MUSIAD MEMBERS. HOWEVER, MANY POLITICAL COMMENTATORS DISAGREE THAT AN ECONOMIC POWER STRUGGLE IS AT THE ROOT OF THE ANTI-ISLAMIST CRACKDOWN. THEY SAY GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS THOUGHT TO BE TOO ISLAMIC AND NEWSPAPER REPORTERS ALSO HAVE BEEN TARGETS OF THE CAMPAIGN.

    LAST MONTH, TWO OF TURKEY'S MOST PROMINENT JOURNALISTS WRITING FOR THE MASS CIRCULATION DAILY SABAH NEWSPAPER WERE ORDERED BY THEIR OWN EDITORS TO STOP CRITICIZING THE MILITARY IN THEIR REPORTS. ONE OF THEM WAS DISMISSED AFTER HE REFUSED TO COMPLY. THE MOVE CAME AFTER SABAH EDITORS ALLEGEDLY RECEIVED COMPLAINTS FROM THE MILITARY ABOUT THE REPORTS.

    ISTANBUL'S ISLAMIST MAYOR TAYYIB ERDOGAN ALSO FACES UP TO 10 MONTHS IN JAIL ON CHARGES SIMILAR TO THOSE AGAINST MUSIAD CHAIRMAN EROL YARAR. IF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT UPHOLDS THE VERDICT, MR. ERDOGAN -- WIDELY EXPECTED TO BECOME THE LEADER OF TURKEY'S RESURGENT ISLAMIST MOVEMENT -- WILL BE BANNED FROM POLITICS FOR GOOD.

    THE FOUNDER OF THE ISLAMIST MOVEMENT AND TURKEY'S FIRST ISLAMIST PRIME MINISTER, NECMETTIN ERBAKAN, WAS BANNED FROM POLITICS LAST JANUARY ON CHARGES OF THREATENING THE SECULAR CONSTITUTION. HIS PARTY, THE LARGEST IN THE TURKISH PARLIAMENT, ALSO WAS BANNED.

    HIS FOLLOWERS HAVE SINCE REGROUPED UNDER A NEW PARTY, VIRTUE OF FAZILET, WHICH WAS LAUNCHED EARLIER THIS MONTH. (SIGNED)
    NEB/AZ/JWH
    25-May-98 8:56 AM EDT (1256 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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

    DATE=05/00/98
    TYPE=U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST
    NUMBER=6-10730
    TELEPHONE=619-3335
    EDITOR=ASSIGNMENTS
    CONTENT=

    ////

    EDS: PERISHABLE MATERIAL, DATED AFTER 10 P-M E-D-S-T ! !

    ////

    INTRO: THE NATION IS RELAXING THIS MONDAY, AND OBSERVING MEMORIAL DAY, IN WHICH THE MEN AND WOMEN WHO HAVE GIVEN THEIR LIVES AT WAR FOR THIS COUNTRY ARE HONORED WITH GRAVESIDE CEREMONIES. IN THE NEWSPAPERS, THERE ARE MANY EDITORIALS DISCUSSING THE SUPREME SACRIFICE THESE PEOPLE HAVE GIVEN TO KEEP THE NATION FREE. BUT FIRST, THERE ARE EDITORIALS ON THE OTHER AFFAIRS OF THE DAY -- AND AMONG THOSE WE FIND COMMENTS ON: THE IRISH PEACE VOTE; GROWING NUCLEAR RISKS IN SOUTH ASIA; THE POST SUHARTO ERA IN INDONESIA. NOW, HERE IS ___________________ WITH A CLOSER LOOK AND SOME QUOTES IN TODAY'S EDITORIAL DIGEST.

    TEXT: SEVERAL PAPERS ARE PRAISING THE YES VOTE IN BOTH NORTHERN IRELAND AND THE IRISH REPUBLIC IN FAVOR OF THE COMPREHENSIVE PEACE AGREEMENT WORKED OUT WITH FORMER U-S SENATOR GEORGE MITCHELL. "THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE" SAYS IN PART:

    VOICE: HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF VOTERS IN NORTHERN IRELAND ON FRIDAY SAID A RESOUNDING 'YES' TO PEACE, TURNING THEIR BACKS ON A BLOODY AND FEARFUL PAST. AFTER 30 YEARS OF SECTARIAN VIOLENCE, HARMONY CANNOT BE EXPECTED TO PREVAIL OVERNIGHT, BUT FRIDAY'S HISTORIC VOTE MARKS A CRITICAL FIRST STEP TOWARD HEALING THE AGE-OLD RIFT BETWEEN PROTESTANTS AND CATHOLICS. ..... CATHOLICS VOTED OVERWHELMINGLY IN FAVOR. FOR THE PROTESTANT, PRO-BRITISH MAJORITY, IT WAS NOT AN EASY CHOICE. BUT ULTIMATELY IT WAS THE ONLY CHOICE THEY COULD MAKE WITHOUT DOOMING THEIR CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN TO A FUTURE MARRED NOT ONLY BY VIOLENCE BUT BY THE ISOLATION IT ENGENDERED.

    TEXT: "THE MIAMI HERALD" ALSO REJOICES THIS MEMORIAL MONDAY.

    VOICE: /// OPT /// NOT FOR NOTHING IS IRELAND CALLED THE EMERALD ISLE. FROM ITS TRANQUIL MEADOWS TO ITS SWEEPING VALLEYS TO THE POSTAGE-STAMP GARDENS OF TENS OF THOUSANDS OF ITS HOUSEHOLDS, THE ISLAND -- NORTH AND SOUTH -- DEFINES 'EMERALD.' BUT FOR THREE DECADES THE GREEN IN NORTHERN ISLAND, OR ULSTER, HAS BEEN SPLOTCHED WITH BLOOD -- THE STAIN OF 32-HUNDRED PEOPLE KILLED IN RELIGIOUS STRIFE. THAT COULD -- AND GOD WILLING WILL BE -- OVER. /// END OPT /// ..... IF THIS PEACE PROCESS SUCCEEDS, THE ANIMOSITY BETWEEN THE BRITISH-RULED, PREDOMINANTLY PROTESTANT NORTHERN IRELAND AND THE PREDOMINANTLY CATHOLIC REPUBLIC OF IRELAND TO THE SOUTH ONE DAY COULD END. THE PROCESS ITSELF IS A TRIUMPH OF PATIENT DIPLOMACY ENGINEERED BY FORMER U-S SENATOR GEORGE MITCHELL. ..... WILL IT WORK? WHO KNOWS. BUT AT LEAST IT HAS A BASIS -- HOPE, WHERE ONCE THERE WAS NONE. IN HOPE, ALL CAN PLACE FAITH.

    TEXT: TODAY'S "NEW YORK TIMES" IS CONCERNED ABOUT THE GROWING THREAT OF NUCLEAR CONFRONTATION IN SOUTH ASIA, NOW THAT INDIAN HAS CARRIED OUT FIVE NUCLEAR EXPLOSION TESTS.

    VOICE: IF PAKISTAN TESTS NUCLEAR WEAPONS, AS MANY EXPECT, SOUTH ASIA WILL HAVE A PAIR OF HOSTILE NUCLEAR POWERS. WHILE A NUCLEAR STANDOFF BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND SOVIET UNION MAY HAVE HELPED TO KEEP THE COLD WAR FROM BECOMING A HOT WAR, PAKISTAN AND INDIA FACE A MORE UNSTABLE EQUATION. MEASURES THE SUPERPOWERS EMPLOYED TO REDUCE MUTUAL MISTRUST WOULD BE USEFUL, BUT EVEN THEIR ADOPTION WOULD LEAVE SOUTH ASIA IN PERIL OF A NUCLEAR CONFLICT. ..... UNLIKE THE SUPERPOWERS, INDIA AND PAKISTAN WILL HAVE SMALL, POORLY PROTECTED NUCLEAR STOCKS. NO NATION IN THAT SITUATION CAN BE SURE THAT ITS WEAPONS COULD SURVIVE A NUCLEAR ATTACK. EACH, THEN, HAS THE INCENTIVE TO LAUNCH A PRE-EMPTIVE STRIKE.

    TEXT: STILL IN THE GENERAL AREA, TO THE NORTH, THERE IS CONCERN ABOUT THE SITUATION IN AFGHANISTAN VOICED IN TODAY'S "LOS ANGELES TIMES," ABOUT HOW THE TALEBAN ULTRA-ORTHODOX ISLAMIC GOVERNMENT IS ALLEGEDLY USING STARVATION AS A POLITICAL WEAPON AGAINST ITS OPPONENTS IN THE CIVIL WAR.

    VOICE: /// OPT /// THE TALIBAN, RELIGIOUS ZEALOTS TRYING TO CONSOLIDATE POWER IN AFGHANISTAN, HAVE STOOPED TO A BARBAROUS LOW BY STARVING CIVILIANS IN AN ATTEMPT TO DEFEAT THEIR ENEMIES. /// END OPT /// THE ISLAMIC FUNDAMENTALISTS HAVE BLOCKED SUPPLIES FROM REACHING THE CENTRAL AFGHANISTAN REGION OF HAZARAJAT, HOME TO THEIR ETHNIC FOES, THE HAZARA PEOPLE. /// OPT /// UNITED NATIONS OFFICIALS TOLD THE TIMES ... THE ACTION OF A GOVERNMENT SUPPRESSING EFFORTS TO FEED ITS OWN PEOPLE IS BEYOND THE PALE. /// END OPT /// RELIEF WORKERS AND STARVING FARMERS GIVE ACCOUNTS OF HAVING NOTHING BUT GRASS TO EAT AND WATCHING THEIR CHILDREN DIE OF HUNGER.... WHAT'S HAPPENING IS A SETTLING OF OLD SCORES. THE BLOCKADE ENABLES THE TALIBAN, MOST OF THEM PUSHTUNS, THE COUNTRY'S MAJOR ETHNIC GROUP, TO SUPPRESS THE HAZARAS, THE LARGEST MINORITY IN AFGHANISTAN. HAZARAS HAVE A DIFFERENT LANGUAGE AND FOLLOW A DIFFERENT BRANCH OF ISLAM. FOR NOW THERE IS LITTLE CHOICE FOR AID GROUPS AND OUTSIDE GOVERNMENTS BUT TO PUSH THE TALIBAN TO RELENT. /// OPT /// NEIGHBORING PAKISTAN, ESPECIALLY SHOULD USE ITS CONSIDERABLE INFLUENCE TO PERSUADE THE TALIBAN TO SEE IT GAINS NOTHING BY STARVING THE PEOPLE WITH WHOM IT SHARES A DESOLATE LAND. /// END OPT ///

    TEXT: AS REGARDS THE RECENT TRANSITION OF POWER IN INDONESIA, "THE WASHINGTON POST" SAYS THE WHOLE WORLD WILL BE WATCHING TO SEE HOW QUICKLY THE HABIBIE GOVERNMENT MOVES TOWARD REFORMS AND HOW SUCCESSFUL IT WILL BE.

    VOICE: MR. HABIBIE'S FIRST PROBLEM IS INDONESIA'S MONTHS-OLD ECONOMIC CRISIS. TOUTED ONLY A YEAR AGO AS A MODEL OF POOR-COUNTRY DEVELOPMENT, THIS ARCHIPELAGO NATION OF 202 MILLION IS GROWING POORER BY THE DAY. ITS CURRENCY IS WORTH A QUARTER OF ITS 1997 VALUE, FACTORIES HAVE PRETTY MUCH STOPPED WORKING, AND UNEMPLOYMENT IS ON THE RISE. TWO WEEKS OF POLITICAL PROTEST AND ONE NIGHT OF VENGEFUL RIOTING HAVE SCARED AWAY WHATEVER INVESTORS REMAINED. MR. HABIBIE HAS PLEDGED TO ADHERE TO AN ECONOMIC RESTRUCTURING PROGRAM APPROVED BY THE INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND. BUT AT BEST SUCH A PROGRAM WILL NOT BRING THE QUICK RELIEF MANY INDONESIANS EXPECT.... A CLEAR COMMITMENT TO A TRANSITION TO DEMOCRACY WOULD GIVE MR. HABIBIE HIS BEST SHOT [CHANCE] AT OVERCOMING HIS HANDICAPS.

    /// OPT ///

    TEXT: BRIEFLY, ON THE MIDDLE EAST PEACE PROCESS, "THE WASHINGTON POST" TALKS ABOUT THE BASIC PRINCIPAL OF THE U-S NOT FORCING ISRAEL TO MAKE REDEPLOYMENTS IN THE WEST BANK THAT COULD COMPROMISE ISRAEL'S SECURITY. BUT THE PAPER SUPPORTS SECRETARY OF STATE MADELEINE ALBRIGHT'S EXTENSION OF THIS CONCEPT TO INCLUDE CONCERN FOR THE PALESTINIANS.

    VOICE: .... MADELEINE ALBRIGHT, MAKES A FAIR AND NECESSARY AMPLIFICATION ... IN THE LAMED BUT CONTINUING AMERICAN SEARCH FOR TERMS THAT WILL DRAW IN ISRAELIS AND THAW THEIR FROZEN TALKS WITH THE PALESTINIANS. SHE AFFIRMS THE BROAD PLEDGE OF AMERICAN CONSTANCY .... BUT, SHE ADDS, 'IT IS IN THE NATURE OF PARTNERSHIP THAT ISRAEL SHOULD TAKE PALESTINIAN CONCERNS INTO ACCOUNT, WHILE FOLLOWING THE TERMS OF ITS AGREEMENT. OTHERWISE, THE PEACE PROCESS CANNOT MOVE FORWARD."

    /// END OPT ///

    TEXT; LASTLY, SOME THOUGHTS ON MEMORIAL DAY, BEING OBSERVED ACROSS THE NATION BY THE LIVING TO HONOR THE DEAD, WHOSE SACRIFICE MAINTAINED THE COUNTRY'S FREEDOM. "THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER," ACCOMPANIES A PHOTO JOURNAL OF MONUMENTS IN ITS AREA, WITH THESE THOUGHTS:

    VOICE: TODAY, AMERICA REMEMBERS. IT REMEMBERS THOSE WHO RISKED HAZARD FOR NATION, ABOVE ALL THOSE FOR WHOM THAT GAMBLE TURNED TO BLOOD AND DARKNESS. IT REMEMBERS WITH SPEECHES AND SERVICES, HOT DOGS AND HOOPLA [CELEBRATIONS]. AND IT REMEMBERS IN STONE. THESE ARE THE PILLARS OF COMMUNITY, THE OBELISKS, MARKERS AND STATUES THAT HONOR THE DEAD OF AMERICA'S WARS. AT PARK, PLAZA AND CROSSROADS, THEY TESTIFY WITH STUBBORN PRIDE, REMINDING US TO WHOM WE OWE OUR PROSPEROUS FREEDOM.

    TEXT: WITH THAT TRIBUTE, WE CONCLUDE THIS SAMPLING OF COMMENT FROM MEMORIAL HOLIDAY NEWSPAPERS AROUND THE COUNTRY.
    NEB/ANG/MMK
    25-May-98 11:19 AM EDT (1519 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [05] EURO STOCKS (S ONLY) BY JACK HUIZENGA (LONDON)

    DATE=5/25/98
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-232763
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK PRICES ROSE IN TRADING MONDAY IN EUROPE. V-O-A'S JACK HUIZENGA HAS THE CLOSING MARKET REPORT FROM LONDON.

    TEXT: SHARE PRICES CLOSED HIGHER IN A SLOW TRADING DAY IN EUROPE. ANALYSTS SAID HOLIDAYS IN THE UNITED STATES AND BRITAIN KEPT TRADING VOLUMES LOW.

    BUT MOST EUROPEAN MARKETS THAT WERE OPEN RECORDED GAINS, WITH PARIS AND FRANKFURT AMONG THOSE REACHING NEW CLOSING HIGHS. IN PARIS, THE CAC-40 INDEX ROSE TO A RECORD HIGH 41-09, UP 59 POINTS, ALMOST ONE-AND-ONE-HALF PERCENT.

    AND IN FRANKFURT, THE DAX INDEX ROSE STEADILY DURING THE FLOOR TRADING DAY, THEN IN LATER COMPUTERIZED TRADING IT CLOSED AT MORE THAN 55-92, ONE-AND-ONE-TENTH PERCENT.

    ON EUROPEAN CURRENCY EXCHANGES, THE VALUE OF THE U-S DOLLAR ROSE AGAINST THE BRITISH POUND, GERMAN MARK, AND THE JAPANESE YEN. (SIGNED) OPT OUTRO: THE U-S STOCK MARKETS WERE CLOSED MONDAY, FOR THE MEMORIAL DAY HOLIDAY.
    NEB/JWH/MMK
    25-May-98 1:39 PM EDT (1739 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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

    DATE=5/25/98
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-232751
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE FOREIGN MINISTERS OF THE 15 EUROPEAN UNION COUNTRIES HAVE AGREED (EDS: MONDAY) ON A NEW CODE OF CONDUCT FOR ARMS SALES. THIS IS DESIGNED TO PREVENT MEMBER STATES FROM CASHING-IN ON THEIR PARTNERS RELUCTANCE TO DO BUSINESS WITH SUSPECT REGIMES. JOHN FRASER REPORTS FROM E-U HEADQUARTERS IN BRUSSELS.

    TEXT: THE NEW CODE OF CONDUCT WAS A BRITISH INITIATIVE, AND BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY ROBIN COOK SAYS HE IS VERY PLEASED AT THE AGREEMENT.

    UNDER THE CODE OF CONDUCT, THERE ARE CLEAR RULES FOR REFUSING TO SUPPLY ARMS TO A BIDDER, WHICH SHOULD BE APPLIED BY ALL. IF ONE GOVERNMENT REFUSES A SALE OF ARMS, IT WILL OBLIGED TO INFORM ITS E-U PARTNERS OF THIS. IF ONE OF THESE PARTNERS DECIDES NEVERTHELESS TO GO AHEAD WITH A SIMILAR ARMS SALE, IT WILL BE REQUIRED TO REPORT THIS -- AND TO JUSTIFY ITS DECISION. IT WILL THEN BE POSSIBLE FOR THE COUNTRY WHICH REFUSED THE SALE TO CHALLENGE THE STATE WHICH IS SELLING THE ARMS AT A EUROPEAN MINISTERS' MEETING.

    THERE WILL BE NO VETO, BUT BRITISH OFFICIALS SAY THAT PEER PRESSURE MAY BE EFFECTIVE IN ENSURING A MORE CONSISTENT POLICY AMONG THE 15 E-U GOVERNMENTS.

    THEY ADD THAT IT WAS A DIFFICULT TASK TO BALANCE THE CONFLICTING VIEWS OF THOSE E-U COUNTRIES -- SUCH AS FRANCE -- WHICH WANTED LITTLE ACTION, AS AGAINST THE NORDIC EUROPEAN NATIONS, WHICH WANTED A FULLY-HARMONISED EUROPEAN POLICY ON ARMS SALES. AND THEY CLAIM THAT THE UNANIMOUS DECISION ON THE CODE OF CONDUCT REPRESENTS A REMARKABLE ACHIEVEMENT FOR THE EUROPEAN UNION, AS IT AMOUNTS TO A FIRST STEP TOWARDS A HARMONIZED POLICY ON ARMS SALES.

    THE AGREEMENT INCLUDES EIGHT CRITERIA WHICH MUST BE USED BY EUROPEAN GOVERNMENTS WHEN ASSESSING WHETHER OR NOT TO ISSUE EXPORT LICENSES FOR ARMS.

    // OPT //

    THE EXPORTER MUST TAKE ACCOUNT OF EXISTING INTERNATIONAL POLICIES -- SUCH AS UNITED NATIONS OR E-U ARMS EMBARGOES, OR AGREEMENTS ON NON-PROLIFERATION OF WEAPONS.

    THEY MUST ALSO EXAMINE THE HUMAN RIGHTS RECORD OF THE POTENTIAL PURCHASER, AND SHOULD NOT ALLOW THE SALE TO GO AHEAD, IF THERE IS A CLEAR RISK THAT THE WEAPONS COULD BE USED FOR INTERNAL REPRESSION.

    THERE MUST BE CAUTION AND VIGILANCE WHERE THE COUNTRY CONCERNED HAS BEEN CONDEMNED FOR HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS BY THE E-U OR OTHER ORGANIZATIONS, INCLUDING THE UNITED NATIONS.

    IT MUST BE ESTABLISHED THAT THE WEAPONS WILL NOT BE USED TO PROLONG A CIVIL WAR, OR AGGRESSION AGAINST A NEIGHBORING STATE -- AND THE SECURITY OF E-U NATIONS AND OTHER FRIENDLY POWERS MUST ALSO BE TAKEN CONSIDERED.

    CONSIDERATION MUST ALSO BE TAKEN ON WHETHER THE PURCHASING COUNTRY SUPPORTS TERRORISM, AND FULLY RESPECTS INTERNATIONAL LAW.

    THERE MUST ALSO BE AN ASSESSMENT OF WHETHER OR NOT THE ARMS WILL GO WHERE THE PURCHASER SAYS THEY WILL GO -- OR IF THERE IS A DANGER OF THEM BEING DIVERTED TO ANOTHER NATION. AND, AN ASSESSMENT MUST BE MADE OF WHETHER THE PURCHASER CAN REALLY AFFORD THE ARMS -- WITH CARE BEING TAKEN TO SEE THAT THE PURCHASE WILL NOT HAMPER THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE COUNTRY. //END OPT//

    BY APPLYING THESE RULES, THE IS E-U GOVERNMENTS SHOULD DEVELOP A MORE CONSISTENT APPROACH TO ARMS SALES. HOWEVER, THE WEAKNESS OF THIS AGREEMENT IS THAT THE FINAL DECISION ON WHETHER TO SELL OR NOT STILL RESTS WITH EACH GOVERNMENT. AND, AT THE END OF THE DAY, THERE WILL BE NOTHING TO STOP IT GOING AHEAD WITH AN ARMS SALE -- EVEN IF THIS IS CONSIDERED TO BE IRRESPONSIBLE BY ALL ITS EUROPEAN UNION PARTNERS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/JF/PCF
    25-May-98 8:47 AM EDT (1247 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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