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Voice of America, 98-11-15

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

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] BOSNIA - SESELJ (S/L) BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)
  • [02] ITALY-KURDS (LONG ONLY) BY SABINA CASTELFRANCO (ROME)

  • [01] BOSNIA - SESELJ (S/L) BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)

    DATE=11/14/98
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-241672
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: INTERNATIONAL OFFICIALS IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA HAVE EXPELLED A TOP MEMBER OF THE SERBIAN GOVERNMENT BECAUSE OF HIS EXTREMIST VIEWS. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ART CHIMES IS FOLLOWING THE STORY FROM OUR REGIONAL NEWS BUREAU IN PRAGUE.

    TEXT: THE WESTERN POWERS' HIGH REPRESENTATIVE HAS DECLARED DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER VOJISLAV SESELJ PERSONA NON GRATA, ORDERING HIM OUT OF THE COUNTRY. MR. SESELJ LEFT BOSNIA SATURDAY WITHOUT INCIDENT AFTER TALKS WITH THE NEW PRESIDENT OF BOSNIA'S SERB REPUBLIC, NIKOLA POPLASEN. MR. POPLASEN IS A MEMBER OF THE SERBIAN RADICAL PARTY, THE BOSNIAN BRANCH OF MR. SESELJ'S PARTY IN BELGRADE.

    //OPT//

    PRESIDENT POPLASEN'S VICTORY WAS A DISAPPOINTMENT TO THE WEST, WHICH HAD BACKED THE INCUMBENT, BILJANA PLAVSIC. MRS. PLAVSIC IS A PRAGMATIC NATIONALIST WHO SUPPORTED THE DAYTON PEACE AGREEMENT. //END OPT//

    HIGH REPRESENTATIVE CARLOS WESTENDORP LAST MONTH SAID MR. SESELJ SHOULD NOT GET INVOLVED IN BOSNIAN POLITICS. MR. SESELJ HAS OPPOSED THE DAYTON PEACE AGREEMENT THAT ENDED THE BOSNIAN WAR. THAT AGREEMENT OUTLINED A UNIFIED BOSNIA DIVIDED INTO A SERB REPUBLIC AND A MUSLIM-CROAT FEDERATION.

    // REST OPT FOR LONG VERSION //

    THE TWO ENTITIES WERE SUPPOSED TO OPERATE SOMETHING LIKE STATES OR PROVINCES UNDER A NATIONAL GOVERNMENT, BUT ONGOING ANIMOSITY HAS MADE COOPERATION BETWEEN THE ENTITIES ALMOST NON-EXISTENT.

    HIGH REPRESENTATIVE WESTENDORP HAS TAKEN AN INCREASINGLY GREATER ROLE IN THE RUNNING OF THE COUNTRY, INCLUDING SEEMINGLY TRIVIAL BUT SYMBOLIC DETAILS SUCH AS APPROVING DESIGNS FOR MONEY AND LICENSE PLATES.

    WESTERN OFFICIALS HAVE CONSIDERED VOJISLAV SESELJ AN OBSTACLE TO PEACE AND NORMALIZATION IN THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA. DURING THE BOSNIAN WAR HE WAS AN ALLY OF RADOVAN KARADZIC, THE BOSNIAN SERB LEADER WHO IS NOW AN INDICTED WAR CRIMES SUSPECT. BACK HOME IN BELGRADE HE HAS LED A CRACKDOWN ON THE INDEPENDENT MEDIA AND ON ACADEMIC FREEDOM IN THE UNIVERSITIES. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ART/DW/GE
    14-Nov-98 10:38 AM EST (1538 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] ITALY-KURDS (LONG ONLY) BY SABINA CASTELFRANCO (ROME)

    DATE=11/14/98
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-241681
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE LEADER OF TURKEY'S OUTLAWED KURDISTAN WORKERS PARTY, ABDULLAH OCALAN, REQUESTED POLITICAL ASYLUM IN ITALY SATURDAY AS HUNDREDS OF KURDISH SUPPORTERS DEMONSTRATED OUTSIDE THE ROME MILITARY HOSPITAL WHERE HE IS BEING HELD. AS SABINA CASTELFRANCO REPORTS FROM ROME, THE KURDISH REBEL LEADER HAS ALSO BEGUN A HUNGER STRIKE.

    TEXT: ITALIAN OFFICIALS SAY THE KURDISH LEADER WAS ARRESTED AT ROME AIRPORT AS HE ATTEMPTED TO WALK THROUGH PASSPORT CONTROL ON A FALSE PASSPORT. HE HAD FLOWN INTO ROME FROM MOSCOW AND APPEARED TO BE NO MORE THAN AN ORDINARY BUSINESSMAN.

    BUT A SPOKESMAN FOR THE KURDISTAN WORKERS PARTY SAID IN ROME SATURDAY THAT THE ITALIAN GOVERNMENT KNEW IN ADVANCE OF MR. OCALAN'S ARRIVAL. HE SAID THE REBEL LEADER HAD TURNED HIMSELF IN OF HIS OWN FREE WILL AND REQUESTED POLITICAL ASYLUM. OTHER KURDISH SOURCES SAID MR. OCALAN'S DECISION TO SURRENDER WAS PART OF A CAMPAIGN TO TURN WORLD ATTENTION TO THE PLIGHT OF KURDS.

    ABDULLAH OCALAN IS DESCRIBED BY TURKEY AS ITS MOST WANTED TERRORIST. ANKARA HAS ALREADY APPLIED FOR HIS EXTRADITION FROM ITALY. BUT THAT IS NOW LIKELY TO BE BLOCKED BY THE KURDISH LEADER'S REQUEST FOR ASYLUM. IN ADDITION, THE ITALIAN CONSTITUTION FORBIDS EXTRADITION TO COUNTRIES, LIKE TURKEY, WHERE CAPITAL PUNISHMENT IS STILL IN FORCE.

    OUTSIDE THE ROME MILITARY HOSPITAL WHERE HE IS BEING HELD, HUNDREDS OF KURDISH SUPPORTERS GATHERED IN HEAVY RAIN, AS ONE OF THEM SAID, "TO GREET OUR PRESIDENT, NOT TO PROTEST AGAINST THE ITALIAN GOVERNMENT." THEY CRIED OUT THEIR LEADER'S NAME, USING HIS NICKNAME "APO," WHICH MEANS UNCLE IN THEIR LANGUAGE. A GROUP OF WOMEN DANCED AND SANG TRADITIONAL KURDISH SONGS.

    THEIR SPOKESMAN SAID MANY MORE KURDS AND SUPPORTERS OF THEIR CAUSE ARE TRAVELLING TO ITALY FROM ALL OVER EUROPE TO TAKE PART IN FURTHER DEMONSTRATIONS SUNDAY.

    ABDULLAH OCALAN HAS LED THE ARMED REVOLT AGAINST THE TURKISH GOVERNMENT SINCE 1984 WITH THE AIM OF ESTABLISHING AN INDEPENDENT KURDISH STATE IN SOUTHEAST TURKEY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/SC/DW/GE
    14-Nov-98 1:59 PM EST (1859 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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