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Voice of America, 99-01-08

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

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] KOSOVO VIOLENCE (L-ONLY) BY PHILIP SMUCKER (PRISTINA)
  • [02] U-N KOSOVO (L-ONLY) BY LISA SCHLEIN (GENEVA)
  • [03] NATO / KOSOVO BY LAURIE KASSMAN (LONDON)
  • [04] TURKEY HUMAN RIGHTS (CORRECTED) (L ONLY) BY ELAINE JOHANSON (NEW YORK)
  • [05] YUGOSLAVIA ECONOMY BY BARRY WOOD (WASHINGTON)
  • [06] EURO / FRANCE / JAPAN (L) BY JULIAN NUNDY (PARIS)
  • [07] N-Y ECON WRAP (S & L) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)
  • [08] FRIDAY'S EDITORIALS BY ANDREW N. GUTHRIE (WASHINGTON)
  • [09] IRAQ/KURDS/DEPORTATIONS BY AMBERIN ZAMAN (SULAYMANIYAH)

  • [01] KOSOVO VIOLENCE (L-ONLY) BY PHILIP SMUCKER (PRISTINA)

    DATE=1/8/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-243947
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: IN THE WORST REPORTED VIOLENCE IN KOSOVO SINCE THE NEW YEAR BEGAN, THREE SERBIAN POLICEMEN WERE KILLED NEAR THE TOWN OF SUVA REKA, SOUTHWEST OF THE CAPITAL, PRISTINA. THE DEATHS COME AS SERBIAN CIVILIANS ARE DEMANDING MORE PROTECTION FROM THE YUGOSLAV GOVERNMENT. MEANWHILE IN THE NORTH OF KOSOVO, WESTERN SOURCES SAY A YUGOSLAV ARMY CONVOY HAS BEEN AMBUSHED AND HOSTAGES TAKEN BY ETHNIC ALBANIAN GUERRILLAS. DETAILS FROM PRISTINA AND REPORTER PHILIP SMUCKER.

    TEXT: THE THREE SERBIAN POLICEMEN WERE REPORTER KILLED FRIDAY IN CLASHES WITH ETHNIC ALBANIAN GUERRILLAS. A SPOKESMAN FOR THE O-S-C-E, THE ORGANIZATION FOR SECURITY AND COOPERATION IN EUROPE, CONFIRMED THAT TWO SERBIAN POLICEMEN HAD DIED INSTANTLY IN A CLASH NEAR THE TOWN OF SUVA REKA IN CENTRAL KOSOVO. A THIRD DIED IN THE HOSPITAL OF HIS WOUNDS. HE WAS DRIVEN THERE BY O-S-C-E OFFICIALS IN KOSOVO ASSIGNED TO MONITOR THE FRAGILE TRUCE.

    O-S-C-E SPOKESMAN SANDY BLYTH SAYS THE SHOOTING APPEARED TO INVOLVE AN EXCHANGE BETWEEN TWO ARMORED VEHICLES. A SPOKESMAN FOR ETHNIC ALBANIAN "KOSOVO LIBERATION ARMY," THE K-L-A, SAYS THAT ARMED SERB CIVILIANS HAD PROVOKED THE INCIDENT. THE SPOKESMAN GAVE NO FURTHER DETAILS.

    WESTERN SOURCES CONFIRMED THAT SEVERAL CIVILIANS WERE WOUNDED IN THE CROSSFIRE. OTHER WESTERN SOURCES SAID THAT A YUGOSLAV ARMY CONVOY HAD BEEN AMBUSHED IN NORTHERN KOSOVO NEAR THE TOWN OF MITROVICA. SEVERAL HOSTAGES WERE TAKEN AND O-S-C-E OFFICIALS ARE WORKING TO GAIN THEIR RELEASE.

    WESTERN MONITORS, WORKING TO CALM TENSIONS IN KOSOVO, FEAR THAT THE GROWING VIOLENCE COULD SOON SPILL OVER INTO A FULL-BLOWN WAR.

    FRIDAY'S SHOOTOUT COMES IN THE WAKE OF RISING TENSIONS ACROSS THE SERBIAN PROVINCE. THE KILLING OF A SERB SECURITY GUARD ON TUESDAY SPARKED BLOCKADES OF MAJOR HIGHWAYS IN KOSOVO BY SERB CIVILIANS ON THURSDAY AND FRIDAY.

    THE SERBS -- MANY OF THEM ALREADY ARMED WITH SUB-MACHINE GUNS -- ARE DEMANDING THAT THE YUGOSLAV GOVERNMENT STEP UP ITS SECURITY PRESENCE IN KOSOVO.

    WESTERN OBSERVERS SAY THAT ANY INCREASE IN SERBIAN FORCES IN KOSOVO IS UNACCEPTABLE AND COULD SPARK AN ARMED INTERVENTION FROM NATO.

    //REST OPT//

    THE NEW CHAIRMEN IN OFFICE OF THE O-S-C-E, NORWEGIAN FOREIGN MINISTER KNUT VOLLEBAEK, VISITS KOSOVO ON TUESDAY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/PS/PCF
    08-Jan-99 12:01 PM EST (1701 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

    [02] U-N KOSOVO (L-ONLY) BY LISA SCHLEIN (GENEVA)

    DATE=1/8/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-243942
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE U-N REFUGEE AGENCY, THE U-N-H-C-R, SAYS HUNDREDS OF ETHNIC ALBANIANS DISPLACED BY THE WAR IN THE SERBIAN PROVINCE OF KOSOVO HAVE RETURNED TO HOMES THEY ABANDONED LAST YEAR. IN THE PAST FEW WEEKS, AROUND 800 PEOPLE HAVE RETURNED TO THE TOWN OF MALISEVO. DETAILS FROM LISA SCHLEIN IN GENEVA.

    TEXT: LAST JULY, THE THREE-THOUSAND INHABITANTS OF MALISEVO FLED INTO NEARBY HILLS TO ESCAPE FIGHTING BETWEEN SERB SOLDIERS AND KOSOVO REBELS. UNLIKE MOST OTHERS DISPLACED BY THE WAR, THE INHABITANTS OF MALISEVO REFUSED TO RETURN HOME AFTER A CEASE-FIRE BETWEEN THE WARRING PARTIES WAS IMPLEMENTED.

    U-N-H-C-R SPOKESMAN KRIS JANOWSKI SAYS THOSE WHO FLED MALISEVO REMAINED IN THEIR MOUNTAIN HIDEOUTS AND WITH FAMILIES AND FRIENDS BECAUSE THEY DIDN'T BELIEVE THE TRUCE WOULD HOLD, AND THEY REMAINED IN FEAR OF THEIR LIVES. HOWEVER, MR. JANOWSKI SAYS THE RECENT VISIT TO THE AREA BY THE HEADS OF THE U-N REFUGEE AGENCY AND THE EUROPEAN MONITORING MISSION HAS ENCOURAGED MANY TO RETURN HOME.

    ///JANOWSKI ACT///

    MALISEVO, FOR MANY MONTHS, WAS A GHOST TOWN ... WITH A LOT OF POLICE PRESENCE AND A LOT OF TENSION. PEOPLE WERE ESSENTIALLY REFUSING TO GO BACK THERE. NOW, THEY ARE STARTING TO GO BACK AND 800 -- ROUGHLY 80 FAMILIES -- HAVE RETURNED. SO THIS IS GOOD NEWS.

    ///END ACT///

    NEVERTHELESS, MR. JANOWSKI SAYS THE SITUATION IN GREATER KOSOVO REMAINS VERY TENSE.

    MR. JANOWSKI SAYS DEMONSTRATIONS BY SERB CIVILIANS ON THURSDAY WHICH EFFECTIVELY SEALED OFF ALL ROADS LEADING TO THE CAPITAL, PRISTINA, KEPT THREE U-N CONVOYS FROM DELIVERING MUCH NEEDED AID. HE SAYS THE CONVOYS WERE FINALLY ABLE TO DELIVER THEIR RELIEF SUPPLIES ON FRIDAY (TODAY) AFTER THE ROADBLOCKS WERE LIFTED.

    //SECOND JANOWSKI ACT///

    THIS IS ESSENTIALLY AN ILLUSTRATION OF HOW TENSE THE SITUATION IS, AND U-N-H-C-R IS AGAIN APPEALING TO BOTH ETHNIC ALBANIANS AND ETHNIC SERBS TO EXERCISE UTMOST RESTRAINT WHILE A POLITICAL EFFORT IS UNDERWAY TO RESOLVE THE KOSOVO CRISIS.

    ///END ACT///

    ON A MORE POSITIVE NOTE, THE U-N REFUGEE SPOKESMAN SAYS HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE WHO FLED FIGHTING WHICH ERUPTED ON DECEMBER 24TH HAVE RETURNED TO THEIR HOMES IN THE KOSOVO VILLAGE OF LAPASTICA. (SIGNED)
    NEB/LS/PCF
    08-Jan-99 10:33 AM EST (1533 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [03] NATO / KOSOVO BY LAURIE KASSMAN (LONDON)

    DATE=1/8/99
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-42319
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    /////

    ED'S: KASSMAN Q AND A WITH NATO'S JAMIE SHEA FED SEPARATELY. /////

    INTRO: THE SITUATION IN KOSOVO HAS BEEN DETERIORATING, WITH SERBS AND ETHNIC ALBANIANS SNIPING AT EACH OTHER AGAIN -- BOTH WITH WORDS AND BULLETS. NATO OFFICIALS HAVE EXPRESSED FRUSTRATION WITH THE SLOW PACE OF NEGOTIATIONS TO RESOLVE THE CONFLICT AS INTERNATIONAL OBSERVERS TRY TO KEEP THE FRAGILE CEASEFIRE FROM DISINTEGRATING ALTOGETHER. CORRESPONDENT LAURIE KASSMAN IN LONDON REVIEWS THE CURRENT SITUATION.

    TEXT: INTERNATIONAL OBSERVERS MANAGED TO RESTORE THE SHAKY CEASEFIRE LAST MONTH AFTER A BRIEF OUTBURST OF VIOLENCE. BUT ATTACKS BETWEEN SERBS AND ETHNIC ALBANIANS IN KOSOVO HAVE INCREASED AGAIN AND EVEN ERUPTED IN THE CAPITAL CITY OF PRISTINA.

    THAT HAS ADDED TO NATO'S FRUSTRATIONS AND INCREASED PRESSURE ON U-S MEDIATOR CHRISTOPHER HILL TO PROD OFFICIALS IN BELGRADE AND PRISTINA TO PUSH THE PEACE NEGOTIATIONS FORWARD.

    NATO HAS ISSUED FRESH WARNINGS TO YUGOSLAVIA TO HEED THE CEASEFIRE AND KEEP INTERNATIONAL OBSERVERS IN KOSOVO OUT OF DANGER. IN A PHONE INTERVIEW WITH V-O-A, SPOKESMAN JAMIE SHEA DOES NOT HIDE NATO'S FRUSTRATIONS.

    /// SHEA ACT ///

    NATO HAS ISSUED ITS WARNINGS, BUT IT IS A COMPLICATED SITUATION. WE DO NOT HAVE A SITUATION WHERE IT IS ONLY THE SERBS THAT ARE CREATING THE PROBLEMS, ALTHOUGH THEY BEAR A MAJOR RESPONSIBILITY FOR WHAT HAS HAPPENED. IF THEY HAD NOT ACTED WITH SUCH BRUTALITY OVER THE LAST DECADE OR SO, THERE NEVER WOULD HAVE BEEN A KOSOVO LIBERATION ARMY AND THE TROUBLE WE SEE AT THE MOMENT. BUT ON THE OTHER HAND, WE HAVE TO RECOGNIZE THAT THE KOSOVO ALBANIAN ARMED GROUPS, PARTICULARLY THE K-L-A, ARE PROVOKING THE SERBS, TOO, AND INITIATING ATTACKS. SO WE HAVE TO PUT PRESSURE NOT ON JUST ONE SIDE, BUT ON BOTH SIDES TO GO TOWARD A POLITICAL SOLUTION.

    /// END ACT ///

    WESTERN RESEARCHERS WHO FOLLOW YUGOSLAV POLITICS, LIKE DANA ALLIN OF LONDON'S "INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR STRATEGIC STUDIES," SAY THE ETHNIC-ALBANIAN KOSOVO LIBERATION ARMY IS NOT INTERESTED IN DISCUSSING ANYTHING LESS THAN FULL INDEPENDENCE. AND MR. ALLIN BELIEVES YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC IS NOT WILLING TO DO THE MINIMUM NEEDED TO HOLD ONTO KOSOVO EITHER.

    /// ALLIN ACT ///

    YOU KNOW MILOSEVIC'S BEHAVIOR IS NOT THAT OF A MAN WHO IS TRYING TO PRESERVE A FEDERATION, A YUGOSLAV FEDERATION, BY DEMOCRATIC MEANS. IF MILOSEVIC WAS REALLY INTERESTED IN CREATING THE CONDITIONS BY WHICH KOSOVO ALBANIANS WOULD BE WILLING TO REMAIN PART OF YUGOSLAVIA, HE WOULD HAVE STARTED SERIOUS NEGOTIATIONS LONG AGO, BASED ON A MINIMUM OF RESTORATION OF AUTONOMY FOR KOSOVO ALBANIANS, WHICH HE STILL DOES NOT. I MEAN HE IS OSTENSIBLY INVOLVED IN NEGOTIATIONS TO THAT END, BUT HE DOES NOT SEEM VERY SERIOUS ABOUT IT.

    /// END ACT ///

    NATO'S JAMIE SHEA ECHOES ALLIED LEADERS WHEN HE INSISTS THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE TO A NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT.

    /// SHEA ACT TWO ///

    THE SERBS, NO MATTER HOW HARD THEY CRACK DOWN, ARE NOT GOING TO RE-ESTABLISH AFFECTION VIS-A-VIS THE KOSOVO ALBANIANS. ON THE OTHER HAND, THERE IS NO SUPPORT IN THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY FOR INDEPENDENCE FOR KOSOVO, WHICH IS SOUGHT BY THE KOSOVO ALBANIAN ARMED GROUPS. AND THE VIOLENCE PRODUCES NO SOLUTIONS BUT SIMPLY REFUGEES, DEATH, SUFFERING, AND FURTHER POLARIZATION.

    /// END ACT ///

    MR. SHEA SAYS BOTH SIDES ARE TO BLAME FOR THE RECENT OUTBURSTS. INTERNATIONAL OBSERVERS HAVE MANAGED TO RESTORE THE FRAGILE CEASEFIRE AND PERSUADE SERB FORCES AND ARMED ALBANIAN GROUPS TO RETREAT. BUT ANALYSTS AND DIPLOMATS WARN IF A SETTLEMENT IS NOT REACHED IN THE NEXT FEW MONTHS, THE CONFLICT IS LIKELY TO ERUPT AGAIN WHEN THE SNOWS MELT. (SIGNED)
    LON/LK/RAE
    08-Jan-99 10:56 AM EST (1556 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [04] TURKEY HUMAN RIGHTS (CORRECTED) (L ONLY) BY ELAINE JOHANSON (NEW YORK)

    DATE=1/8/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-243948
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:
    // EDITORS: THIS IS A MANDATORY CORRECTION THAT MUST BE USED IN PLACE OF THE PREVIOUS, 2-243915, WHICH MOVED THURSDAY. THE 2ND AND 3RD GRAFS OF THE TEXT HAVE BEEN REWRITTEN IN THIS VERSION. //

    INTRO: A U-S HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP HAS CALLED ON TURKEY TO DROP CHARGES AGAINST 25 LAWYERS IN TURKEY WHO HAVE BEEN ON TRIAL FOR THE PAST FIVE YEARS -- FOR ACTIVITIES THEY SAY ARE RELATED TO THEIR LEGAL DEFENSE OF PEOPLE THE GOVERNMENT CONSIDERS TERRORISTS. VOA CORRESPONDENT ELAINE JOHANSON REPORTS FROM NEW YORK:

    TEXT: ROJBIN TUGAN (RUSH-BIN TOO-GHAN), A YOUNG KURDISH LAWYER VISITING THE UNITED STATES, MET WITH THE NEW YORK-BASED LAWYERS' COMMITTEE FOR HUMAN RIGHTS. SHE DESCRIBED HER COUNTRY -- TURKEY AS A LAND OF BROKEN DREAMS AND VIOLENCE.

    A GREAT DEAL OF THAT VIOLENCE, SHE SAYS, TAKES PLACE IN SOUTHEASTERN TURKEY, WHERE THE OUTLAWED KURDISH WORKERS' PARTY -- THE P-K-K -- OPERATES. MS. TUGAN SAYS SHE HAS BEEN HARASSED, THREATENED, HER PHONES TAPPED AND HER MAIL OPENED BY TURKISH AUTHORITIES. SHE SAYS WHILE TRYING TO DEFEND THE RULE OF LAW, SHE HAS BEEN VULNERABLE TO WHAT SHE CALLS UNLAWFULNESS.

    MS. TUGAN SAYS HUMAN RIGHTS ADVOCATES OFTEN TRY TO SEND REPORTS OUT OF THE COUNTRY OF ALLEGED RIGHTS ABUSES BY TURKISH STATE SECURITY AUTHORITIES. FOR THIS, MS. TUGAN CONTENDS, SHE AND MANY OF HER COLLEAGUES, FACE A CLEAR AND PRESENT DANGER TO THEIR LIVES. BUT SPEAKING THROUGH AN INTERPRETER, MS. TUGAN SAYS SHE INTENDS TO CONTINUE HER LEGAL OBLIGATIONS:

    //INTERPRETER ACT//

    (OPENS WITH TURKISH WORDS) WHILE DEFENDING THE RULE OF LAW I AM VULNERABLE TO THE UNLAWFULNESS. I GO ON WITH MY WORK THERE AS A LAWYER KNOWING THAT ONE DAY I MAY BE THE VICTIM OF AN EXTRA-JUDICIAL KILLING OR I MIGHT DIE IN A TORTURE ROOM.

    //END ACT//

    THE KURDISH LAWYER TELLS OF A RECENT INCIDENT FOLLOWING A P-K-K ATTACK IN SOUTHEASTERN TURKEY. SHE SAYS GOVERNMENT SECURITY FORCES ROUNDED UP ALL THE MEN IN A NEARBY VILLAGE AND DETAINED THEM FOR TWO DAYS. MS. TUGAN SAYS ALTHOUGH THEY SHOWED SIGNS OF TORTURE, THEY WERE AFRAID TO FILE A COMPLAINT.

    A TURKISH GOVERNMENT SPOKESMAN IN NEW YORK SAYS THE GOVERNMENT HAS NO PROBLEM WITH ITS KURDISH CITIZENS AND DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE AGAINST THEM. AT THE SAME TIME, HE SAYS ANKARA WILL NOT TOLERATE WHAT IT CALLS THE TERRORIST ACTIVITIES OF THE KURDISH COMMUNISTS -- THE P-K-K.

    THE LAWYERS' COMMITTEE FOR HUMAN RIGHTS HOPES TO SEND MONITORS TO SOUTHEASTERN TURKEY SOON. IT SAYS TURKEY CANNOT SUSPEND HUMAN RIGHTS OR THE RULE OF LAW BECAUSE IT FEELS THREATENED BY INTERNAL ENEMIES.

    //REST OPT//

    TURKEY IS A U-S ALLY AND A KEY NATO PARTNER. BUT THE U-S CONGRESS HAS TAKEN SERIOUSLY NUMEROUS REPORTS OF HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLENCE IN SEVERAL TURKISH PROVINCES. IT PASSED A LAW IN 1996 SHARPLY CURTAILING U-S GOVERNMENT FINANCING OF WEAPONS SALES TO TURKEY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/NY/EJ/LSF
    08-Jan-99 12:03 PM EST (1703 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [05] YUGOSLAVIA ECONOMY BY BARRY WOOD (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=1/8/99
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-42323
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: YUGOSLAVIA'S ECONOMIC PROBLEMS CONTINUE TO MOUNT WITH THE CURRENCY STEADILY WEAKENING AND THE GOVERNMENT INCREASINGLY SHORT OF HARD CURRENCY TO PAY FOR NEEDED IMPORTS OF OIL AND GAS. V-O-A'S BARRY WOOD HAS MORE ON YUGOSLAVIA'S ECONOMIC WOES.

    TEXT: A NEW SURVEY IN BELGRADE SHOWS THAT 65 PERCENT OF THE YUGOSLAV POPULATION IS LIVING IN POVERTY. AT CURRENT EXCHANGE RATES, THE AVERAGE MONTHLY WAGE IS LESS THAN 100-DOLLARS, AND ESTIMATES FOR THE JOBLESS RATE APPROACH 50 PERCENT. MOST PENSIONERS ARE GETTING BY WITH LESS THAN 50-DOLLARS PER MONTH.

    HERE IN WASHINGTON, THE CLINTON ADMINISTRATION RECENTLY ANNOUNCED THAT U-S ECONOMIC SANCTIONS ON YUGOSLAVIA WILL REMAIN IN EFFECT FOR AT LEAST ANOTHER SIX MONTHS. THE SANCTIONS PREVENT SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO FROM JOINING THE INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND AND WORLD BANK, POTENTIAL SOURCES OF HARD CURRENCY LOANS. VARIOUS SANCTIONS HAVE BEEN IN EFFECT SINCE 1992 AND WERE STRENGTHENED IN 1998 BECAUSE OF SERBIA'S CRACKDOWN IN KOSOVO. THIS WEEK, THE YUGOSLAV CENTRAL BANK TOUGHENED ITS REGULATIONS ON COMPANIES OBTAINING FOREIGN CURRENCY. ENTERPRISES HAVE TO KEEP SOME OF THEIR HARD CURRENCY ON DEPOSIT WITH THE CENTRAL BANK AND LOCAL FIRMS ARE BEING ASKED TO REPATRIATE HARD CURRENCY FROM ABROAD. YUGOSLAV IMPORTS GREATLY EXCEED EXPORTS AND THE CENTRAL BANK IS BELIEVED TO HAVE ENOUGH HARD CURRENCY TO PAY FOR LESS THAN ONE MONTH'S IMPORTS. YUGOSLAVIA HAS LARGE DEBTS FOR OIL AND GAS DELIVERIES TO BOTH RUSSIA (GAS) AND CHINA (OIL).

    DRAGOSLAV AVRAMOVIC, A LEADER OF AN OPPOSITION POLITICAL GROUP, SAYS A KEY QUESTION FOR THE NEW YEAR IS HOW LONG THE MILOSEVIC REGIME CAN HOLD OFF COMPLETE ECONOMIC COLLAPSE. MR. AVRAMOVIC, WHO AS CENTRAL BANK CHIEF IN 1994 TAMED HYPER-INFLATION, TOLD THE FINANCIAL TIMES (IN LATE DECEMBER) THAT IT IS A MIRACLE THAT ANYTHING FUNCTIONS IN THE YUGOSLAV ECONOMY. DURING AN EARLIER VISIT TO WASHINGTON (OCTOBER 15TH), MR. AVRAMOVIC REFLECTED ON YUGOSLAVIA'S STUNNING ECONOMIC DECLINE OVER THE PAST DECADE.

    //AVRAMOVIC ACT//

    IT IS ONLY THANKS TO AGRICULTURE AND THE GREY ECONOMY THAT THE ECONOMY DOES SURVIVE. BUT IT DOES NOT PROGRESS. THE PROGRAM FOR THE ALLIANCE FOR CHANGE IS TO MOUNT SIMULTANEOUSLY A STABILIZATION PROGRAM, THE OPENING OF THE ECONOMY AND A LIFTING OF SANCTIONS, WHICH IS ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL, AND THE REPATRIATION OF YUGOSLAV CAPITAL ABROAD.

    //END ACT//

    SOME 60 PERCENT OF ALL PRICES IN YUGOSLAVIA ARE CONTROLLED. THE 79-YEAR-OLD MR. AVRAMOVIC RECALLED THAT 30 YEARS AGO, YUGOSLAVIA'S STANDARD OF LIVING APPROACHED THAT OF AUSTRIA. TODAY, HE SAYS, IT HAS DECLINED TO THAT OF ALBANIA.

    ANALYSTS SAY THE CURRENT WINTER WILL BE PARTICULARLY CHALLENGING AND THAT AGRICULTURE WILL SUFFER BECAUSE THERE WAS NO MONEY FOR IMPORTS OF FERTILIZER. (SIGNED)
    NEB/BDW/RRM
    08-Jan-99 2:50 PM EST (1950 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [06] EURO / FRANCE / JAPAN (L) BY JULIAN NUNDY (PARIS)

    DATE=1/8/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-243946
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER KEIZO OBUCHI -- VISITING FRANCE ON A EUROPEAN TOUR THAT COINCIDES WITH THE CREATION OF THE NEW SINGLE EUROPEAN CURRENCY, THE EURO -- HAS CALLED FOR EFFORTS TO ENSURE EXCHANGE RATE STABILITY BETWEEN THE WORLD'S MAIN TRADING CURRENCIES. JULIAN NUNDY REPORTS FROM PARIS.

    TEXT: DURING A VISIT TO A PARIS DEPARTMENT STORE, THE PRIME MINISTER OF JAPAN WAS THE FIRST POLITICAL LEADER TO MAKE A PUBLIC PURCHASE WITH EUROS IN FRANCE.

    PRIME MINISTER KEIZO OBUCHI BOUGHT CRYSTAL FIGURINES MADE IN AUSTRIA WITH TRAVELERS' CHECKS DENOMINATED IN THE NEW EUROPEAN CURRENCY. ADDING TO THE INTERNATIONAL SYMBOLISM WAS THE FACT THE CHECKS WERE ISSUED BY AN AMERICAN BANK, BUT THE CHANGE FOR THE JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER'S CHECKS WAS GIVEN IN OLD-FASHIONED FRENCH FRANCS.

    MR. OBUCHI'S TOUR OF EUROPE COINCIDES WITH THE EURO'S FIRST STEPS. DURING HIS VISIT TO PARIS, THE JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER APPEALED FOR EXCHANGE-RATE STABILITY BETWEEN THE EURO, THE JAPANESE YEN. AND THE U-S DOLLAR.

    FRENCH PRESIDENT JACQUES CHIRAC, BACKING THE JAPANESE CALL IN A NEW YEAR SPEECH TO FRENCH BUSINESS LEADERS, SAID FRANCE WILL PROPOSE MEASURES TO REDUCE EXCHANGE RATE FLUCTUATIONS TO THE GROUP OF SEVEN INDUSTRIALIZED NATIONS' GROUP LATER THIS YEAR.

    DURING HIS FINAL ROUND OF TALKS IN FRANCE WITH PRIME MINISTER LIONEL JOSPIN, MR. OBUCHI SAID HE AND THE FRENCH LEADER AGREE THE EURO SHOULD FIND A STABLE PLACE ON WORLD CURRENCY MARKETS, AND BE NEITHER OVER- NOR UNDER-VALUED.

    THE JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER SAID THE CREATION OF THE EURO OPENS A NEW PAGE IN MONETARY HISTORY.

    THE EURO OFFICIALLY CAME INTO BEING ON NEW YEAR'S DAY AND, ON PAPER AT LEAST, IT NOW CO-EXISTS ALONGSIDE THE FRENCH FRANC AND THE CURRENCIES OF 10 OTHER EUROPEAN UNION STATES.

    IN THREE YEARS' TIME, THE EURO WILL TAKE OVER ENTIRELY, WITH EURO NOTES AND COINS REPLACING THE OTHER CURRENCIES IN EUROPEANS' POCKETS (SIGNED)
    LON/JN/RAE
    08-Jan-99 11:55 AM EST (1655 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [07] N-Y ECON WRAP (S & L) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)

    DATE=1/8/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-243962
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK PRICES IN THE UNITED STATES WERE UP STRONGLY TODAY (FRIDAY) TO END A RECORD-BREAKING WEEK. VOA CORRESPONDENT BRECK ARDERY REPORTS FROM NEW YORK.

    TEXT: THE DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE CLOSED AT A RECORD HIGH 96 HUNDRED 43, UP 105 POINTS. FOR THE WEEK, THE INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE GAINED 462 POINTS OR MORE THAN FIVE PERCENT. THE STANDARD AND POOR'S 500 INDEX ALSO CLOSED FRIDAY AT A RECORD HIGH 12 HUNDRED 75, UP FIVE POINTS. THE NASDAQ INDEX CLOSED AT A RECORD HIGH FOR THE SIXTH STRAIGHT SESSION. VOLUME ON THE NEW YORK STOCK EXCHANGE WAS HEAVY AT MORE THAN 900 MILLION SHARES.

    ANALYSTS SAY IT REMAINS A LIQUIDITY-DRIVEN MARKET, MEANING THAT INVESTMENT MANAGERS ARE RUSHING TO CONVERT CASH INTO STOCKS.

    MANY INTERNET-RELATED STOCKS CONTINUED THEIR RELENTLESS CLIMB AND SOME ANALYSTS CONTINUED TO WORRY THAT MANY OF THOSE STOCKS ARE VASTLY OVER-VALUED.

    ///BEGIN OPT///

    HOWEVER, BERNARD MCSHERRY WHO HEADS HIS OWN INVESTMENT FIRM, SAYS THERE IS GENUINE VALUE IN SOME OF THOSE INTERNET STOCKS.

    ///OPT///MCSHERRY ACT///

    WE ARE AT A PERIOD OF HISTORY WHERE WE ARE MOVING INTO THE INFORMATION AGE. THERE ARE A LOT OF PARALLELS TO WHEN WE WENT INTO THE INDUSTRIAL ERA. IF YOU CAN PICK THE WINNERS, THE REWARDS WILL BE ENORMOUS. THE HARD PART (LAUGHS) IS PICKING THOSE WINNERS FOR THE LONG TERM.

    ///END ACT///

    END OPT///

    THE U-S UNEMPLOYMENT RATE DROPPED ONE-TENTH OF ONE PERCENT IN DECEMBER TO FOUR POINT THREE PERCENT. THE NUMBER OF NEW JOBS GREW AT THE FASTEST RATE IN MORE THAN A YEAR.

    ///REST OPT///

    ALCOA, THE WORLD'S LARGEST ALUMINUM COMPANY, HAD PLENTY OF GOOD NEWS FOR ITS STOCKHOLDERS. THE COMPANY SAID ITS QUARTERLY EARNINGS ROSE 23 PERCENT, WELL AHEAD OF EXPECTATIONS. IN ADDITION, ALCOA WILL RAISE ITS STOCK DIVIDEND 50 PERCENT, BUY BACK 10 MILLION SHARES AND SPLIT THE STOCK TWO FOR ONE. B-P AMOCO, THE NEWLY FORMED ANGLO-AMERICAN OIL GIANT, SAYS IT WILL ELIMINATE 900 JOBS, ABOUT ONE PERCENT OF ITS WORLD WIDE WORK FORCE, IN AN EFFORT TO CUT COSTS. OF COURSE, THE ENTIRE OIL INDUSTRY IS HAVING A TOUGH TIME WITH OIL PRICES AT 12 YEAR LOWS. THE TEXACO OIL COMPANY IS WARNING THAT ITS FOURTH-QUARTER EARNINGS WILL FALL WELL BLOW EXPECTATIONS.

    TWO U-S SPORTING GOODS RETAILERS REPORTED DISAPPOINTING RESULTS IN THE FOURTH QUARTER. THE HIBBETT COMPANY AND THE SPORTS AUTHORITY BLAMED ERRATIC WEATHER IN MUCH OF THE COUNTRY AND THE PROFESSIONAL BASKETBALL LABOR DISPUTE WHICH DAMPENED INTEREST IN BASKETBALL-RELATED PRODUCTS.

    NORTHWEST AIRLINES HAS A PUBLIC RELATIONS PROBLEM WITH THOUSANDS OF ANGRY PASSENGERS WHO SAY THEY WERE TRAPPED ON AIRPLANES FOR UP TO EIGHT HOURS DURING A SNOWSTORM AT THE DETROIT, MICHIGAN, AIRPORT. IN A LAWSUIT, SOME PASSENGERS ALLEGE THE AIRLINE IS GUILTY OF NEGLIGENCE AND FALSE IMPRISONMENT. A NORTHWEST SPOKESWOMAN CONCEDES THE SITUATION WAS UNACCEPTABLE BUT SAYS IT OCCURRED DURING A VERY HEAVY STORM IN WHICH THERE WAS NO SAFE WAY TO EVACUATE THE AIRPLANES.(SIGNED) NEB/NY/BA/LSF/RRM
    08-Jan-99 5:11 PM EST (2211 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [08] FRIDAY'S EDITORIALS BY ANDREW N. GUTHRIE (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=01/08/99
    TYPE=U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST
    NUMBER=6-11090
    TELEPHONE=619-3335
    EDITOR=ASSIGNMENTS
    CONTENT=

    ////

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

    ////

    INTRO: THE BEGINNING OF IMPEACHMENT PROCEEDINGS IN THE UNITED STATES SENATE AGAINST THE PRESIDENT DOMINATES THE EDITORIAL COLUMNS OF THE NATION'S LARGEST METROPOLITAN DAILIES.

    VARIOUS EDITORIALS ARE COMMENTING ON THE SOLEMNITY OF HOW THE TRIAL BEGAN, ALONG WITH THE DEBATE AMONG SENATORS OF HOW TO PROCEED.

    OTHER TOPICS INCLUDE THE CIVIL WAR IN SIERRA LEONE; THE NEW SPEAKER IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES; THE CONTROVERSY OVER ALLEGED U-S SPYING WITHIN THE U-N WEAPONS INSPECTION TEAM IN IRAQ; AND SOME THOUGHTS ON THE NORTH AMERICAN FREE TRADE AGREEMENT. NOW, HERE WITH SOME EXCERPTS AND A CLOSER LOOK IS ___________________ AND TODAY'S EDITORIAL DIGEST.

    TEXT: "THE NEW YORK TIMES" TAKES NOTE OF THE HISTORIC AND SOLEMN TENOR OF THE PROCEEDINGS IN ITS LEAD EDITORIALS.

    VOICE: AFTER THE STRIFE IN THE HOUSE (OF REPRESENTATIVES), THE OPENING OF THE SENATE TRIAL OF PRESIDENT CLINTON LOOKED REASSURING DECOROUS. /// OPT /// SENATOR STROM THURMOND, WHO WAS BORN ONLY 34 YEARS AFTER ANDREW JOHNSON'S IMPEACHMENT, SWORE IN THE BIG, CALM-LOOKING CHIEF JUSTICE, WILLIAM REHNQUIST. THEN AFTER A PERIOD OF TURMOIL OVER THE ISSUE OF CALLING WITNESSES, THE MAJORITY LEADER, TRENT LOTT, AND HIS DEMOCRATIC COUNTERPART, TOM DASCHLE, ENDED THE DAY BY ANNOUNCING A PLAN TO SEEK AGREEMENT ON RULES FOR THE TRIAL. ... WE ARE ESPECIALLY IMPRESSED THAT THE SENATE LEADERSHIP HAS STOOD UP TO THE EFFORT BY THE HOUSE IMPEACHMENT MANAGERS TO DICTATE THE CALLING OF MULTIPLE WITNESSES. ..... NEITHER A LENGTHY TRIAL NOR ANOTHER RENDITION OF THE SAME DISMAL TESTIMONY WILL ADD TO MR. CLINTON'S DISGRACE. /// END OPT /// ... THE PUBLIC WANTS AND NEEDS A DEMONSTRATION THAT EVEN WHEN THE WHITE HOUSE IS SHAKEN, THE SENATE HAS THE STABILITY TO BEHAVE RESPONSIBLY. A FAIR, EXPEDITIOUS PROCEEDING PRODUCING THE OBVIOUSLY CALLED-FOR CENSURE IS THE WAY TO SEND THAT REASSURANCE.

    /// OPT ///

    TEXT: IN CALIFORNIA, "THE LOS ANGELES TIMES" IS MUCH MORE CRITICAL OF THE SENATE, DESCRIBING THE PROCESS AS "SHAMEFULLY CLUELESS" IN ITS HEADLINE.

    VOICE: THE IMPEACHMENT TRIAL ... OPENED IN THE SENATE ... ON A NOTE OF SOLEMN DRAMA, ONLY TO REVERT ALMOST IMMEDIATELY TO SOMETHING APPROACHING POLITICAL FARCE. AFTER SWEARING FOR JUST THE SECOND TIME IN ITS HISTORY TO IMPARTIALLY JUDGE THE GUILT OR INNOCENCE OF A SITTING PRESIDENT CHARGED WITH HIGH CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS, THE SENATE PROMPTLY ADJOURNED, APPARENTLY WITHOUT A CLUE [PLAN] ABOUT WHAT WILL HAPPEN WHEN IT RECONVENES NEXT WEEK. ... THE ... IMPEACHMENT TRIAL - - A PROCESS OF HISTORIC IMPORTANCE THAT OUGHT BE CLEAR IN ITS AIMS AND CERTAIN IN ITS DIRECTION - - COMMENCES IN A MUDDLE.

    /// END OPT ///

    TEXT: "THE WASHINGTON POST" HAD THESE THOUGHTS.

    VOICE: /// OPT /// THE SEARCH FOR AN ADEQUATE TRIAL PROCEDURE IS PROVING DIVISIVE, BUT THE ANIMATING PRINCIPLE THAT WOULD GUIDE A GOOD SENATE TRIAL IS HARDLY SUBTLE. THE SENATE TRIAL, /// END OPT /// WHATEVER PROCEDURE IT USES, WILL BE SEEN AS LEGITIMATE IF SENATORS END UP HEARING THE HOUSE'S CASE ADEQUATELY TO MAKE AN INFORMED JUDGMENT ON ITS MERITS WITHOUT LETTING PARTISAN CONCERNS - - OR, FOR THAT MATTER, CONCERNS ABOUT CONVENIENCE TO THE SENATE OR THE COUNTRY AT LARGE - - ARTIFICIALLY LENGTHEN OR SHORTEN ITS DELIBERATION.

    TEXT: FARTHER DOWN THE EDITORIAL COLUMN IN TODAY'S "POST" IS A LAMENT OVER THE CHILDREN OF SIERRA LEONE, VICTIMS WRITES "THE WASHINGTON POST" IN THE INCREASINGLY BITTER CIVIL WAR THERE.

    VOICE: /// OPT /// A NIGHTMARE IS UNFOLDING IN ... SIERRA LEONE, WEST AFRICA. THE FIGHTING IS NOW OVERWHELMING WHAT NATIONAL FORCES OF ORDER REMAIN, LEAVING A DESPERATE CIVILIAN POPULATION ABANDONED AND DEFENSELESS; AN INTERNATIONAL FORCE DOES WHAT IT CAN. /// END OPT /// PERHAPS THE WORST OF IT (THE FIGHTING) IS THE BROADENING THREAT TO THE CHILDREN OF SIERRA LEONE AS THEIR VILLAGES AND FAMILIES DISINTEGRATE AROUND THEM. THE BOYS AMONG THEM, SOME SEVEN YEARS OLD AND YOUNGER, ARE BEING KIDNAPPED, TO BE PRESS-GANGED INTO MILITARY SERVICE, MEANING IN SOME CASES BEING COMPELLED TO CLEAR PATHS WITH THEIR BODIES THROUGH UNMARKED MINE FIELDS. ... ONE'S EYES ROAMS THE INTERNATIONAL SCENE IN FRANTIC QUEST OF A GOVERNMENT, AN AGENCY, A STRONGER INTERNATIONAL FORCE, A PRESENCE, SOMEONE, SOMETHING, THAT COULD AT THE LEAST BRING SOME SAFETY FOR THE THREATENED PEOPLE OF THE COUNTRY.

    TEXT: AS REGARDS THE MIDDLE EAST, MAINE'S "PORTLAND PRESS HERALD" SUGGESTS TODAY THAT "IT'S NOT UP TO SADDAM [HUSSEIN] TO SET THE RULES IN IRAQ."

    VOICE: SADDAM HUSSEIN, MOTHER OF ALL CRY-BABIES, SAYS U-N INSPECTION TEAMS IN IRAQ INCLUDED SPIES WORKING FOR U-S INTELLIGENCE. GOOD. FIND THOSE SPIES AND GIVE THEM PROMOTIONS. SADDAM SEEMS TO FORGET THAT HE IS AT WAR WITH THE UNITED STATES - - IF NOT A FORMALLY DECLARED ONE, A WAR NONETHELESS. ... IT IS NOT UP TO SADDAM HUSSEIN TO SAY WHAT IS ACCEPTABLE CONDUCT IN HIS THREAT TO THE PEACE OF THE PERSIAN GULF REGION. HE IS THE ONE IN THE DOCK - - SOON, WE HOPE, LITERALLY - - NOT THE UNITED STATES OR THE U-N INSPECTORS.

    TEXT: "USA TODAY," THE NATIONAL DAILY PUBLISHED IN THE WASHINGTON SUBURBS, AGREES:

    VOICE: SPYING ON SADDAM HUSSEIN IS NOTHING NEW AND NOTHING NEEDING AN APOLOGY. BUT THE CLINTON ADMINISTRATION SUDDENLY IS SCRAMBLING TO EXPLAIN WHY IT DID JUST THAT. ...SPYING WOULD BE NO ISSUE NOW HAD SADDAM NOT REFUSED FOR THE PAST EIGHT YEARS TO DO WHAT HE PROMISED AFTER THE GULF WAR. BECAUSE OF HIS ATTEMPTS TO CONCEAL PROMISED DATA, NOT TO MENTION WEAPONS, U-N INSPECTORS HAVE HAD TO RESORT TO UNCONVENTIONAL SLEUTHING METHODS.

    /// OPT ///

    TEXT: "THE SUN" IN BALTIMORE FOCUSES, APPROVINGLY, THIS FRIDAY ON DENNIS HASTERT THE NEW SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, A NOT VERY WELL-KNOWN, SMALL TOWN ILLINOIS CONGRESSMAN.

    VOICE: WITH THE SENATE EMBARKING UPON AN IMPEACHMENT TRIAL THAT LACKS PUBLIC SUPPORT, IT IS REFRESHING TO HAVE A SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE WHO APPEARS TO BE WHAT THE PEOPLE WANT: SOMEONE WHO CAN WORK WITH OTHERS TO GET A JOB DONE.

    TEXT: FINALLY, SOME CONCERNS FROM BOSTON'S "CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR" ABOUT ONE OF THE LAST PROVISIONS OF THE NORTH AMERICAN FREE TRADE AGREEMENT ABOUT TO BE PHASED IN, MEXICAN TRUCK TRAFFIC IN THE U-S.

    VOICE: A YEAR BEFORE MEXICAN TRUCKS ARE TO GAIN FULL ACCESS TO HIGHWAYS IN THE UNITED STATES, A REPORT BY THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION'S INSPECTOR GENERAL SAYS NOT ENOUGH OF THE TRUCKS COMING ACROSS THE BORDER NOW ARE BEING INSPECTED. ..... ONLY CALIFORNIA HAS SUFFICIENT INSPECTIONS. A DISTURBING 44 PERCENT OF INSPECTED MEXICAN TRUCKS REQUIRED REPAIRS BEFORE THEY COULD PROCEED ONTO U-S ROADS. ...THE INSPECTOR GENERAL BLAMES THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY WORKS ADMINISTRATION, WHICH IT SAYS HAS NEITHER A SAFETY PROGRAM IN PLACE NOR A PLAN TO IMPLEMENT ONE. ... U-S DRIVERS HAVE ENOUGH PROBLEMS DEALING WITH BIG RIGS [LARGE TRUCKS / LORRIES] ON THE HIGHWAYS AS IT IS. THEY NEED ASSURANCE THAT THOUSANDS OF MEXICAN TRUCKS TO BE ADDED TO THE MIX ARE SAFE.

    /// END OPT ///

    TEXT: THAT CONCLUDES THIS SAMPLING OF EDITORIAL COMMENT FROM FRIDAY'S U-S DAILY PAPERS.
    NEB/ANG/GE
    08-Jan-99 10:52 AM EST (1552 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [09] IRAQ/KURDS/DEPORTATIONS BY AMBERIN ZAMAN (SULAYMANIYAH)

    DATE=1/8/99
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-42320
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: IRAQ IS CONTINUING TO DEPORT HUNDREDS OF ETHNIC KURDS AND OTHER NON-ARAB MINORITIES TO KURDISH-CONTROLLED NORTHERN IRAQ, DESPITE REPEATED WARNINGS FROM U-N OFFICIALS TO STOP THE POLICY DESCRIBED BY KURDS AS "ETHNIC CLEANSING." AMBERIN ZAMAN HAS THE DETAILS FROM THE IRAQI-KURDISH CITY OF SULAYMANIYAH.

    TEXT: IN A DAMP, SQUALID, CANDLE-LIT ROOM, JALAL AMIN ALI, SHAKES WITH ANGER AS HE DESCRIBES HOW HE AND HIS FAMILY WERE FORCED BY IRAQI SECURITY FORCES TO LEAVE THEIR HOME.

    A FARMER FROM THE OIL RICH KIRKUK REGION IN IRAQI GOVERNMENT-CONTROLLED TERRITORY, MR. ALI SAYS HE WAS NOT AT HOME WHEN THE IRAQI POLICE CAME TO ORDER THEM OUT. SO THEY TOOK HIS WIFE AND BABY TO PRISON AND SAID THEY WOULD NOT BE GIVEN ANY FOOD UNTIL HE SHOWED UP AND THEY LEFT KIRKUK FOR GOOD.

    /// AMIN ALI ACT IN KURDISH ESTABLISH FADE UNDER. ///

    MR. ALI SAYS THERE IS NO RUNNING WATER, NO HEAT, AND NO ELECTRICITY IN THIS DERELICT HOTEL, WHICH HE NOW CALLS HOME. HE SAYS WITH NO JOB HE CAN BARELY FEED HIS FAMILY AND HAS LITTLE HOPE FOR THE FUTURE.

    FELLOW DEPORTEES FROM 120 FAMILIES SHELTERED HERE TELL MUCH THE SAME STORY.

    JALAL TALABANI, THE LEADER OF THE PATRIOTIC UNION OF KURDISTAN, ONE OF THE MAIN IRAQI KURDISH FACTIONS THAT CONTROLS SULAYMANIYAH, SAYS THE EXPULSIONS ARE INTENDED TO REMOVE NON-ARABS FROM THE OIL-RICH REGIONS OF MOSUL AND KIRKUK.

    /// TALABANI ACT IN ENGLISH ///

    THERE IS THE POLICY OF ETHNIC CLEANSING IN THE AREA, KURDISTAN AREA, WHICH IS STILL UNDER THE CONTROL OF IRAQI ARMY OF IRAQI GOVERNMENT, LIKE MANDALI, KHANAQIN, KIRKUK, MAHMOUR AREA. IN THESE PLACES, THE IRAQIS ARE CONTINUING THE POLICY OF ARABIZATION OF DEPORTATION AND BRINGING ARAB FAMILIES AND OBLIGING THEM TO SETTLE THERE, INSTEAD OF KURDS AND TURKOMENS WHO ARE DEPORTED.

    /// END TALABANI ACT ////

    MR. TALABANI SAYS HE RAISED THE ISSUE OF THE DEPORTATIONS WITH U-N SECRETARY GENERAL KOFI ANNAN LAST YEAR, AS WELL AS WITH SECRETARY OF STATE MADELEINE ALBRIGHT. BUT THERE ARE NO SIGNS SADDAM HUSSEIN IS ABANDONING WHAT MR. TALABANI TERMS HIS ARABIZATION CAMPAIGN, DESPITE REPEATED WARNINGS FROM THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY.

    ACCORDING TO KURDISH OFFICIALS, ABOUT 250-THOUSAND ETHNIC KURDS HAVE BEEN FORCIBLY EVICTED FROM AREAS UNDER IRAQI GOVERNMENT CONTROL SINCE THE KURDS' FAILED UPRISING AGAINST BAGHDAD FOLLOWING THE 1991 PERSIAN GULF WAR. SADI PIRA, PATRIOTIC UNION OF KURDISTAN MINISTER RESPONSIBLE FOR HUMANITARIAN AFFAIRS, SAYS EXPULSIONS, WHICH ALSO TARGET ETHNIC TURKS AND ASSYRIAN CHRISTIAN ARABS, OCCUR ALMOST DAILY. HE SAYS LOCAL KURDISH OFFICIALS HAVE A HARD TIME PROVIDING SHELTER FOR ALL OF THEM.

    MANY DEPORTEES ARE FORCED TO LIVE IN PLASTIC TENTS AND MOST HAVE THEIR U-N RATION CARDS FOR THE OIL FOR FOOD PROGRAM SEIZED BEFORE THEY ARE KICKED OUT. SO WHEN THEY COME TO NORTHERN IRAQ THEY ARE UNABLE TO CLAIM THEIR DAILY RATIONS OF FOOD FROM THE UNITED NATIONS.

    /// BEGIN PIRA ACT ///

    WE HAVE TO SPEAK ABOUT REGISTERING THEM AGAIN AND IT IS A LONG PROCESS. OF COURSE THEY TRY TO SPEED THIS PROCESS, BUT IT TAKES TIME. FOOD, RATION [CARDS] AND SOME CLOTHES FOR EXAMPLE, HEATING FOR WINTER. YOU CANNOT WAIT IT IS NOT LIKE BUILDING A SCHOOL OR A BRIDGE.

    /// END PIRA ACT ///

    JALAL TALABANI'S ORGANIZATION AND ITS RIVAL, MASSOUD BARZANI'S KURDISTAN DEMOCRATIC PARTY, HAVE CONTROLLED NORTHERN IRAQ SINCE APRIL 1991 WHEN THE UNITED STATES AND ITS ALLIES DECLARED A NO-FLY ZONE THERE. THE SO-CALLED KURDISH SAFE HAVEN IS PROTECTED BY U-S, BRITISH, AND TURKISH WARPLANES BASED IN SOUTHERN TURKEY. (SIGNED)
    LON/AZ/RAE/GE
    08-Jan-99 11:46 AM EST (1646 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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