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Voice of America, 99-03-19

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

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] CLINTON NEWS CONFERENCE OVERVIEW (L) BY NICK SIMEONE (WHITE HOUSE)
  • [02] CLINTON NEWS CONFERENCE / KOSOVO (L) BY GIL BUTLER (WHITE HOUSE)
  • [03] CLINTON/KOSOVO (L) BY NICK SIMEONE (WHITE HOUSE)
  • [04] KOSOVO IMPASSE BY LAURIE KASSMAN (PARIS)
  • [05] KOSOVO TALKS END (L) BY LAURIE KASSMAN (PARIS)
  • [06] KOSOVO / MILITARY (L-ONLY) BY JIM RANDLE (PENTAGON)
  • [07] KOSOVO MONITORS (L ONLY) BY PHILIP SMUCKER (PRISTINA)
  • [08] KOSOVO REFUGEES (L ONLY) BY LISA SCHLEIN (GENEVA)
  • [09] TURKEY POLITICS (L-ONLY) BY AMBERIN ZAMAN (ANKARA)
  • [10] CHINA/EUROPE (L-ONLY) BY STEPHANIE HO (BEIJING)
  • [11] E-U / GERMANY (L ONLY) (BRUSSELS)
  • [12] EDITORIAL: BRINGING BASQUE TERRORISTS TO JUSTICE
  • [13] N-Y ECON WRAP (S&L) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)
  • [14] FRIDAY'S EDITORIALS BY GARY EDQUIST (WASHINGTON)
  • [15] OLYMPIC COMMITTEE EXPULSIONS BY GARY EDQUIST (WASHINGTON)

  • [01] CLINTON NEWS CONFERENCE OVERVIEW (L) BY NICK SIMEONE (WHITE HOUSE)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246915
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: PRESIDENT CLINTON HAS HELD HIS FIRST FORMAL NEWS CONFERENCE AT THE WHITE HOUSE IN NEARLY A YEAR WITH KOSOVO, RELATIONS WITH CHINA AND THE LINGERING EFFECTS OF HIS OWN IMPEACHMENT DOMINATING THE QUESTIONING. CORRESPONDENT NICK SIMEONE REPORTS ON A PRESIDENT SLOWLY BEGINNING TO EMERGE FROM THE SHADOW OF THE MONICA LEWINSKY SCANDAL.

    TEXT: THE WHITE HOUSE MUST BE CLEARLY PLEASED THAT FIVE WEEKS AFTER THE PRESIDENT'S SENATE ACQUITTAL, QUESTIONS FROM REPORTERS ABOUT HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH FORMER INTERN MONICA LEWINSKY ARE FADING AWAY, AND BEING REPLACED WITH THOSE ABOUT FOREIGN POLICY AND THE DAILY ISSUES OF GOVERNING.

    MOST OF THE QUESTIONING DURING FRIDAY'S HOUR-LONG NEWS CONFERENCE DID NOT CONCERN THE PRESIDENT'S PERSONAL LIFE BUT INSTEAD ADMINISTRATION POLICY ON ISSUES RANGING FROM CHINA TO RACE RELATIONS IN THE UNITED STATES.

    THE PRESIDENT CAME TO THE ORNATE WHITE HOUSE EAST ROOM ARMED WITH ANOTHER WARNING THAT AMERICAN AND NATO TROOPS WILL STAND FIRM TO STOP SERB AGGRESSION IN KOSOVO, ALL BUT DECLARING HIMSELF READY TO INTERVENE. LEFT UNCHECKED HE SAID, THE WAR IN THE SERB PROVINCE WILL SPREAD.

    // CLINTON ACT //

    UNQUESTIONABLY, THERE ARE RISKS IN MILITARY ACTION, IF THAT BECOMES NECESSARY. U-S AND OTHER NATO PILOTS WILL BE IN HARMS WAY. THE SERBS HAVE A STRONG AIR DEFENSE SYSTEM. BUT WE MUST WEIGH THOSE RISKS AGAINST THE RISKS OF INACTION. IF WE DON'T ACT, THE WAR WILL SPREAD. IF IT SPREADS WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO CONTAIN IT WITHOUT FAR GREATER RISK AND COST.

    // END ACT //

    AND THE PRESIDENT WARNED LETTING BELGRADE HAVE ITS WAY BY BLOCKING A KOSOVO PEACE ACCORD COULD END UP COSTING THE LIVES OF MORE CIVILIANS.

    // SECOND CLINTON ACT //

    MAKE NO MISTAKE, IF WE AND OUR ALLIES DON'T HAVE THE WILL TO ACT, THERE WILL BE MORE MASSACRES.

    // END ACT //

    FRIDAY'S NEWS CONFERENCE WAS THE FIRST TIME REPORTERS WERE ABLE TO ASK THE PRESIDENT QUESTIONS ABOUT ALLEGED SPYING BY CHINA MORE THAN A DECADE AGO AT NEW MEXICO'S LOS ALAMOS NUCLEAR LABORATORY A SECURITY BREACH THAT DID NOT COME TO LIGHT UNTIL 1996. REPUBLICANS CHARGE THE WHITE HOUSE TRIED TO KEEP THE MATTER QUIET IN ORDER NOT TO DISRUPT THE STATE OF POLITICS OR TRADE BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND CHINA.

    // THIRD CLINTON ACT //

    I AM CONFIDENT WE IN THE WHITE HOUSE HAVE DONE WHAT WE COULD TO BE AGGRESSIVE ABOUT THIS. LOOK, IF THERE WAS ESPIONAGE AGAINST THE UNITED STATES, I WOULD BE VERY UPSET ABOUT IT, AS I HAVE EVERY TIME THERE HAS BEEN. ANYBODY WHO COMMITTED IT OUGHT TO BE PUNISHED. I CAN SAY CATEGORICALLY THAT IT NEVER CROSSED MY MIND THAT I SHOULD NOT DISCLOSE SOME INQUIRY BEING UNDER TAKEN BY THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT FOR REASONS OF COMMERCIAL OR OTHER GAIN.

    // END ACT //

    THERE WERE ALSO SOME REVERBERATIONS FROM THE YEAR-LONG CLINTON SCANDAL, WITH QUESTIONS ABOUT HOW THE PRESIDENT FELT ABOUT HIS LEGACY AFTER SURVIVING IMPEACHMENT -- AS WELL AS HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH SOME OF HIS FORMER AIDES AND ADVISORS WHO LEFT HIS STAFF TO GO ON AND WRITE TELL-ALL BOOKS ABOUT THEIR DAYS IN THE WHITE HOUSE. HE REFUSED TO SPEAK ILL ABOUT FORMER STAFFERS SUCH AS HIS ERSTWHILE SPOKESMAN GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, WHOSE BOOK DETAILING HIS UTTER DISAPPOINTMENT WITH THE PRESIDENT IN THE MONICA LEWINSKY MATTER IS NOW A BEST SELLER. BUT FOR THOSE WHO SURVIVED THE SCANDAL ALONG WITH HIM, HE MADE CLEAR LOYALTY STILL MATTERS.

    // REST OPT //

    // CLINTON ACT //

    I VERY MUCH VALUE THE LOYALTY AND SERVICE I HAVE RECEIVED FROM THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF PEOPLE WHO HAVE WORKED HERE IN THE WHITE HOUSE AND IN THE CABINET AND IN THE ADMINISTRATION -- OFTEN UNDER POSITIONS OF ALMOST UNPRECEDENTED PRESSURE. AND I THINK THAT VERY OFTEN THAT KIND OF LOYALTY GOES UNRECOGNIZED BUT IT IS NOT UNAPPRECIATED BY ME.

    // END ACT //

    AND FOR THE FIRST TIME, THE PRESIDENT SAID HE MAY TAKE UP RESIDENCY IN NEW YORK AFTER HE LEAVES THE WHITE HOUSE IN 2001, ESPECIALLY IF HIS WIFE HILLARY DECIDES TO RUN AND WINS A SEAT IN THE SENATE FROM NEW YORK STATE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/NJS/JO
    19-Mar-99 6:53 PM EST (2353 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] CLINTON NEWS CONFERENCE / KOSOVO (L) BY GIL BUTLER (WHITE HOUSE)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246914
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: PRESIDENT CLINTON USED HIS FIRST FULL-FLEDGED NEWS CONFERENCE IN A YEAR TO ARGUE THAT ACTION MUST BE TAKEN KOSOVO TO PREVENT A HUMANITARIAN DISASTER AND A WIDER CONFLICT IN EUROPE THAT WOULD HARM AMERICAN INTERESTS. V-O-A'S GIL BUTLER HAS MORE ON WHAT THE PRESIDENT SAID ABOUT KOSOVO FROM THE WHITE HOUSE.

    TEXT: FROM MR. CLINTON'S STATEMENTS AND FROM COMMENTS MADE BY LEADING CONGRESSMEN AND SENATORS, WHO MET AT THE WHITE HOUSE EARLIER, NATO AIR STRIKES AGAINST SERBIAN FORCES IN KOSOVO APPEAR CLOSE.

    WHILE SEPARATIST ETHNIC KOSOVAR ALBANIANS HAVE SIGNED A PEACE AGREEMENT, SERBS HAVE REFUSED AND PEACE TALKS IN PARIS HAVE BROKEN OFF.

    AT HIS NEWS CONFERENCE, THE PRESIDENT SAID 40 THOUSAND SERBIAN SOLDIERS AND SPECIAL POLICE ARE THREATENING KOSOVO.

    /// CLINTON ACT ///

    MAKE NO MISTAKE. IF WE AND OUR ALLIES DO NOT HAVE THE WILL TO ACT, THERE WILL BE MORE MASSACRES. IN DEALING WITH AGGRESSORS IN THE BALKANS, HESITATION IS A LICENSE TO KILL. BUT ACTION AND RESOLVE CAN STOP ARMIES AND SAVE LIVES. WE MUST ALSO UNDERSTAND OUR STAKE IN PEACE IN THE BALKANS AND IN KOSOVO. THIS IS A HUMANITARIAN CRISIS, BUT IT IS MUCH MORE. THIS IS A CONFLICT WITH NO NATURAL BOUNDARIES. IT THREATENS OUR NATIONAL INTERESTS.

    /// END ACT ///

    ASKED WHAT THE THRESHOLD IS FOR SERBIAN ACTIONS TO BRING A NATO MILITARY RESPONSE, MR. CLINTON RESPONDED THAT THE THRESHOLD HAS ALREADY BEEN CROSSED.

    THE PRESIDENT REFUSED TO DISCUSS A TIMETABLE FOR ACTION OR TO GO INTO DETAILS ON NATO PLANS, BUT HE SEEMED TO EXPRESS A SENSE OF URGENCY THAT SOME ACTION MUST BE TAKEN.

    /// CLINTON ACT ///

    WITH ALL THE (SERBIAN) TROOPS THAT HAVE BEEN MASSED AND WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT THEIR PLANS AND WHAT THEY HAVE PUBLICLY SAID ABOUT THEM, I WOULD HATE TO THINK THAT WE WOULD HAVE TO SEE A LOT OF OTHER LITTLE CHILDREN DIE BEFORE WE COULD DO WHAT SEEMS TO BE, TO ME, CLEARLY THE RIGHT THING TO DO TO PREVENT IT.

    /// END ACT ///

    AFTER A WHITE HOUSE MEETING BETWEEN THE PRESIDENT AND CONGRESSIONAL LEADERS, MANY SAID MR. CLINTON HAD TO EXPLAIN TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE THE NECESSITY HE SEES FOR ACTION IN KOSOVO. NOW HE HAS USED THE PODIUM OF A NEWS CONFERENCE TO DO THAT. BUT AFTER THEIR BRIEFING AT THE WHITE HOUSE TODAY, SOME REPUBLICAN LEADERS SAID THEY STILL ARE NOT CONVINCED THE CASE FOR MILITARY INTERVENTION HAS BEEN MADE.(SIGNED)
    NEB/MGB/JO
    19-Mar-99 6:27 PM EST (2327 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [03] CLINTON/KOSOVO (L) BY NICK SIMEONE (WHITE HOUSE)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246900
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: MEMBERS OF CONGRESS ARE URGING PRESIDENT CLINTON TO SPELL OUT THE OBJECTIVES OF ANY U-S MILITARY ACTION AGAINST YUGOSLAVIA IF NATO DECIDES TO INTERVENE TO STOP THE CONFLICT IN KOSOVO PROVINCE. THE WHITE HOUSE IS WARNING NATO COULD LAUNCH AIR STRIKES AGAINST SERB TARGETS IF YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC CONTINUES TO BLOCK A KOSOVO PEACE AGREEMENT, WHICH ETHNIC ALBANIANS HAVE ALREADY SIGNED. BUT CORRESPONDENT NICK SIMEONE REPORTS AFTER A BRIEFING BY THE PRESIDENT, KEY MEMBERS OF CONGRESS ARE NOT YET CONVINCED HE HAS MADE THE CASE FOR ANOTHER U-S MILITARY INTERVENTION IN THE BALKANS.

    TEXT: PRESIDENT CLINTON INVITED LAWMAKERS HERE TO REVIEW THE SITUATION IN KOSOVO NOW THAT DIPLOMATIC OPTIONS FOR RESOLVING THE CONFLICT SEEM TO BE DWINDLING.

    DEMOCRATS WERE GENERALLY SUPPORTIVE, REPUBLICANS LESS SO, WITH SOME URGING AN UP OR DOWN VOTE ON THE MATTER. BUT AS LAWMAKERS FILED PASSED REPORTERS WAITING OUTSIDE, ALL INDICATIONS WERE THAT SHORT OF AN UNEXPECTED DIPLOMATIC BREAKTHROUGH, THE COUNTDOWN TOWARD MILITARY ACTION MAY HAVE ALREADY STARTED.

    BUT BEFORE MOVING AHEAD, DEMOCRATIC SENATOR JOE BIDEN URGED THE PRESIDENT TO LAY OUT ALL THE RISKS OF U-S MILITARY INVOLVEMENT ON BEHALF OF PEACE IN KOSOVO IN AN ADDRESS TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE.

    // BIDEN ACT //

    I SAID I THOUGHT THE PRESIDENT SHOULD GO AND TELL THE AMERICAN PEOPLE THERE IS A PROBABILITY THAT AMERICANS WILL BE KILLED, A PROBABILITY, THAT A PILOT OR PILOTS WILL BE SHOT DOWN.

    // END ACT //

    THE PRESIDENT HASN'T YET MADE THE CASE FOR TAKING SUCH A RISK, HE SAID. REPUBLICANS AGREED AND SOME, LIKE SENATOR DON NICHOLS WERE NOT EVEN CONVINCED OF THE MERITS OF JUMPING INTO ANOTHER BALKAN CONFLICT.

    // NICHOLS ACT //

    FOR US TO INITIATE AN ACTION LIKE BOMBING SERBIA IS REALLY AN ACT OF WAR AND I DON'T KNOW THAT IT'S REACHED THE THRESHOLD WHERE WE SHOULD BE TAKING THAT TYPE OF MILITARY ACTION AGAINST THEM.

    // END ACT //

    THE PENTAGON HAS TOLD LAWMAKERS NATO AIR STRIKES AGAINST SERB TARGETS COULD BE TREMENDOUSLY DANGEROUS, MUCH MORE SO THAN THE NATO AIR STRIKES OVER BOSNIA IN 1995. SENATE MAJORITY LEADER TRENT LOTT.

    // LOTT ACT //

    I DON'T BELIEVE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE ARE AWARE OF THE CIRCUMSTANCES AS THEY NOW EXIST AND WHAT MAY OCCUR AND WHAT RISKS ARE INVOLVED.

    // END ACT //

    THE PRESIDENT WILL GET AN OPPORTUNITY TO CLEARLY SPELL OUT WHAT IS AT STAKE IN ANY U-S MILITARY ACTION AGAINST BELGRADE WHEN HE HOLDS HIS FIRST FORMAL WHITE HOUSE NEWS CONFERENCE IN NEARLY A YEAR LATER TODAY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/NJS/ENE/GE
    19-Mar-99 2:05 PM EST (1905 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [04] KOSOVO IMPASSE BY LAURIE KASSMAN (PARIS)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-42897
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE KOSOVO PEACE TALKS HAVE ENDED IN PARIS WITHOUT A COMPLETE PEACE AGREEMENT. ONLY ONE SIDE -- THE KOSOVAR ALBANIANS HAVE SIGNED THE AUTONOMY PLAN. THE SERBS STILL REJECT IT AND FACE THE THREAT OF NATO AIR STRIKES. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT LAURIE KASSMAN TAKES TAKES A LOOK AT WHAT WENT WRONG.

    TEXT: THE PARIS TALKS WERE NEVER MEANT TO REOPEN THE AUTONOMY PLAN THAT HAD BEEN THRASHED OUT OVER 17 DAYS OF MARATHON TALKS LAST MONTH. BUT THE SERBS REFUSED TO TAKE "NO" FOR AN ANSWER. WHEN THE CONFERENCE OPENED ON MONDAY, THE SERB DELEGATION PRESENTED THE THREE MEDIATORS WITH A 20-PAGE DOCUMENT OF AMENDMENTS THEY SAID WOULD IMPROVE THE PLAN.

    THE EUROPEAN UNION MEDIATOR WOLFGANG PETRICH SAID THE POINT OF THE PARIS TALKS WAS TO DISCUSS IMPLEMENTATION OF THE AUTONOMY PLAN, NOT TO RENEGOTIATE IT.

    /// PETRICH ACT ///

    THEY CONTINUE TO HAVE PROBLEMS WITH THE POLITICAL PART OF THE AGREEMENT AND THEY ARE NOT READY TO ENGAGE IN NEGOTIATIONS ON THE IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES THAT WERE CLEARLY A PART OF THE INVITATION TO COME TO PARIS IN THE FIRST PLACE.

    /// END ACT ///

    BY THE END OF THE WEEK, THE ETHNIC ALBANIANS HAD SIGNED THE 81-PAGE DOCUMENT IN A LOW KEY CEREMONY WITHOUT FANFARE. THE SERBS WERE NOT PRESENT.

    THE RUSSIAN MEDIATOR REFUSED TO JOIN HIS U-S AND E-U COLLEAGUES IN ENDORSING THE DOCUMENT. BORIS MAYORSKY HAD ALREADY INDICATED HIS UNEASINESS WITH THE LOPSIDED RESULTS.

    /// MAYORKSY ACT ///

    ONE SIGNATURE UNFORTUNATELY DOESN'T MAKE AN AGREEMENT.

    /// END ACT ///

    THE SERBS LED BY SERB REPUBLIC PRESIDENT MILAN MILUTINOVIC LATER UNDERLINED THAT POINT AS THE SIGN OF DIVISION WITHIN THE CONTACT GROUP.

    /// MILUTINOVIC ACT ///

    THAT IS FROM OUR OPINION A FAKE DOCUMENT BECAUSE THIS DOCUMENT NEVER HAD BEEN DISCUSSED, AGREED, AND SIGNED BEFORE IN ANY FORM BY THE WHOLE CONTACT GROUP.

    /// END ACT ///

    THE ETHNIC ALBANIANS ACCUSED THE SERBS OF WANTING ONLY TO RESOLVE THE KOSOVO CRISIS ON THE BATTLEFIELD. DELEGATION CHIEF HASHIM THACI (SPEAKING THROUGH A TRANSLATOR) SAID IT WAS TIME FOR THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY TO STEP IN.

    /// THACI ACT / TRANSLATOR ///

    THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY SHOULD INTERFERE FASTER IN ORDER TO SECURE PEACE IN KOSOVO. PEACE IN KOSOVO MEANS STABILITY IN THE BALKANS.

    /// END ACT ///

    THE ETHNIC ALBANIANS LEFT THE CONFERENCE STRENGTHENED BY THEIR NEWFOUND ALLIES IN WASHINGTON AND EUROPE.

    THE FINAL STATEMENT OF THE CONFERENCE CO-CHAIRMEN PUT THE BLAME ON BELGRADE FOR THE PARTIAL RESULTS AND WARNED THE SERBS OF GRAVE CONSEQUENCES IF THEY CARRY OUT ANY MILITARY OFFENSIVES IN KOSOVO PROVINCE. THE MASSIVE YUGOSLAV TROOP BUILD-UP IN AND AROUND KOSOVO HAS BEEN DENOUNCED AS ANOTHER VIOLATION OF THE FRAGILE OCTOBER CEASEFIRE.

    THE CONTACT GROUP WILL BE CONSULTING WITH NATO OFFICIALS WHILE LOOKING FOR A LAST-MINUTE COMPROMISE FROM YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC. IN THE PAST, HE HAS REVERSED HIS HARDLINE POSITIONS UNDER THE THREAT OF ATTACK.

    BUT THE QUESTION IS HOW LONG THE WESTERN ALLIES WILL WAIT BEFORE TRANSLATING THE THREAT OF NATO AIR STRIKES INTO ACTION. DIPLOMATS SAY IT IS A MATTER OF DAYS NOT WEEKS. ANALYSTS WARN THAT A LONG DELAY WILL ONLY WEAKEN THE CREDIBILITY OF THE THREAT. (SIGNED)
    NEB/LMK/JWH
    19-Mar-99 8:46 AM EST (1346 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [05] KOSOVO TALKS END (L) BY LAURIE KASSMAN (PARIS)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246872
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE KOSOVO PEACE TALKS HAVE ENDED IN PARIS WITHOUT A COMPLETE PEACE AGREEMENT. SO FAR ONLY ONE SIDE -- THE KOSOVAR ALBANIANS -- HAVE SIGNED THE AUTONOMY PLAN. THE SERBS STILL REJECT IT. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT LAURIE KASSMAN IN PARIS REPORTS A STATEMENT ISSUED BY THE FRENCH AND BRITISH FOREIGN MINISTERS SAYS THE NEGOTIATIONS ARE ADJOURNED.

    TEXT: THE STATEMENT SAYS THE PEACE TALKS WILL NOT RESUME UNLESS BELGRADE ACCEPTS THE PEACE PLAN, WHICH THE ETHNIC ALBANIAN DELEGATION SIGNED ON THURSDAY. NO SPECIFIC DEADLINE HAS BEEN MENTIONED, BUT DIPLOMATS SAY IT IS A MATTER OF DAYS, NOT WEEKS.

    IT ALSO ACCUSES THE SERB DELEGATION OF TRYING TO UNRAVEL THE RAMBOUILLET AGREEMENT. THE SERBS HAD PROPOSED A LIST OF AMENDMENTS TO THE POLITICAL TEXT THAT WOULD HAVE SUBSTANTIALLY CHANGED THE DOCUMENT.

    THE SERBS HAVE CALLED THE PEACE PLAN A FRAUD. BUT THE PRESSURE NOW INCREASES ON YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC TO CHANGE HIS MIND. THE STATEMENT BY THE CO-CHAIRMEN SAYS THE SIX-NATION CONTACT GROUP, WHICH SPONSORED THE PEACE CONFERENCE, WILL BE CONSULTING WITH NATO'S SECRETARY GENERAL

    THE STATEMENT ALSO WARNS YUGOSLAV AUTHORITIES OF GRAVE CONSEQUENCES IF THEY CARRY OUT ANY MILITARY OFFENSIVE IN KOSOVO, WHICH WOULD IMPEDE THE WORK OF THE KOSOVO VERIFICATION MONITORS. THE SERBS HAVE BEEN DEPLOYING TENS OF THOUSANDS OF TROOPS IN AND AROUND KOSOVO, WHICH SERB OFFICIALS DESCRIBE NOW AS A SELF-DEFENSE MEASURE.

    AT THE START OF THE PARIS ROUND OF TALKS, THE BRITISH AND FRENCH FOREIGN MINISTERS WARNED THAT TIME IS RUNNING OUT FOR ACCEPTANCE OF THE AUTONOMY PLAN FOR KOSOVO PROVINCE. AND THE THREAT OF NATO AIR STRIKES INTENSIFIES DESPITE DIVISIONS WITHIN THE SIX-NATION CONTACT GROUP ABOUT THE OUTCOME OF SUCH DRASTIC ACTION. (SIGNED)
    NEB/LMK/JWH/PLM
    19-Mar-99 6:31 AM EST (1131 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [06] KOSOVO / MILITARY (L-ONLY) BY JIM RANDLE (PENTAGON)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246897
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: WITH DIPLOMATIC EFFORTS FAILING TO FORGE A PEACE DEAL FOR KOSOVO, WESTERN OFFICIALS ARE NOW CONSIDERING TAKING MILITARY ACTION AGAINST YUGOSLAVIA. V-O-A'S JIM RANDLE REPORTS FROM THE PENTAGON ON PREPARATIONS FOR THREATENED NATO AIRSTRIKES.

    TEXT: PENTAGON OFFICIALS SAY SIX NATO WARSHIPS -- THAT CAN LAUNCH CRUISE MISSILES -- ARE ON PATROL CLOSE TO YUGOSLAVIA AND 350 NATO WARPLANES ARE ON DUTY WITHIN STRIKING DISTANCE OF YUGOSLAV MILITARY FACILITIES. PLANNERS SAY KEY SERB TARGETS HAVE ALREADY BEEN SELECTED AND ASSIGNED.

    BUT BEFORE NATO CAN BEGIN BOMBING, IT MUST FIRST GET 13-HUNDRED INTERNATIONAL OBSERVERS AND MANY DIPLOMATS AND THEIR FAMILIES OUT OF YUGOSLAVIA IN THE NEXT FEW DAYS.

    DURING THE WAR IN NEIGHBORING BOSNIA, SERB FORCES COUNTERED THREATENED NATO AIR STRIKES BY TAKING U-N OBSERVERS HOSTAGE, AND CHAINING SOME OF THEM TO LIKELY TARGETS. MEANTIME, TOP U-S MILITARY OFFICIALS HAVE TOLD CONGRESS THAT AIR ATTACKS ON SERB TARGETS MAY COST NATO PLANES AND PILOTS' LIVES. PENTAGON SPOKESMAN KEN BACON SAYS SERB AIR DEFENSES ARE STRONG.

    /// BACON ACT ///

    THIS IS A ROBUST, HIGHLY INTEGRATED, WELL-EQUIPED AIR DEFENSE SYSTEM OPERATED BY WELL-TRAINED PEOPLE. IT IS A MUCH MORE SIGNIFICANT SYSTEM THAN OUR PILOTS FACED IN BOSNIA IN 1995.

    /// END ACT ///

    AND THE BOSNIAN SYSTEM WAS ABLE TO SHOOT DOWN A U-S F-16 JET.

    YUGOSLAV AIR DEFENSES ARE MADE UP OF A WEB OF RADARS TO DETECT PLANES, MISSILES TO TAKE OUT HIGH-FLYING AIRCRAFT ALONG WITH ANTI- AIRCRAFT ARTILLERY AND SHORT RANGE MISSILES TO DESTROY LOW FLYING PLANES THAT TRY TO SNEAK UNDER RADAR. TOP U-S OFFICERS SAY EVEN KOSOVO'S WEATHER --- A WINTRY MIX OF SNOW, FOG AND ICE FAVORS THE DEFENDERS.

    NATO PLANNERS SAY THEY ARE READY TO ACT IF, AND WHEN, THEY GET THE ORDER. (SIGNED)
    NEB/JR/ENE/JO
    19-Mar-99 1:43 PM EST (1843 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [07] KOSOVO MONITORS (L ONLY) BY PHILIP SMUCKER (PRISTINA)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246893
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: WESTERN PEACE MONITORS AND DIPLOMATS BEGAN LEAVING YUGOSLAVIA FRIDAY AFTER PEACE TALKS ON AUTONOMY FOR KOSOVO PROVINCE COLLAPSED IN PARIS. PHILIP SMUCKER IN KOSOVO'S CAPITAL, PRISTINA, REPORTS THE HEAD OF THE KOSOVO MONITORING MISSION EXPRESSED GRAVE CONCERNS FOR THE SAFETY OF THOSE ETHNIC ALBANIANS AND SERBS WHO ARE STAYING BEHIND.

    TEXT: WESTERN MONITORS AND DIPLOMATS BEGAN EVACUATING YUGOSLAVIA FRIDAY AS FIGHTING AND FEARS OF A GREATER WAR INCREASED.

    WESTERN DIPLOMATS SAY YUGOSLAV FORCES ARE CONTINUING TO PREPARE A MAJOR OFFENSIVE AGAINST THE REBEL ETHNIC ALBANIAN KOSOVO LIBERATION ARMY (K-L-A). A TOP YUGOSLAV GENERAL VOWED THIS WEEK TO STRIKE AT THE K-L-A IF NATO MAKES GOOD ON ITS THREAT TO LAUNCH AIR STRIKES AGAINST SERBIA (YUGOSLAVIA'S DOMINANT REPUBLIC).

    THE HEAD OF THE MISSION CHARGED WITH MONITORING KOSOVO, WILLIAM WALKER, SAID HE UNDERSTOOD WHAT HE CALLED THE DANGERS FACED BY THOSE WHO REMAIN IN KOSOVO. THE MONITORING MISSION OF THE ORGANIZATION FOR SECURITY AND COOPERATION IN EUROPE HAS NEARLY 13-HUNDRED-50 MONITORS IN KOSOVO.

    A SPOKESMAN FOR THE MONITORS, JORGAN GRUNNET, SAID THE MONITORING MISSION NO LONGER HAS A JOB IN KOSOVO SINCE THE CEASEFIRE IT WAS ASSIGNED TO MONITOR HAS ENTIRELY BROKEN DOWN. BUT MR. WALKER EXPRESSED HOPES THAT HIS MISSION MIGHT RETURN TO KOSOVO SHORTLY.

    SENIOR NATO OFFICIALS HAVE WARNED YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC THAT THEY HAVE THE POTENTIAL TO DEVASTATE AND DESTROY HIS ARMY WITH AIR STRIKES.

    SEVERAL WESTERN EMBASSIES, INCLUDING THAT OF THE UNITED STATES AND BRITAIN, PULLED OUT NON-ESSENTIAL STAFF FROM YUGOSLAVIA ON FRIDAY.

    YUGOSLAV AND SERBIAN FORCES HAVE POUNDED REBEL POSITIONS IN CENTRAL KOSOVO ALL WEEK. DOZENS OF CIVILIANS AND REBELS HAVE BEEN KILLED IN THE WEEK'S FIGHTING. U-N REFUGEE OFFICIALS SAY NEARLY 60-THOUSAND ETHNIC ALBANIANS HAVE BEEN FORCED FROM THEIR HOMES IN THE PAST THREE WEEKS OF FIGHTING.

    SERBIAN SECURITY FORCES NOW APPEAR POISED TO STRIKE AT THE ETHNIC ALBANIAN REBEL HEARTLAND IN CENTRAL KOSOVO. (SIGNED)
    NEB/PS/JWH/JO
    19-Mar-99 12:20 PM EST (1720 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [08] KOSOVO REFUGEES (L ONLY) BY LISA SCHLEIN (GENEVA)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246881
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE U-N REFUGEE AGENCY, U-N-H-C-R, SAYS THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE ARE CONTINUING TO FLEE FROM FIGHTING IN THE SERBIAN PROVINCE OF KOSOVO. LISA SCHLEIN IN GENEVA REPORTS THE REFUGEE AGENCY SAYS A SIGNIFICANT PORTION OF THE POPULATION HAS BEEN DISPLACED SINCE THE CONFLICT BEGAN.

    TEXT: U-N-H-C-R SPOKESWOMAN, JUDITH KUMIN, SAYS IT IS DIFFICULT TO GIVE PRECISE FIGURES FOR THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN MADE HOMELESS BY THE CONFLICT IN KOSOVO. BUT, SHE SAYS HER AGENCY ESTIMATES THE NUMBER OF THOSE WHO ARE NOW DISPLACED WITHIN THE PROVINCE AT 240-THOUSAND.

    /// KUMIN ACT ///

    WHEN WE ADD TOGETHER ALL THE PEOPLE DISPLACED BY THIS CONFLICT INSIDE KOSOVO TO CENTRAL AND AND WESTERN EUROPE AND TO OTHER PARTS OF THE REGION THAT IS ALBANIA, MACEDONIA, MONTENEGRO, WE COME TO A RATHER STAGGERING FIGURE OF 22 PERCENT OF KOSOVO'S POPULATION DISPLACED SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE CONFLICT.

    /// END ACT ///

    MS. KUMIN SAYS THE 22 PERCENT IS BASED ON AN ESTIMATE OF KOSOVO'S PRE-CONFLICT POPULATION OF TWO-MILLION PEOPLE. THAT MEANS THAT AROUND 400-THOUSAND PEOPLE HAVE FLED THEIR HOMES SINCE FIGHTING BEGAN.

    MS. KUMIN SAYS THE ACTUAL FIGURE IS PROBABLY LARGER BECAUSE THE AGENCY'S ESTIMATE DOES NOT TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE WHO REPORTEDLY HAVE ENTERED EUROPEAN COUNTRIES ILLEGALLY.

    SHE SAYS U-N STAFF IN KOSOVO REPORT THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE FLED THEIR HOMES THIS WEEK ALONE AS THE YUGOSLAV ARMY BROUGHT NEW TROOPS INTO THE PROVINCE. SHE SAYS SEVERAL VILLAGES IN VARIOUS AREAS WERE SHELLED. SHE NOTES AROUND 60-THOUSAND PEOPLE HAVE BEEN DRIVEN FROM THEIR HOMES SINCE THE END OF THE FIRST ROUND OF PEACE TALKS IN FRANCE IN LATE FEBRUARY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/LS/JWH
    19-Mar-99 9:25 AM EST (1425 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [09] TURKEY POLITICS (L-ONLY) BY AMBERIN ZAMAN (ANKARA)

    DATE=3/18/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246859
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: TURKEY'S PARLIAMENT HAS VOTED (THURSDAY) TO DEBATE A NO-CONFIDENCE MOTION AGAINST PRIME MINISTER BULENT ECEVIT'S LEFT-WING MINORITY GOVERNMENT. AMBERIN ZAMAN REPORTS FROM ANKARA, THE MOVE HAS PLUNGED TURKEY INTO FURTHER POLITICAL UNCERTAINTY JUST A MONTH AHEAD OF NATIONWIDE PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS.

    TEXT: DURING A ROWDY SESSION OF THE TURKISH PARLIAMENT, 240 LAWMAKERS VOTED IN FAVOR OF DEBATING THE MOTION, WHILE 211 OTHERS VOTED AGAINST IT. THE MOVE IS INTENDED TO POSTPONE PARLIAMENTARY AND MUNICIPAL ELECTIONS, SCHEDULED TO BE HELD ON APRIL 18TH.

    IN COMMENTS PUBLISHED IN THE MASS-CIRCULATION DAILY NEWSPAPER HURRIYET (THURSDAY), TURKEY'S POWERFUL CHIEF OF GENERAL STAFF, HUSEYIN KIVRIKOGLU, URGED PARLIAMENT NOT TO DELAY THE POLLS, SAYING THIS WOULD LEAD TO WHAT HE TERMED "CHAOS." GENERAL KIVRIKOGLU ALSO WARNED THE LAWMAKERS AGAINST TRYING TO RESCIND LAWS USED TO PROSECUTE ISLAMIST POLITICIANS. HE SAID TO DO SO WOULD HEIGHTEN THE THREAT POSED BY ISLAMIC RADICALS TO TURKEY'S SECULAR CONSTITUTION.

    MOVES TO DELAY THE POLLS ARE BEING SPEARHEADED BY LAWMAKERS WHO WERE NOT ASKED BY THEIR RESPECTIVE PARTIES TO RUN AGAIN IN THE PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS NEXT MONTH.

    THEY HAVE BEEN NICKNAMED "THE DISGRUNTLED ONES" BY THE TURKISH PRESS, AND ARE WIDELY ACCUSED OF ACTING OUT OF SELF-INTEREST. THE REBEL LAWAKERS ARE BEING SUPPORTED BY THE ISLAMIST VIRTUE PARTY.

    THE ISLAMISTS, WHO COMMAND THE LARGEST BLOC IN THE 550-MEMBER TURKISH LEGISLATURE, ARE BACKING THE CAMPAIGN TO DELAY THE ELECTIONS IN EXCHANGE FOR SUPPORT FOR CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS THAT WOULD ENABLE TURKEY'S FORMER ISLAMIST PREMIER NECMETTIN ERBAKAN TO RUN FOR OFFICE AGAIN. LAST YEAR, THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT BARRED MR ERBAKAN FROM POLITICS FOR FIVE YEARS, AND BANNED HIS ISLAMIST WELFARE PARTY. THE FORMER PREMIER WAS ACCUSED OF TRYING TO INTRODUCE ISLAMIC RULE DURING A STORMY YEAR IN OFFICE (IN 1997).

    THE ISLAMISTS REGROUPED UNDER THE VIRTUE PARTY, WHICH WAS ESTABLISHED LAST YEAR. DESPITE THURSDAY'S VOTE TO OPEN DEBATE, ANALYSTS SAY IT IS UNLIKELY THE REBELS WILL MUSTER THE 276 VOTES THEY NEED TO TO BRING DOWN MR ECEVIT'S GOVERNMENT DURING A NO-CONFIDENCE VOTE, SCHEDULED TO TAKE PLACE ON MONDAY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/AZ/WTW SIGNED
    18-Mar-99 7:26 PM EST (0026 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [10] CHINA/EUROPE (L-ONLY) BY STEPHANIE HO (BEIJING)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246865
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE CHINESE PRESIDENT HEADS TO EUROPE SATURDAY -- FOR AN 11-DAY, THREE-COUNTRY TOUR AIMED AT BOLSTERING BEIJING'S RELATIONSHIPS THERE. VOA'S STEPHANIE HO REPORTS THE TRIP INCLUDES STOPS IN ITALY AND AUSTRIA, AS WELL AS A VISIT TO SWITZERLAND, THAT COINCIDES WITH THE ANNUAL GENEVA MEETING OF THE UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION.

    TEXT: CHINESE PRESIDENT JIANG ZEMIN LEAVES FOR ITALY ON SATURDAY. ONE OF THE MAIN QUESTIONS IS WHETHER HE WILL MEET WITH REPRESENTATIVES FROM THE VATICAN -- WHICH HAS OFFICIAL TIES WITH CHINA'S ARCH-RIVAL, TAIWAN, AN ISLAND BEIJING REGARDS AS A RENEGADE PROVINCE.

    AT A REGULAR NEWS BRIEFING THURSDAY, CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN SUN YUXI, SPEAKING THROUGH AN INTERPRETER, WOULD NOT CONFIRM ANY SUCH MEETINGS.

    // SUN INTERPRETER ACT //

    WITH REGARD TO PRESIDENT JIANG'S ACTIVITIES IN ITALY, I DON'T HAVE ANY INFORMATION AT HAND NOW. HOWEVER, CHINA IS WILLING TO IMPROVE RELATIONS WITH THE VATICAN.

    // END ACT //

    THE BEIJING SPOKESMAN REPEATED CHINA'S CONDITIONS FOR DIPLOMATIC TIES WITH THE VATICAN. HE SAYS THE HOLY SEE MUST SEVER ITS TIES WITH TAIWAN AND MUST NOT, AS HE PUT IT, USE RELIGION TO INTERFERE IN CHINA'S INTERNAL AFFAIRS.

    MEMBERS OF CHINA'S OFFICIALLY-SANCTIONED CATHOLIC CHURCH ARE NOT PERMITTED TO RECOGNIZE THE AUTHORITY OF THE POPE AND THE FOUR MILLION MEMBERS MUST WORSHIP IN GOVERNMENT-APPROVED "PATRIOTIC" CHURCHES.

    FROM ITALY, MR. JIANG HEADS TO SWITZERLAND ON MARCH 25TH -- A VISIT THAT WILL COINCIDE WITH THE ANNUAL UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS FORUM IN GENEVA.

    THE CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY DID NOT HAVE DETAILS OF HIS TRIP TO SWITZERLAND, BUT SAID HE IS LIKELY TO HAVE CONTACTS WITH INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS WHILE IN GENEVA.

    THE THIRD COUNTRY HE WILL VISIT IS AUSTRIA. IT IS ONE OF THE THREE NATIONS REPRESENTED IN A EUROPEAN DELEGATION THAT MET WITH CHINESE OFFICIALS THIS WEEK IN BEIJING, TO DISCUSS HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUES.

    THE TALKS WERE AIMED AT HELPING THE EUROPEAN UNION DECIDE WHETHER TO SUPPORT CENSURING CHINA FOR ITS HUMAN RIGHTS RECORD, AT THE UPCOMING GENEVA MEETING. ON TUESDAY, MR. SUN SAID BEIJING HOPES THE EUROPEAN UNION WILL TAKE THE OVERALL RELATIONSHIP INTO CONSIDERATION.

    CHINA'S AGREEMENT TO HOLD A HUMAN RIGHTS DIALOGUE WITH WESTERN GOVERNMENTS WAS A KEY FACTOR IN THEIR DECISION NOT TO SEEK A CENSURE AT LAST YEAR'S U-N HUMAN RIGHTS MEETING IN GENEVA. (SIGNED) NEB/HO/FC/PLM,
    19-Mar-99 4:30 AM EST (0930 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [11] E-U / GERMANY (L ONLY) (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246894

    CORRESPONDENT=RON PEMSTEIN CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: GERMAN CHANCELLOR GERHARD SCHROEDER HAS COMPLETED TALKS WITH THE OTHER 14 EUROPEAN UNION LEADERS ABOUT THE AGENDA FOR THE E-U SUMMIT MEETING IN BERLIN BEGINNING THURSDAY. V-O-A'S RON PEMSTEIN IN BRUSSELS REPORTS THE TOP PRIORITY AT THE MEETING WILL BE SOLVING THE EUROPEAN UNION'S FINANCIAL PROBLEMS.

    TEXT: THE BERLIN SUMMIT HAS BEEN ORGANIZED BY GERMANY TO AGREE ON THE EUROPEAN UNION'S BUDGET FOR THE NEXT SEVEN YEARS, THE BUDGET IT NEEDS TO ENLARGE TO NEW MEMBERS IN CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE.

    THE MEETING OF EUROPEAN LEADERS HAS BEEN COMPLICATED BY THE RESIGNATION UNDER FIRE OF THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION, THE UNION'S EXECUTIVE BOARD. THERE HAS BEEN PRESSURE BY BRITAIN, AUSTRIA AND SOME OTHER MEMBER COUNTRIES TO FIND A QUICK REPLACEMENT FOR COMMISSION PRESIDENT JACQUES SANTER.

    THE ENTIRE 20-MEMBER COMMISSION RESIGNED TUESDAY AFTER INDEPENDENT EXPERTS APPOINTED BY THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT ACCUSED THE COMMISSION OF AVOIDING ANY RESPONSIBILITY FOR CASES OF CORRUPTION AND NEPOTISM.

    THE COMMISSION REMAINS IN A CARETAKER CAPACITY AND HAS PLEDGED NOT TO TAKE ANY NEW ACTIONS UNTIL THE MEMBER STATES DECIDE TO REPLACE IT.

    OUTGOING COMMISSION PRESIDENT SANTER WILL BE IN BERLIN AND MR. SANTER SAYS HE IS CONFIDENT THE LEADERS WILL AGREE ON THE BUDGET DEAL AT THE BERLIN SUMMIT.

    GERMANY'S GERHARD SCHROEDER IS THE PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL OF MINISTERS FOR THE FIRST SIX MONTHS OF THE YEAR UNDER THE EUROPEAN UNION'S ROTATION SYSTEM. HE TELLS REPORTERS HERE IN BRUSSELS THAT GERMANY WANTS A QUICK DECISION ON REPLACING THE COUNCIL IN BERLIN OR SOON AFTERWARD.

    /// SCHROEDER ACT - IN GERMAN - FADE UNDER ///

    WE WILL TALK IN BERLIN ABOUT THE PROCEDURE AMONG THE STATE AND GOVERNMENT LEADERS, THE CHANCELLOR SAYS. WHETHER WE CAN MAKE A DECISION IS OPEN, I CAN'T SAY AT THE PRESENT TIME. BUT IN ANY CASE, HE SAYS, ALL OF US WANT A QUICK DECISION THAT WILL ALSO BE A SIGNAL FOR EUROPE'S ABILITY TO ACT.

    AT THE SAME TIME, CHANCELLOR SCHROEDER MADE CLEAR IN HIS MEETING WITH MR. SANTER AND LATER WITH THE PRESIDENT OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT THAT HIS FIRST PRIORITY WILL BE TO REACH AGREEMENT ON THE EUROPEAN UNION BUDGET FOR THE YEARS 2000 TO 2006.

    THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT HAS THE POWER TO APPROVE A NEW EUROPEAN COMMISSION. PARLIAMENT PRESIDENT JOSE MARIA GIL-ROBLES HAS BEEN DEMANDING THAT MR. SANTER BE REPLACED RIGHT AWAY.

    AFTER MEETING WITH MR. SCHROEDER, THE PARLIAMENT PRESIDENT AGREED WITH THE CHANCELLOR THAT THE TOP PRIORITY IN BERLIN WILL BE THE BUDGET AND THE SECOND PRIORITY WILL BE THE PROCEDURE FOR REPLACING THE COMMISSION AND MR. SANTER.

    ONE DECISION TO BE MADE IS WHETHER TO APPOINT A TEMPORARY COMMISSION PRESIDENT TO FINISH MR. SANTER'S TERM UNTIL THE END OF THE YEAR. ANOTHER POSSIBILITY IS APPOINTING SOMEONE RIGHT AWAY FOR THE FULL FIVE YEAR TERM PLUS THE REST OF MR. SANTER'S. SPECULATION HAS CENTERED ON ITALY'S FORMER PRIME MINISTER ROMANO PRODI. (SIGNED)
    NEB/RDP/JWH
    19-Mar-99 12:39 PM EST (1739 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [12] EDITORIAL: BRINGING BASQUE TERRORISTS TO JUSTICE

    DATE= 03/21/99
    TYPE= EDITORIAL
    NUMBER= 0-08234
    CONTENT=THIS IS THE ONLY EDITORIAL BEING RELEASED FOR BROADCAST
    03/21/99.

    ANNCR: THE VOICE OF AMERICA PRESENTS DIFFERING POINTS OF VIEW ON A WIDE VARIETY OF ISSUES. NEXT, AN EDITORIAL EXPRESSING THE POLICIES OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT.

    VOICE:

    FRENCH AUTHORITIES SCORED A MAJOR VICTORY IN THE WAR AGAINST INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM WITH THE ARREST, MARCH 9TH, OF JAVIER ARIZCUREN-RUIZ. ARIZCUREN-RUIZ IS CHIEF OF THE TERRORIST GROUP CALLED BASQUE FATHERLAND AND LIBERTY, OR E-T-A. ALSO KNOWN AS "KANTURI," HE WAS ARRESTED IN PARIS ALONG WITH FIVE OTHER ARMED TERRORISTS. HE IS CHARGED WITH ORDERING MURDERS IN SPAIN OVER A TEN-YEAR PERIOD AND WITH THE ATTEMPTED ASSASSINATION IN 1995 OF SPAIN'S KING, JUAN CARLOS.

    FRENCH AND SPANISH AUTHORITIES HAVE WORKED CLOSELY IN RECENT YEARS TO SMASH THE E-T-A NETWORK, MUCH OF WHICH HAS BEEN BASED IN FRANCE. IN 1997, FRENCH POLICE ARRESTED MORE THAN ONE-HUNDRED FORTY E-T-A ACTIVISTS. SIXTY WENT ON TRIAL IN FRANCE AND TWENTY-THREE WERE EXTRADITED TO SPAIN. SEVERAL OTHER E-T-A TERRORISTS WERE EXTRADITED TO SPAIN IN 1998.

    SUCH COOPERATION HAS BEEN URGENTLY NEEDED. SINCE ITS FOUNDING IN 1959, THE E-T-A HAS KILLED NEARLY EIGHT-HUNDRED MEN, WOMEN, AND CHILDREN AND WOUNDED MANY MORE. THE E-T-A HAS FINANCED ITS TERROR THROUGH KIDNAPPING, ROBBERY, AND EXTORTION. IT ALSO RECEIVED, AT VARIOUS TIMES, ASSISTANCE AND TRAINING FROM LIBYA, SYRIAN-CONTROLLED LEBANON, AND THE FORMER SANDINISTA REGIME IN NICARAGUA. CUBA IS BELIEVED TO HAVE GIVEN SAFE HAVEN TO E-T-A TERRORISTS.

    TERRORIST GROUPS LIKE THE E-T-A OFTEN OPERATE FAR BEYOND THE BORDERS OF THE COUNTRY OR COUNTRIES THEY TARGET. THEY DEPEND HEAVILY ON OTHER TERRORIST GROUPS AND STATE SPONSORS FOR SUPPORT. FOR THIS REASON, INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION TO STOP SUCH GROUPS IS VITAL. THE EXAMPLE SET BY SPAIN AND FRANCE IN DEALING WITH THE E-T-A IS ONE THAT OTHERS SHOULD FOLLOW.

    ANNCR:

    THAT WAS AN EDITORIAL EXPRESSING THE POLICIES OF THE U.S. GOVERNMENT. IF YOU HAVE A COMMENT, PLEASE WRITE TO EDITORIALS, V-O-A, WASHINGTON, D-C, 20547, U-S-A. YOU MAY ALSO COMMENT AT WWW-DOT-VOA-DOT-GOV-SLASH-EDITORIALS, OR FAX US AT (202) 619-1043.
    19-Mar-99 9:30 AM EST (1430 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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

    DATE=3/19/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-246909
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK PRICES IN THE UNITED STATES WERE DOWN TODAY (FRIDAY), AS THE DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE AGAIN MOVED ABOVE 10-THOUSAND, BUT THE INDEX (OF STOCK PRICES) ONCE AGAIN FAILED TO CLOSE AT THAT LEVEL. V-O-A BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT BRECK ARDERY REPORTS FROM NEW YORK.

    TEXT: THE DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE CLOSED AT 99-HUNDRED-THREE, DOWN 94 POINTS, OR ABOUT ONE PERCENT. FOR THE WEEK, THE INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE GAINED 27 POINTS. THE STANDARD AND POOR'S 500 INDEX CLOSED FRIDAY AT 12-HUNDRED-99, DOWN 17 POINTS. THE NASDAQ INDEX CLOSED DOWN MORE THAN ONE AND ONE-HALF PERCENT.

    FOR THE THIRD TIME THIS WEEK, THE INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE TRADED ABOVE 10-THOUSAND. AND FOR THE THIRD TIME IT FAILED TO CLOSE ABOVE THAT LEVEL. MANY ANALYSTS STILL SAY IT IS ONLY A MATTER OF DAYS BEFORE IT DOES CLOSE ABOVE 10-THOUSAND. BUT A FEW SAY THE FAILURE TO DO SO THIS PAST WEEK COULD TRIGGER A NEGATIVE ATTITUDE ON THE PART OF MANY TRADERS.

    /// REST OPT ///

    INVESTMENT ADVISER ROBERT STOVALL SAYS THE NUMBER OF LEADERSHIP STOCKS WILL HAVE TO EXPAND, IF THE INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE IS GOING TO TRADE ABOVE 10-THOUSAND FOR ANY SUSTAINED PERIOD OF TIME.

    /// STOVALL ACT ///

    WHAT YOU WILL NEED TO HOLD THE DOW ABOVE 10-THOUSAND IS FOR THE BUYING INTERST TO EXPAND FROM THE EIGHT OR SO STOCKS OF THE

    /// END ACT ///

    A-T-AND-T AND BRITISH TELECOMMUNICATIONS ARE REPORTEDLY IN FINAL TALKS TO BUY 30-PERCENT OWNERSHIP IN JAPAN TELECOM. THE COMPANIES HAVE NOT COMMENTED, BUT ANALYSTS SAY THE MOVE WOULD GIVE THE AMERICAN AND BRITISH COMPANIES A KEY POSITION IN THE JAPANESE TELECOMMUNICATIONS MARKET.

    THE STOCK OF ABODE SYSTEMS ROSE MORE THAN 10 PERCENT AFTER THE COMPUTER SOFTWARE COMPANY REPORTED BETTER-THAN-EXPECTED EARNINGS. THE COMPANY ALSO ANNOUNCED IT WILL INTRODUCE SEVERAL NEW PRODUCTS LATER THIS YEAR. NIKE, THE FOOTWEAR AND SPORTS APPAREL MAKER, ALSO REPORTED BETTER-THAN-EXPECTED EARNINGS. BUT NIKE SAID IT IS CAUTIOUS ABOUT CONTINUED GROWTH, BECAUSE OF PROBLEMS IN ASIAN MARKETS AND WEAKNESS IN SPORTSWEAR DEMAND IN THE UNITED STATES.

    FIRST UNION, THE SIXTH-LARGEST BANK IN THE UNITED STATES, SAYS IT WILL ELIMINATE SIX-THOUSAND JOBS, OR ABOUT SEVEN PERCENT OF ITS WORK FORCE, IN A RESTRUCTURING.

    THERE WAS SOME GOOD NEWS FOR AMERICAN MEAT PRODUCERS. THE UNITED STATES AND RUSSIA HAVE REACHED AGREEMENT ON A MEAT ASSISTANCE DEAL. THIS WILL GIVE RUSSIA ONE-BILLION DOLLARS IN LOW-INTEREST LOANS TO HELP BUY MORE THAN 200-THOUSAND METRIC TONS OF AMERICAN BEEF, PORK AND POULTRY. (SIGNED) NEB/NY/BA/LSF/WTW
    19-Mar-99 5:39 PM EST (2239 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [14] FRIDAY'S EDITORIALS BY GARY EDQUIST (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=03/1/99
    TYPE=U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST
    NUMBER=6-11199
    TELEPHONE=619-2702
    EDITOR=ASSIGNMENTS
    CONTENT=

    //// EDS: MATERIAL DATED AFTER 10 P-M E-S-T ////

    INTRO: THERE IS A WARNING IN FRIDAY'S U-S NEWSPAPER EDITORIALS ABOUT A POSSIBLE DEADLY CONFLICT OVER KOSOVO; THERE IS ALSO CALL FOR RESTORING OLYMPIC CREDIBILITY; AND CONCERN ABOUT POTENTIALLY DAMAGING SECURITY LEAKS AT U-S NUCLEAR LABS. NOW, HERE WITH SOME EXCERPTS ON THESE AND OTHER COMMENTARIES FROM FRIDAY'S U-S PRESS IS _________________ AND THE EDITORIAL DIGEST.

    TEXT: AN EDITORIAL IN "NEWSDAY" (FROM LONG ISLAND, NEW YORK) WARNS THAT "SERBIAN LEADER SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC IS PLAYING A DANGEROUS GAME ... WITH NATO OVER KOSOVO." THE KOSOVO PEACE TALKS IN PARIS HAVE ADJOURNED AND INTERNATIONAL MEDIATORS SAY THE NEGOTIATIONS WILL RESUME ONLY IF YUGOSLAVIA ACCEPTS A PROPOSED PEACE PLAN FOR THE SERBIAN PROVINCE. "NEWSDAY" WRITES THAT PRESIDENT MILOSEVIC IS SETTING HIMSELF UP "FOR A MILITARY CONFRONTATION THAT HE IS BOUND TO LOSE." THE NEWSPAPER ADDS:

    VOICE: CIVILIANS ON BOTH SIDES STAND TO LOSE, TOO. IT'S IN EVERYONE'S INTEREST TO AVOID A CONFRONTATION. PERHAPS (MR.) MILOSEVIC HAS BEEN TAKING POINTERS FROM IRAQ'S SADDAM HUSSEIN ON HOW TO DEAL WITH THREATS FROM A U-S-LED ALLIANCE: IGNORE ALL THREATS OF MILITARY FORCE -- ESPECIALLY WHEN THOSE THREATS ARE TIED TO ENDLESSLY ELASTIC DEADLINE -- AND DEFY A SUPERIOR MILITARY POWER AS LONG AS POSSIBLE.

    TEXT: "THE WASHINGTON POST" IS WRITING ABOUT OFFICIAL U-S REACTION TO REPORTS OF CHINESE ESPIONAGE. "EVERYONE UNDERSTANDS," WRITES THE POST, "THAT GOVERNMENTS SPY ON EACH OTHER AND THAT THE ALLEGED THEFTS OF NUCLEAR SECRETS DID INDEED TAKE PLACE BEFORE MR. CLINTON'S TERM (IN OFFICE BEGAN). THE EDITORIAL CONTINUES:

    VOICE: YOU WOULD EXPECT PRESIDENT CLINTON, VICE PRESIDENT GORE AND OTHER STEWARDS OF AMERICA'S NUCLEAR SECRETS TO BE INDIGNANT -- WHY NOT ANGRY? -- AT WHAT CHINA HAS DONE. BUT FACED WITH EVIDENCE OF A SERIOUS BREACH WITH POTENTIALLY DAMAGING CONSEQUENCES TO U-S SECURITY, THEIR CHIEF RESPONSE HAS BEEN TO DODGE BLAME AND MAKE EXCUSES. IT IS DEMEANING. /// OPT /// THE CLINTON ADMINISTRATION HAS BEEN SO EAGER FOR WARM RELATIONS WITH CHINA'S COMMUNIST REGIME THAT IT HAS RAISED SUSPICIONS IT WILL PAY TOO HIGH A PRICE FOR SUCH FRIENDSHIP -- INCLUDING DOWNGRADING AMERICA'S FRIENDSHIP WITH TAIWAN, SLIGHTING ITS ALLIANCE WITH JAPAN, MUTING ITS CONCERNS ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS AND, POSSIBLY, PLAYING DOWN THE SIGNIFICANCE OF ALLEGED ESPIONAGE. /// END OPT ///

    TEXT: THE U-S AND NORTH KOREA REACHED AN AGREEMENT THIS WEEK TO ALLOW THE U-S TO INSPECT A SUSPECTED NUCLEAR FACILITY IN THE NORTH. THE "LOS ANGELES TIME" HAS THIS EDITORIAL COMMENT.

    VOICE: WASHINGTON'S ON-AGAIN, OFF-AGAIN EFFORT TO STEER NORTH KOREA AWAY FROM MAKING NUCLEAR WEAPONS AND ONTO THE PATH OF GREATER ENGAGEMENT APPEARS TO BE ON AGAIN, AT LEAST FOR NOW. ... BUT THE EXISTENCE OF THE ... SITE AND CONCERNS THAT NORTH KOREA MIGHT BE HIDING OTHER SECRET NUCLEAR FACILITIES, PLUS PYONGYANG'S CONTINUING DEVELOPMENT OF LONG-RANGE MISSILES THAT ARE OF LITTLE USE EXCEPT AS DELIVERY VEHICLES FOR NUCLEAR WARHEADS, INESCAPABLY FEED SUSPICIONS ABOUT ITS FIDELITY TO AGREEMENTS AND ITS INTENTIONS.

    TEXT: "THE SUN" IN BALTIMORE (MARYLAND) WRITES ABOUT RESTORING OLYMPIC CREDIBILITY, AND SAYS THAT THE OUSTER OF SIX I-O-C (INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE) MEMBERS IS A GOOD FIRST STEP.

    VOICE: EXPULSION OF SIX INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE MEMBERS, JOINING FOUR WHO QUIT, IS ONE STEP OUT OF THE PIT THE I-O-C HAS DUG FOR ITSELF. BUT ALONE IT DOES NOT END THE SCANDAL BY PROVING THE I-O-C IS PURGING ITSELF OF CORRUPTION. NOR DOES IT RESTORE THE CREDIBILITY THE OLYMPIC MOVEMENT REQUIRES. ... AS THE SOURCE OF THE PROBLEMS, (I-O-C PRESIDENT JUAN ANTONIO) SAMARANCH CANNOT BE THE SOLUTION. ANOTHER HAND SHOULD GUIDE THE REFORMS TO COME.

    TEXT: THAT CONCLUDES THIS SAMPLING OF EDITORIAL COMMENT FROM FRIDAY'S U-S PRESS.
    NEB/GE/KL
    19-Mar-99 10:32 AM EST (1532 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [15] OLYMPIC COMMITTEE EXPULSIONS BY GARY EDQUIST (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=03/19/99
    TYPE=U-S OPINION ROUNDUP
    NUMBER=6-11200
    TELEPHONE=619-2702
    EDITOR=ASSIGNMENTS
    CONTENT=

    INTRO: THE INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE (I-O-C) EXPELLED (THIS WEEK) SIX MEMBERS FOR THEIR ROLES IN THE SALT LAKE CITY CORRUPTION SCANDAL. WE GET A SAMPLING OF U-S EDITORIAL REACTION TO THE ACTION FROM ____________ IN TODAY'S U-S OPINION ROUNDUP.

    TEXT: THE SIX WHO WERE EXPELLED WERE FOUND GUILTY OF BREAKING I-O-C RULES ON ACCEPTING GIFTS DURING SALT LAKE CITY'S WINNING BID FOR THE 2002 WINTER GAMES. BUT THE I-O-C ALSO EXPRESSED STRONG SUPPORT FOR ITS EMBATTLED PRESIDENT, JUAN ANTONIO SAMARANCH. "THE NEW YORK TIMES" HAS THIS COMMENT ABOUT THE I-O-C MEETING.

    VOICE: PERHAPS THE OLYMPIC MOVEMENT SHOULD CREATE AN EVENT FOR THOSE WHO EXCEL AT JUST GETTING BY. IF IT DID, JUAN ANTONIO SAMARANCH ... SURELY WOULD HAVE WON A GOLD MEDAL THIS WEEK. DESPITE HIS DECLARATION OF VICTORY OVER BRIBERY AND CORRUPTION AT THE CLOSE OF THE ORGANIZATION'S MEETING ..., THE ACTIONS AND REFORMS RATIFIED WERE QUITE MEAGER.

    TEXT: THE "LOS ANGELES TIMES WRITES ABOUT WHAT IT CALLS A "FIRST STEP IN OLYMPICS REFORM" AT THE MEETING IN SWITZERLAND.

    VOICE: /// OPT /// WHILE THIS WAS AN UNPRECEDENTED ACTION IN THE MODERN OLYMPIC MOVEMENT, IT IS A MINIMAL FIRST STEP. EVIDENCE OF CORRUPTION BY OTHER I-O-C MEMBERS MUST BE PURSUED. BUT THE REAL WORK BEGINS (NOW) AS THE I-O-C ESTABLISHES A NEW SYSTEM FOR SELECTION OF OLYMPIC SITES, CREATES AN ETHICS COMMISSION AND LAUNCHES BASIC CHANGES IN OLYMPIC GOVERNANCE. /// END OPT ///... IF ANYONE CAN CONVINCE THE I-O-C THAT THE FUTURE OF THE OLYMPIC MOVEMENT DEPENDS ON DRAMATIC REFORM, PERHAPS IT IS (I-O-C PRESIDENT) SAMARANCH. AND ONLY (MR.) SAMARANCH HIMSELF CAN DETERMINE THE SORT OF LEGACY HE WILL LEAVE. HE CAN BE REMEMBERED AS THE HAUGHTY PATRICIAN WHO ALLOWED SCANDAL AND CORRUPTION TO INFECT, AND POTENTIALLY DESTROY, THE OLYMPIC MOVEMENT, OR HE CAN STAND IN OLYMPIC HISTORY AS THE LEADER WHO FINALLY GRASPED THE EXTENT OF THE DAMAGE AND RESPONDED WITH THE REAL REFORM THAT WAS NEEDED TO REFORM THE OLYMPICS TO WORLDWIDE CREDIBILITY.

    TEXT: THE "NEW YORK POST" ALSO IS UPSET THAT JUAN ANTONIO SAMARANCH WILL REMAIN IN THE TOP I-O-C POSITION.

    VOICE: /// OPT /// THE PROBLEM WITH INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS LIKE THE I-O-C ... IS THAT THEY ARE PRONE TO CORRUPTION ON TWO FRONTS. FIRST, BECAUSE THERE IS NO INSTITUTIONAL OVERSIGHT, MEMBERS BEGIN TO BELIEVE THAT THEY CAN GET AWAY WITH ANYTHING. UNTIL NOW. SECOND, THEY BEGIN TO CONFUSE THEIR OWN INTERESTS WITH THE HIGH IDEALS THEY CLAIM TO BE PROMOTING. /// END OPT /// THE I-O-C AS CONSTITUTED IS PROBABLY UNREFORMABLE. NEW BLOOD IS CERTAINLY NEEDED IF ANYTHING WORTHWHILE IS TO GET DONE AT ALL. (MR.) SAMARANCH MUST GO. THE SOONER THE BETTER.

    TEXT: "THE SUN" IN BALTIMORE (MARYLAND) AGREES THAT THE OUSTER OF SIX I-O-C MEMBERS IS A GOOD FIRST STEP.

    VOICE: BUT ALONE IT DOES NOT END THE SCANDAL BY PROVING THE I-O-C IS PURGING ITSELF OF CORRUPTION. NOR DOES IT RESTORE THE CREDIBILITY THE OLYMPIC MOVEMENT REQUIRES. ... MR. SAMARANCH WANTS A LAST HURRAH AT THE SUMMER GAMES IN SYDNEY NEXT YEAR (AND THE END OF HIS TERM IN OFFICE). HE MEANS TO APPOINT THE REFORM COMMISSION CHARGED WITH CLEANING UP THE MESS. AS THE SOURCE OF THE PROBLEMS, (MR.) SAMARANCH CANNOT BE THE SOLUTION. ANOTHER HAND SHOULD GUIDE THE REFORMS TO COME.

    TEXT: THAT CONCLUDES THIS SAMPLING OF U-S EDITORIAL COMMENT.
    NEB/GE/JO
    19-Mar-99 12:12 PM EST (1712 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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