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Voice of America, 99-09-06

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

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] E-U / YUGOSLAVIA SANCTIONS (L-O) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)
  • [02] MONTENEGRO / PEOPLES' ARMIES (L-O) BY PHILIP SMUCKER (CETINJE, YUGOSLAVIA)
  • [03] RUSSIA / DAGESTAN (L) BY PETER HEINLEIN (MOSCOW)
  • [04] GERMANY / STATE ELECTIONS (L-ONLY) BY JONATHAN BRAUDE (BERLIN)
  • [05] NORTHERN IRELAND (L) BY LAURIE KASSMAN (LONDON)
  • [06] MONDAY'S EDITORIALS BY BARBARA KLEIN (WASHINGTON)

  • [01] E-U / YUGOSLAVIA SANCTIONS (L-O) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=9/6/1999
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-253509
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: E-U Foreign Ministers have decided to lift sanctions against Montenegro and Kosovo, but to maintain them against the rest of Serbia. Correspondent Ron Pemstein reports from Brussels that the European Commission is hunting for ways to distinguish among the parts of Yugoslavia.

    TEXT: The European oil embargo against Kosovo and Montenegro will be eased when the European Commission adopts proposals to reverse the sanctions. The Commission will be seeking explicit assurances from Montenegro, the smaller republic in Yugoslavia, that none of the oil will be allowed to flow into Serbia. Officials say oil deliveries to Montenegro will be monitored and the sanctions re-imposed if these assurances are violated. At the same meeting in Finland's Lapland, the foreign ministers failed to agree on a plan to help democratically elected town governments in Serbia. The Netherlands and Greece had favored the so-called "energy for democracy" idea that would allow fuel to reach towns that are controlled by opponents of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic. European Commission spokesman Nico Wegter says agreement could not be reached on ways to get fuel to individual towns without involving the Serbian government, which is under Mr. Milosevic's control.

    /// WEGTER ACT ///

    How can you assure that you deliver petrol to that particular place which will not be transported into other places? Another thing is there might be people benefiting in that commune (community) from that facility who are maybe on the part (side) of Mr. Milosevic, while other communes where there (are) also a minority of democratic people who are not benefiting from the same facility. I am just giving two examples to show that it might be a sympathetic idea in principle, but putting it into practice is much more difficult.

    /// END ACT ///

    The E-U Foreign Ministers approved more than 20- million dollars for humanitarian aid for Serbia, but officials say this money will not be used to repair bombed out bridges or power stations. Instead, it will be channeled through non-governmental organizations to help Serb refugees from Kosovo and other people in need. Commission spokesman Wegter says the reason for distinguishing between Serbia and favored areas of Montenegro and Kosovo is to demonstrate the need for Serbia to remove President Milosevic from power.

    /// WEGTER ACT ///

    The more you squeeze Serbia financially, economically and so on, the bigger the chances there might be that Mr. Milosevic is going to quit. So that is what we are aiming at. We should not facilitate life (or actions), which might possibly enhance the chances for Mr. Milosevic to stay in power.

    /// END ACT ///

    E-U Foreign Ministers will meet again next week to approve the Commission plan to end the oil embargo against Kosovo and Montenegro, and to resume commercial air travel there. The European sanctions will remain in place against the rest of Serbia. Both supporters and opponents of President Milosevic face a winter without energy assistance from Western Europe. (SIGNED)
    NEB/RP/GE/RAE 06-Sep-1999 09:48 AM LOC (06-Sep-1999 1348 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

    [02] MONTENEGRO / PEOPLES' ARMIES (L-O) BY PHILIP SMUCKER (CETINJE, YUGOSLAVIA)

    DATE=9/6/1999
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-253520
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: New armed units are being formed in the Yugoslav republic of Montenegro -- amid increasing calls for the republic's independence from Yugoslavia. But as Philip Smucker reports from Cetinje in Montenegro, critics of the new army charge it is a creation of the republic's president, who they say has an interest in making the threat from Serbia seem greater than it really is.

    TEXT: The head of one of the new armed groups, Bobo Bogdanovic, says he is the leader of a new defense force that will rise up to defend the republic against an attack from forces under the control of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic. Speaking through an interpreter, Mr. Bogdanovic said his army represents the will of the Montenegrin people to defend themselves.

    /// BOGDANOVIC TRANSLATOR ACT ///

    First, my organization represents for the Montenegrin people defense from the worst evil that could happen to Montenegrins in the last 100-years. Milosevic wants to discipline Montenegro. He wants to destroy the democratically elected government of Montenegro.

    /// END ACT ///

    Young residents in this rocky, mountain town say that a core of officers in the Montenegrin defense force have already trained under Mr. Bogdanovic. Many of them say they believe Mr. Bogdanovic is working directly for Montenegro's president. Slavko Perovic, a member of the opposition "Liberal Alliance" which has also called for Montenegro's independence from Yugoslavia, says Mr. Bogdanovic is nothing more than a police agent working for President Milo Djukanovic. He says Mr. Djukanovic is exaggerating the danger of an attack from Yugoslavia in order to gain more Western sympathy as he cracks down on his opposition by restricting their financing and limiting press freedom. A series of advertisements have appeared on Montenegrin state television promoting Mr. Djukanovic's growing ties with Western countries. Mr. Perovic says the television advertisements are illegal because they have no connection with an election campaign. Meanwhile, the European Union announced plans to ease an oil embargo and flight ban against Montenegro and Kosovo. But it said it will continue sanctions against the rest of Yugoslavia in support of pro- democracy Serbs who want to topple President Milosevic. (SIGNED)
    NEB/PS/JWH/RAE 06-Sep-1999 13:56 PM LOC (06-Sep-1999 1756 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

    [03] RUSSIA / DAGESTAN (L) BY PETER HEINLEIN (MOSCOW)

    DATE=9/6/1999
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-253514
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: Russia's Security Council is to hold an urgent session on the rapidly spreading conflict in the northern Caucasus, as the death toll from Saturday's bomb blast in Dagestan reaches 50. Moscow Correspondent Peter Heinlein reports Russian jets are again bombing villages controlled by Muslim rebels.

    TEXT: President Boris Yeltsin ordered his powerful security council to meet after reports that additional Muslim insurgents are streaming into Dagestan from neighboring Chechnya. A Kremlin aide said the council's session (Tuesday) will consider ways of restoring order in the predominantly Muslim northern Caucasus region. In the meantime, Russian jets and artillery are keeping up a steady barrage of strikes against several villages held for nearly one-year by Islamic extremists in the Dagestani mountains. A senior Chechen official said the air strikes had also targeted villages inside that breakaway region. Deputy Prime Minister Kazbek Makhashev said 25-people were killed in the attacks, most of them civilians. However, a Russian official said he had no information on those attacks. In Moscow, Dagestan's representative to the central government, Gadgi Gamzaev, issued an appeal to President Yeltsin to take tougher measures to end the nearly month-long conflict.

    /// GAMZAEV ACT - IN RUSSIAN - FADE UNDER
    ///
    He says measures taken by federal authorities are insufficient. Mr. Gamzaev urged President Yeltsin to take personal control over the anti-insurgency campaign, calling the Muslim uprising -- a plague that can spread throughout Russia. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who was appointed almost the same day the fighting broke out last month, said in an interview broadcast Sunday that the anti- insurgency campaign in Dagestan is going according to plan. But that interview was recorded Saturday, hours before a bomb destroyed a military housing complex in Dagestan's second city, Buinaksk. The blast killed scores of people, most of them family members of soldiers involved in the conflict. The leader of a pro-government faction in parliament Monday disagreed sharply with Prime Minister Putin's assessment. Alexander Shokhin of the "Our Home is Russia" faction described the Dagestan conflict as a - full-scale undeclared war. He said it is important the fighting does not lead to new hotbeds of separatism. (SIGNED)
    NEB/PFH/JWH/RAE 06-Sep-1999 11:24 AM LOC (06-Sep-1999 1524 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

    [04] GERMANY / STATE ELECTIONS (L-ONLY) BY JONATHAN BRAUDE (BERLIN)

    DATE=9/6/1999
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-253507
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: Germany's ruling coalition of Social Democrats and Environmentalists suffered a setback at the start of a season of state elections Sunday. Not only have the polls weakened Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder at the federal level, they have put far right neo-Nazis into another state legislature and boosted the former East German Communist party. Jonathan Braude reports from Berlin.

    TEXT: It was an unfortunate day for Chancellor Schroeder. The winner in national elections only a year ago, his Social Democratic Party lost heavily in both the former East German state of Brandenburg and the Western state of Saarland. He said he was, "saddened and disappointed" by the results. He also said he was determined to continue the fight for his program of modernizing reforms, against the combined forces of the opposition and the left wing of his own party. In Saarland, the opposition Christian Democrats will now take power. Their victory will further weaken the Government in the Bundesrat, the upper house of Germany's Federal parliament, and make it much tougher to push through unpopular economic reforms. But for many Germans the results in economically depressed Brandenburg were more worrying still. The neo-Nazi, Deutsche Volksunion, won some 6 per cent of the vote, propelling its candidates into the state assembly for the first time and setting a precedent for other eastern German states, which go to the polls in the coming weeks.

    /// OPT ///

    Liane Hesselbarth, who will lead the Deutsche Volksunion in the Assembly warned in her victory speech that the party would stop the state wasting millions of marks of taxpayers money on asylum-seekers hostels. The hecklers, calling "Nazis out!" in the background, seemed not to bother her. /// END OPT
    ///
    The Social Democrats remain the largest party in Brandenburg, the province surrounding the Federal Capital, Berlin. But they will now be forced into a coalition with either the Christian Democrats -- some of whose leaders echo the anti- foreigner rhetoric of the far right -- or with the party of the former East German Communists Analysts say the results in Brandenburg are an alarm signal that Mr. Schroeder's party cannot afford to ignore. The chancellor has already strengthened the national leadership team in a bid to end the public bickering over his economic reforms, but he still has to find a way to woo the disaffected Eastern German vote. He does not have much time. Next Sunday, the state of Thuringia goes to the polls. The far right is aiming to capture 10 per cent of the vote.
    NEB/JB/GE/KL 06-Sep-1999 08:40 AM EDT (06-Sep-1999 1240 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

    [05] NORTHERN IRELAND (L) BY LAURIE KASSMAN (LONDON)

    DATE=9/6/1999
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-253506
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: Former U-S Senator George Mitchell has launched a review of Northern Ireland's stalled peace process in an effort to get it back on track. V-O-A Correspondent Laurie Kassman reports from London.

    TEXT: The critical review is underway, but without any direct talks between Unionists and Republicans. Mr. Mitchell is meeting each group separately at first to see just where they stand on the issues on the agenda. The review is supposed to focus on the dispute that has blocked the handover of home rule powers to Belfast. Protestant First Minister David Trimble refuses to let the political wing of the Irish Republican Army join an executive council before the I-R-A paramilitaries start handing over their weapons. Sinn Fein says there is no precondition to their participation in the peace government. The two sides have not been able to find a compromise. Mr. Mitchell insists the review will be strictly limited in scope, despite Unionist calls for an expanded review of the whole peace process.

    /// MITCHELL ACT ONE ///

    We are not here to renegotiate the Good Friday Agreement. We are here solely to determine how to overcome the difficulties in implementing the principles set forth by the Prime Minister (Tony Blair) and the Teosach (Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern) in July.

    /// END ACT ///

    Amid words of gloom from Republican and Unionist politicians going into the talks, Mr Mitchell urges both sides to look beyond their self-interests.

    /// MITCHELL ACT TWO ///

    There is a chance, the best in many years, to set Northern Ireland on the path to enduring peace and political stability. The political leaders of Northern Ireland must seize this opportunity.

    /// END ACT ///

    Demonstrators who have gathered outside the meeting place express frustration with both sides and also are urging the politicians to get the peace process back on track. (Signed)
    NEB/LMK/JWH/KL 06-Sep-1999 08:18 AM EDT (06-Sep-1999 1218 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America

    [06] MONDAY'S EDITORIALS BY BARBARA KLEIN (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=9/6/1999
    TYPE=U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST
    NUMBER=6-11455
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: This is the Labor Day Holiday in the United States and the subject of work has drawn the attention of several U-S newspapers. Also, controversy continues over the F-B-I's handling of the 1993 siege of the Branch Davidians near Waco, Texas. In overseas news, editorial writers are analyzing Sunday's Israeli-Palestinian peace deal and the political shake-up in Venezuela. Now, here with a closer look and some excerpts is ____________ with today's Editorial Digest. Text: Most Americans celebrate Labor Day by taking a day off work . the very part of life the holiday is set aside to honor. The "New York Times" compares the role of work in the "old world" and the "new". Voice: The days when men and women bore the distinguishing marks of their labor have certainly not ended, nor will they ever end as long as the material world is shaped in part by human muscle. But now . there is a familiar, prevailing sense that no matter what the job, it is probably too small to contain something as volatile and transcendent as our latter-day identities, which are made up, we seem to believe, of finer stuff than those of our ancestors. Labor is both trap and liberation, servitude and release, and it is tempting, on Labor Day, to think of labor . in largely historical terms, to remember photographs of coal-darkened miners and young women huddled over sewing machines... But there is nothing historical about these labors. They are still being performed today. Where the world of work is concerned, we dwell, even in this country, among our ancestors. Some people dream of living in a world without work. But the better dream . is that of a world in which . the necessity of work is tempered by a choice of labors. Text: Some Congressional Republicans are calling for Attorney General Janet Reno to resign. It was revealed last week that the F-B-I may have lied about its use of flammable tear-gas in its 1993 confrontation with Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas. Miami's "The Herald" suggests Ms. Reno is not the only U-S official who has responsibility for the tragedy. Voice: So why is not F-B-I Director Louis J. Freeh on the ropes just like Attorney General Janet Reno? . It has been under Mr. Freeh's tenure that constant questions have been raised about Waco.. Now -- six-years later -- it appears that the F-B-I was quietly sitting on tapes that put a different color on events. . Rightly angry, Ms. Reno -- officially Mr. Freeh's boss -- ordered U-S marshals to seize and secure the tapes. She confirmed that she is seeking an independent investigator. . To her credit, Ms. Reno immediately took responsibility for what happened at Waco. Mr. Freeh should do as much. Indeed, those Republican members of Congress who long have clamored for Ms. Reno's resignation ought to be as tough in confronting Mr. Freeh, one of their few favorites in the Clinton administration. The F-B-I's storied independence . must not be allowed to shield the powerful agency or Mr. Freeh from accountability. Text: After several days of what were described as frustrating negotiations last week, Israeli and Palestinian leaders have agreed on an interim peace deal. The "Washington Post" writes that while a hopeful glow has returned to Mideast peace negotiations, Syria remains a serious obstacle. Voice: The essence of the progress made . in the past few days is the exchange of Israeli- occupied land for the Palestinians for what is called peace, based first on security, for the Israelis. This involves a transaction of many parts and phases, all of them intimately rooted in the politics of the contenders. It is wise to take advantage of the momentum generated by the breakthrough on "Wye Two"... But it is even wiser to anticipate the obstacles ahead. One of them is Syria. Hafez Assad, the president, looks to be stuck on the notion that the Israelis must agree to restore all war-lost Syrian territory without his having at the same time to lay out how he will satisfy Israeli considerations of security and peace in return. Mr. Assad has a way to go to keep up the polish on his reputation as a shrewd negotiator. Text: Turning now to Latin America, Venezuela's Constitutional Assembly, made up of supporters of President Hugo Chavez, last week stripped the country's opposition-controlled Congress of its authority. Rhode Island's "Providence Journal" describes the move as a slow-motion coup that could end up threatening U-S interests. Voice: President Chavez says he simply wants to eliminate political corruption so that the nation's vast oil wealth can be used to help the poor and downtrodden. Sure. That is the sort of thing all would-be populist dictators say to justify concentrating power in their own and their supporters' hands. The Assembly is taking upon itself powers that have nothing to do with writing a constitution. It is trying to run the country before it has even come up with a document. It has stripped the legislature of its powers under the present constitution.Contrary to the spirit of the present constitution . the assembly is allowing President Chavez to "integrate" the military into his government hierarchy. The Clinton administration is watching all this with concern. . But . President Clinton, or his successor in the White House, may have to consider stronger measures. Venezuela is our main foreign supplier of oil, and a populist dictatorship with that kind of leverage may get big ideas and become hard to get along with. Text: That concludes our sampling of comment from Monday's U-S editorials.
    NEB/ENE/BK/RAE 06-Sep-1999 13:46 PM LOC (06-Sep-1999 1746 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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