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Voice of America, 00-08-25

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

From: The Voice of America <gopher://>




    /// EDS: Fixing first graph of 2-265859 to read "Yugoslav President" instead of "Serbian President" ///

    INTRO: Albania's prime minister, Ilir Meta, wound up a visit to Washington Friday calling the situation in neighboring Montenegro very delicate. V-O-A's Barry Wood reports the Albanian leader is worried about the deteriorating political relations between Montenegro and Serbia, its partner in the Yugoslav federation.

    TEXT: Addressing reporters at the National Press Club, Mr. Meta spoke of the warm relations his government enjoys with Montenegro's pro-Western leadership and of the benefits of increasing bilateral cooperation. But with Serbia and Montenegro at odds over planned elections next month, Mr. Meta called on the West to issue a warning to Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

    /// Meta Act ///

    The international community, NATO, the United States, the EU countries, have to make clear to Milosevic that he has to understand that democracy in Montenegro must not be provoked.

    /// End Act ///

    Mr. Meta met Wednesday with U-S Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. A 31-year-old socialist, Mr. Meta has been Albania's prime minister for 10 months. He blamed Mr. Milosevic for the increased tension in Montenegro.

    /// Meta Act ///

    Now it is a very delicate situation after Milosevic made these constitutional changes which in essence convert the Republic of Montenegro into a province of Serbia, by losing all the authority that Montenegro has enjoyed under the constitution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

    /// End Act ///

    Mr. Meta said Albania has made considerable progress economically and politically over the past year. He pledged aggressive action to fight the corruption in the transport and public works ministries that has slowed construction of vital, foreign-financed road projects. He said NATO membership remains Albania's goal and that his government has excellent relations with its neighbors -- Italy, Greece, Macedonia, and Montenegro. He acknowledged that without democracy in Serbia -- a traditional regional power -- Balkan cooperation and economic progress will be open to question. (signed)
    NEB/BDW/JP 25-Aug-2000 13:46 PM LOC (25-Aug-2000 1746 UTC)
    Source: Voice of America


    /// Re-issuing to correct last sentence of actuality to read: "And I am afraid that after the 24th September [elections], an aggression of the Milosevic regime on Montenegro will be more likely"; on, sted or as originally sent ///

    INTRO: The wife of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic has entered the race for a seat in Parliament in next month's elections. As Stefan Bos reports, this will be Mirjana Markovic's first try for an elected office.

    TEXT: The neo-communist Yugoslav Left Party announced Friday that its leader, Yugoslavia's first lady Mirjana Markovic, will run for a Parliament seat in Pozarevac. President Slobodan Milosevic and his wife both come from Pozarevac, in central Serbia. Mrs. Markovic, who is 58, will be running for Parliament for the first time since her husband rose to power in the late 1980's. Although she wants to be seen as a politician in her own right, Ms. Markovic was an outspoken supporter of her husband during four Balkan wars in which he played a central role. Critics will argue that Mrs. Markovic's candidacy is another sign that President Slobodan Milosevic wants to increase his power base ahead of the elections on September 24th. Mr. Milosevic is running for re- election in the ballot next month, representing both his Socialist Party and his wife's Yugoslav Left. The latest opinion polls show Mr. Milosevic is running slightly behind the main opposition candidate, Vojislav Kostunica. Analysts say Mr. Milosevic's political moves are dictated, in part, by his desire to avoid prosecution by a United Nations tribunal for alleged war crimes. With his wife playing an influential role in Parliament, analysts say, Mr. Milosevic would be less likely to face extradition to the U-N court in The Hague. The vice president of the opposition Social Democratic Union, Vlatko Sekulovic, says the election could usher in a dangerous period of instability for Yugoslavia, whether or not Mr. Milosevic is the winner.

    /// SEKULOVIC ACT ///

    After this election, whatever will be the result, the possibility of a war or conflict will rise in this area. Primarily, I think about Montenegro. And I am afraid that after the 24th September [elections], an aggression of the Milosevic regime on Montenegro will be more likely.

    /// END ACT ///

    The small republic of Montenegro, which along with Serbia makes up the Yugoslav federation, has already said it will boycott the polls, because of what it calls "un-democratic" election laws. U-S officials, who have set up a so-called "pro- democracy office" in neighboring Hungary to support the Serbian opposition, fear that President Milosevic and his allies will try to rig the vote. (Signed)
    NEB/SJB/WTW/JP 25-Aug-2000 17:37 PM EDT (25-Aug-2000 2137 UTC)
    Source: Voice of America



    INTRO: Wall Street ended the week with mixed results. Correspondent Barbara Schoetzau reports from New York.

    TEXT: Computer maker I-B-M, posting its biggest gains in almost a year, led the Dow Jones Industrial Average to close up just under 10 points at 11-thousand-192. But the broader Standard and Poor's 500 Index finished down almost two percent. And the technology-weighted Nasdaq Composite Index lost almost 11 points, closing down for the first time in a week. The National Association of Realtors reported sales of previously owned homes fell in July to the lowest level in five months, largely because of higher mortgage rates. And, revising earlier estimates, the U-S Commerce Department said the U-S economy expanded at an annual rate of five- point-three percent during the second quarter.

    ////REST OPT ////

    The Commerce Department report also said business inventories were up due to a slow down in consumer spending. Biotechnology was the top performing stock sector of the week, followed by aerospace. The biggest losing sectors -- forest products and footwear. The telecommunications sector rallied. But the sector has been in a slump for months. Adam Quinton, telecommunications analyst with Merrill Lynch, says investors perceive much of what is happening in the sector negatively.

    ////QUINTON ACT ////

    Long distance, that has been a particular area of weakness. There is a sense that there is a lot of capital expenditure being thrown at the business. Concern on investors' part as to when companies will earn return on that. Of course, the blocking of the Worldcom Sprint merger was an issue that sent some stocks down. So there is a whole mix of things.

    /// END ACT ///

    Shares of Siebel Systems - a leading provider of e- business application software -- bounced back following a sharp decline earlier in the week when software giant Oracle announced its intention to challenge Siebel. Chairman Thomas Siebel says Oracle's efforts to make headway in Siebel's market have been a total failure.

    //// SIEBEL ACT ///

    Oracle has been trying to get into this market now for about five years. They have one- thousand programmers working on this problem and they have a fraction of one-percent market share. So this is arguably the biggest disaster in the history of the application software marketplace.

    //// END ACT ////

    An unexpected intrigue dominated discussion on Wall Street for most of the trading day. Trading was halted for Emulex -- a company that designs network connectivity products -- and the company's stock plunged more than 50 percent after a fraudulent press release -- sent to media outlets through the Internet said Emulex chairman Paul Folino had resigned and the government was probing accounting irregularities at the company. Mr. Folino says he has no idea who is behind the hoax but the F-B-I has begun investigating.

    ///FOLINI ACT ///

    I think what you see out there in the markets today are people who try, through these chat lines and other means, to fictitiously put rumor and innuendo out into the market place. This is obviously beyond innuendo and just for personal gain.

    //// END ACT ///

    Trading for Emulex resumed mid-day. (Signed) NEB/NYC/bjs/LSF/PT 25-Aug-2000 17:11 PM EDT (25-Aug-2000 2111 UTC)
    Source: Voice of America



    INTRO: Newspapers along the U-S/Mexico border featured editorials Friday about Mexican President- elect Vicente Fox's northward journey. Other editorial writers focused on President Clinton's upcoming visit to Africa, and Iraq's refusal to cooperate with a newly assembled United Nations weapons inspection team. _____________________ reviews the editorial pages from Friday's U-S newspapers.

    TEXT: Newspapers from Los Angeles to Dallas to Miami hailed the Mexican president-elect as a man of vision, though not all agree that his vision of a North America without borders is workable. The Miami Herald points out that those on the northern side of the border must accept that as long as the United States remains among the richest places on earth, immigrants will flock here.

    VOICE: Visionaries have the luxury of not being confused by reality. And so Vicente Fox, in a historic visit to the United States, is speaking of open borders and cooperative economic development -- ideas that are premature, if not altogether quixotic (impractical). But more open, humane borders are far more realistic than building a two-thousand mile barbed wire fence. Mr. Fox merits credit for sparking a long-needed debate, and his ideas deserve consideration.

    TEXT: The Los Angeles Times calls President-elect Fox's ideas "bold" in their attempt to reduce the enormous economic gap between Mexico and its northern neighbors.

    VOICE: (Mr.) Fox is calling for an agreement that would gradually allow increased legal immigration from Mexico to the United States. That is a potentially explosive issue. But consider: Despite legal and physical barriers, some 300-thousand Mexican immigrants cross the line, illegally, each year, and find jobs in the United States. The problem is complex, and so far, Fox's only concrete answer to the issue is a guest worker program. That represents no more than a partial solution. (Mr.) Fox has to understand, as President Clinton pointed out to him, "We have borders and we have laws that apply to them, and so do the Mexicans."

    TEXT: The Dallas Morning News welcomes Mr. Fox's candor and farsightedness, noting that he comes brimming with new ideas about how to manage Mexico's relationship with its North American neighbors.

    VOICE: .Like most visionaries, he is probably some years ahead of its time. But his ideas are worth discussing now. Mr. Fox knows he won't get everything he wants, at least no time soon. But he once again has shown intellectual courage that invites a respectful dialogue. His ideas may be revolutionary, but they are not wild. Bienvenido (welcome) to Mexico's new champion.

    TEXT: President Clinton's visit to Nigeria drew the attention of the New York Times, Washington Post and Christian Science Monitor. A Washington Post editorial says the trip marks the arrival of a new political era in a deeply troubled West African country.

    VOICE: Nigeria has spend most of the last three decades lurching from one military coup to another, culminating in the brutal and kleptocratic five-year reign of General Sani Abacha. It was precisely the lack of an elected civilian government in Nigeria that caused Mr. Clinton to bypass that country on his two-week trip through Africa in 1998. The United States expects Nigeria to play a regional leadership role, starting with the planned peacekeeping mission against Sierra Leone's brutal rebels, for which American forces are just beginning to train five Nigerian battalions. The U-S goal is not to build up Nigeria's armed forces to take part in politics once again, but to aid their professionalization and equip them for appropriate missions.

    TEXT: A New York Times editorial expresses hope that the president's trip will meet with greater success than some of his previous attempts to strengthen ties with African nations.

    VOICE: Some of Mr. Clinton's past efforts have led him to embrace leaders who were neither democratic nor statesmen. The journey he embarks upon (this week) is more promising.

    TEXT: The Christian Science Monitor notes that the training of Nigerian troops by U-S army special forces is another sign that the direction of peacekeeping remains in flux 10 years after being freed of Cold War rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union.

    VOICE: President Clinton's trip . includes a pat on the back and 20-million dollars for the Nigerian military to improve its role as West Africa's peacekeeper. The training of regional nations such as Nigeria to carry the burden of quelling hot spots is just one idea that's taking hold. But more needs to be done to create an international military corps that can end local conflicts or keep them from flaring up.

    TEXT: The Miami Herald comments on Iraq's refusal to cooperate with the newly assembled United Nations weapons inspection team.

    VOICE: The United States is justified in slamming shut the door to any lifting or further easing of economic sanctions, despite the regrettable cost to Iraqis. The door must stay shut until U-N inspectors can return to Iraq and work unimpeded and unharrassed. In the interim, (Saddam) Hussein and his forces must be contained.

    TEXT: The editorial writers at U-S-A Today lament the troubling statistics on adult diabetes compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    VOICE: A third of Americans are significantly overweight. That includes the young. The result: A much higher risk of adult-onset diabetes, as the body's ability to convert blood sugar into energy wears down. Meanwhile, the costs of bad habits balloon. Diabetes alone . costs the health care system 90-billion dollars a year, more than heart disease or cancer.

    TEXT: The U-S-A Today editorial says a better solution lies in eating fewer sweets, fats and carbohydrates, as well as exercising more. With that advice, we end Friday's editorial summary.
    NEB/PFH/JP 25-Aug-2000 12:43 PM LOC (25-Aug-2000 1643 UTC)
    Source: Voice of America

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