OMRI Daily Digest, No. 31, Part II, 13 Feb 95 [**]

Ta nea ths hmeras, apo to OMRI:

  • . O OHE kataggelei serbikes pthseis panw apo thn Bosnia.
  • . Sklhres maxes sto Mpixats kata to sabbatokyriako, enisxyseis twn Serbwn apo thn Kraina.
  • . Problhmata twn Kroatwn ths Bosnias.
  • . Ekrhjh se ergostasio (symfwna me to AFP paragei xhmika gia ton strato) konta sto Beligradi.
  • . Ypanaxwrei apo thn epitrofh twn kratikwn perioysiwn stoys palaioys idiokthtes toys h kybernhsh ths Boylgarias.
  • ** H pGDM isxyrizetai oti h Ellada zhthse na ginoyn mystikes synomilies. Synanthsh twn YpEj Ellados-Gioygkoslabias. H Ellada yposthrizei thn arsh toy empargko kata ths Gioygkoslabias.
  • * Protash momfhs kata toy proedroy ths albanikhs Boylhs apo kommata ths antipoliteyshs. Th protash sthrizei kai [ek meroys toy kommatos;] o boyleyths ths "Omonoias" Kwstas Makariadhs.

    Dhmhtrhs Paneras
    Boston, MA


    No. 31, Part II, 13 February 1995


  • UN CONDEMNS SERB FLIGHTS OVER BOSNIA. The BBC's Serbian and Croatian Services reported on 13 February that the UN ruled that all sides in the Bosnian conflict have broken flight restrictions in that embattled republic but that the Bosnian Serbs have been "especially active." The report noted daily flights from Serb airfields in Banja Luka and in Krajina in the past two weeks. The Bosnian Serb news agency SRNA quotes Radovan Karadzic as saying that if Croatia attacks the Krajina Serbs, his men will defend them, and that this would be the first practical step toward the unification of the two rebel Serb states. The latest UN report and the course of fighting around Bihac, however, help recall that the two groups have long been working hand-in-glove and in cooperation with authorities in Serbia proper. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

  • BIHAC FIGHTING AT CENTER OF ATTENTION. International media report on 13 February that combat in the Bihac pocket intensified over most of the weekend and that Krajina Serb land reinforcements have arrived. The Bosnian government singled out the situation around Bihac as demanding immediate attention if the ceasefire that is largely holding elsewhere is to be maintained. UN commander Lieutenant-General Rupert Smith met on 12 February with his Bosnian government counterpart General Rasim Delic and now wants to see Bosnian Serb General Ratko Mladic. The 13 February Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung notes fighting on three fronts: Bihac itself, Velika Kladusa, and Bosanska Krupa. Bosnian Prime Minister Haris Silajdzic, for his part, already seems to have soured on the ceasefire, saying it should not be extended when it expires on 1 May. He charged that an extension "would serve the purpose of our enemies, and that is to keep the status quo here forever." -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

  • A SHAKY FUTURE FOR BOSNIAN CROATS. Among the worst victims of the Croat- Muslim war of 1993 were the Croats of Bosnia, who, unlike those of Herzegovina, live in widely scattered communities that are frequently far from Croatia or other solid areas of Croatian settlement. Vecernji list of 13 February quotes Bishop Franjo Komarica of Serb-held Banja Luka as saying that his people are frightened and confused, wanting only to get out. He laments, however, that the continued exodus on top of the Serbs' own ethnic cleansing could mean the end for many age-old Croatian communities in Bosnia. Meanwhile in northern Bosnia, on 12 February the cantonal legislature of Posavina met in Orasje amid the presence of many Bosnian and Bosnian Croat dignitaries, including federal President Kresimir Zubak. The session dealt with a number of questions in Croat- Muslim relations and marks a step toward the normal functioning of the joint federation in northern Bosnia. The region has its own distinct profile, and the Croats in nearby Gradacac kept their alliance with the Muslims even in 1993. Many Posavina Croats suspect, moreover, that the Zagreb and Herzegovinian authorities have repeatedly sold out their interests. Croatian President Franjo Tudjman has often tried to mollify the angry people of Posavina, many of whom feel he deliberately abandoned their city of Bosanski Brod in a secret deal with the Serbs. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

  • FIVE KILLED IN BLAST NEAR BELGRADE. Tanjug reported on 11 February that five persons were killed and one seriously injured in a blast at a factory at Lucani, some 140 kilometers southwest of Belgrade. AFP accounts suggest the victims worked for a firm which produces chemicals for the military. In other news, the international sanctions applied against the rump Yugoslavia continue to receive media attention; on 12 February Reuters reported that Belgrade's UN ambassador, Dragomir Djokic, told a local radio broadcaster in Kragujevac that same day that in his opinion sanctions may be eased, on humanitarian grounds, to allow for the importation of gas from Russia. -- Stan Markotich, OMRI, Inc.

  • BULGARIAN PROPERTY RECLAMATION BAN EXTENDED. The Bulgarian Parliament on 9 February extended a 1992 measure protecting tenants from being thrown out of restituted property for a further three years, Reuters reported the following day. Krasimir Premyanov of the Bulgarian Socialist Party said "the law aims to attain greater social justice," as without it there is "fear that 120,000 people will be left on the streets." The opposition sees it as a step back towards communism, arguing it was unjust. Aleksandar Dzherov of the People's Union said it "means an explicit restriction of the rights" of owners of homes due to be restituted. The ban on the reclamation of property nationalized after 1944 would have expired on 24 February. -- Stefan Krause, OMRI, Inc.

  • MACEDONIA SAYS GREECE OFFERED SECRET TALKS. The Macedonian government on 10 February said it rejected an offer by Greece to establish secret contacts, AFP reported the same day. Macedonian Interior Minister Ljubomir Frckovski said Greek envoys came to Skopje at the end of January to propose secret contacts, adding that Macedonia has no interest in them for the time being. Macedonia agrees to discuss technical questions such as visa problems or contacts between firms "on a professional level," but the Greek envoys soon raised political subjects such as the controversy over Macedonia's name and flag. Greek government spokesman Evangelos Venizelos on 10 February denied that Greece proposed any such meetings and said that Frckovski's declarations "are purely a product of his imagination." Greece never had any intention and no reason to make any proposals to Macedonia, AFP cited Venizelos as saying. Meanwhile, Greek Foreign Minister Karolos Papoulias and his rump-Yugoslav counterpart Vladislav Jovanovic met in Thessaloniki the same day. Nasa Borba reported on 11 February that the Macedonian question was the main subject of their talks, but gave no details. The same day AFP cited Papoulias as saying that Greece supports moves to lift the UN sanctions against rump-Yugoslavia because "we believe that the international community's attitude towards Slobodan Milosevic is unjust, considering the decisive contribution he has made to peace in the region." -- Stefan Krause, OMRI, Inc.

  • NO-CONFIDENCE VOTE AGAINST PRESIDENT OF ALBANIAN PARLIAMENT. Twenty- seven legislators, mainly from the opposition Socialist Party and Democratic Alliance, initiated a no-confidence vote against President of Parliament Pjeter Arbnori, Aleanca reported on 11 February. Also among the deputies who signed the petition were Abdi Baleta from the ruling Democratic Party and Kosta Makariadhi from the ethnic Greek party Omonia. The legislators claim that Arbnori deliberately broke parliamentary rules and did not make regular reports as he is obliged to do. They also accused him of exceeding his authority and using state funds for personal purposes, including using a helicopter to travel to Saranda to launch his new book. -- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.

    [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Steve Kettle