Epilogh OMRI Daily Digest, No. 37, Part II, 21 Feb 95
Epilogh OMRI Daily Digest, No. 37, Part II, 21 Feb 95 [**]
Ta nea ths hmeras, apo to OMRI:
- * EU COMMISSION: EASTERN EUROPE LACKS INFRASTRUCTURE TO JOIN EU.
- * VAN DER STOEL VISITS MACEDONIA AFTER TETOVO CLASHES.
- . DID THE UN IMAGINE AIRCRAFT NEAR TUZLA?
- . BOSNIAN AND KRAJINA SERBS FORM JOINT WAR COUNCIL.
- . CROATIAN UPDATE.
- . IMF AND WORLD BANK OFFICIALS IN BULGARIA.
- ** GREECE DEPORTS ILLEGAL ALBANIAN IMMIGRANTS.
OMRI DAILY DIGEST
No. 37, Part II, 21 February 1995
- EU COMMISSION: EASTERN EUROPE LACKS INFRASTRUCTURE TO JOIN EU.
internal European Union Commission document, leaked to the news agency
Reuters, states that Eastern Europe lacks the institutions and
infrastructure to join the EU. Reuters on 17 February reported the
document as saying that attempts by the East European countries to adopt
EU rules "would be an empty exercise if the organizational and
institutional structures which must underpin the measures are absent."
-- Michael Mihalka, OMRI, Inc.
- VAN DER STOEL VISITS MACEDONIA AFTER TETOVO CLASHES.
Commissioner for Minorities Max van der Stoel called for restraint
following clashes between ethnic Albanians and Macedonian police sparked
by the crackdown on the self-proclaimed Albanian-language University in
Tetovo. Van der Stoel met with President Kiro Gligorov and advocated a
more comprehensive law on higher education. He also met with Abdurrahman
Aliti, leader of the Party of Democratic Prosperity, and other Albanian
representatives, Flaka reported on 21 February. Following the police
crackdown, one ethnic Albanian died in armed riots and seven were
sentenced to 30 days in prison for disturbing the peace. The Democratic
Forum of Gostivar on 20 February released a statement saying police
raided the forum's office on 17 February, destroyed furniture, and
arrested activists. Meanwhile, vandals demolished 30 tombstones in a
Moslem graveyard in Kumanovo, international agencies reported on 20
February. Macedonian Radio linked the incident to the clashes in Tetovo.
-- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.
- DID THE UN IMAGINE AIRCRAFT NEAR TUZLA?
The Washington Post reports on
21 February about disputes between the UN and NATO over violations of
the no-fly zone over Bosnia and Herzegovina. The newspaper points out
that all sides use aircraft freely because they know there is no serious
possibility that NATO planes will go after them. In the latest
development, UN observers recently saw large transport aircraft of
uncertain origin unload high-tech equipment for Bosnian government
forces near Tuzla. NATO, however, said that no such mission took place
and asked the UN to change its report. The newspaper suggests that NATO
is trying to get the UN to cover up for its own incompetence. -- Patrick
Moore, OMRI, Inc.
- BOSNIAN AND KRAJINA SERBS FORM JOINT WAR COUNCIL.
Nasa Borba says on 21
February that Bosnian and Krajina Serbs set up a joint military council
at Banja Luka the previous day. Their respective leaders, Radovan
Karadzic and Milan Martic, announced the setting up of the Supreme
Defense Council, which provides for joint defense and mutual assistance
in keeping with a 1993 pact between the two rebel Serbian states.
Elsewhere in Bosnia, international media report that Krajina Serbs on 20
February stopped a UN relief convoy heading for Bihac and forced it to
Velika Kladusa, which is under the control of local kingpin Fikret
Abdic. The Serbs had promised to let the relief vehicles through to the
besieged town, where some 20% of the population is reportedly threatened
with starvation. The BBC on 21 February said the UN is trying to
negotiate the release and safe passage of the convoy. Finally, news
agencies report a sharp increase in fighting on 20 February in the
narrow but strategic Posavina corridor in northern Bosnia. The route
provides a land bridge between Serbia, on the one hand, and Serb-held
territories in Bosnia and Croatia on the other. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI,
- CROATIAN UPDATE.
Vecernji list on 18 February reported that Prime
Minister Nikica Valentic visited Istria to discuss the peninsula's
economic development. Istria has a strong regional movement that is at
odds with Croatian President Franjo Tudjman, who regards any form of
regionalism as virtually identical with secession. The Constitutional
Court last month struck out key passages of a regional statute that
would have provided wide autonomy for Istria and its Italian minority.
Valentic's visit was obviously aimed at repairing some of the political
damage caused by the court's ruling. Meanwhile, Vjesnik on 20 February
noted that the Roman Catholic Church would welcome the introduction of
private television. The ruling Croatian Democratic Community (HDZ) has
tried to maintain a virtual monopoly on the electronic media, with most
exceptions limited to entertainment programs. Also on 20 February, Novi
list reported on the latest congress of the right-wing Croatian Party of
Historic Rights, led by Dobroslav Paraga. He used the occasion to
stress his party's historic support for an alliance of Muslims and
Croats and to lambaste the HDZ. Two leading politicians from the left of
center, Stipe Mesic and Silvije Degen, likewise railed against the
ruling party. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.
- IMF AND WORLD BANK OFFICIALS IN BULGARIA.
Delegations from the
International Monetary Fund and the World Bank asked for further price
hikes on electricity, according to the Bulgarian press on 21 February.
Kontinent reported that the delegations, on a working visit to Sofia,
asked for price increases twice as high as those announced by the
Bulgarian government on 16 February. Bulgaria agreed to raise the price
from 1.9 to 3.5 cents per kilowatt-hour. In return, the IMF and the
World Bank agreed to lend Bulgaria $93 million for improvements in the
country's power sector. -- Stefan Krause, OMRI, Inc.
- GREECE DEPORTS ILLEGAL ALBANIAN IMMIGRANTS.
Greece rounded up and
deported 889 illegal Albanian immigrants on 18-19 February, Reuters
reported. According to a police spokesman, the move followed an increase
in the number of Albanians trying to cross illegally into Greece. Border
patrols have reportedly been reinforced. About 300,000 illegal
immigrants from Albania are working in Greece. Meanwhile, Albanian
Deputy Foreign Minister Arjan Starova has confirmed that Greek Foreign
Minister Karolos Papoulias will visit Albania in March. Starova said he
expects the talks to focus on Albania's Greek minority, Albanian
immigrants in Greece, and border issues. -- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.
[As of 12:00 CET] Compiled by Jan Cleave