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OMRI Daily Digest II, No. 213, 1 November 1995

From: "Steve Iatrou" <siatrou@cdsp.neu.edu>

Open Media Research Institute Directory

CONTENTS

  • [1] FINAL RESULTS OF CROATIAN ELECTIONS.

  • [2] SERBIAN PRESIDENT VOICES "OPTIMISM" ON PEACE TALKS . . .

  • [3] . . . WHILE CROATIAN PRESIDENT SAYS HE IS "HOPEFUL."

  • [4] EXPULSION OF MUSLIMS CONTINUE IN NORTHWESTERN BOSNIA.

  • [5] SLAVONIAN SERBS REJECT US-UN PROPOSED DRAFT AGREEMENT.

  • [6] CROATIA THREATENS TO STRIKE BACK.

  • [7] ROMANIAN OPPOSITION LEADER IN "CRITICAL" CONDITION.

  • [8] EUROPEAN INVESTMENT BANK FINANCES NEW PROJECTS IN ROMANIA.

  • [9] MOLDOVAN STUDENTS RESUME, THEN POSTPONE STRIKE AGAIN.

  • [10] BULGARIAN OPPOSITION PREPARES FOR COOPERATION IN LOCAL ELECTIONS.

  • [11] ALBANIA WANTS KOSOVO INCLUDED IN PEACE TALKS.


  • OMRI DAILY DIGEST

    No. 213, Part II, 1 November 1995

    SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

    [1] FINAL RESULTS OF CROATIAN ELECTIONS.

    Reuters on 31 October reported that the Croatian Electoral Commission had announced that with nearly all the ballots counted from the 29 October elections, the governing Croatian Democratic Union won with about 44.8% of the votes. It was followed by the five-party coalition led by the Peasant Party with 18.4% and the opposition Social Liberals with 11.6%. AFP on 31 October reported that observers of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) were among those who pointed out polling irregularities. According to a statement issued by the observers, voters were "not always guaranteed" a secret ballot and "numerous bulletins were filled in publicly." The observers added, however, that "the atmosphere was positive in general." * Stan Markotich

    [2] SERBIAN PRESIDENT VOICES "OPTIMISM" ON PEACE TALKS . . .

    Nasa Borba on 1 November reported that Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic the previous day declared his "optimism" as he left for the U.S. to attend peace talks slated to open on 1 November in Ohio. Also attending the talks will be Croatian President Franjo Tudjman and Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic. Representatives from the U.S., the EU, and Russia will mediate. "Our aim is peace," Milosevic said. AFP quoted the Serbian president as saying that "We are all hoping . . . that a fair and lasting peace will finally be established. . . . It will be lasting and fair in so far as the peace accord will protect in an equitable fashion the interests of the [Serbian, Croatian, and Moslem] peoples and all the citizens of Bosnia-Herzegovina." The Serbian delegation also includes Bosnian Serbs-notably Momcilo Krajisnik, the speaker of the Bosnian Serb assembly-who continue to advocate the partitioning of Bosnia- Herzegovina. * Stan Markotich

    [3] . . . WHILE CROATIAN PRESIDENT SAYS HE IS "HOPEFUL."

    As he left for theOhio talks, Franjo Tudjman remarked he was "hopeful" a peace deal could be hammered out that would lead to a stable peace in the war-torn former Yugoslavia, AFP reported on 31 October. He further noted that "it is difficult to say that something is certain . . . after all the conferences we have had since 1990." It is expected that Tudjman will not stay for the duration of the talks, and that Foreign Minister Mate Granic will take over as chief Croatian negotiator. * Stan Markotich

    [4] EXPULSION OF MUSLIMS CONTINUE IN NORTHWESTERN BOSNIA.

    According to the UNHCR, Bosnian Serbs are continuing to expel Muslims from the Banja Luka region. A UN spokesman quoted local police as saying the Muslims had "no right" to demand protection. Meanwhile Bosnian Prime Minister Muhamed Sacirbey demanded that the UN Security Council launch an investigation into the fall of Srebrenica in July. He added that the peace talks will not succeed unless the council insists on investigating "ethnic cleansing" around Banja Luka, Reuters reported on 31 October. Sacirbey also accused Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic of ultimate responsibility for the slaughter of thousands of people after the fall of Srebrenica. He commented that he should not be a party in the Ohio peace talks. * Fabian Schmidt

    [5] SLAVONIAN SERBS REJECT US-UN PROPOSED DRAFT AGREEMENT.

    The self-declared ethnic Serbian Assembly of the Srem-Baranja Region on 31 October approved the refusal by their negotiator Milan Milanovic to a draft agreement, proposed by UN negotiator Thorvald Stoltenberg and U.S. Ambassador Peter Galbraith. The accord would have put eastern Slavonia under UN control for two years. Milanovic demanded a period of five years, while Croatia has said it will accept 12 months, AFP reported the same day. * Fabian Schmidt

    [6] CROATIA THREATENS TO STRIKE BACK.

    Croatian Foreign Minister Mate Granic has threatened that Croatian forces will strike back if the Bosnian Serbs attack Dubrovnik again. Referring to an alleged attack on 29 October, Granic is quoted by Reuters on 31 October as saying that "similar attacks will not be tolerated." The Bosnian Serbs deny the charges and accuse the Croatian army of launching the attack on the weekend. Meanwhile, the UN said it plans to withdraw 6,000-8,500 of the 18,000-strong contingent as a cost-cutting measure and in expectation of 60,000 NATO troops arriving after a peace settlement, AFP reported. * Fabian Schmidt

    [7] ROMANIAN OPPOSITION LEADER IN "CRITICAL" CONDITION.

    Corneliu Coposu, leader of the opposition National Peasant Party Christian Democratic, was hospitalized on 30 October in Bucharest and his situation is "critical," Radio Bucharest announced on 31 October. Coposu suffers from a lung ailment and has undergone surgery in Germany, where he has often been hospitalized during the last two years. * Michael Shafir

    [8] EUROPEAN INVESTMENT BANK FINANCES NEW PROJECTS IN ROMANIA.

    European Investment Bank Vice President Wolfgang Roth on 31 October signed in Bucharest an agreement granting a loan of 60 million ECU to Romania for the modernization of its electricity supply structure, Radio Bucharest announced the same day. He said he hoped Romania will soon become a member of the EIB. * Michael Shafir

    [9] MOLDOVAN STUDENTS RESUME, THEN POSTPONE STRIKE AGAIN.

    Moldovan students on 31 October briefly resumed their protest strike but later agreed to postpone it again, international agencies reported. The strike was renewed after students learned that a parliamentary debate on the government's performance, scheduled for 31 October, had been postponed until 7 November owing to the opening in Chisinau of a conference of foreign ministers from member states of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Council. Parliamentary deputy chairman Dumitru Motpan told a delegation from the striker's committee that the debate in the parliament on President Mircea Snegur's initiative to change the name of the country's official language from "Moldovan" to "Romanian" has been postponed because Snegur wants first to consult parliamentary factions. In a related development, Prime Minister Andrei Sangheli on 31 October met a delegation of the National Federation of Student Organizations to discuss proposals for improving the students' economic situation. * Michael Shafir

    [10] BULGARIAN OPPOSITION PREPARES FOR COOPERATION IN LOCAL ELECTIONS.

    Cooperation talks between the opposition parties due to take part in the second round of the local elections seem well under way, Standart reported. The leaders of the Union of Democratic Forces (SDS), the People's Union (NS), and the ethnic Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedom (DPS) are due to meet on 1 November to discuss the possibility of a nationwide agreement. In some towns, including Sofia, the NS has already withdrawn its candidates in favor of the better-placed SDS candidates. In ethnically mixed regions, the SDS will support DPS candidates, SDS chairman Ivan Kostov said. In Sofia, the SDS is demanding that the runoff be set for 5 November, after the Communal Electoral Commission on 31 October changed the date from 11 to 12 November. * Stefan Krause in Sofia

    [11] ALBANIA WANTS KOSOVO INCLUDED IN PEACE TALKS.

    Albanian Deputy Foreign Minister Arian Starova, during a visit to Greece, repeated calls that Kosovo be included in U.S. efforts to forge a comprehensive peace agreement for the Balkans. Reuters on 31 October quoted Starova as saying that "they cannot ignore Kosovo and they should address this issue by putting it on the agenda." * Fabian Schmidt

    This material was reprinted with permission of the Open Media Research Institute, a nonprofit organization with research offices in Prague, Czech Republic.
    For more information on OMRI publications please write to info@omri.cz

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