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Yugoslav Daily Survey, 97-05-23

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From: Yugoslavia <>

Yugoslav Daily Survey




    Tanjug, 1997-05-23

    Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic said in Arandjelovac Thursday that no*one from the outside can decide about changes in the country, but only its citizens.

    President Milosevic, opening a new mineral water bottle*filling facility at the Knjaz Milos plant in Arandjelovac, said: "I wish to tell you all, and our public, that this year our country will have the highest rate of economic growth in Europe, double the one in the country with the highest growth".

    President Milosevic further said: "Now, that we are freed of the pressure, we want to achieve what has been denied us. In the first four months this year, we had a rate of growth of nearly eight percent, despite attempts to destabilize our country at the beginning of the year. As for destabilization attempts, they are not new and there are not the first or the last. We have witnessed them for several years. Precisely because this country has pursued a principled policy to preserve peace but also to protect the vital interests of the Serbian people. It has been subjected to enormous pressure, unprecedented in history."

    "These attempts made by certain outside factors with the help of some internal factors were aimed at overthrowing the authorities in Serbia for the simple reason that this is a people's regime. But these attempts have failed, and all similar future attempts are also bound to fail for the same reason. Because this is a people's regime and it cannot be changed from the outside but it can he changed exclusively by the wilt of the citizens of this country," President Milosevic said.

    After the obstacles that we have overcome and the difficult days, and the heavy burdens from the time of huge pressure, from the time of difficult sanctions, war in the neighbourhood and huge responsibilities towards our people outside Serbia. We are in a situation today to realise successful development very quickly," he said.

    "We have every reason to believe in the future of a country with huge potentials, because this country has a future and this country must believe in it and all the citizens of this country should believe in the future of their homeland," President Milosevic said in conclusion."


    Tanjug, 1997-05-22

    The Yugoslav Government held a session in Belgrade on Thursday, chaired by Prime Minister Radoje Kontic.

    Among other business, the Government approved a report stating the readiness of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to make use of the European Union's trade preferentials, a statement issued from the session said.

    The Government decided that the competent federal government bodies intensify their activities with a view to increasing Yugoslavia's export to the EU member states on the basis of the preferentials.

    The Government discussed also documents on activities undertaken with a view to including Yugoslav roads and railways in European corridors.

    Yugoslav roads and railways are of European importance and are covered by agreements signed within the Geneva-based UN Economic Commission for Europe (ECE), it was noted.

    However, the Government noted, because of an anti-Yugoslav embargo in operation at the time, these roads and railways were not included in central and eastern European corridors at the 2nd pan-European conference on transport held in Crete in 1994.

    The Crete conference defined priorities in development of European traffic arteries until the year 2010, with the possibility of obtaining foreign credit for the purpose.

    It was decided that, at the 3rd pan-European conference on transport, to be held in Helsinki in June, Yugoslav roads be added to the central and eastern European corridors defined at crete.


    Tanjug, 1997-05-22

    Yugoslav Defence Minister Pavle Bulatovic said Thursday that Yugoslavia did not give priority to the issue of joining NATO or other military alliance but to the return to world political, economic and financial institutions.

    Addressing a joint news conference after talks with Greek Defence Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos, Bulatovic said that NATO represented an economic, military and political reality and a recognised fact in Europe, a strong organisation and a power to be reckoned with. He said, however, a decision whether to join a military organisation or not could not be taken hastily and without consideration.

    He said a comprehensive analysis was required both of positive as well as negative sides. There would have to be a parliamentary debate in Yugoslavia on a possible decision to this end or even a more comprehensive debate that would offer an answer to this major issue, he said.

    He said cooperation between the two countries' Defence Ministries did not amount to much last year, saying he was confident that Tsohatzopoulos's visit was an opportunity to put an end to this unwelcome practice that was not to the two countries' benefit. He said the visit reflected the Greek Government's active political stand on finding a just and lasting solution to the crisis in the former Yugoslavia.

    Bulatovic said he had discussed with Tsohatzopoulos the current security situation in Europe and the Balkans, and ways of bilateral cooperation between Yugoslavia and Greece.

    He said he believed there was no difference of opinion over the issue of how to build both the security system in Europe and regional systems connected with the Balkans. There is willingness to create conditions for the elimination of all hot spots in the process of strengthening peace, he said.

    According to Bulatovic, Tsohatzopoutos's visit will create a chance and conditions for stepping up cooperation between the two countries' Defence Ministries in the field of economy, technology, science and research. This will doubtless have positive economic bearing on both sides and will at the same time contribute to the stabilisation of the situation in the region, he said.

    Bulatovic said that the talks, which he described as friendly, had not dealt with the creation of a new military alliance. He said no concrete deals had been agreed on, either, saying that would be done by the two countries' experts and businessmen. He said the intention was to create a general framework and conditions for unhindered cooperation between the two countries' companies that manufacture arms and military equipment.

    He said the talks had also tackled ways of exchanging information in the sphere of science and of creating conditions for training Yugoslav Army troops in the Greek Army and vice versa.

    Speaking of Greece's initiative for a meeting of the Balkan defence ministers in Salonika, Tsohatzopoulos, who also positively assessed the talks, said the creation of a new NATO pact, which strived to become a defence organisation of all peoples, was being considered in Europe these days.

    As long as a procedure to this end is not completed, the Balkan peoples wilt feel the need to create conditions of continual cooperation, he said.

    He said it was first necessary to coordinate actions between Greece and Yugoslavia in order to prepare for stability in the region, saying the two countries did not aspire to form an alternative organisation for security and cooperation.

    In this connection, he said both countries felt it necessary to establish with other Balkan peoples a firm and stable level of cooperation in order to take into consideration jointly some issues whose presence endangered stability and security in the Balkans.

    Tsohatzopoulos met also with Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic, Yugoslav Prime Minister Radoje Kontic and Yugoslav Foreign Minister Milan Milutinovic.

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