|Wednesday, 28 February 2024
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 99-05-14
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <ert.ntua.gr/>
 Developments in the Yugoslav crisisNATO launched new air strikes on Yugoslavia and as a result a great part of the country remained without electricity last night.
The Serb television interrupted its programme to report that graffiti bombs hit a number of electric power supply plants in Belgrade, as well as in the cities of Novi Sad and Nis.
The American wing-commander Charles Waldt stated that NATO planes effected about 800 flights last night and that the mission of the 650 flights was to throw bombs to fixed targets and 33 to mobile targets.
NATO's spokesman Jamie Shea yesterday said that the air strikes on Yugoslavia will continue until winter unless Serb president Slobodan Milosevic agreed with the Alliance's demands, while the American President Bill Clinton's stand on the issue was identical to Mr. Shea's statements.
Serb security forces have started pulling out from Kosovo as Belgrade claimed yesterday, but NATO announced that there was no proof that the Serb forces were indeed withdrawing.
The White House has announced that the Chinese president Ziang Zemin has agreed to talk with his American counterpart Bill Clinton on the issue of the recent bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade.
Meanwhile, media magnet and owner of the CNN tv network Ted Turner has urged NATO to put an end to the strikes against Yugoslavia, stressing that the continuation of the strikes could lead to world war with China and Russia.
Russia's special envoy for the Yugoslav crisis Victor Chernomyrdin met in Helsinki last night with the Finnish president Marti Achtisaarti, whose country will assume the EU's rotating presidency on July 1st, while the Russian president Boris Yeltsin met in Moscow yesterday with his French counterpart Jacques Chirac.
In Moscow, the Russian officials have repeated to the American assistant secretary of state Strobe Talbot, president Yeltsin's warning that Russia would be forced to go ahead with serious changes in its stand on the situation in the Balkans unless the bombings stopped in Yugoslavia.
The visit of the UN high commissioner for human rights Mary Robinson to the Balkans ended yesterday. Mrs. Robinson also expressed her concern over the "many mistakes" NATO had committed during the bombings.
Finally, The Albanian prime minister Panteli Maico had a meeting with the German foreign minister Otto Seiley.
The Albanian prime minister warned during the meeting that the situation of the Kosovar refugees in Albania was getting worse, while for his part, the German foreign minister promised more German aid to Tirana.
 The Greens approved Joshca Fischer's policy on YugoslaviaIn Germany, the government coalition has finally avoided the risk of being dissolved, as a conciliatory spirit prevailed in the convention of the Greens. The policy of foreign minister Joshca Fischer was approved with 444 votes in favour and 318 against.
However, Mr. Fischer had earlier been disapproved by the delegates, regarding his stands in favour of the NATO strikes against Yugoslavia.
 Greek foreign minister visits SofiaGreek foreign minister George Papandreou is today travelling to Sofia for talks on the Yugoslav crisis with his counterparts of Bulgaria and Romania.
 The Greek president's visit to Georgia and ArmeniaThe Greek president Konstantinos Stephanopoulos ended his official visit to Georgia and Armenia yesterday.
In Armenia, president Stephanopoulos inaugurated the Greek library in the university of the Armenian capital, Erevan, while foreign undersecretary Grigoris Niotis who was accompanying the president visited the Greek school which is being financed by the Greek state.
Upon his arrival in Athens, Mr. Stephanopoulos said that the two country's friendly intentions towards Greece has been confirmed, while he expressed the wish that the war in Yugoslavia ends soon.
 Euroelection campaigns in GreeceThe Greek prime minister Costas Simitis, who chaired a meeting of the ruling PASOK party central electoral campaign committee yesterday, told the members of the committee that the Euroelections race was a tough one and that they should all fight together until the end.
Issues concerning PASOK's election campaign were dealt with during the meeting, as only one month is left till the Euroelections, while according to information, the party is expected to announce its ballot paper in the next three or four days.
Speaking at yesterday's joint meeting of the New Democracy party Central Committee and the parliamentary group, the party's leader Kostas Karamanlis strongly criticised the government, stressing that his party would come first in the Euroelections.
The secretary general of the Greek Communist party Aleka Paparigha will go on a tour of Hania, Crete, today.
The Political Spring party has issued the party's ballot papers for the Euroelections. The party's leader Antonis Samaras is first on the ballot paper, followed by Nikitas Kaklamanis.
 Democratic Social Movement leader visits BelgradeThe Democratic Social Movement leader Dimitris Tsovolas met in Belgrade yesterday with the president of Serbia Milan Milutinovic and expressed to him his party's solidarity, as well as the solidarity of the Greek people.
 Coalition of the Left leader visits BerlinThe leader of the Coalition of the Left Wing and Progress Nikos Konstantopoulos is visiting Berlin, within the framework of his tour of various European capitals.
 Greek journalists' visit to BelgradeA delegation of the Greek Journalists Union also visited Belgrade yesterday. The Greek journalists left some flowers to the building of the Serb television network, where 16 journalists and technicians were killed during a NATO bombing.
 Greek alternate foreign minister in CyprusThe Greek alternate foreign minister Yannos Kranidiotis and the Cypriot foreign minister Ioannis Kassoulidis will have talks in Nicosia today on issues pertaining to the memorandum which is being prepared regarding Cyprus' admission course to the EU.
Mr. Kranidiotis will also meet with the Cypriot president Glafkos Cleridis and the speaker of the House Spyros Kyprianou, as well as with Cyprus' mediator in the EU George Vassiliou.
 Developments in the Cyprus issueThe Cypriot president Glafkos Cleridis has stated that greater efforts were required by the international community concerning the effective influence in Turkey, so that this country may show political will as regards the Cyprus issue, especially due to the new correlation of political forces that came out from the recent elections in Turkey.
Speaking at the opening session of the International State Exhibition of Cyprus yesterday, Mr. Cleridis referred to Cyprus' positive prospects after the end of the crisis in Yugoslavia, while he said he was certain that the development that would follow would prove Greece as a stabilizing factor in the Balkans and the broader region par excellence. This will affect positively the course of the Cyprus issue as well, Mr. Cleridis said.
 Kurdish refugee sets herself on fireA young refugee of Kurdish descent who set herself on fire outside the Cultural Center of Lavrio yesterday shouting slogans in favour of Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan, was admitted to hospital in a critical condition.