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Voice of America, 97-03-08

Voice of America: Selected Articles Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Voice of America <gopher://gopher.voa.gov>


CONTENTS

  • [01] ALBANIA UNREST (S ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (TIRANA)
  • [02] ALBANIA UNREST UPDATE (S ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (TIRANA)
  • [03] ALBANIA OVERNITER BY BARRY WOOD (TIRANA)
  • [04] ALBANIA WRAP (S-ONLY) BY VICTOR BEATTIE (WASHINGTON)
  • [05] U-N WEEK-IN-REVIEW BY ELAINE JOHANSON (UNITED NATIONS)

  • [01] ALBANIA UNREST (S ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (TIRANA)

    DATE=3/8/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-211135
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: IN ALBANIA ARMED PROTESTERS IN THE SOUTH ARE CONSOLIDATING THEIR HOLD ON SEVERAL IMPORTANT TOWNS AND REFUSING TO COMPLY WITH THE GOVERNMENT'S OFFER OF AMNESTY IF THEY TURN IN THEIR WEAPONS. V-O-A'S BARRY WOOD REPORTS FROM TIRANA THAT FURTHER DIPLOMATIC EFFORTS ARE UNDER WAY TO FIND A PEACEFUL WAY OUT OF THE POLITICAL CRISIS.

    TEXT: FORMER AUSTRIAN CHANCELLOR FRANS VRANITZKY IS IN TIRANA MEETING WITH PRESIDENT SALI BERISHA AS WELL AS OPPOSITION LEADERS.

    THIS IS THE THIRD WEST EUROPEAN DELEGATION TO VISIT TIRANA IN THE PAST 24 HOURS. REPRESENTING THE ORGANIZATION FOR SECURITY AND COOPERATION IN EUROPE, MR. VRANITZKY IS SEEKING AGREEMENT ON THE COMPOSITION OF AN INTERIM GOVERNMENT ACCEPTABLE TO THE OPPOSITION AS WELL AS A COMMITMENT TO INTERNATIONALLY SUPERVISED ELECTIONS LATER THIS YEAR.

    THE PROTESTERS IN THE SOUTH INSIST ONLY PRESIDENT BERISHA'S RESIGNATION CAN RESOLVE THE CRISIS.

    IN THE SOUTH OFFICERS WHO HAVE RECENTLY DESERTED FROM THE ARMY ARE HELPING TO ORGANIZE LOCAL DEFENSE UNITS OF ARMED PROTESTERS IN VLORE, SARANDE AND TEPELENE. NEWLY ELECTED DEFENSE COMMITTEES ARE SEEKING TO DISCIPLINE ARMED BANDS AND RESTORE A MEASURE OF CIVIL ADMINISTRATION.

    THE ITALIAN MILITARY AGAIN SATURDAY LANDED HELICOPTERS IN VLORE TO EVACUATE NEARLY 20 PEOPLE, MOST OF THEM ITALIAN CITIZENS, WHO WERE EAGER TO LEAVE. INCREASING NUMBERS OF REFUGEES ARE BEING RESCUED IN THE ADRIATIC SEA BY ITALIAN AND GREEK NAVAL UNITS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/BDW/DW/KL
    08-Mar-97 8:51 AM EST (1351 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] ALBANIA UNREST UPDATE (S ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (TIRANA)

    DATE=3/8/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-211137
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: IN ALBANIA, DIPLOMATIC EFFORTS CONTINUE TO FIND A SOLUTION TO THE ARMED UPRISING IN THE SOUTH. IN A MEETING WITH FORMER AUSTRIAN CHANCELLOR FRANS VRANITZKY SATURDAY, PRESIDENT SALI BERISHA SAID HE WOULD BE READY TO HOLD EARLY ELECTIONS AS A WAY TO END THE CRISIS. V-O-A'S BARRY WOOD REPORTS FROM TIRANA THAT MR. VRANITZKY, BY TALKING WITH THE PRESIDENT AND THE OPPOSITION, IS TRYING TO BRING A PEACEFUL END TO THE CRISIS.

    TEXT: MR. VRANITZKY SAYS INTENSIFIED DIALOGUE BETWEEN ALL PARTIES IS THE WAY TO REACH A SOLUTION TO THE ALBANIAN CRISIS. HEADING A DELEGATION FROM THE ORGANIZATION FOR SECURITY AND COOPERATION IN EUROPE, MR. VRANITZKY SAYS HIS FIRST OBJECTIVE IS TO OBTAIN AN EXTENSION OF THE CEASE FIRE AND AMNESTY OFFER THAT IS SET TO EXPIRE SUNDAY MORNING.

    //VRANITZKY ACT//

    WE WOULD BE VERY GLAD AND WOULD CONSIDER IT VERY CONSTRUCTIVE IF THE CEASEFIRE WHICH HAS BEEN SET OUT FOR 48 HOURS COULD BE PROLONGED FOR ANOTHER 48 HOURS.

    //END ACT//

    MR. VRANITZKY SAYS AN EXTENSION WOULD BUY TIME AND PERMIT FURTHER NEGOTIATIONS BETWEEN PRESIDENT BERISHA AND THE OPPOSITION ON FORMING A NEW GOVERNMENT.

    IN THE SOUTH THE IMPORTANT TOWN OF GJIROCASTRA, WHICH HAD BEEN CUT OFF FROM GOVERNMENT POSITIONS TO THE NORTH, HAS REPORTEDLY BEEN TAKEN OVER BY ARMED PROTESTORS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/BDW/DW/KL
    08-Mar-97 12:12 PM EST (1712 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [03] ALBANIA OVERNITER BY BARRY WOOD (TIRANA)

    DATE=3/8/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-211141
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: AS ARMED PROTESTORS SEIZED ANOTHER IMPORTANT TOWN IN SOUTHERN ALBANIA, DIPLOMATIC EFFORTS INTENSIFIED SATURDAY IN THE CAPITAL AIMED AT ORGANIZING A CARETAKER GOVERNMENT AND PREPARING FOR NEW ELECTIONS LATER THIS YEAR. VOA'S BARY WOOD REPORTS FROM TIRANA.

    TEXT: FORMER AUSTRIAN CHANCELLOR FRANS VRANITZKY HELD TWO ROUNDS OF TALKS WITH PRESIDENT SALI BERISHA AND LEADERS OF THE OPPOSITION. HEADING A DELEGATION FROM THE ORGANIZATION FOR SECURITY AND COOPERATION IN EUROPE, MR. VRANITZKY SAID HIS FRIST PRIORITY IS AN EXTENSION OF THE 48-HOUR CEASEFIRE AND THE OFFER OF AMNESTY FOR PROTESTORS WHO TURN IN THEIR WEAPONS. HE SAID O-S-C-E MONITORS COULD BE MADE AVAILABLE TO HELP COLLECT WEAPONS.

    MR. VRANITZKY SAID PRESIDENT BERISHA AGREED THAT NEW PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS SHOULD BE HELD THIS YEAR

    /// VRANITZKY ACTUALITY ///

    I THINK IT IS FAIR TO SAY THAT THERE MIGHT BE A CHANCE FOR A FLEXIBLE APPROACH AS TO WHEN, TO THE TIME, AT WHICH THESE ELECTIONS WILL TAKE PLACE.

    /// END ACTUALITY ///

    PREVIOUSLY, MR. BERISHA INSISTED THAT AN ELECTION BE HELD QUICKLY WITHIN 45 DAYS. THE O-S-C-E SAYS IT WILL WORK TO ASSURE THAT THE ELECTIONS ARE FREE AND FAIR.

    IN THE SOUTH, INCREASING NUMBRS OF ALBANIANS ARE FLEEING BY BOAT TO ITALY. PROTESTORS SEIZED THE IMPORTANT TOWN OF GJIROKASTER -- NOT FAR FROM THE BORDER WITH GREECE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/SD
    08-Mar-97 4:40 PM EST (2140 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [04] ALBANIA WRAP (S-ONLY) BY VICTOR BEATTIE (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=3/7/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-211131
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: A DELEGATION OF THE ORGANIZATION FOR SECURITY AND COOPERATION IN EUROPE IS (DUE TO ARRIVE) IN ALBANIA TODAY (SATURDAY) TO SEEK A PEACEFUL RESOLUTION OF COUNTRY'S GROWING CRISIS. V-O-A'S VICTOR BEATTIE REPORTS ONE AMERICAN ANALYST ATTRIBUTES THE UNREST STEMMING FROM WEEKS OF PROTESTS OVER FAILED INVESTMENT SCHEMES IN PART TO LONG-HELD ETHNIC AND POLITICAL ANIMOSITIES.

    TEXT: THE O-S-C-E DELEGATION IS HEADED BY FORMER AUSTRIAN CHANCELLOR FRANZ VRANITZKY, WHO IS TO MEET WITH PRESIDENT SALI BERISHA, THE OPPOSITION AND NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS. REPRESENTATIVES OF THE EUROPEAN UNION, THE UNITED STATES, RUSSIA, ITALY AND GREECE WILL ACCOMPANY MR. VRANITZKY TO TIRANA.

    THE DELEGATION ARRIVES AMID A TENSE SITUATION BROUGHT ON BY WEEKS OF PROTESTS OVER FAILED INVESTMENT SCHEMES IN WHICH HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS LOST THEIR LIFE SAVINGS. THE PROTESTS ESCALATED LAST WEEK AS RIOTERS IN SOUTHERN ALBANIA SEIZED ARMS FROM POLICE AND ARMY DEPOTS AND LOOTED SHOPS.

    ANALYST DANIEL NELSON IN WASHINGTON SAYS THE UNREST IS FUELED BY OLD ANIMOSITIES WITH THE RULING DEMOCRATS STRONGEST IN THE NORTH WHILE THE SOCIALISTS' BASE IS IN THE SOUTH:

    ///NELSON ACTUALITY///

    THERE'S ALSO SOME ETHNICITY INTERMINGLED THERE BECAUSE THE SOUTH TENDS TO BE WHERE THE GREEK MINORITY IS CLUSTERED, PARTICULARLY IN SOME OF THE COASTAL AREAS. SO, THERE ARE MANY FACTORS THAT HAVE CONTRIBUTED TO A RAPIDLY ESCALATING PROBLEM.

    ///END ACTUALITY///

    INSURGENTS IN THE SOUTH HAVE REJECTED PRESIDENT BERISHA'S OFFER OF AMNESTY AND ARE BUILDING FORTIFICATIONS.

    MR. NELSON WARNS THE POTENTIAL IS THERE FOR A SOUTH BALKAN WAR SIMILAR TO WHAT OCCURRED WITH THE BREAKUP OF THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA. (SIGNED)
    NEB/VB/RRM
    07-Mar-97 9:40 PM EST (0240 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [05] U-N WEEK-IN-REVIEW BY ELAINE JOHANSON (UNITED NATIONS)

    DATE=3/7/97
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-35894
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE UNITED STATES VETOES A U-N SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTION CALLING ON ISRAEL TO ABANDON PLANS TO BUILD JEWISH HOUSING IN EAST JERUSALEM; THE COUNCIL PONDERS THE CRISIS IN ZAIRE, CALLING FOR AN IMMEDIATE CEASE-FIRE; AND ANOTHER SCANDAL HITS A MAJOR U-N AGENCY. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ELAINE JOHANSON REVIEWS THE MAIN DEVELOPMENTS OF THE PAST WEEK.

    TEXT: THE UNITED STATES BLOCKED A EUROPEAN RESOLUTION IN THE SECURITY COUNCIL WARNING ISRAEL THAT ITS CONSTRUCTION PLANS IN EAST JERUSALEM WOULD COMPROMISE THE PEACE PROCESS. ISRAEL AND THE PALESTINIANS ARE DUE TO RESUME TALKS THIS MONTH ON THE FUTURE STATUS OF JERUSALEM. ISRAEL SEIZED THE EASTERN, MAINLY ARAB SECTOR, DURING THE 1967 WAR.

    THE UNITED STATES HAD ALREADY CRITICIZED THE ISRAELI DECISION. BUT U-S AMBASSADOR BILL RICHARDSON ARGUED AFTER THE VETO THAT THE SECURITY COUNCIL SHOULD NOT INTERVENE IN MIDDLE EAST ISSUES.

    ARAB DIPLOMATS HINTED THEY MIGHT TAKE THE SETTLEMENT PROBLEM TO THE 185-MEMBER GENERAL ASSEMBLY WHERE THERE IS NO VETO. ASSEMBLY RESOLUTIONS -- UNLIKE THOSE OF THE SECURITY COUNCIL -- ARE NOT LEGALLY BINDING.

    EARLIER IN THE WEEK, PALESTINIAN PRESIDENT YASIR ARAFAT URGED THE COUNCIL TO TAKE A POSITION. HE SAID ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER BENJAMIN NETANYAHU IS STRAINING THE PEACE PROCESS.

    //ARAFAT ACT//

    MY MESSAGE TODAY IS HOW TO IMPLEMENT ACCURATELY AND HONESTLY WHAT HAS BEEN AGREED UPON, TO PREVENT ANY PROVOCATIONS ... HE IS PUSHING THE PEACE PROCESS [INTO] VERY CRITICAL AND CRUCIAL CIRCUMSTANCES.

    //END ACT//

    AT THE SAME TIME, MR. ARAFAT PLEDGED TO CONTINUE NEGOTIATING WITH THE ISRAELI GOVERNMENT TOWARD A COMPREHENSIVE PEACE. BUT HIS U-N REPRESENTATIVE WARNED AFTER THE SECURITY COUNCIL VOTE THAT THE AMERICAN VETO IS LIKELY TO HAVE A NEGATIVE IMPACT ON THE PEACE PROCESS.

    -0-

    THE SECURITY COUNCIL LATE FRIDAY ISSUED AN APPEAL FOR A CEASE-FIRE IN ZAIRE. IT ENCOURAGED THE REBELS SEIZING CONTROL OF THE EASTERN PORTION OF THE COUNTRY TO STOP MILITARY OPERATIONS AND PROCEED DIRECTLY TO THE NEGOTIATING TABLE.

    SECRETARY-GENERAL KOFI ANNAN CAME BACK FROM A WEEK-LONG TRIP TO EUROPE SAYING THE SECURITY COUNCIL SHOULD CONSIDER SENDING TROOPS EVEN WITHOUT A CEASE-FIRE. HIS SPOKESMAN, FRED ECKHARD, TOLD REPORTERS MR. ANNAN BELIEVES U-N INTERVENTION IS NEEDED TO PROTECT REFUGEES AND AID WORKERS:

    //ECKHARD ACT//

    WHEN HE WAS IN EUROPE, ONE FOREIGN MINISTER SAID THAT HE FOUND IT STRANGE THAT THE MEDIA CAN VISIT EASTERN ZAIRE, MRS. OGATA CAN VISIT EASTERN ZAIRE, AID WORKERS CAN WORK IN EASTERN ZAIRE, BUT IT'S TOO DANGEROUS FOR TROOPS TO GO THERE. HE CONSIDERS THAT A VALID OBSERVATION.

    //END ACT//

    MRS. OGATA IS THE U-N HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR REFUGEES, WHO HAS BEEN TRYING TO COPE WITH LARGE NUMBERS OF DISPLACED PEOPLE IN CENTRAL AFRICA.

    GOVERNMENTS WERE WILLING TO PUT A MILITARY FORCE TOGETHER LATE LAST YEAR. THE SECURITY COUNCIL HAD AUTHORIZED IT. BUT THEIR POLITICAL WILL DISSIPATED WHEN MANY OF THE REFUGEES STARTED RETURNING HOME ON THEIR OWN. ONLY FRANCE AT THIS POINT FAVORS SENDING TROOPS.

    -0-

    MORE SCANDAL AT THE UNITED NATIONS. THE DIRECTOR OF THE U-N DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM REVEALED THIS PAST WEEK THAT 16 CURRENT AND FORMER U-N EMPLOYEES ARE UNDER AN INVESTIGATION HE INTIATED BECAUSE OF OVERPAYMENT OF SIX-MILLION DOLLARS FOR CONSTRUCTION COSTS IN NINE AFRICAN COUNTRIES. AS A RESULT, U-N HOUSING AND OFFICES IN THOSE COUNTRIES ARE WORTH MUCH LESS THAN WHAT THE UNITED NATIONS PAID.

    THE INVESTIGATION IS CONTINUING. THE UNITED NATIONS WOULD NOT REVEAL THE NAMES OF THE PEOPLE INVOLVED, BUT SAID TWO U-N STAFF MEMBERS HAVE BEEN SUSPENDED SO FAR.

    THE NEW REVELATIONS COME AS THE UNITED NATIONS' OVERSIGHT OFFICE THE U-N EQUIVALENT OF AN INSPECTOR-GENERAL -- IS TRYING TO WEED OUT WASTE AND CORRUPTION THROUGHOUT THE U-N SYSTEM. (SIGNED)
    NEB/EJ/RRM
    07-Mar-97 8:40 PM EST (0140 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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