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Voice of America, 99-05-02

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

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] PRISONER RELEASE PLAN (L) BY CAROL PINEAU (BELGRADE)
  • [02] P-O-W'S FREED / L BY CAROL PINEAU (BELGRADE)
  • [03] BELGRADE POWER OUTAGE (L) BY CAROL PINEAU (BELGRADE)
  • [04] PILOT RESCUED / S-O BY JIM RANDLE (PENTAGON)
  • [05] NATO/KOSOVO (L-ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)
  • [06] NATO/KOSOVO-UPDATE (L-ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)
  • [07] KOSOVO/ALBANIA (L-ONLY) BY PETER HEINLEIN (KUKES, ALBANIA)
  • [08] LIFE OF A REFUGEE BY LAURIE KASSMAN (SKOPJE, MACEDONIA)
  • [09] FRANCE/EGYPT/ KOSOVO (L) BY SCOTT BOBB (CAIRO)

  • [01] PRISONER RELEASE PLAN (L) BY CAROL PINEAU (BELGRADE)

    DATE=5/1/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-248843
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE YUGOSLAV GOVERNMENT HAS AGREED TO REVEREND JESSE JACKSON'S REQUEST TO FREE THREE AMERICAN P-O-W'S. CAROL PINEAU HAS BEEN IN BELGRADE WITH REVEREND JACKSON AND HIS DELEGATION OF RELIGIOUS LEADERS. SHE REPORTS ON PLANS FOR THE P-O-W'S RELEASE.

    TEXT: THE THREE MEN ARE TO BE PICKED UP AT AN UNDISCLOSED MILITARY INSTALLATION JUST AFTER DAWN SUNDAY MORNING. AFTER PHONE CALLS TO FAMILY IN THE UNITED STATES, THEY WILL GO WITH REVEREND JESSE JACKSON'S DELEGATION ON THE HOUR PLUS BUS RIDE TO THE CROATIAN BORDER.

    THE GROUP WILL THEN BOARD CHARTER PLANE FOR AN AIRBASE IN GERMANY, WHERE THE THREE SERVICEMEN WILL BE DEBRIEFED AND GET MEDICAL CHECKUPS.

    AT A CELEBRATORY DINNER IN BELGRADE SATURDAY EVENING, REVEREND JACKSON ASSURED SERB AUTHORITIES, FREEING THE P-O-W'S WILL HAVE A POSITIVE EFFECT.

    // JACKSON ACT //

    TONIGHT CONGRESSMEN IN AMERICA ARE CALLING THE WHITE HOUSE URGING THAT THERE BE PAUSE IN BOMBING, LONG ENOUGH TO ASSESS THE RELEASE. THE U-S-NATO FORCES SHOULD AT LEAST DETERMINE THE WORTH OF THIS ACTION AND NOT DISMISS IT CYNICALLY.

    // END ACT //

    THE HOST OF SATURDAY NIGHT'S CELEBRATION WAS YUGOSLAV MINISTER BOGOLJUB KARIC -- THE SERBIAN POLITICIAN (MINISTER WITHOUT PORTFOLIO) WHO LAST FEBRUARY FOUNDED A COMMITTEE FOR DIALOGUE BETWEEN YUGOSLAVIA AND AMERICA -- AND HELPED REVEREND JACKSON NEGOTIATE THE RELEASE.

    HE TOLD THE GROUP THAT THE DECISION TO FREE THE PRISONERS CAME ON THE SAME DAY AS A NATO BOMB HIT A PASSENGER BUS IN KOSOVO KILLING AT LEAST 40 PEOPLE. HE SAID IT MADE THE DECISION EVEN MORE DIFFICULT, BUT THAT THE MOVE WAS MADE IN SPITE OF THE TRAGEDY. NATO SAYS IT IS STILL LOOKING INTO THE REPORT.

    // KARIC ACT IN SERBIAN -- ESTABLISH AND FADE UNDER //

    MR. KARIC SAID THE (REV. JACKSON) MISSION TOOK WAS ONE STEP TOWARDS PEACE. BUT IT WAS ALSO A VERY BIG STEP FOR YUGOSLAV GOVERNMENT. THE MINISTER TOASTED REVEREND JACKSON'S DELEGATION, SAYING THAT WHILE DISASTERS LIKE THE KILLING OF CIVILIANS HAPPENS BECAUSE OF AN ADMINISTRATION'S MISTAKES, HE WAS PLEASED THERE WERE LIKE THE MEMBERS OF THE DELEGATION WHO WOULD NOW USE THE FREEING OF THE U-S SERVICEMEN TO PRESENT A MORE BALANCED PICTURE OF THE SERBIANS TO THE AMERICAN PUBLIC.

    THE THREE SERVICEMEN WERE CAPTURED LAST MONTH ALONG THE KOSOVO-MACEDONIA BORDER. (SIGNED)
    NEB/CP/CBL-T/SD
    01-May-99 9:15 PM EDT (0115 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] P-O-W'S FREED / L BY CAROL PINEAU (BELGRADE)

    DATE=5/2/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-248848
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE THREE AMERICAN SERVICEMEN HELD FOR MORE THAN ONE-MONTH IN YUGOSLAVIA ARE FREE. YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC AGREED TO THEIR RELEASE AFTER MEETING WITH JESSE JACKSON AND A DELEGATION OF U-S RELIGIOUS LEADERS WHO TRAVELED TO BELGRADE TO SEEK THE SERVICEMEN'S FREEDOM. CAROL PINEAU ATTENDED THE CEREMONY AND FILES THIS REPORT.

    TEXT: THE THREE AMERICAN PRISONERS OF WAR ENTERED THE ROOM SOLEMNLY, WITH HANDS BEHIND THEIR BACKS, AS JESSE JACKSON, A RED CROSS OFFICIAL, AND YUGOSLAV GENERALS SIGNED FOR THE PRISONERS' RELEASES.

    FOLLOWING THE SPEECHES, THE SERVICEMEN BROKE INTO BROAD GRINS AS REVEREND JACKSON HELD HIS ARMS OUTSTRETCHED AND TOLD THE MEN TO COME OVER AND HUG HIM..

    AFTER HUGS AND PHOTOS, WITH THUMBS-UP SIGNS, REVEREND JACKSON PHONED THE WHITE HOUSE TO SAY THE P-O-W'S WERE FREE.

    THE JUST-RELEASED PRISONERS THEN SAT DOWN WITH REVEREND JACKSON TO CALL THEIR FAMILIES. SMILING -- WITH TEARS RUNNING DOWN THEIR FACES -- THEY TOLD THEIR FAMILIES THEY WERE FREE AND THEY LOOKED FORWARD TO SEEING THEM.

    THE FORMER P-O-W'S CANNOT SPEAK TO THE MEDIA UNTIL AFTER THEY ARE DEBRIEFED, BUT BEFORE LEAVING THEY THANKED THE YUGOSLAV GOVERNMENT FOR SETTING THEM FREE. THEY ALSO THANKED THE YUGOSLAV GOVERNMENT FOR TREATING THEM HUMANELY AND IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE GENEVA CONVENTION..

    NATO'S BOMBING CAMPAIGN OF BELGRADE HAD INTENSIFIED DURING THE PAST FEW DAYS. LAST NIGHT, THE YUGOSLAV CAPITAL WAS QUIET.

    REVEREND JACKSON, WHO HAS NEGOTIATED PRISONER RELEASES FROM SYRIA, CUBA, AND IRAQ, SAID THE RELEASE OF P-O-W'S CAN OFTEN ACT AS WHAT HE CALLS A "CIRCUIT BREAKER" TO MOVE PAST A CIRCLE OF VIOLENCE AND DIPLOMATIC IMPASSE.

    HE SAYS THE YUGOSLAV FOREIGN MINISTER CAME TO HIS HOTEL EARLY SUNDAY TO DELIVER A LETTER FROM PRESIDENT MILOSEVIC TO PRESIDENT CLINTON.

    THE LETTER OUTLINES THE YUGOSLAV POSITION ON THE POINTS OF CONTENTION BETWEEN NATO AND YUGOSLAVIA -- PRIMARILY THE END OF VIOLENCE IN KOSOVO; RETURN OF THE REFUGEES IN ALBANIA, MACEDONIA AND MONTENEGRO; AND THE DEPLOYMENT OF AN INTERNATIONAL PEACEKEEPING FORCE. THE YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT ALSO ASKED FOR A MEETING WITH PRESIDENT CLINTON.

    BEFORE THE PRISONERS' RELEASE, REVEREND JACKSON SPOKE WITH PRESIDENT CLINTON.

    REVEREND JACKSON SAYS HE TOLD THE PRESIDENT IT IS CRITICAL THE UNITED STATES REMAIN ON WHAT HE CALLED THE MORAL OFFENSIVE. HE SAYS IT IS TIME FOR NATO AND THE UNITED STATES TO MAKE A DIPLOMATIC GESTURE.

    // JACKSON ACTUALITY //

    A DIPLOMATIC INITIATIVE DESERVES A DIPLOMATIC RESPONSE, NOT A MILITARY RESPONSE. IT IS TIME TO USE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO MOVE TOWARD RESOLUTION AND NOT TOWARD ESCALATION. WE CANNOT MAINTAIN THE MORAL OFFENSIVE WITH THAT KIND OF ACTION. THERE COMES A TIME WHEN MILITARY TACTICIANS HAVE A ROLE TO PLAY AND A TIME WHEN POLITICAL STRATEGISTS HAVE A ROLE TO PLAY. BUT, IN THE END, LEADERS MUST ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY. THIS PROBLEM -- GIVEN THE AMOUNT OF MONEY INVOLVED, THE AMOUNT OF LIVES INVOLVED, THE DESTABILIZING POSSIBILITIES INVOLVED -- THIS DESERVES THE HIGHEST LEVEL OF LEADERSHIP ENGAGEMENT.

    // END ACTUALITY //

    AFTER LEAVING BELGRADE, THE THREE RELEASED PRISONERS TRAVELED WITH THE REVEREND JACKSON TO THE BORDER [WITH CROATIA], WHERE THEY PASSED A YUGOSLAV CHECKPOINT AND BOARDED A BUS ON THE OTHER SIDE. THE TRIP FROM ZAGREB TO A MILITARY BASE IN GERMANY -- WHERE THE MEN WILL BE DEBRIEFED AND GET MEDICAL CHECKUPS -- IS TO BE MADE BY MILITARY TRANSPORT.

    THE SOLDIERS FAMILIES ARE TO TRAVEL TO GERMANY TO MEET THEM AND TO FLY BACK TO THE UNITED STATES TOGETHER. (SIGNED).
    NEB/WD-T/WD/RAE
    02-May-99 8:13 AM EDT (1213 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [03] BELGRADE POWER OUTAGE (L) BY CAROL PINEAU (BELGRADE)

    DATE=5/2/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-248862
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    ///EDS: JACKSON ACT FILED IN EARLIER PINEAU CR #2248848 ///

    INTRO: ELECTRIC POWER FOR MOST OF SERBIA HAS BEEN CUT OFF -- PLUNGING BELGRADE INTO DARKNESS. THE BLACKOUT IS ATTRIBUTED TO NATO BOMBING -- AS WE HEAR FROM CAROL PINEAU IN BELGRADE.

    TEXT: YUGOSLAV NEWS REPORTS SAY NATO BOMBS HIT THE KEY OBRENOVAC POWER STATION AT AROUND TEN P.M. BELGRADE TIME SUNDAY. RED STREAKS OF ANTI-AIRCRAFT FIRE WERE SEEN IN THE SOUTHWEST AS AIR RAID SIRENS BLARED THROUGH THE CAPITAL AND MUCH OF THE COUNTRY WAS PLUNGED INTO DARKNESS.

    THE POWER OUTAGE AFFECTED A VAST AREA - FROM NIS IN THE SOUTH TO SOMBOR NEAR THE HUNGARIAN BORDER IN THE NORTH. IT IS THE WORST POWER OUTAGE IN THE FORTY DAY BOMBING CAMPAIGN.

    THERE ARE NO DAMAGE ASSESSMENT REPORTS YET BUT YUGOSLAVIA IS ALREADY SUFFERING A SEVERE FUEL SHORTAGE CAUSED BY NATO'S EMBARGO. LAST WEEK NATO REPORTED THE SHORTAGE HAD BECOME SO ACUTE THAT SOLDIERS WERE SIPHONING OFF GAS FROM CARS ABANDONED BY REFUGEES. NATO TARGETS HAVE BEEN CAREFULLY SELECTED TO INHIBIT THE ARMY'S ABILITY TO OPERATE.

    AIR RAID SIRENS COULD BE HEARD THROUGHOUT THE DAY AS NATO CONTINUED ITS INTENSIFIED BOMBING CAMPAIGN. NATO SAYS IT HAS FLOWN ABOUT SIX HUNDRED SORTIES PER DAY SINCE IT STEPPED UP THE PRESSURE LAST THURSDAY.

    THE POWER PLANT STRIKE COMES ON THE SAME DAY AS THE RELEASE OF THREE AMERICAN MILITARY PRISONERS OF WAR. YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC APPROVED THEIR RELEASE AFTER DISCUSSIONS WITH REVEREND JESSE JACKSON, WHO LED A DELEGATION OF U-S RELIGIOUS LEADERS ON A PRIVATE MISSION TO BELGRADE.

    REVEREND JACKSON'S GROUP AND THE FORMER P-O-WS LEFT THE YUGOSLAV CAPITAL EARLY SUNDAY MORNING AND ARRIVED AT A U-S AIR BASE IN GERMANY BY THE AFTERNOON. MR. JACKSON SAID HE IS CARRYING A LETTER FROM PRESIDENT MILOSEVIC TO PRESIDENT CLINTON OUTLINING THE POINTS OF CONTENTION BETWEEN NATO AND YUGOSLAVIA.

    REVEREND JACKSON -- WHO HAS NEGOTIATED SEVERAL PRISONER RELEASES IN SYRIA, CUBA AND IRAQ -- ARGUED THAT THE RELEASE OF P-O-WS CAN OFTEN ACT AS WHAT HE CALLED A CIRCUIT BREAKER TO MOVE PAST A CYCLE OF VIOLENCE OR DIPLOMATIC IMPASSE.

    THE AMERICAN CIVIL RIGHTS LEADER IS CALLING ON THE UNITED STATES AND NATO TO RETURN TO DIPLOMACY AND TAKE WHAT HE CALLS THE MORAL OFFENSIVE AS A RESPONSE TO THE RELEASE OF THE SOLDIERS.

    //JACKSON ACT//

    A DIPLOMATIC INITIATIVE DESERVES A DIPLOMATIC RESPONSE NOT A MILITARY RESPONSE. IT IS TIME TO USE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO MOVE TOWARDS RESOLUTION AND NOT TOWARDS ESCALATION. WE CANNOT MAINTAIN THE MORAL OFFENSIVE WITH THAT KIND OF ACTION.

    //END ACT//

    BUT NATO SAID SUNDAY THAT WHILE IT WAS PLEASED WITH THE RELEASE THERE WILL BE NO LET UP IN THE INTENSIFIED BOMBING CAMPAIGN. A SPOKESMAN REITERATED NATO WOULD CONTINUE THE BOMBING UNTIL THE YUGOSLAV GOVERNMENT ENDS THE VIOLENCE IN KOSOVO, REPATRIATES THE REFUGEES IN ALBANIA, MACEDONIA AND MONTENEGRO AND ALLOWS AN INTERNATIONAL PEACE KEEPING FORCE INTO KOSOVO. (SIGNED)
    NEB/CP/ENE-T/WFR
    02-May-99 7:24 PM EDT (2324 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [04] PILOT RESCUED / S-O BY JIM RANDLE (PENTAGON)

    DATE=5/2/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-248845
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: A NATO PILOT HAS BEEN RESCUED AFTER A U-S F-16 CRASHED ON A BOMBING MISSION OVER YUGOSLAVIA. U-S OFFICIALS SAY THE PILOT APPEARS TO BE IN GOOD CONDITION. V-O-A'S JIM RANDLE REPORTS FROM THE PENTAGON.

    TEXT: THE PLANE WAS RETURNING FROM A COMBAT MISSION OVER YUGOSLAVIA WHEN IT CRASHED. BECAUSE THE AIRCRAFT IS AN F-16-C-G THE GROUND ATTACK VERSION OF THE JET FIGHTER --- THAT MISSION WAS VERY LIKELY A BOMBING RUN ON SERB TARGETS SOMEWHERE IN YUGOSLAVIA.

    OFFICIALS WILL NOT SAY IF THE PLANE WAS SHOT DOWN OR FELL FROM THE SKY BECAUSE OF MECHANICAL PROBLEMS.

    SPECIALLY TRAINED AND EQUIPPED U-S FORCES ARE DEPLOYED NEAR YUGOSLAVIA TO RESCUE DOWNED PILOTS. OFFICIALS WILL GIVE NO DETAILS OF THE RESCUE, BUT ONE PENTAGON OFFICIAL SAYS "THE PILOT DID NOT WALK OUT."

    NATO PLANES HAVE MADE MORE THAN 12 THOUSAND FLIGHTS IN THE PAST FIVE WEEKS OVER OR NEAR YUGOSLAVIA, AS PART OF OPERATION ALLIED FORCE. ONLY ONE OTHER MANNED AIR CRAFT HAS BEEN LOST -- AN F-117 STEALTH FIGHTER. THAT PILOT WAS ALSO RECOVERED IN GOOD CONDITION. (SIGNED).
    NEB / WD / WD
    02-May-99 2:34 AM EDT (0634 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [05] NATO/KOSOVO (L-ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=5/2/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-248851
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    /////

    MAKE TAPE CONFORM TO TEXT. DROPS PENULTIMATE GRAF AS VOICED. /////

    INTRO: NATO SAYS TWO MORE OF ITS AIRCRAFT HAVE CRASHED, AS THE ALLIANCE CONTINUES TO INTENSIFY ITS AERIAL BOMBARDMENT ON SERBIAN FORCES IN KOSOVO. JOHN FRASER REPORTS FROM NATO HEADQUARTERS IN BRUSSELS.

    TEXT: NATO SPOKESMAN JAMIE SHEA SAYS THE TWO AMERICAN WARPLANES CRASHED DURING THE PAST 24-HOURS. THE FIRST WAS AN F-16, WHICH CAME DOWN IN NORTHWEST SERBIA. THE PILOT EJECTED SAFELY AND WAS RESCUED WITHIN TWO-HOURS.

    MR. SHEA SAYS THE PILOT IS BEING DEBRIEFED AT A NATO BASE. NATO HAS OFFERED NO EXPLANATION FOR THE CRASH.

    THE SECOND WAS AN ACCIDENT SATURDAY, WHEN AN AMERICAN A-V-B-B HARRIER JET ON A TRAINING FLIGHT CRASHED NEAR AN AIRCRAFT CARRIER IN THE ADRIATIC. THE PILOT WAS RESCUED SAFELY, BUT THERE WAS NO IMMEDIATE EXPLANATION AS TO WHAT CAUSED THE CRASH.

    MR. SHEA SAYS THE POUNDING OF SERB FORCES IS CONTINUING AT A HIGH LEVEL, AND NATO HAS BEEN GIVEN A HELPING HAND BY IMPROVED WEATHER. HE SAYS THE MOST RECENT TARGETS HAVE BEEN COMMAND AND CONTROL FACILITIES, RADIO TRANSMITTERS, OIL STORAGE FACILITIES, BRIDGES, AND AIRFIELDS.

    MR. SHEA SAYS AIR ATTACKS IN THE PAST 24-HOURS HAVE BEEN DIRECTED AT ARMORED VEHICLES, MORTAR SITES, COMMAND POSTS, ARTILLERY POSITIONS, AND SURFACE-TO-AIR MISSILE INSTALLATIONS. HE SAYS ALL OF THESE ARE AIMED AT MAKING SERB COMMANDERS FEEL WHAT THEY MUST BE FEELING -- VERY NERVOUS.

    IN ANOTHER DEVELOPMENT, NATO HAS WELCOMED THE RELEASE, BY THE SERBS, OF THE THREE AMERICAN SERVICEMEN. THEY WERE CAPTURED AT THE END OF MARCH WHILE ON A PEACEKEEPING PATROL ALONG THE BORDER BETWEEN YUGOSLAVIA AND MACEDONIA.

    BUT NATO SAYS THE GESTURE WILL NOT AFFECT ITS DETERMINATION TO PURSUE ITS MILITARY CAMPAIGN AGAINST THE FORCES OF YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SOLBODAN MILOSEVIC. MEANWHILE, NATO SAYS IT ACCEPTS RESPONSIBILITY FOR SATURDAY'S BOMBING OF A CIVILIAN BUS AS IT WAS CROSSING A BRIDGE IN KOSOVO. SERB OFFICIALS CLAIM AS MANY AS 60 CIVILIANS WERE KILLED IN THE ATTACK.

    MR. SHEA EMPHASIZED THAT DESPITE SERBIAN CLAIMS, NATO HAS NEVER DELIBERATELY TARGETED CIVILIANS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/JF/ALW/RAE
    02-May-99 8:32 AM EDT (1232 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [06] NATO/KOSOVO-UPDATE (L-ONLY) BY JOHN FRASER (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=5/2/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-248857
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: NATO SAYS AN AMERICAN PLANE THAT CRASHED EARLY SUNDAY IN SERBIA CAME DOWN BECAUSE OF ENGINE FAILURE. BUT AS JOHN FRASER REPORTS FROM NATO HEADQUARTERS IN BRUSSELS, A QUESTION STILL REMAINS OVER WHETHER IT WAS HIT BY GROUND FIRE.

    TEXT: THE F-16 WARPLANE CRASHED IN NORTHWEST SERBIA, AND A NATO MILITARY SPOKESMAN PUT THE BLAME ON ENGINE FAILURE. BUT HE SIDESTEPPED THE ISSUE OF WHETHER THE AIRCRAFT HAD BEEN HIT BY SERBIAN FIRE FROM THE GROUND, AS YUGOSLAVIA CLAIMS.

    THE SERBS SAY THEIR AIR DEFENSES BROUGHT DOWN THE JET, AND SHOWED T-V PICTURES PURPORTING TO BE THE WRECKAGE. BUT THE NATO SPOKESMAN WOULD SAY LITTLE MORE, OTHER THAN THAT THE PILOT EJECTED FROM HIS CRIPPLED PLANE AND WAS RESCUED SAFELY.

    THAT CRASH CAME LESS THAN 24-HOURS AFTER ANOTHER AMERICAN PLANE, A MARINE A-V 8-B HARRIER, PLUNGED INTO THE SEA NEAR AN AIRCRAFT CARRIER. ITS PILOT, TOO, WAS RESCUED, APPARENTLY UNHARMED.

    NATO OFFICIALS ALSO SOUGHT TO DEFUSE THE GROWING CONTROVERSY OVER AN AIR ATTACK ON A BRIDGE IN WHICH A BUS WAS HIT AND, ACCORDING TO SERB CLAIMS, AS MANY AS 60 CIVILIANS WERE KILLED. AN ALLIANCE SPOKESMAN SAYS THE BRIDGE HAD ALREADY BEEN TARGETED AND THE PLANE'S ORDNANCE RELEASED BEFORE THE BUS WAS SPOTTED. IT WAS, HE SAID, A REGRETTABLE ACCIDENT.

    NATO CHIEF SPOKESMAN JAMIE SHEA REITERATED THE ALLIANCE WELCOMED THE RELEASE OF THREE AMERICAN SOLDIERS FROM YUGOSLAV CAPTIVITY, BUT HE INSISTED THEY SHOULD NEVER HAVE BEEN CAPTURED IN THE FIRST PLACE, SINCE THEY WERE ON A PEACEKEEPING PATROL AT THE TIME.

    MR. SHEA CALLED THEIR RELEASE A GESTURE, AND HE SAID IF MR. MILOSEVIC REALLY WANTED TO MAKE AN IMPRESSION HE SHOULD AGREE TO ALL FIVE OF NATO'S CONDITIONS TO BRING THE CONFLICT TO A CLOSE. MEANWHILE, THE NATO SPOKESMAN INSISTS THERE IS DECLINING MORALE AMONG SERBIAN FORCES, WHO ALREADY KNOW THEY CANNOT WIN THIS CONFLICT. HE SAYS IT IS ONLY A MATTER OF TIME BEFORE THE YUGOSLAV LEADERSHIP ALSO RECOGNIZES THIS, AND SEEKS A DIPLOMATIC SOLUTION. (SIGNED)
    NEB/JF/ALW/RAE
    02-May-99 11:40 AM EDT (1540 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [07] KOSOVO/ALBANIA (L-ONLY) BY PETER HEINLEIN (KUKES, ALBANIA)

    DATE=5/2/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-248860
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: REFUGEES FLEEING KOSOVO INTO NORTHERN ALBANIA SAY SERB TROOPS ARE USING SLAVE LABOR TO BUILD UP DEFENSES AGAINST NATO ATTACKS. VOA'S PETER HEINLEIN REPORTS FROM THE NORTHERN ALBANIAN TOWN OF KUKES, WHERE HUMANITARIAN GROUPS ARE CALLING FOR OUTSIDE HELP TO DISPERSE THE CONCENTRATION OF REFUGEES BUILDING UP ALONG THE KOSOVO BORDER.

    TEXT: ///SFX OF NEW ARRIVALS BEING GREETED, THEN UNDER TEXT...///

    CLOSE TO TWO THOUSAND PEOPLE REACHED THE MORINA FRONTIER CROSSING NEAR KUKES SUNDAY, MOST OF THEM ON FOOT, EXHAUSTED AND GLAD TO TAKE THE DRINKS AND SOUP OFFERED BY AID WORKERS.

    WITH THE LATEST ARRIVALS, ALBANIA'S REFUGEE POPULATION IS NEARING 400-THOUSAND. EACH NEW ARRIVAL HAS HIS OR HER OWN INDIVIDUAL STORY TO TELL. BUT ALL OF THEM BEAR A STRIKING SIMILARITY. 23-YEAR OLD MERITA SEFAJ STRUGGLED ACROSS THE FRONTIER SUNDAY SAYING SHE WAS ALLOWED TO LEAVE BECAUSE SHE IS EIGHT MONTHS PREGNANT. BUT SHE SAID OTHER YOUNG WOMEN ARE BEING HELD BACK, WHILE MEN ARE ROUNDED UP, FORCED TO DRESS IN SERB ARMY UNIFORMS AND ORDERED TO HELP IN SUCH TASKS AS DIGGING TRENCHES AND STORING AMMUNITION.

    ///SEFAJ ACT///

    -

    SEFAJ: MY HUSBAND'S BROTHER, THEY TOOK HIM.

    QUESTION: AND THEY'RE USING THESE PEOPLE TO STORE AMMUNITION INTO THE BUILDINGS?

    SEFAJ: AND THEY ARE WEARING UNIFORMS, BUT NO GUNS. ONLY UNIFORMS.

    QUESTION: SERBIAN UNIFORMS?

    SEFAJ: YES

    ///END ACT///

    UNITED NATIONS REFUGEE AGENCY OFFICIAL STEFAN DE MISTURA HAS BEEN DOING PRELIMINARY INTERVIEWS WITH NEW ARRIVALS AT THE MORINA CHECKPOINT. HE SAYS HE TOO IS HEARING A GROWING NUMBER OF REPORTS ABOUT THE USE OF FORCED LABOR GANGS.

    ///DE MISTURA ACT///

    WHAT I'VE BEEN HEARING IS THAT, FROM MANY WITNESSES, THAT MEN HAVE BEEN KEPT IN SOME CASES AND PUT SERBIAN DRESS ON. MILITARY DRESS ON. TO DO WHAT, WE DON'T KNOW, BUT WE CAN IMAGINE THE WORST, OF COURSE.

    ///END ACT///

    OTHER U-N-H-C-R OFFICIALS ARE BATTLING TO COPE WITH THE CONTINUING INFLUX OF NEW ARRIVALS THAT HAS SWOLLEN THE POPULATION OF KUKES FROM 28-THOUSAND TO ABOUT 130-THOUSAND. NO MATTER HOW MANY ARE MOVED OUT, AT LEAST AS MANY MORE SEEM TO SHOW UP.

    U-N-H-C-R SPOKESMAN RAY WILKINSON SAYS CONVOYS OF NATO TRUCKS ARE BEING SENT TO KUKES TO HELP IN THE MASSIVE JOB OF MOVING THE REFUGEES TO SAFER CAMPS AWAY FROM THE TENSE BORDER REGION

    ///WILKINSON ACT///

    WE NEVER KNOW EXACTLY HOW MANY PEOPLE CAN WE MOVE OUT OF THE CITY OR CAN MOVE OUT OF THIS TOWN. YESTERDAY WE MOVED ALMOST FIVE THOUSAND, THAT'S BEEN THE AVERAGE THE PAST FEW DAYS.

    ///END ACT///

    THE URGENCY OF THE RELOCATION PROJECT WAS AMPLIFIED SUNDAY WHEN AUTHORITIES IN KUKES SUDDENLY CUT OFF WATER TO THE REFUGEE CAMPS, SAYING SUPPLIES WERE DANGEROUSLY LOW. THE MOVE CAME JUST AS ONE OF TWO PUMPS SUPPLYING UNDERGROUND WATER TO THE CAMPS BROKE DOWN.

    THE U-N-H-C-R'S RAY WILKINSON ASSURED REPORTERS SUNDAY THERE IS NO IMMEDIATE WATER CRISIS. BUT HE SAYS THE SITUATION COULD BECOME CRITICAL IN THE NEXT MONTH, AS WARMER WEATHER SETS IN. (SIGNED)
    NEB/PFH/WFR
    02-May-99 6:03 PM EDT (2203 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [08] LIFE OF A REFUGEE BY LAURIE KASSMAN (SKOPJE, MACEDONIA)

    DATE=5/2/99
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-43288
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: KOSOVAR ALBANIANS HAVE BEEN UPROOTED FROM THEIR HOMES AND THEIR LIVES. THEY HAVE BEEN DISPERSED IN CAMPS AND PRIVATE HOMES IN MACEDONIA AND ALBANIA, WHERE THEY WAIT TO GO HOME. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT LAURIE KASSMAN TAKES A LOOK AT HOW THEY SPEND THEIR DAYS IN EXILE.

    TEXT: /// SOUND OF GAMES ///

    AID WORKERS ORGANIZE SPORTS AND OTHER GAMES TO KEEP KOSOVAR YOUNGSTERS IN THE STENKOVIC REFUGEE CAMP BUSY. IT HELPS TAKE THEIR MIND OFF THE NIGHTMARES THEY HAVE LIVED THROUGH.

    SHADING HIS EYES FROM THE HOT SUN, A KOSOVAR ALBANIAN TEENAGER FROM FERAZAJ (FER-AHZ-EYE) REMEMBERS WHAT HE USED TO DO BACK HOME IN NICE WEATHER.

    /// ALBANIAN AND FADE ///

    HE SAYS HE WOULD HANG OUT WITH HIS FRIENDS AFTER SCHOOL, BUT THE SERB POLICE WOULD STOP THEM AND HARASS THEM.

    /// ALBANIAN AND FADE ///

    NOW, HE JUST STANDS AROUND OR WAITS IN LINE TO PHONE HIS BROTHER IN GERMANY.

    DOCTORS AND NURSES AMONG THE REFUGEES FROM KOSOVO VOLUNTEER THEIR SERVICES TO THE NUMEROUS INTERNATIONAL AID GROUPS WORKING IN THE CAMPS. ONE PSYCHOLOGIST HAS EVEN FOUND SOME OF HIS FORMER PATIENTS. LANGUAGE STUDENTS HELP OUT AS TRANSLATORS.

    /// SOUND OF WATER AND SCRUBBING AND FADE UNDER ///

    WOMEN AND YOUNG GIRLS SPEND THEIR DAYS WASHING OUT THE FEW BELONGINGS OF THEIR FAMILY, SWEEPING THE DIRT OUT OF THEIR CROWDED TENTS WITH SMALL TWIG BROOMS, AND TENDING THE SMALL FIRES WHILE THEY COOK A MEAGER MEAL FROM RATIONS OF CANNED SARDINES AND VEGETABLES. BROTHERS OR HUSBANDS WAIT FOR FOOD AND DRINKING WATER IN LINES THAT CAN OFTEN STRETCH OUT 50-METERS OR MORE.

    FOR THOSE WHO HAVE FOUND REFUGE IN PRIVATE HOMES AMONG MACEDONIA'S ETHNIC-ALBANIAN COMMUNITY, THERE IS FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT, BUT TOO MUCH IDLE TIME.

    ONE YOUNG PREGNANT KOSOVAR FROM PRISTINA IS STILL IN A DAZE.

    /// ALBANIAN AND FADE ///

    SHE AND HER FAMILY HAD COME TO SKOPJE TO VISIT RELATIVES TWO DAYS BEFORE NATO LAUNCHED ITS AIR STRIKES. NOW THEY ARE STRANDED HERE.

    IN THE WESTERN TOWN OF TETOVA, MANY OF PRISTINA'S INTELLECTUALS AND POLITICIANS SPEND THEIR DAYS SIPPING COFFEE IN A LOCAL CAFE, EXCHANGING INFORMATION AND SPECULATING ABOUT THEIR FUTURE.

    TWENTY-FOUR-YEAR-OLD AFERDITA REFUSES TO JUST SIT AROUND. THE ENTERPRISING FOURTH YEAR ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING STUDENT ATTENDS COMPUTER CLASSES AT TETOVA'S ALBANIAN-LANGUAGE UNIVERSITY, WHICH IS NOT ACCREDITED OR RECOGNIZED BY THE MACEDONIAN GOVERNMENT. NO MATTER, SHE SAYS.

    /// AFERDITA ACT ///

    SOME OF MY PROFESSORS FROM PRISTINA HAVE ARRIVED HERE. MOST OF THE PROFESSORS ARE FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF PRISTINA, SO I WENT TO THEM AND MAYBE I CAN DO MY EXAMS HERE. I HAD A KIND OF AGREEMENT WITH MY PROFESSORS THAT MAYBE WHEN I LEARN IF I CAN LEARN NOW, MAYBE I CAN TAKE THE EXAMS HERE AND WHEN I GO BACK TO PRISTINA -- I HOPE IT WILL BE SOON -- THEY WILL GIVE ME MY MARKS THERE.

    /// END ACT ///

    KOSOVAR ALBANIAN JOURNALISTS HAVE REGROUPED AND REORGANIZED THEMSELVES TOO. PRISTINA'S ALBANIAN NEWSPAPER KOHA DITORE NOW IS PUBLISHING AN ABBREVIATED VERSION OF ITSELF. ABOUT 10-THOUSAND COPIES ARE DISTRIBUTED IN THE REFUGEE CAMPS.

    PRISTINA'S ALBANIAN-LANGUAGE RADIO STATION, KNOWN AS RADIO 21, WILL START BROADCASTING VIA THE INTERNET AND SHORTWAVE TO PROVIDE MORE NEWS AND INFORMATION FOR THE GROWING KOSOVAR REFUGEE POPULATION HERE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/LK/ALW/RAE
    02-May-99 1:25 PM EDT (1725 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [09] FRANCE/EGYPT/ KOSOVO (L) BY SCOTT BOBB (CAIRO)

    DATE=5/2/99
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-248858
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: FRENCH PRIME MINISTER LIONEL JOSPIN HAS REACTED TO THE RELEASE OF THREE U-S SOLDIERS CAPTURED ONE-MONTH AGO BY SERBIAN FORCES. BUT HE SAYS PROPOSALS BY YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT SLOBODAN MILOSEVIC ISSUED WITH THEM BEAR CAREFUL STUDY. THE FRENCH OFFICIAL MADE THE REMARKS AT THE CONCLUSION OF A TWO-DAY VISIT TO EGYPT. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT SCOTT BOBB HAS DETAILS FROM CAIRO.

    TEXT: FRENCH PRIME MINISTER LIONEL JOSPIN WELCOMED THE RELEASE OF THE THREE U-S SOLDIERS. BUT HE REACTED CAUTIOUSLY TO THE PROPOSALS BY THE YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT WHICH REPORTEDLY ACCOMPANIED THEM.

    /// JOSPIN ACT IN FRENCH ///

    THE FRENCH PRIME MINISTER SAID FRANCE IS RECEPTIVE TO ANY DIPLOMACY AIMED AT BRINGING PEACE TO KOSOVO. BUT HE SAID IT IS ALSO PREPARED TO CONTINUE THE MILITARY STRIKES AS LONG AS NECESSARY.

    MR. JOSPIN SAID ANY PROPOSITION THAT DOES NOT FULFILL MINIMUM CONDITIONS SET BY THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED. HE SAID THESE CONDITIONS INCLUDE AN END TO THE REPRESSION, THE WITHDRAWAL OF SERBIAN FORCES FROM KOSOVO, ACCEPTANCE OF THE PRINCIPLE OF THE REFUGEES' RETURN HOME, AND THE INSTALLATION OF FORCES TO OVERSEE IT ALL.

    THE FRENCH OFFICIAL SPOKE TO REPORTERS (SUNDAY) IN CAIRO AFTER MEETING EGYPTIAN PRESIDENT HOSNI MUBARAK AND VISITING PALESTINIAN LEADER YASSER ARAFAT.

    HE PRAISED THE DECISION BY THE PALESTINIANS TO POSTPONE THEIR DECLARATION OF AN INDEPENDENT STATE UNTIL AFTER THE ISRAELI ELECTIONS. BUT HE SAID FRANCE RECOGNIZES THEIR RIGHT TO DECLARE SUCH A STATE, ESPECIALLY IF THE OTHER PARTY REFUSES TO NEGOTIATE.

    /// REST OPT ///

    /// JOSPIN ACT IN FRENCH ///

    THE FRENCH PRIME MINISTER SAID HE HOPES THAT AFTER THE ISRAELI ELECTIONS, THE MIDDLE-EAST PEACE PROCESS WILL RESUME WITH GREATER FORCE. IF THAT DOES NOT HAPPEN, HE SAID THE FRENCH-EGYPTIAN PROPOSAL TO HOLD AN INTERNATIONAL SUMMIT ON THE MIDDLE EAST MIGHT ONCE AGAIN BE USEFUL.

    MR. JOSPIN MADE THE REMARKS AT THE CONCLUSION OF A TWO-DAY VISIT TO EGYPT, DURING WHICH HE INAUGURATED A LARGE FRENCH EXPOSITION IN CAIRO AND WITNESSED THE SIGNING OF SEVERAL MAJOR COMMERCIAL AGREEMENTS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/SB/ALW/RAE
    02-May-99 12:06 PM EDT (1606 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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