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Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 99-06-11

Macedonian Press Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.


MACEDONIAN PRESS AGENCY NEWS IN ENGLISH
Thessaloniki, June 11, 1999

SECTIONS

  • [A] NATIONAL NEWS
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • NEWS HEADLINES

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

  • [01] GREEK PM: THE DEVELOPMENTS IN YUGOSLAVIA VINDICATE GREECE
  • [02] GREEKS TO VOTE ON SUNDAY FOR EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT ELECTIONS
  • [03] GREEK FM IN BELGRADE TODAY, TO MEET WITH YUGOSLAV LEADERS
  • [04] LAST CONTINGENT OF US MARINES DISEMBARKS IN GREECE TODAY
  • [05] CONTAINERS WITH BELGIUM-MADE FOOD SEIZED AT PIRAEUS PORT
  • [06] GREEK DEFENSE MINISTER: THE GREEKS ARE DOUBLY VINDICATED
  • [07] KOZANI TO HOST $1.2 MILLION TIMBER INDUSTRIAL PARK
  • [08] THE GREEK BATTALION THAT WILL BE SENT TO KOSSOVO WAS REVIEWED BY THE MINISTER OF DEFENSE
  • [09] 8.912.901 GREEKS WILL VOTE IN THE EURO-ELECTIONS ON SUNDAY
  • [10] TSOCHATZOPOULOS: THE GREEK PEOPLE WERE VINDICATED
  • [11] EARTHQUAKE HIT THE ISLAND OF ZAKYNTHOS
  • [12] THE GREEK FARM PRODUCTS ARE SAFE
  • [13] MR. ATHANASAKIS COMMENTED ON THE STATEMENTS OF THE TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTER
  • [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  • [14] U.S. WON'T ASSIST IN REBUILDING F.R.Y. WITH MILOSEVIC IN POWER
  • [15] FIRST PEACEKEEPING TROOPS TO ARRIVE IN KOSOVO TOMORROW
  • [16] UN SECURITY COUNCIL ADOPTS RESOLUTION FOR FORCE DEPLOYMENT
  • [17] G8 FOREIGN MINISTERS CALL FOR COMPREHENSIVE TALKS IN CYPRUS
  • [18] YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT MILOSEVIC: PEACE HAS DEFEATED VIOLENCE
  • [19] GREEK FM MEETS WITH YUGOSLAV COUNTERPART IN BELGRADE
  • [20] GREEK JOURNALISTS COVERING WAR IN KOSOVO RECEIVE PRAISE
  • [21] MR. PAPANDREOU HAD A NUMBER OF MEETINGS IN BELGRADE
  • [22] MS. ALBRIGHT IS IN SKOPJE
  • [23] CHERNOMYRDIN: THE RUSSIAN FORCE WILL CONTROL THE REGION BETWEEN KOSOVO AND SERBIA
  • [24] BILT: 100.000 SERBS ARE READY TO ABANDON KOSOVO

  • NEWS IN DETAIL

    [A] NATIONAL NEWS

    [01] GREEK PM: THE DEVELOPMENTS IN YUGOSLAVIA VINDICATE GREECE

    Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis has the U.N. Security Council resolution which specifies the terms of effecting the peace process in Kosovo.

    "I am especially satisfied with this development of events.

    It confirms the correctness of Greece's stance, it confirms our viewpoint, that it is necessary to insist on political talks, diplomatic initiatives and permanent consultations with the parties concerned," he said.

    Meanwhile, the Greek contingent participating in the peacekeeping mission assigned to Kosovo is expected to depart tomorrow. This afternoon, Minister of National Defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos is to visit a military camp in Yiannitsa where he will review the corps.

    [02] GREEKS TO VOTE ON SUNDAY FOR EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT ELECTIONS

    Approximately 8.9 million Greeks will take to the polls on Sunday in order to cast their ballot for the country's 25 deputies in the European Parliament.

    Voting will begin at 7 a.m. and will conclude at 7 p.m. According to an EC directive, the ballots will be opened at 9:00 p.m., although exit polls will begin to air at 7 p.m.

    The precise number of registered voters is 8.912.901 (4.353.685 men, 4.559.216 women).

    In spite of the feverish speeches and rallies, the Europarliament elections have been marred by public indifference in the past, as the country's abstention rate in the last European election, June 1994, amount to 28.78 percent.

    [03] GREEK FM IN BELGRADE TODAY, TO MEET WITH YUGOSLAV LEADERS

    Greece's Foreign Minister George Papandreou is to travel to Belgrade today where he will have talks with the Yugoslav leaders.

    In Cologne yesterday, Mr. Papandreou participated in a conference on the Balkans where the foreign ministers from 28 countries (with the exception of Yugoslavia) adopted a stability pact for southeastern Europe.

    The document is aimed at creating conditions for establishing peace and safety in the region. It envisions the development of democratic processes and market economy there, overcoming of ethnic enmity and integration of Balkan states in European structures.

    [04] LAST CONTINGENT OF US MARINES DISEMBARKS IN GREECE TODAY

    The last contingent of U.S troops comprising the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, who will join the Kosovo implementation force (KFOR), is to disembark this evening in the port of Litochoro, en route to Skopje.

    Dozens of containers with military equipment and vehicles are being transported from the two warships and helicopter-carrier presently off-shore onto trailer-trucks.

    According to a NATO official, once the troops and equipment transport has been completed, the ships will leave the sea region.

    The few remaining protesters left the port yesterday afternoon, although a strong police force continues top guard the premises.

    [05] CONTAINERS WITH BELGIUM-MADE FOOD SEIZED AT PIRAEUS PORT

    Fifteen containers with Belgian pet food, chocolates and margarine remain seized at the Piraeus port customs since yesterday, with samples having been taken for inspection from the state authorities.

    The containers arrived in Greece four months ago, well after the official ban (imposed on January 15) on Belgian food imports.

    At the same time, the Attica Pharmaceutical Association is requesting from the National Drug Organization (EOF) a list of baby milk products and their producers in order to ascertain which milk could be contaminated with dioxin.

    Meanwhile, a representative from the European Consumers Association stated that fish from fish farms are also suspect since they could have been given tainted feed. Greek officials have categorically refuted implications of Greek fish raised in farms being tainted.

    [06] GREEK DEFENSE MINISTER: THE GREEKS ARE DOUBLY VINDICATED

    The Greek people are doubly vindicated from the result of the Kosovo crisis, as over 90% of them were against the bombings stated the Minister of National Defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos.

    The Defense Minister added that the remaining Europeans, realizing later that the war tactic is a dead end, began supporting the political and diplomatic option.

    Referring to Sunday's European Parliament elections, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated that Greeks, who are greatly sensitized to peace, view the ruling PASOK party's policy as having made consistent choices, which will be appreciated when the time to vote comes.

    [07] KOZANI TO HOST $1.2 MILLION TIMBER INDUSTRIAL PARK

    A timber industrial park, amounting to 400 million drachmas (approximately 1.2. million dollars) is to be established at the prefecture of Kozani, housing wood and timber manufacturers at an expanse of over 200 acres.

    The Ministries of Development and Environment, Planning and Public Works have issued a joint resolution approving the project's funding.

    [08] THE GREEK BATTALION THAT WILL BE SENT TO KOSSOVO WAS REVIEWED BY THE MINISTER OF DEFENSE

    The mechanized battalion of the 34th brigade that will be sent to Kossovo to be part of the international peacekeeping force was reviewed today by Greek minister of defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos at Filippakou Army Camp in Yiannitsa, northern Greece.

    Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated to reporters that the war has ended but the peace agreement should be backed in order to be implemented. He said that there should be peace in the Balkans and the procedure for their economic restructuring should be underway, adding that there will be multi-national military forces in the Balkans (Bosnia, Albania, FYROM and Kossovo) for many years and for this reason there should be a new system of security.

    The battalion is made up of 450 officers, personnel carriers, and other military vehicles and it will be deployed at the south- eastern part of Kossovo between the German and the US force. The Greek minister of defense stated that Greece wants to participate in the command of the peacekeeping force but this has not been decided yet as the relevant negotiations continue.

    Referring to the signing of the peace agreement, Mr. Tsochatzopoulos stated that it is a vindication of the policy followed by the Greek government which had clarified from the beginning that it will not take part in war operations but only in a peacekeeping force after a UN Security Council decision.

    Responding to the question on the Euro-parliament elections, he stated that he is optimistic that the Greek people will reward the Greek government for its stance which safeguarded national interests contributing, at the same time, to the efforts for peace in the Balkans.

    [09] 8.912.901 GREEKS WILL VOTE IN THE EURO-ELECTIONS ON SUNDAY

    Two days are left before Sunday's Euro-elections. The voting will start at 7:00am and will be completed at 7:00pm. The voters must have with them their voting booklet and their identity card.

    The counting of the votes will start at 9:00pm based on the EU directive and the exit polls results can be reported after 7:00pm. The registered voters in Greece are 8.912.901, while the registered voters in Thessaloniki are 632.993, of them 300.992 are men and 332.071 are women.

    [10] TSOCHATZOPOULOS: THE GREEK PEOPLE WERE VINDICATED

    The Greeks were vindicated with the outcome of the crisis in Kosovo as over 90% of them were against the bombings, stated the minister of defense.

    Mr. Tsochatzopoulos added that the rest of the Europeans needed many days to realize that the war tactic was a dead end and begin backing the political and diplomatic solution. Referring to the Euro-elections, he said that the Greeks, who have a great sensitivity toward peace, can see that PASOK's policy is vindicated and will take this under consideration when they vote on Sunday's Euro-parliament elections.

    [11] EARTHQUAKE HIT THE ISLAND OF ZAKYNTHOS

    An earthquake measuring 5.1 on the Richter scale was recorded at 10:50 am this morning and its epicenter was located at the sea region between the Ionian island of Zakynthos and the Peloponesse in southern Greece.

    No damages or victims were reported by the local authorities.

    [12] THE GREEK FARM PRODUCTS ARE SAFE

    The Greek farm products are not harmful to the health of consumers as the animal feed that is being used is of excellent quality and has been approved by the responsible state agencies.

    The assurance was given by the Greek Animal Feed Industries Association and it was also clarified that the raw material used undergoes strict controls by state and European Union agencies.

    The Greek animal feed industries have their own quality control labs for each production stage, while themselves undergo periodical control by state agencies and the storage of the raw material they use is being made based on the existing legislation.

    [13] MR. ATHANASAKIS COMMENTED ON THE STATEMENTS OF THE TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTER

    Acting Greek government spokesman Nikos Athanasakis, on the occasion of the statements made by Turkish foreign minister Ismael Cem, who spoke of a hostile policy followed by Greece, stated that the Turkish foreign minister should be more careful with his statements.

    Mr. Athanasakis reiterated that Greece expects from the new Turkish government to act in order to reinforce peace and cooperation in the region and stated that Greece does not provoke, claim or give away anything.

    [B] INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    [14] U.S. WON'T ASSIST IN REBUILDING F.R.Y. WITH MILOSEVIC IN POWER

    Efforts for the deployment of an international civil and security presence in Kosovo under UN auspices are presently underway, after the UN Security Council adopted the relevant resolution last night.

    Prior to the voting, NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana stated that the Allied air operations against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia had been suspended but added that they could begin again if Serbia does not comply with the peace agreement.

    Russia's role in the peacekeeping force remains to be seen, as it is still the subject of negotiations between Russian and NATO officials in Moscow.

    United States President Bill Clinton stated that his country will not contribute to the reconstruction of Yugoslavia as long as Serb President Slobodan Milosevic remains in office.

    [15] FIRST PEACEKEEPING TROOPS TO ARRIVE IN KOSOVO TOMORROW

    The first troops of the peacekeeping force deployed in Kosovo are expected to begin arriving tomorrow at the Serb province, a slight delay in NATO's original plans.

    According to reports, British and French parachutists are to comprise the force's forefront, paving the troops' way from Skopje to Prishtina.

    Meanwhile, Serb forces are reportedly withdrawing from Kosovo, while Russia is asking a separate zone for its troops, whose administration would be independent from NATO.

    [16] UN SECURITY COUNCIL ADOPTS RESOLUTION FOR FORCE DEPLOYMENT

    The United Nations Security Council yesterday endorsed a plan to bring peace to a devastated Kosovo by adopting a resolution which authorizes the deployment of an international civil and security presence under UN auspices.

    The Council's action came after UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan received a letter from NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana saying Yugoslav forces had begun to withdraw from Kosovo and NATO air operations against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia had been suspended.

    The resolution, adopted by a vote of 14 in favor with China abstaining, sets out the terms of a political solution for Kosovo based on the general principles agreed to on May 6 by the Foreign Ministers of the seven industrialized countries and Russia, known as the G-8, and the peace plan presented to Belgrade last week by Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari and Russian envoy Viktor Chernomyrdin.

    The Council demanded that the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia immediately end the violence in Kosovo and complete a rapid withdrawal of all military, police and paramilitary forces.

    It also demanded that the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and other armed Kosovo Albanian groups immediately end all offensive actions and demilitarize. The resolution notes that the Council took its action "bearing in mind" the principles of the UN Charter, including the primary role of the Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security.

    According to the resolution, the international security presence in Kosovo will have substantial NATO participation and will be deployed under a unified command and control to establish a safe environment for all people in the province and facilitate the safe return of refugees and displaced persons.

    It will also be responsible for ensuring the withdrawal and prevent the return of Yugoslav forces, prevent new hostilities, enforce a ceasefire, and demilitarize the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and other armed Kosovo Albanian groups.

    The international civilian presence will be under the control of Secretary-General's Special Representative who will coordinate closely with the security component to ensure that both operations work towards the same goals in a mutually supportive manner.

    The civilian operation will be established to provide an interim administration under which, in the words of the resolution, "the people of Kosovo can enjoy substantial autonomy within the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia." The interim administration will set up and oversee the development of provisional democratic, self- governing institutions to ensure a peaceful and normal life for all Kosovo inhabitants. The civilian operation will also support humanitarian and disaster relief and economic reconstruction, maintain civil law and order and protect and promote human rights.

    Under the terms of the plan, an agreed number of Yugoslav and Serb personnel will be allowed to return to liaison with the civilian mission and security presence, help with mine clearance, and maintain a presence at Serb patrimonial sites and key border crossings.

    The Security Council also demanded "the full cooperation of all concerned, including the international security presence", with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia.

    [17] G8 FOREIGN MINISTERS CALL FOR COMPREHENSIVE TALKS IN CYPRUS

    The Foreign Ministers of the G8 (group of seven most industrialized countries plus Russia) have recommended that the UN calls the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sides to comprehensive talks without any preconditions.

    According to the Cypriot News Agency, the group, whose foreign ministers concluded their two-day meeting in Cologne yesterday, also called on all concerned to "avoid any measures that could increase tensions on the island and complicate efforts to promote a just and lasting peace.

    "We recommend that the G8 summit urge the UN Secretary- General to invite the leaders of both parties to enter into comprehensive negotiations without preconditions," according to their joint statement.

    [18] YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT MILOSEVIC: PEACE HAS DEFEATED VIOLENCE

    Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic made a televised address to the nation yesterday, announcing the end of the NATO aggression and urging the population to start reconstruction in the country.

    According tot he Russian news agency Itar-Tass, Mr. Milosevic stated "the aggression is over. Peace has defeated violence."

    He further stressed that the first thoughts now go out to the heroes who have given their lives for the defense of their fatherland, adding that their names will be announced. The war, which lasted exactly 11 weeks, killed 462 army soldiers and 114 policemen, he added.

    "We must do everything to help the families of the dead," Milosevic stressed.

    According to the Yugoslav president, the entire nation participated in the war - from children and ill people to the soldiers in air defense trenches, air defense specialists and border guards.

    "We shall not forget the heroism of those who defended the bridges, the squares, the plants, protecting them with their own bodies," Mr. Milosevic said.

    "We never gave up Kosovo," he stressed, adding that the country's territorial integrity and sovereignty is guaranteed by the G-8 nations.

    This guarantee is in the draft resolution of the UN Security Council. Thus, the issue of Kosovo independence has been dismissed, according to Mr. Milosevic.

    "We have brought back to the world stage the U.N. which did not function since the beginning of the aggression. That is our contribution to the creation of a multi-polar world, which will not be based on the dictate from one center," Mr. Milosevic said, adding that "we have shown that our army is invincible, that it is the best army in the world, including the police."

    The Yugoslav president urged the nation to maintain unity during reconstruction work in the country. According to Mr. Milosevic, the international forces which come to Kosovo will serve peace, regardless from which countries they come from.

    [19] GREEK FM MEETS WITH YUGOSLAV COUNTERPART IN BELGRADE

    Greece's Foreign Minister George Papandreou is presently meeting with his Yugoslav counterpart Zivadin Jovanovic in Belgrade.

    Mr. Papandreou is the first European minister to arrive in Belgrade after the signing of the peace agreement. Messrs. Jovanovic and Papandreou will discuss the organization of the humanitarian aid mission dispatched to Yugoslavia.

    [20] GREEK JOURNALISTS COVERING WAR IN KOSOVO RECEIVE PRAISE

    Belgrade's Studio B radio-television station, in airing an interview of the desk chief of the Greek Press Office in the Yugoslav capital Spyros Hatzaras, stated that Greek journalists covering the 11-week war honored the profession by being objective, as opposed to certain other foreign correspondents who served their country's motives.

    The program also praised Greece's assistance by stressing that humanitarian aid from Greece to Serbia and Kosovo's Albanians pours in every other day

    On the contrary, the program reported, other countries who claim to be fervent supporters of human rights, did not display the same sort of sensitivity when it came to the Serb people's suffering.

    [21] MR. PAPANDREOU HAD A NUMBER OF MEETINGS IN BELGRADE

    Greek foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou had a number of meetings with the Yugoslav leadership in Belgrade today within the framework of his one-day visit to the Yugoslav capital where he arrived this morning.

    Mr. Papandreou has already met with his Yugoslav counterpart Zivadin Jovanovic while he is expected to meet with Serb president Milan Miludinovic, Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic and leader of the Serb Renewal Movement Vuk Draskovic.

    The talks Mr. Papandreou will have will focus on the implementation of the Stability and Development Pact in south- eastern Europe, the humanitarian aid distribution in Yugoslavia mainly coordinated by Greece and details concerning the implementation of the peace agreement that was signed two days ago.

    Mr. Papandreou, before flying back to Athens, is also expected to visit Skopje later today where he is going to meet with US secretary of state Madeleine Albright who is on a visit to the capital of FYROM.

    [22] MS. ALBRIGHT IS IN SKOPJE

    US secretary of state Madeleine Albright is in Skopje to visit the US troops before they move on to be deployed in Kosovo.

    The talks between the military delegations of Russia and the United States were interrupted in Moscow due to the disagreements that exist regarding the command of the Russian military mission in Kosovo.

    [23] CHERNOMYRDIN: THE RUSSIAN FORCE WILL CONTROL THE REGION BETWEEN KOSOVO AND SERBIA

    Russia will have its own zone of responsibility in the peacekeeping mission in Kosovo, stated Russian mediator Victor Chernomyrdin.

    After his meeting with the Austrian foreign minister, Mr. Chernomyrdin stated that the Russian force will have the exclusive control of a zone that will possibly be at the borders of Kosovo with Serbia.

    However, until now the Russians and the Americans were unable to reach an agreement on where the Russian force will be deployed, while the issue of its command has not been clarified yet.

    [24] BILT: 100.000 SERBS ARE READY TO ABANDON KOSOVO

    UN special mediator in Kosovo and former prime minister of Sweden Karl Bilt expressed the view that within the next few days Kossovo will be abandoned by 100.000 of the Serbs who are living there.

    Mr. Bilt warned that during their departure from Kossovo they may destroy everything they leave behind and expressed the hope that changes in Belgrade's political scene will be promoted soon for the benefit of the whole region.


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