AIM Morning News for Friday, September 01, 2000
===== AIM MORNING NEWS for Friday, September 01, 2000 =====
SOCIALIST PARTY CAMPAIGNS IN KOSOVO
BELGRADE, September 1, 2000 (Reuters)
Senior officials of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic's
Socialist Party said Serbs living in Kosovo would be able to vote in
next month's Yugoslav elections, Belgrade media said on Thursday.
Socialist Party secretary-general Gorica Gajevic headed a
delegation which on Wednesday visited the Kosovo Serb village of
Gracanica, promising to keep the province in Yugoslavia.
Yugoslav parliamentary and presidential elections are due on
September 24, as are local elections in Serbia. Kosovo remains
legally part of Yugoslavia, but is now under de facto international
Earlier this month, the head of the UN mission in Kosovo,
Bernard Kouchner, said he doubted that Yugoslav elections could take
place in the province at such short notice.
Gracanica, home of a 14th century Serb Orthodox monastery, is a
Serb enclave in Kosovo guarded by soldiers of the NATO-led KFOR
Some 180,000 Serbs have fled Kosovo since June 1999 when
international peacekeepers took control of the province after
Yugoslav forces withdrew following NATO's 11-week bombing campaign.
Up to 100,000 Serbs remain in Kosovo, many of them grouped
together in heavily guarded enclaves like Gracanica south of the
provincial capital Pristina.
NATO TO ARREST MILOSEVIC IF HE VISITS KOSOVO
BELGRADE, September 1, 2000 (BETA)
NATO will arrest Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic if he
visits Kosovo, as Yugoslav Deputy Prime Minister Nikola Sainovic has
announced, a NATO official said on Aug. 31.
"Kosovo is under the administration of the United Nations, and
The Hague-based International Criminal Tribunal, which was founded by
the U.N., has indicted Slobodan Milosevic. If Milosevic wants to
visit Kosovo he will be arrested by NATO and transferred to The
Hague," said the NATO official, who wished to remain anonymous.
MOSLEM REBLES PROMISED TO RELEASE HOSTAGES
MANILA, Philippine September 1, 2000 (AFP)
A top negotiator on Friday said Muslim extremists have promised
to release within a week six remaining European hostages held in the
southern Philippines but added he would not lead talks to free an
American who has become the gunmen's latest hostage.
Roberto Aventajado, who is also a special envoy of President
Joseph Estrada, said this week's abduction of American Jeffrey
Schilling by the Abu Sayyaf would not sidetrack negotiations for the
release of the Europeans held for up to four months.
GENERALS NAMED IN TIMOR INQUIRY
JAKARTA, Indonesia, September 1, 2000 (BBC)
Indonesia says it will question 19 people, including three
Indonesian generals as provisional suspects in its investigation into
the violence that ravaged East Timor last year.
The list announced by the attorney-general's office does not
include former Indonesian armed forces chief General Wiranto nor
leaders of the pro-Jakarta militias blamed for many of the killings
that followed the UN-sponsored independence vote.
More than 600 East Timorese died and more than 200,000 fled into
West Timor furing the upsurge of violence.
The territory's infrastructure was devastated in the violence
unleashed by the militias backed by Indonesia.
The current list of suspects is headed by former regional
military commander Major-General Adam Damiri, former East Timor
military commander Colonel Tono Suratman and ex-East Timor police
chief General Timbul Salaen.
150 BANGLADESHI MISSING AND FEARED DEAD
BANGLADESH, India, September 1, 2000 (Deutsche Welle)
In Bangladesh, about 150 Bangladeshi are missing and feared dead
after being caught at sea in heavy rain storms. Authorities said bad
weather foiled efforts by grieving relatives to find some of the men
lost in storms since Tuesday. Three bodies have been found on the
coast. A tidal surge on Wednesday inundated low-lying coastal areas
and some 22,000 villagers remain in emergency shelters. A seven-year
old boy was swept away and drowned and some 10 others injured in mud
slides. As many as 100,000 were affected.
EU MINISTERS TO DISCUSS THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE SANCTIONS --
BELGRADE, September 1, 2000 (BETA)
EU ministers will carefully examine the effect of the sanctions
against the regime in Belgrade at their conference due to take place
in Evian on Saturday and Sunday. The ministers will try to determine
whether there is consent among EU governments to partially suspend
the sanctions, reveals Beta agency from sources in the European
Commission and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
VOLCANO ISLANDERS FORCED TO LEAVE
TOKYO, Japan, September 1, 2000 (BBC)
The governor of Tokyo has ordered all remaining residents of the
island of Miyakojima to evacuate to the mainland after a series of
earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
The remaining 1,500 residents have been told to leave the
Japanese island, around 150km southwest of Tokyo, within three days.
The order, from Governor Shintaro Ishihara, came two days after
the 814m (2,686-foot) Mount Oyama erupted for the eighth time since
early July, forcing the evacuation of the island's children. Some
experts fear a massive earthquake could be about to hit Tokyo,
although others have dismissed the fears. More than 30m people live
in or around Tokyo - one of the most densely populated areas in the
Volcanic eruptions have covered Miyakojima with ash, leading to
warnings that heavy rains might set off mudslides across the island.
About 70,000 earthquakes have hit Miyakojima, and surrounding islands
in the Izu chain, in recent months.
More than two thirds of Miyakojima have already voluntarily left
for the mainland, where the government has been setting up shelters.
Ships are being sent to island to pick up those remaining.
On the mainland, the government has stepped up this weekend's
annual earthquake drills, in which about 5.5m people across Japan are
taking part - including Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori and his entire
LANDMINE KILLS SRI LANKA AIRMEN
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, September 1, 2000 (BBC)
Fifteen air force personnel have been killed and six injured by
a landmine blast in northern Sri Lanka.
A military spokesman said the victims' vehicle hit a mine
planted by suspected Tamil Tiger rebels on a road between the
government-held town of Vavuniya and the western Mannar district. One
of the injured is in a critical condition. The airmen were on a
tractor-trailer, returning home on leave.
It was the worst attack in 12 months, since 18 soldiers died in
a bomb blast last September in the eastern district of Batticaloa.
Tamil separatist rebels are fighting for an independent homeland in
the island's northeast.
A search was launched in the Puvarasankulam area of Vavuniya
following the latest bombing. Nearly two weeks ago, a suicide bomber
ambushed a military vehicle in Vavuniya, killing himself and a
nine-year-old girl and wounding five others. Vavuniya, 260km (160
miles) north of Colombo, is a de facto frontier town at the entrance
to the Wanni region, dominated by Tamil Tiger rebels. There is a
large flow of traffic that daily makes the journey between Vavuniya
and Mannar without incident.
Morning news edited by: Jasmina Vermezovic
AIM, Belgrade, September 1, 2000 13:00
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