Clinton appeals via satellite to Serbs
March 26, 1999
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- U.S. President Bill Clinton made an impassioned, televised appeal to the people of Serbia Friday calling on them to avoid further attacks by signing the Kosovo peace deal.
Clinton stressed that he believed all options had been exhausted and that only the "swift action" of U.S. and NATO forces could save the chance for peace in the Balkans.
"I cannot emphasize too strongly that the U.S. and our European allies have no quarrel with the Serbian people," Clinton said in his seven-minute address.
He said Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic had diminished Serbia's standing in the international community.
The U.S. leader went on to accuse Milosevic of jeopardizing Kosovo's future and bringing more war to the troubled region. He said Milosevic had repeatedly used history as justification for his actions but instead had "imperiled the future."
He called for Serbs to work with the U.S. and NATO to restore Serbia as a "great nation of Europe."
Clinton's taped speech was posted on the government-funded WORLDNET Internet site, the U.S. Information Agency global information network, and was scheduled to be beamed out by the U.S. Information Agency via satellite at 2:30 a.m. EST (0730 GMT). However, it is unlikely to be broadcast by Yugoslav TV.
His comments came after two days of U.S. and NATO strikes against Serbian military positions.
The Serb-led Yugoslav government has refused NATO-brokered efforts at a peace deal for Kosovo -- a province of Serbia dominated by ethnic Albanians seeking greater autonomy.
Pentagon: All NATO planes safe as second day of strikes ends
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