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World - Europe

Britain says Milosevic 'feeling the heat'

boombing
Explosions light up the night sky in Smederevo Thursday night as shown on Serbian TV

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InteractiveIMAGE GALLERY:
Burning flags and rock concerts:
Protesting the NATO strikes

Devastation of Kosovo capital

The Serbs and Kosovo
 ALSO
Envoy: No progress in talks on U.S. soldiers

Yeltsin warns of possible world war over Kosovo

Serbs reportedly planting land mines to create Kosovo 'no man's land'

U.S. casts doubt on Cuban base as refugee site

 MAPS
NATO officials describe attacks from day one through day fifteen
 

In this story:

Wide range of targets hit

Fighting erupts on Albanian border

Milosevic eyes Russia-Belarus union

Britain: Serbs living in poverty

Refugees and diplomacy

RELATED STORIES, SITES icon



April 9, 1999
Web posted at: 9:23 a.m. EDT (1323 GMT)

LONDON (CNN) -- Britain's foreign secretary said Friday that Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic was "feeling the heat" and was looking for a way to escape the punishing NATO airstrikes, which the alliance said had again targeted Serb military units, fuel depots and field forces.

Robin Cook told a news conference in London that NATO would not accept any "empty gestures" from Milosevic.

"We will now only stop the NATO campaign if Milosevic makes an offer of real substance that meets NATO's key demands: a cease-fire on the ground and a halt to ethnic cleansing," Cook said.

NATO attacks on almost 150 targets clearly have taken a toll on Milosevic, Cook said, adding that the Yugoslav president now appeared far less confident during his appearances on Serbian television.

U.S. President Bill Clinton said Friday that Milosevic was still continuing his crackdown on ethnic Albanians in Kosovo and that NATO strikes would therefore continue.

Shortly after that statement from Washington, a special Cypriot envoy in Belgrade said he made no progress in winning the release of three U.S. soldiers held in Yugoslavia, despite a face-to-face meeting with Milosevic.

Wide range of targets hit

On Thursday night, the 16th night of air attacks, NATO aircraft attacked a wide range of targets. An auto factory and a fuel depot were claimed as the latest infrastructure casualties in the air campaign.

A Belgrade television station, Studio B, reported strikes on suburbs east of the Yugoslav capital and two towns farther away that were hit in earlier NATO raids -- Pancevo, a city on the Danube River west of Belgrade, and Kragujevac, southeast of the capital.

The station reported that in Kragujevac, the automobile factory "Zastava" was hit. TV Belgrade said several civilian buildings also were damaged in the town.

Serbian television said a fuel depot in Smederevo, east of the capital, was hit. According to Serbian TV, the depot was owned by one of the largest oil companies in Yugoslavia.

Fighting erupts on Albanian border

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe told CNN there was fighting Friday between Serbian forces and Kosovo Liberation Army guerrillas on the Yugoslav-Albanian border. The fighting was between the KLA on the Albanian side of the border and Yugoslav army forces in Kosovo. The KLA is seeking independence for Kosovo.

The OSCE said the fighting was "more than the usual border incident" and involved light arms and artillery.

The KLA set up a camp in the border area and has been recruiting new fighters from among Kosovo-Albanian refugees arriving in Albania from Kosovo, according to the OSCE.

auto
Serbian TV says NATO bombings hit an assembly plant that is reported to produce the Yugo automobile  

Britain: Serbs living in poverty

Britain on Friday again accused Milosevic of destroying his country economically, while enriching himself and the political elite supporting him.

Col. Mike Moody told the London news conference that Milosevic's policies in Yugoslavia had led to a situation where 50 percent of the population was now living below the poverty line.

He said inflation was 70 percent and rising, unemployment was above 50 percent and pension payments had been cut back several times.

"I watched a once-prosperous and proud Serbia descending into poverty and Third world status," said Moody, who spent several years in Serbia.

Milosevic eyes Russia-Belarus union

Russian President Boris Yeltsin said Friday that Milosevic had asked to join a Slavic union that includes Russia and Belarus.

Yeltsin said Milosevic made the request during a meeting Thursday in Belgrade with Gennady Seleznyov, speaker of Russia's lower house of parliament.

Russia and neighboring Belarus have created the loose political union over the past three years. Yugoslavia has observer status in the union's parliamentary assembly. It shares no borders with either country.

On Friday, Yeltsin again warned NATO not to send ground troops into Yugoslavia. But he reiterated that Moscow will not be drawn into the conflict militarily.

Refugees and diplomacy

NATO officials and the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees were still struggling to keep the aid flowing for tens of thousands of ethnic Albanian refugees who fled Kosovo and are now living in NATO-run tent cities in Albania and Macedonia.

While aircraft have been flying in food and supplies to the Albanian capital, Tirana, for days, distribution has been a problem. Albania has taken in about 70 percent of the refugees.

A NATO commander told CNN that civilian aid organizations need to step up their contributions of food and medical aid.

J. Brian Atwood, administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development, said about 140,000 refugees in Albania were "in bad condition (with) respiratory diseases and diarrheal diseases."

"More importantly, they've been terribly traumatized by the brutality that they've faced. We've seen people whose families were executed (and) watched as their homes burned."

On the diplomatic front, Cypriot envoy Spyros Kyprianou was to meet Milosevic Friday to discuss the possible release of three American soldiers held captive by Serb forces.

"I expect to have very friendly and constructive negotiations," said Kyprianou, who arrived in Belgrade Thursday.

Correspondents Matthew Chance, Catherine Bond and Betsy Aaron contributed to this report.
RELATED STORIES:
NATO vows strikes will continue; Serb TV shows fresh 'hits'
April 9, 1999
Yugoslavia declares 'peace' in Kosovo; NATO airstrikes continue
April 8, 1999
NATO strikes target Serb ground forces, complicate GI release efforts
April 8, 1999
Blasts shake Belgrade in dawn of third week of airstrikes
April 7, 1999
NATO reports 'breakthrough' against Serb forces
April 7, 1999
NATO defies Yugoslav cease-fire with more bombing
April 7, 1999
NATO rejects cease-fire, resumes bombing Yugoslavia
April 6, 1999
NATO rejects Yugoslav unilateral cease-fire offer
April 6, 1999
Airstrikes hit home in a small Serbian town
April 6, 1999
Support for ground troops swells in Congress
April 4, 1999

RELATED SITES:
Extensive list of Kosovo-related sites
  • Kosovo

Yugoslavia:
  • Federal Republic of Yugoslavia official site
      • Kesovo and Metohija facts
  • Serbia Ministry of Information
  • Serbia Now! News


Kosovo:
  • Kosova Crisis Center
  • Kosova Liberation Peace Movement
  • Kosovo - from Albanian.com

Military:
  • NATO official site
  • BosniaLINK - U.S. Dept. of Defense
  • U.S. Navy images from Operation Allied Force
  • U.K. Ministry of Defence - Kosovo news
  • U.K. Royal Air Force - Kosovo news
  • Jane's Defence - Kosovo Crisis

Relief:
  • International Rescue Committee
  • Unicef USA
  • Doctors Without Borders
  • World Vision
  • CARE: The Kosovo Crisis
  • InterAction
  • International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
  • International Committee of the Red Cross
  • Disaster Relief from DisasterRelief.org
  • Catholic Relief Services
  • Kosovo Relief
  • ReliefWeb: Home page


Media:
  • Independent Yugoslav radio stations B92
  • Institute for War and Peace Reporting
  • United States Information Agency - Kosovo Crisis

Other:
  • 1997 view of Kosovo from space - Eurimage
  • Prayers for peace
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