NATO bombs destroy Danube River bridge
Red Cross visits captured U.S. servicemen
April 26, 1999
BELGRADE, Yugoslavia (CNN) -- NATO bombs destroyed the last of three bridges connecting Novi Sad -- Yugoslavia's second largest city -- with the Serb heartland in the south, the British Defense Ministry said Monday, confirming earlier reports from Yugoslav sources.
And while NATO's air campaign continued to rain bombs on Yugoslavia, the International Committee of the Red Cross said it had been allowed to meet with three U.S. servicemen captured more than three weeks ago by the Yugoslav army.
The men were described as being in, "reasonably good condition," the Pentagon told CNN. The Red Cross has been promised a longer visit with the servicemen on Tuesday.
Yugoslavia had pledged to abide by the Geneva Conventions rules about treatment of prisoners of war, but had so far not allowed a visit from the ICRC, one of the conventions' requirements.
Staff Sgt. Christopher Stone, Staff Sgt. Andrew Ramirez and Spc. Steven Gonzales were captured, reportedly while on a routine patrol as part of the peacekeeping mission in Macedonia earlier this month.
Novi Sad bridges all destroyed
"In spite of continuing poor weather in the operational area, NATO continued with its air campaign," British chief of defense staff Gen. Charles Guthrie said. "A number of targets in Serbia were attacked, including destroying the third and last remaining bridge over the Danube in Novi Sad."
NATO had struck all three spans before, rendering two of them unusable, before wrecking the final span, known as the Zezeljev Bridge, Sunday night.
Yugoslav anti-aircraft batteries were said to have responded to the attack, but NATO said all its planes returned safely from the mission.
NATO also confirmed an attack on a fuel depot at Pricevic. Attacks took place at Smederevo, according to Internet reports, while Serb TV reported attacks at Sombor near the Hungarian border and the Slatina airport outside Pristina.
Serb TV on and off
Serb TV, struck twice by the bombing campaign over the weekend, stopped broadcasting at 3:34 a.m. Monday (9:34 p.m. EDT Sunday) after an announcement. It resumed programming with a news bulletin at 6:30 a.m., and went off the air again at 10:15 a.m., saying it would return in 45 minutes. It returned to air shortly before 2 p.m.
Also in Tirana Sunday was NATO Supreme Allied Commander Gen. Wesley Clark, meeting with officials and troops. Clark told reporters the air campaign was "right on schedule, really."
Dissension in Yugoslav ranks?
"We said it would be a serious and sustained effort. We said it would progressively intensify. We've more than doubled the number of aircraft that are engaged," he said.
"We're bringing in addition reconnaissance means and others, and I think we are having an effect," said Clark. "As I said in Washington a couple of days ago, we're winning, Milosevic is losing, and he knows it."
"Draskovic called yesterday for the Serbian state media to tell the truth about the Kosovo conflict, and to stop lying to the Serbian people," Robertson said. "(It) blows a hole in the facade of Belgrade's unity. In quite a remarkable and very revealing interview, Mr. Draskovic accused his fellow leaders in Yugoslavia of, I quote, 'Lying to the people that any day now we are going to prevail over NATO; that NATO is about to collapse, and Russia is on the verge of starting World War III.'"
Robertson also quoted Draskovic as saying, "NATO has never been stronger and more homogeneous, and Russia will never send us military aid, as this will close the door to Western financial channels."
French waver on NATO plan to choke Yugoslav oil imports
Extensive list of Kosovo-related sites:
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