NATO pounds Yugoslav targets after flurry of diplomacy
May 4, 1999
BELGRADE, Yugoslavia (CNN) -- NATO's bombs rocked portions of Yugoslavia Monday night and Tuesday morning, just hours after U.S. President Bill Clinton said NATO would consider a pause in the attack "under the right circumstances."
Clinton made the comment after a meeting in Washington with Russian envoy Viktor Chernomyrdin, who carried Russia's latest proposals for peace in Kosovo. The "right circumstances," Clinton said, would include a withdrawal of Serb troops from Kosovo, one of the main points of an international peace plan rejected by Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.
The latest attacks ushered in the 41st day of NATO's Operation Allied Force, aimed at forcing Milosevic to accept the international peace plan. Milosevic has refused to discuss the plan until NATO's bombing stops, and NATO insists it will not stop the bombing until Milosevic complies with the plan.
A NATO spokesman told CNN on Tuesday the alliance's latest attacks focused on hitting field forces and military airfields. A radio-television relay station in Novi Sad, Yugoslavia's second largest city, also was hit.
NATO said all its aircraft returned safely to their bases.
Pentagon sources say a U.S. F-16 shot down a Yugoslav MiG-29 on Monday night near the border between Bosnia and Serbia.
The sources say the MiG came up to challenge the F-16 and was shot down. The U.S. plane was unharmed.
There has been little in the way of air-to-air combat so far during the conflict with Yugoslavia.
Serbian TV said two missiles struck a television station in Novi Sad, causing extensive damage.
Yugoslav National Radio reported a barrage of attacks on oil refineries in Novi Sad and the small town of Pozego in the overnight raids. A bridge over the Danube River in Ostruznica, near Belgrade, was hit, as was a bridge over the Morava in Grdelicka Valley, about 50 miles south of the city of Nis.
Power outages were still widespread across much of Yugoslavia Tuesday morning, the result of a NATO attack Sunday against main power grids.
NATO claims no responsibility for second bus attack
In another development, NATO spokesman Jamie Shea said there was no evidence it was responsible for an attack Monday on a bus in Kosovo that Yugoslav media said killed 20 civilians and injured 43.
NATO officials said it reached that conclusion after conducting a comprehensive review of military activities, looking at combat footage, talking with air crews and reviewing its target lists.
"Although we had several aircraft in the general area, NATO can find no evidence to link our activities with this alleged incident," the 19-member alliance said in a statement.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, NATO officials said the bus had been traveling in an area known for heavy fighting between separatist Kosovo Liberation Army guerrillas and Yugoslav troops.
Over the weekend, NATO admitted that one of its missiles inadvertently struck a bus as it crossed a bridge. Serb media said 39 people died in the blast.
NATO strikes knock out Serb electrical power
Extensive list of Kosovo-related sites:
|Back to the top||
© 2001 Cable News Network. All Rights Reserved.|
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.