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Crisis 1999
News Archive 1999

Italian prime minister proposes immediate halt to bombing
if Yugoslavia will accept UN resolution

Having consulted with several western leaders, Italian Prime MInister Massimo D'Alema suggested that the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia should be halted immediately, on condition that the authorities in Belgrade accepted a U.N. Security Council resolution on the Kosovo crisis.

Sources in Brussels said that the resolution would be based on principles recently adopted by the Group of Eight, and endorsed with the Russian and Chinese support. However, the resolution would give "the green light" to "an international ground intervention" if Belgrade refused it.

According to D'Alema's proposal, NATO would stop the bombing of Yugoslavia even before the Yugoslav troops started pulling out from Kosovo, providing that the U.N. Security Council's resolution anticipates a possible use of force, based on Chapter 7 of the U.N. Charter. This means "a ground intervention" if Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic refuses what would than represent "a position by the entire international community."

D'Alema discussed the matter with French President Jacques Chirac, NATO Secretary General Javier Solana and others, and he is to exchange opinions with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder in Bari, on May 18.

The new Italian plan will be discussed by the EU foreign ministers in Brussels, BETA has learned from sources in the EU Council of Ministers in Brussels. Their session will be attended by Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov, Montenegrin President Milo Djukanovic and the leader of the Democratic Alliance of Kosovo, Ibrahim Rugova.

The Italian prime minister's plan stipulates that the U.N. resolution orders "NATO's unilateral halt to the bombing of Yugoslavia." Also, as agreed at a recent ministerial meeting held by the Group of Eight, the resolution will demand an end to violence, a withdrawal of the Yugoslav troops from Kosovo, the return of refugees under international protection and the resolving of Kosovo's political status.

The G8 principles were also accepted by Zoran Djindjic and Vuk Obradovic, representatives of the Serbian opposition, as well as Montenegrin President Milo Djukanovic.

Source: Beta Press

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