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Issue No. 192 - September 28 , 2000.
Contents :

       By Zoran Mamula

       By Slobodan Rackovic

       By Ylber Emra

4. Special addition: NEW AT TOL

    By Zoran Mamula
    The proclaiming of the second round of presidential elections created
all the conditions for further radicalization of the situation in Federal
Republic of Yugoslavia, which is already burdened enough by
political conflict between two federal states of Serbia and
Montenegro. Analyses which said that Yugoslav president Slobodan
Milosevic wouldn't admit defeat in the elections proved true.
Although by records from voting posts which were presented to the
public by all parties but Milosevic's regime parties - Socialist
Party of serbia (SPS) and Yugoslav United Left (JUL), the presidential
candidate of Democratic opposition of Serbia (DOS) Vojislav
Kostunica won over 52 per cent of the votes and so has the right to
victory in first round of elections, the Federal Election Commission,
wholly comprised of men loyal to Milosevic, stated that Kostunica
has somewhat less than 49 per cent and Milosevic 39 per cent of the
votes. It was a re-run of the story from 1996 when the Yugoslav
president didn't admit the opposition victory in the local elections,
but this time the stakes are much higher.
    Milosevic has lost elections for the first time in his
political career, decisively, and it happened just in the moment
when he was obviously certain in his victory since he promptly
changed federal constitution in order to make sure that it is now
the citizens, not parliamentary representatives, who vote for
Yugoslav president at direct elections. After the first
indications that Kostunica's victory in first round won't be
acknowledged, opposition speedily said that there would be no
second round, and when the Federal election commission officially
published results of the voting, leaders of the opposition
coalition asked citizens to block all Serbian cities during the
next days and to support general strike until Milosevic bends to
the will of the people and leave his presidential office. One of
the DOS leaders and president of Democratic party Zoran Djindjic
said that Federal election commission was "just a group of
criminals, who should be held responsible for votes' theft". "They
suddenly lowered the number of voters by 600,000 to lower
Kostunica's percentage of votes below 50 per cent and they didn't
allow our representatives to monitor counting of votes. It is
clear that it's a manipulation", said Djindjic. He added that the
day after the elections Milosevic's emissaries tried to contact
DOS leaders and reach an agreement to accept second round of
presidential elections. In return, socialists would have admitted
defeat at the local elections and given many seats DOS had won in
the federal parliament.
    "We didn't want to talk with Milosevic's people since there is
no bargain over the election results", said Djindjic.
    Zarko Korac, leader of Socialdemocratic union, also DOS
member, thinks that the only possible negotiation with Milosevic
is about his peacefully turning the power over to the democratic
forces, and that all the rest is just his bluffing, trying to
prolong his own end. All Serbian political analysts agree that the
next several days will be crucial for the survival of the country.
    There are several possible developments of the crisis: one is
use of police or even army to clash announced opposition
demonstrations. It could cause dramatic conflict within Serbia,
state of emergency, but also separation of Montenegro, whose
president Milo Djukanovic recently said that if Milosevic survived
in power or if the situation in Serbia detoriated, Montenegrin
government would hold a referendum on independence. Loyalty of
Serbian police to Milosevic has never been an issue and it
obediently followed all his commands, but the big question is
would officers in the field accept to beat citizens only because
they are demonstrating against the president who doesn't want to
realize that he lost the elections. Headquarters of the Yugoslav
Army confirmed their complete loyalty to Milosevic during the
election campaign with statements of army chief Nebojsa Pavkovic
and general Lazarevic that "they would not allow the government to
be toppled in the streets". However, Pavkovic himself said after
the elections that the army "would never shoot in its people".
    Ljubodrag Stojadinovic, former spokesman of the Yugoslav Army,
said STINA that army as an institution shouldn't be equaled with
generals at the top. "It is certain that officers who expect to be
used in defense of the election theft doubt whether they should
end their military careers in that way, since at this moment any
attempt to defend Milosevic's regime by force means pointing guns
at the people. That would be the end for the Yugoslav Army", said
    Second scenario could be an attempt by regime to reclaim some
of the opposition leaders which used to side with Milosevic before
and sporadic and well-balanced use of force against protesters. It
would create rift in opposition flanks, and protests would be
"broken" by 8th October, when second round of presidential
elections was planned to begin.
    With the help of state-controlled media, the regime would
create an impression that the voting passes in normal atmosphere.
    And the third scenario, often mentioned by analysts, is
Milosevic's withdrawal and accepting Kostunica's victory if the
Yugoslav president realizes that the protests are gathering too
many people and that their violent suppression could wipe him out
of political scene forever. In that case, he could opt for office
of federal prime minister who, by constitution, has much greater
authorities than president of Yugoslavia. Milosevic's chances for
such an attempt are good. Although Democratic opposition of Serbia
won most seats in federal parliament, the left can still form the
government because of Montenegrin election boycott, headed by
ruling coalition in that state. Almost all seats reserved for
Montenegrin representatives were won by Socialist people's party
(SNS), close to Milosevic. Coalition composed of SNS, SPS and JUL
has majority in both house of the federal parliament. That this
situation is seriously contemplated by the government was
illustrated by the statement issued by president of Yugoslav left
Ljubisa Ristic who said that "there is much noise about, in fact,
basically irrelevant office of the country's president and the
left coalition, if Kostunica wins, will nominate Milosevic for the
post of prime minister".
    It would be a difficult situation for Kostunica who would have
his hands tied and would need to find an exit in early federal
elections. In such political combinations at the federal level,
one shouldn't oversee tumults within the Serbian government.
Serbian radical party, coalition partner of SPS and JUL, announced
after disastrous defeat at the federal elections that it would
cancel coalition with the leftists and would probably ask change
of government in the Serbian parliament.
    Serbian reformist movement stated that they would support this
initiative and since these two parties together hold majority
seats in Serbian parliament, it is very likely that by the end of
the year or in January 2001 there will be early elections in
Serbia. It will certainly be crucial elections since, according to
the constitution of FR Yugoslavia, most power is wielded by states
members of the federation.
    Judging by results of the past elections, new votes of Serbian
citizens will be the final defeat of Slobodan Milosevic and his
SPS. And in Milosevic's fall the crucial role was played by
presidential candidate of the opposition, president of Democratic
party of Serbia and a communist dissident Vojislav Kostunica who
turned out to be the only possible cohesion between various
political options, ranging from hard nationalists to supporters of
Western-style democracy. Kostunica was already known by his harsh
condemnation of last year's NATO air strikes in FRY and criticism
of the politics of international community towards Serbia and
Bosnian Serbs (the well-informed say that he was the last Serbian
citizen to meet Radovan Karadzic before his forced withdrawal from
politics). He proved to be a difficult target for the government's
propaganda which, contrary to other opposition leaders who often
made contacts with western politicians, couldn't accuse him of
"treachery" and "serving enemies of the country", which used to be
the most common way to sotonize opposition in the past year. "The
elections were in fact a referendum where it was decided whether
Yugoslavia would come out of isolation and years of sanctions that
has done serious damage to economy or whether with Milosevic in
power its downfall would be confirmed", said a sociologist Dragan
Radulovic and added that citizens opted for the first solution and
that they recognized Kostunica as pioneer of the changes.
    By Slobodan Rackovic
    In Montenegro the official government ignored the elections and
didn't accept their results, only a quarter of the total voters
used their right to vote, more precisely about 25 out of 100 per
cent or something over 100,000 people. It is here much more
important than the fact that almost all votes went to Slobodan
Milosevic and Socialist people's party of Montenegro which,
together with SPS and JUL, nominated Milosevic for the office of
Yugoslav president.
    Now one can say that Slobodan Milosevic's policy came to a
complete halt in Montenegro, and his pawn Momir Bulatovic,
Yugoslav prime minister, and Socialist party of Montenegro as well
as other Serbian parties in this republic have experienced the
most disastrous defeat in their history. It came out that the
state anti-campaign was well-balanced and that it gave the full
effect, and the motto "I will not vote - my choice is Montenegro"
that was aired for days and weeks on radio and TV stations proved
to be extremely powerful and caused a real surge of national
romanticism. We should wait before conclusion, but all local
independent analysts agree that president Milo Djukanovic and
Montenegrin forces he's leading last Sunday gained decisive
momentum in his attempt to return this tiny state into Europe, to
introduce it to the family of the independent and democratic
countries, and to bring better life soon to its people.
    Unanimous opinion is that Milosevic's defeat in Montenegro
equals victory of Montenegrin separatist forces, without regards
to the outcome of the elections and political life-or-death game
in Serbia. Maybe for the first time, Milosevic predicted poorly
when he issues federal elections in Montenegro. Will he now still
play a poor gambler who goes on playing even when he's lost the
game and will he try to keep Montenegro inside Yugoslavia by force
- is to be seen. But it is more than certain that Montenegro got
very much with this election result. It was the best public poll,
a pre-referendum test of constitutional Montenegrin future. If
Milosevic wins in Serbia or declares a violent victory, then
Montenegro will certainly find its own independent way, as
Montenegrin prime minister Filip Vujanovic said.
    If the winners are Democratic opposition of Serbia, out of
which Montenegrins don't expect much due to its negative attitude
towards Montenegrin nation, culture, language and religion - then
Podgorica will try to make a kind of loose community ties with
Serbia. If Kostunica and his colleagues don't accept it - then it
is the end of the Yugoslav romance.
    These were the most unusual and irregular elections ever to be
held in Montenegro - all objective monitors and politicians agree
on it. People voted in private houses, at 671 locations, and the
house owners decided themselves about who can enter their homes
and who can't. There was almost bewildering indifference in
Montenegro; the cities were empty, especially Podgorica, Cetinje
and sea-side towns where the residents tried to catch still a
little more sun and sea than save third Yugoslavia. During
afternoon, as the election results became more and more shocking
to pro-Yugoslav option, military police turned more aggressive and
ever more present at the voting booths, beating several citizens
and monitors of Democratic opposition of Serbia in the towns of
Niksic and Beranje. Socialist people's party headed by Momir
Bulatovic who took upon himself to organise elections in
Montenegro has allowed twenty thousand citizens to vote by mail
due to alleged sickness, which is nine out of h d who joined the
elections and is utterly irregular! Health minister Miomir Mugosa
said cynically that one should be very concerned for Montenegrin
health. To top it all, there were no IDs needed at the voting
posts. Yet, elections were boycotted even by the voters of towns
where Bulatovic's Socialist people's party was in power so that
more than 50 per cent voter turnout was only in Andrijevci,
Pluzine and Kolacin. Even in Herceg Novi, where at the last local
elections in June Bulatovic's candidates won, there was a third of
voters, although nobody was asking any IDs from an army of Serb
refugees who are living there! The smallest turnover was in
Cetinje (4%), Rozaje (5%) and Ulcinj (6%), while a quarter of
registered voters turned up in Podgorica. Elections were covered
by nearly two hundred foreign journalists, who didn't need any
visa to enter the country, not even special work permits.
    All Montenegrin media, with the exception of those controlled
by SNP, commented such results as beginning of the end of
Yugoslavia, and the independent daily newspapers from Podgorica
"Vijesti" published a cover with the huge text: "24,8 per cent of
voters came to Yugoslav funeral". In Cetinje and some other places
several citizens brought a funeral wreath to the voting and cried
for deceased Yugoslavia.
    However, although everything went well on Sunday, the fear of
state of emergency, military coup and civil unrest is still
present. There are very strong police troops to be seen on the
streets of Podgorica, while the military units took their
positions along the city limits. There is also a selective
mobilisation of special army units. Much depends upon further
development in Belgrade and about what will Milosevic do. Both
good and evil still comes to Montenegro from there, although
president Djukanovic said last night that peace and freedom cannot
come to question whatever may be. Everybody here agrees that
Slobodan Milosevic is still to be reckoned with, since his
reactions cannot be predicted. In that sphere comes his insisting
on holding the second round of presidential elections, although he
himself is deeply aware of the fact that he is defeated. "Slobodan
Milosevic tries to buy time, in order to provoke incidents in
Belgrade, Serbia and Montenegro. He wants to provoke disharmony
within the Serbian opposition and to test the opinion of Serbian
citizens, but also of army and police since he's not sure how much
armed forces are loyal to him. If he estimates that opposition in
Serbia is infirm, people disunited, and armed forces ready to
intervene on his behalf - he won't wait to proclaim state of
emergency and so prolong his rule outside the constitution. He
would also use the state of emergency to clear up the bill with
unruly Montenegro" - is what most independent analysts in
Podgorica think.
    Most of them think that such Milosevic's scenario is a perfect
opportunity that has been waiting for long time so that Montenegro
may leave Yugoslavia. In the current political situation, there
would hardly be anyone who could criticise Montenegro on that
move, not even the indecisive international community which is
still deceiving itself with the barren ideas about saving
Yugoslavia. Grave defeat of pro-Yugoslav forces at the Sunday
elections and Milosevic's unbearable rigidness give Montenegrin
president free hands to fulfil the dream of most citizens about
independent and internationally recognised state, which Montenegro
was until 1918, when it was forcibly included into first
Yugoslavia as a Serbian appendage.
    By Ylber Emra
    Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic managed to hold federal
elections in a part of Kosovo, but he was prevented from misusing
and falsifying those votes, as he did for ten years.
Formally, he won the majority of approximately 44,000 votes, among
them 8 Albanians who voted in Pristina, but in the whole of FR
Yugoslavia he was decisively defeated by opposition candidate
Vojislav Kostunica, supported by an alliance of 15 parties united
into the coalition Democratic opposition of Serbia (DOS).
    DOS monitors and, maybe even more, international authorities,
prevented Milosevic in Kosovo from producing votes for himself and
his party, Socialist party of Serbia (SPS) as well as his
coalition partner, neocommunist Yugoslav left (JUL), headed by his
wife Mirjana Markovic. That barren victory in Kosovo was the chief
argument of Milosevic's SPS in hiding the real election defeat  of
their leader.
    Yugoslav elections in Kosovo put an end to a myth about the
omnipotence of the ruling parties in the province that has been
under international control since June last year following the
NATO intervention (NAPOMENA: air strikes mozda neutralnije).
    The part of Yugoslav elections that were held on Kosovo on
24th September were, until the voting booths shut down, a big
unknown for all serious monitors of Yugoslav elections, especially
because fo fear that there will be a mass turnout of phantom votes
at the imaginary voting locations. Fears grew after the fact that
the Belgrade government, at the moment without any authority in
the province, published as much as 600,000 voting ballots in
Albanian. Even before the elections, everybody in Kosovo knew that
Albanians will boycott Yugoslav elections, as they have been doing
for the last ten years. Now, with province under international
rule and with open general dream of gaining independence for
Kosovo, it was illusory even to think that a significant number of
Albanians, which comprise 95 per cent of the population, will
accept the elections.
    Milosevic once managed, with various methods, to gather
hundreds of thousands of people in Kosovo, but now got only about
30,000 votes of Serbs the number of which is, according to the
data of international government, just 100,000. Ruling parties
carefully prepared the elections, tried in every way to break
apart opposition parties and movements in the province, including
bribe, but they didn't take into account that there will be
control, especially by the international representatives. So
Milosevic, who had 343,000 voters in Kosovo four years ago, now
managed to call to voting booths only 44,167 voters, as was stated
by the head of UN Civil mission in Kosovo Bernard Kouchner an hour
after closing of the elections.
    Opposition representatives, which were monitoring the
elections with the international forces, in many places failed to
find voting places, many of which were relocated at the last
minute from schools to private apartments. During the voting
process there were several incidents, like the one that happened
in the village of Granicane near Leposavic, at the north of
province, where socialists' supporters attacked opposition
representatives with hoes. The attacked were wary and quick enough
so there were no wounded.
    Having no stronger arguments, represntatives of Milosevic's
regime have been exploiting in media Kosovo election results for
two days.
    Representatives of all political parties of Kosovar Albanians
long ago rejected any possibility to participate at the Yugoslav
elections. They treat them as elections in the "neighbouring
country". Resolving the problems of Kosovo doesn't depend on
present or future development of situation in Serbia - is the most
common answer of Kosovar political parties.
    Vicepresident of the Alliance for the future of Kosovo Bajram
Kosumi said that Yugoslav elections signify "nothing special for
Kosovo", and vicepresident of Democratic alliance of Kosovo Kolj
Berisa said that those "are foreign elections, elections in a
nerighbouring country". General secretary of Democratic party of
Kosovo Jakup Krasnici stated that issue of Kosovo will be resolved
in some other way, "completely aside from the changes in Belgrade"
and that the elections carried out by Yugoslav authorities mean
nothing to Kosovar Albanians.
    One of the six daily newspapers in Albanian published in
Pristina, "Koha Ditore" said in a commentary that the votes which
Kosovar Serbs gave to Milosevic were "votes of shame". In the
meantime, Kosovar Albanians are occupied with the first local
elections to be internationally verified. There are 22 parties and
one coalition that will participate at the elections to be held on
28th October. It will be the first big exam of their preparedness
to start the process of democratization in Kosovo...
By Farhad Mammadov
    Regardless of all the international pressures and internal
protests, the current Azerbaijani government has refused to create
normal conditions for the November 5th parliamentary elections. On
September 18, the Central Election Commission [CEC] being under
the complete control of the authorities has rejected the
registration of the common candidates' list of the Party Musavat,
one of the leading oppositional parties of Azerbaijan.
    The Party Musavat faced with the same situation during the
parliamentary elections in 1995, as well, and debarring the party
from the participation in the upcoming parliamentary elections
with the same pretext has caused doubt to the results of the
elections beforehand.
    Now the pre-election situation in Azerbaijan differs less from
the situation in Belorus. The authorities as if to repeat the
measures taken by the Belorus president Lukashenco against the
opposition and the events happened in the country show that the
government does not intend to observe democratic norms. The
Musavat is not the only party that moved away from the elections.
On September 19, the Democrat Party of Azerbaijan [ADP-co-chairman
Rasul Guliev, presently living as an emigrant in the U.S. and
known with his strong oppositional position against Heidar
Aliev-F.M.] had to remain outside of the elections with the
decision of the CEC.
    According to the decision of the CEC, a part of the signatures
gathered by the Musavat and Democrat Parties were false. But the
government is also putting some steps towards giving a democratic
background to the pre-election situation. For example, after the
CEC has decided not to allow the Musavat Party to the elections,
it has not also registered the Democratic Alliance bloc, a
unification of small parties supporting the government, but not
having a social base. Even if that bloc is allown to the
elections, they had lest possibility to pass to the parliament by
their own force and it is supposed that the authorities have
sacrificed the Democratic Alliance bloc "for the sake of
    Another fact is that the Court of Appeal has not considered
right the decision of the CEC on the pro-governmental Communist
party, which consists of a few persons. The CEC has not registered
this party and the party has applied to the court, according to
the law. And that decision of the Court of Appeal is made for the
public opinion, as if there are an independent court system in
Azerbaijan. Let's note that the Musavat and Democrat Parties have
appealed to the Court of Appeal concerning the decision of the
CEC, as well. But there is no hope that the Court will issue a
positive decision on those parties.
    Now, as a result of election tactics of the authorities, none
of the oppositional parties can occupy a place at the parliament.
The CEC has registered only two of the oppositional parties, the
National Independence Party and the "Yurd" fraction of the Popular
Front, which is separated after the death of its chairman Abulfaz
Elchibey. This fact has not been faced simple, as well. Now there
spread such opinion on the special attitude of the authorities to
these parties. Let's note that those parties of the opposition had
also participated in the 1995 parliamentary elections.
    For now, the international observers are not willing to
comment the latest incidents happened in Azerbaijan. But
undoubtedly, the Azerbaijani government will face with the next
wave of the international protest. And undoubtedly, Heidar Aliev,
president of Azerbaijan, who is undergoing a medical treatment in
Cleveland since September 4, will not respond to these protests.
Let's note that several days ago he stressed in his speech in
Washington that "no one could pressure on Azerbaijan for
democracy" and "Azerbaijan has its own characteristics".

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 (Free Access)
  Both Sides Claim Early Victory in Yugoslav Elections
  OSCE Dismisses Russian Election Fraud Accusations
  Bailiffs Freeze Shares in Russia's Independent Media-MOST
  Police Name Suspect in Missing Journalist Case
  Electoral Storm Hits Polish Public Television
  Islamic Community Center Inaugurated in Bosnia
  Holocaust Deniers in Czech Republic To Face Tougher Sentences
  Kyrgyz Political Parties Decry Akaev's Candidacy
  Investigation Into Romanian Union Leader's Murder Progresses
  Russia Leads Region in Olympic Medals

    OUR TAKE: It's Pretty Vacant Out There
    Protesters and Police in Prague

    FEATURE: Forever and a Day
    by Mike Scollon
    (Free Access)
    The last Jew living in the Polish town of Oswiecim, near the
Auschwitz death camp, died in May. Since then, a disco has been
built in what is purported to have been a Nazi slave-labor
tannery, and the town's only synagogue to survive World War II has
been reopened. Recently, over one hundred Jews embarked on a
solemn journey to Oswiecim--for many, their birthplace--to let the
healing begin.

    MEDIA: The Harm Before the Storm
    by Petra Breyerova
    (Free Access)
    Just before the footage of a police training exercise with
officers clad in riot gear fighting mock protesters, a Czech
police spokesman had said that anti-globalization protesters were
being trained by foreign activists. The juxtaposition of images
left little to the average Czech's imagination. The news item was
fairly typical of Czech media coverage of the International
Monetary Fund and World Bank meeting in Prague. Before the show
has even begun, television and print media has been accused by
many of sensationalism and inflammatory coverage that has done
little to allay the fears of already-nervous Czechs.

    OPINION: Putin Flirts With Extremists
    by Nikolai Butkevich
    (Free Access)
    In a meeting with editors from several major national
newspapers last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin took the
unprecedented step of including Aleksander Prokhanov, the editor
of the country's most prominent anti-Semitic paper, "Zavtra." By
placing "Zavtra" on a level with other national dailies, Putin
legitimized a publication that regularly defames Jews. At the same
time, the president has promised that state-sponsored
anti-Semitism is gone forever from Russia.

    FEATURE: He Cannot Get Pregnant
    by Katerina Zachovalova
    Czech employers prefer men in higher positions--admittedly,
because they cannot get pregnant. Although employment rates are
high among Czech women, discrimination is nonetheless a given. In
positions where women have the same qualifications and experience,
their salaries are typically 10 to 35 percent lower than the
salaries of their male counterparts. And women have much more
difficulty getting promoted. Still, women themselves are unwilling
to stand up for their rights and risk being labeled "feminists."