- The Washington Times - Wednesday, November 22, 2000

Milosevic bids to rally party for new vote

BELGRADE Yugoslavia's ousted president, Slobodan Milosevic, emerged from hiding yesterday to try to pull his party back into shape ahead of Dec. 23 parliamentary elections in Serbia.

Reports said Mr. Milosevic, who was forced from power after an Oct. 5 revolt ended his attempts to steal Yugoslav federal elections held in September, was struggling to remain chief of his beleaguered Serbian Socialist Party (SPS), which he founded and presided over for a decade.

Belgrade radio station B-92 said Mr. Milosevic emerged from an SPS party meeting yesterday as the sole candidate for the party's presidency when it comes up for election in a congress to be held Saturday, fending off moderate challengers.

U.N. war-crimes chief pushes Yugoslav case

NEW YORK Declaring that former Yugoslav leader Slobodan Milosevic must stand trial, the United Nations' chief war-crimes prosecutor said yesterday that the world should insist Belgrade surrender him.

"Milosevic must be brought to trial before the international tribunal. There simply is no alternative," prosecutor Carla Del Ponte told an open U.N. Security Council session.

She made clear that Mr. Milosevic would be the main topic of her visit with the new Yugoslav president, Vojislav Kostunica, who invited her to Belgrade in the near future. Barred from visiting under Mr. Milosevic, she will reopen the tribunal's office in Belgrade.

Rights in Chiapas found deteriorating

MEXICO CITY International and Mexican groups warned yesterday of an "alarming" deterioration of human rights in Mexico's Chiapas state, urging President-elect Vicente Fox to take immediate steps to curb rights abuses.

"The rights situation in Chiapas is alarming," Rafael Reygadas of the Civilian Peace Mission, one of several observer groups, told reporters.

The 145 rights workers from Mexico, the United States, Nicaragua and Switzerland issued a report based on two observation missions this year to Chiapas, where Zapatista rebels rose up in 1994 over the rights of the largely Indian population.

Broader cattle tests sought by EU aides

BRUSSELS European Union farm ministers agreed in principle yesterday to extend testing of cattle for mad-cow disease, EU officials said.

Most EU member states backed a proposal from the European Commission to test all cattle above a yet-to-be-determined age, which could involve some 6 million animals, they said.

"There was clear support for more testing," said Beate Gminder, spokeswoman for the EU's food-safety commissioner, David Byrne.

The move to extend the testing backed by France, which is currently under pressure to assure its EU partners that it is doing enough to combat mad-cow disease was opposed by some Nordic countries and Austria.

Center-right sweeps Czech Senate vote

PRAGUE The center-right opposition Quad-Coalition swept the second round of voting for one-third of the Czech Senate, dealing a severe blow to the ruling Social Democrats, election data showed Monday.

The result from Sunday's election effectively killed plans by the minority government and its parliamentary ally, the Civic Democrats (ODS), to slash the powers of President Vaclav Havel through constitutional reform.

The outcome, according to data from all constituencies posted by the Czech Statistical Bureau, boosted the Quad-Coalition's faction in the Senate and stripped the Social Democrats and the ODS of their majority in the 81-seat house.

Kabila replaces foreign minister

KINSHASA, Congo Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) President Laurent Kabila has replaced his foreign minister, Abdoulaye Yerodia, who is the subject of an international arrest warrant on charges of inciting hatred in 1998.

Mr. Kabila on Monday named human rights lawyer Leonard She Okitundu to replace Mr. Yerodia as part of a larger Cabinet reshuffle.

The new foreign minister, well viewed by diplomats here, had been in charge of the DRC's human rights portfolio for more than two years.

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