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Special Event

President-Elect Kostunica Discusses the Future of Yugoslavia

Aired October 6, 2000 - 3:20 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

LOU WATERS, CNN ANCHOR: The president-elect, Vojislav Kostunica, is now speaking on Serbian television. We're going to check in on that.

(JOINED IN PROGRESS)

VOJISLAV, KOSTUNICA, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF YUGOSLAVIA (through translator): ... diplomatic activities and a kind of opening of this country. And it is very important also the opening of the Europe to our country.

We hope that Monday there are good opportunities for lifting the sanctions. Replacability of the power is very good test for democracy, so I think we did the first test. So the change happens now, but it should have happened earlier if the other side showed more understanding.

And if it could have happened earlier, I'm sure that all the troubles would have been avoided. For example, the situation like Poland is quite possible. The communists lost, and after that they came to power. Here, everything happened with delay.

Yesterday and today, I had a lot of contact, even with those who were authorities, represent the power in this country, in republic and both in federation, and that proves the fact that the change of power happened. And I had some meetings also with army officials, and I expect meetings even with Mr. Milosevic.

I received an invitation to participate in the first session of republican parliament from Mr. Tomic (ph)...

WATERS: Vojislav Kostunica, the president-elect of Yugoslavia, speaking on Serbian television about replacing what he calls, "the civility of power." "We passed the first Democratic test," he said. Now he hopes for the restoration of an opening to rejoin the European community.

(INTERRUPTED BY CNN COVERAGE OF A LIVE EVENT)

WATERS: We're going to Serb television now.

(JOINED IN PROGRESS)

KOSTUNICA (through translator): Talking in general, is there any aspect of social life that is more important than the education?

QUESTION (through translator): I will add that the law, you are a lawyer, and the law is also a very important aspect.

KOSTUNICA (through translator): That's true. Law guarantees something that is important, equal rights to all. It brings security, the equal life brings security. It allows you to plan something for tomorrow. That is very important. And that's what our law lacked. It was full of relativity, of some simply ad-hoc deciding depending on one moment or some party's interest. Law must become something which is beyond every politics.

WATERS: Serbian television continuing with its interview of the president-elect, Kostunica, who said earlier that he hoped the sanctions, now, would be lifted; and the president of the United States, speaking simultaneously while Kostunica was being interviewed on Serbian television, saying the United States and the rest of the international community must do something immediately to reward the Serbian people for, as he put it, their heroic effort to unseat Milosevic.

As far as Milosevic is concerned, the president said it is unclear what the Russian intentions are regarding the future of Milosevic. Until there is a clear and unambiguous restoration of democracy, then and only then can the international community restore -- can and will restore those sanctions.

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