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Clinton, Yeltsin to confer on Yugo war

Clinton and Yeltsin
Clinton and Yeltsin are to continue their dialogue Monday over the phone  

Diplomatic breakthrough not likely

April 19, 1999
Web posted at: 8:38 a.m. EDT (1238 GMT)

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Clinton and Boris Yeltsin were due to confer by telephone on Monday in hopes of seeking an end to NATO's strikes against Yugoslavia, but the possibility of a breakthrough on U.S.-Russian differences seemed slim.

Clinton was scheduled to make the call, which White House officials described as a "chance to keep the dialogue going" with Moscow during a search for a diplomatic solution.

The Russian president was expected to repeat his demand that bombing be stopped, while White House aides said Clinton will restate NATO's rationale for airstrikes, now in their 27th day. No diplomatic breakthrough was likely.

Once the bombing stops, "(Yugoslav President Slobodan) will sit down at the negotiating table," Yeltsin said on Monday, according to the Russian news agency Interfax.

Another Russian news agency, ITAR-Tass, quoted Yeltsin as saying Russia was ready to act as middleman in future peace negotiations.

The United States and its NATO allies say there can be no end to bombing until Milosevic ends his attempt to empty the Serb province of Kosovo of its ethnic Albanian population.

Yeltsin, whose earlier attempts to mediate in the conflict have failed, met top officials on Monday, including Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov and newly appointed envoy to Yugoslavia, Viktor Chernomyrdin, to work out Russia's strategy.

Prior to his phone call with the U.S. president, Yeltsin warned the West on Monday he would not allow it to defeat Milosevic and establish control over Yugoslavia.

"Bill Clinton hopes that Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic will capitulate, give up the whole of Yugoslavia. We will not allow this. This is a strategic place," Yeltsin said, according to ITAR-Tass.

Interfax quoted Yeltsin as saying Russia would exercise "restraint" in handling the Kosovo crisis, but it would maintain close ties with Milosevic. It quoted him as saying: "We simply cannot ditch Milosevic. We want to embrace him as tight as possible."

Russia has bitterly denounced NATO airstrikes but U.S. officials say Moscow has given both public and private reassurances it will not get drawn into the conflict militarily.

Correspondent John King contributed to this report.

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April 10, 1999
Yeltsin says Milosevic seeking entry in Russian-Belarus union
April 9, 1999
Russia presses on for diplomatic end to Kosovo crisis
April 8, 1999
Russian aid both blessed and cursed
April 6, 1999
Survey: Two-thirds of Russians fear NATO attack
April 3, 1999
Russian lawmakers call for military aid for Belgrade
March 31, 1999
Russian PM blames NATO for pushing Belgrade too hard
March 31, 1999
Primakov says Milosevic ready to talk peace in Kosovo
March 30, 1999

Extensive list of Kosovo-related sites
  • Kosovo

  • Federal Republic of Yugoslavia official site
      • Kesovo and Metohija facts
  • Serbia Ministry of Information
  • Serbia Now! News

  • Kosova Crisis Center
  • Kosova Liberation Peace Movement
  • Kosovo - from

  • NATO official site
  • BosniaLINK - U.S. Dept. of Defense
  • U.S. Navy images from Operation Allied Force
  • U.K. Ministry of Defence - Kosovo news
  • U.K. Royal Air Force - Kosovo news
  • Jane's Defence - Kosovo Crisis

  • Kosovar doctor helps refugees one at a time
  • Mercy International USA
  • Donations for Kosovo Refugees
  • International Rescue Committee
  • Unicef USA
  • Doctors Without Borders
  • World Vision
  • CARE: The Kosovo Crisis
  • InterAction
  • International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
  • International Committee of the Red Cross
  • Disaster Relief from
  • Catholic Relief Services
  • Kosovo Relief
  • ReliefWeb: Home page

  • Independent Yugoslav radio stations B92
  • Institute for War and Peace Reporting
  • United States Information Agency - Kosovo Crisis

  • Prayers for peace
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