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World - Europe

NATO: Yugoslav strikes won't stop, despite indictments

Serbian television shows damage in Zajecar, Yugoslavia

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May 27, 1999
Web posted at: 5:14 p.m. EDT (2114 GMT)

In this story:

Russian envoy to return Friday

Belgrade reports heaviest bombardment


BRUSSELS, Belgium (CNN) -- NATO welcomed Thursday's indictment of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic and four other leaders on charges of war crimes, but said the allied bombardment of Yugoslavia would go on.

The two-month-old allied campaign continued Thursday, with allied forces setting a new record for the number of raids carried out in Yugoslavia -- 308 strike sorties flown out of a total of 741.

NATO pilots reported an increase in anti-aircraft fire, which Maj. Gen. Walter Jertz, the alliance's military spokesman, called an act of "desperation."

"They are shooting unguided missiles. They are shooting as many as they can in an attempt to hit a plane just by chance," Jertz said.

All NATO aircraft returned safely.

NATO spokesman Jamie Shea said the attacks would continue until Milosevic agrees to the conditions set by the alliance, including the withdrawal of Yugoslav troops from the Serbian province of Kosovo and the safe return of hundreds of thousands of ethnic Albanian refugees.

Russian envoy to return Friday

Russia's special envoy on the Balkans, Viktor Chernomyrdin, intends to travel to Belgrade on Friday to meet once again with Milosevic. He was scheduled to leave Thursday, but his trip was delayed because of extended talks with his two fellow special envoys -- U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott and Finnish President Marrti Ahtisaari.

Chernomyrdin went on with the talks despite Russian objections to Milosevic's indictment and the NATO campaign.

Chernomyrdin, in an editorial in The Washington Post on Thursday, repeated Russian threats to pull out of the negotiating process if NATO does not stop its attacks.

"Unless the raids stop soon," he wrote, he will recommend to President Boris Yeltsin that Russia stop all military and technological cooperation with the United States and Europe.

Chernomyrdin said he would also recommend a delay in the ratification of the START II nuclear arms-reduction treaty and the use Russia's veto on any U.N. resolution on Yugoslavia.

Belgrade reports heaviest bombardment

In Belgrade, private television station Studio B said 53 missiles hit the city and its surrounding area overnight in one of the fiercest NATO attacks on the capital since the bombing started March 24.

Serbian media also said a series of "exceptionally strong explosions" echoed early Thursday from the direction of the Batajnica military airport, northwest of Belgrade. Flashes from the blasts could be seen from central Belgrade.

Yugoslavia' state-run Tanjug news agency said NATO struck a ministry building in New Belgrade that coordinates imports and exports of weapons, but the missiles did not explode.

Serbian media reported that two children and a woman were killed and several people were injured in Ralja, 18 miles south of Belgrade, when a missile struck residential buildings. Tanjug said three people were killed and two injured when NATO bombed two villages in the Kosovska Vitina area southeast of Pristina, Kosovo's provincial capital.

Other targets attacked included:

-- Yugoslav army and Serbian police units in Kosovo. NATO said it hit 10 artillery positions, armored personnel carriers and at least 5 tanks, plus two Antonov Colt light transport aircraft.

-- Ammunition storage sites at Kursumlija, Pristina, Novi Pazar and Boljevac.

-- Television and radio transmission and relay sites at Krstac, Kacanik, Stara Pazova and Ruma.

-- Supply depots at Kragujevac, Titovo Uzice, Pristina, Cuprija and Ralja.

-- Petroleum storage sites at Kraljevo, Sjenica and Batajnica.

Trial of aid workers begins in Yugoslavia
May 26, 1999
Some Kosovo refugees moved deeper into Albania
May 25, 1999

Related to this story:
  • U.S. Department of State
    • Madeline Albright: Secretary of State
    • Strobe Talbott: Deputy Secretary Of State
  • European Union Home Page
  • The United Nations

Extensive list of Kosovo-related sites:
  • Kosovo

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

  • Kosova Crisis Center
  • Kosovo - from

  • United States Air Force
  • F-117s arrive at Aviano to support possible NATO operations
  • 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

  • World Relief
  • USA for UNHCR
  • Doctors Without Borders
  • U.S. Agency for International Development (Kosovo aid)
  • Doctors of the World
  • The IOM Migration Web
  • InterAction
  • International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
  • International Committee of the Red Cross
  • Kosovo Humanitarian Disaster Forces Hundreds of Thousands from their Homes
  • Catholic Relief Services
  • Kosovo Relief
  • ReliefWeb: Home page
  • The Jewish Agency for Israel
  • Mercy International

  • Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
  • Independent Yugoslav radio stations B92
  • Institute for War and Peace Reporting
  • United States Information Agency - Kosovo Crisis

  • Expanded list of related sites on Kosovo
  • 1997 view of Kosovo from space - Eurimage
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