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Tuesday, March 23, 1999 Published at 04:41 GMT


World: Europe

Crisis dominates world press

Italy is said to be worried about refugees pouring into the country

Kosovo dominates many of the front pages of newspapers around the world on Tuesday.

Kosovo Section

Le Soir of Paris says it is make or break time for Richard Holbrooke and Slobodan Milosevic.

The paper says it is still not clear whether peace will prevail or the uncertain mechanism of air strikes will be unleashed.

El Pais of Madrid says the Contact Group is desperate to convince public opinion that if a military attack begins, it will be because all peaceful options have been exhausted.

The International Herald Tribune discusses the feasibility of American forces waging two wars at the same time.

The paper says with tens of thousands of troops still in the Gulf supporting air strikes against Iraq, analysts say the Pentagon risks seriously overstretching its personnel.

But the paper quotes US officials who insist there will be no problem maintaining two large-scale forces.

Rome's Corriere della Sera says the Italian Prime Minister Massimo d'Alema is warning that his country may need help from its European partners as many more thousands of refugees are expected to flood into Italy to escape the fighting in Kosovo.

The UK's Guardian newspaper says the only honourable course for Europe and America is to use military force to try to protect the people of Kosovo.

"America is not ready for this, Europe is not ready for it, Western military forces are not ready for it. Yet the crisis is upon us and we must respond."

The Times says it could be a false assumption for Belgrade to believe that bombing would be delayed until Yevgeni Primakov, the Russian Prime Minister, has completed his visit to Washington this week.

The newspaper notes there has been a lack of debate in Britain on the case for action.

"This is in marked contrast to the US, where the pluses and minuses have been discussed at length in Congress, in the opinion columns of newspapers and on talk shows."



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