Wednesday, April 28, 1999 Published at 05:44 GMT 06:44 UK
Oil ban 'will hit civilians'
Serbs are having to queue for some basic supplies
An oil embargo will hit Yugoslavia's civilian population harder than its armed forces, the United Nations has been warned.
Sergio Vieira de Mella, the Under Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, acknowledged that most of Yugoslavia's remaining fuel stocks were being diverted towards Belgrade's military effort.
But he added that the planned embargo would be felt first by civilians, not the military.
Mr Vieira de Mella made the warning at a private meeting of the Security Council, which was discussing Nato's air campaign and its humanitarian consequences.
General Wesley Clark, the Supreme Commander of Nato forces in Europe, says any oil embargo should be backed up with the threat of force.
But France is among a number of alliance members to have expressed reservations about the plan, saying it would be illegal without a specific UN resolution and could spark a confrontation with Russia.
Russia has warned it will not recognise the embargo and will continue to supply oil to Yugoslavia.
He said an embargo "would further restrict the ability of international humanitarian agencies to provide assistance to civilians within the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia".
Mr Vieira de Mella added that the embargo "would severely hamper the agricultural sector" by making planting and harvesting almost impossible.