Wednesday, April 28, 1999 Published at 22:20 GMT 23:20 UK
Draskovic fired over Kosovo remarks
Vuk Draskovic was once the main opposition leader in Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia's Deputy Prime Minister, Vuk Draskovic, has been dismissed for opposing the government's position on the Kosovo conflict.
Mr Draskovic's outspoken comments in recent days have prompted Western leaders to talk of serious cracks in President Milosevic's regime.
The authorities would not allow the BBC to broadcast footage of an interview recorded on Tuesday.
Cracks in the regime
Mr Draskovic's dismissal comes a day after he expressed his support for stationing international peacekeeping troops under UN control in Kosovo.
The former opposition leader, who joined the government in January, also attacked the state media for misrepresenting Yugoslavia's situation in the war with Nato.
He said publicly that the Serb leadership should recognise that "we cannot defeat Nato" and must respect the "reality" of facing a world united against it.
Speaking after his removal, Mr Draskovic denied accusations that he was supporting Nato's air campaign.
He also said he did not know why he was sacked.
"Maybe some people in the West believed that I could be the man of tomorrow with whom Nato could co-operate," he said.
Mr Draskovic said three other ministers, all from his own party, had resigned following his dismissal. They were named as: Internal Trade Minister Slobodan Nenadovic; Information Minister Milan Komnenic; and Minister without Portfolio Milan Bozic.
The US said that Mr Draskovic's removal demonstrated that President Milosevic had grown increasingly isolated from his own leadership.
National Security Council spokesman David Leavy said: "It's clear that even his own top leadership believes that he has to stop his repression, stop his deception, stop his manipulation of the media and comply with the demands of the international community."
Meanwhile, the US Congress has moved to limit President Bill Clinton's powers to widen the conflict.
The House of Representatives voted by 249 to 180 not to fund a ground invasion unless it was consulted first.
The House majority leader, Dick Armey, said Congress and the president together could define a mission with maximum effectiveness and minimum threat to the troops.
Rugova signs deal
In Yugoslavia itself, the moderate Kosovo Albanian leader, Ibrahim Rugova, is reported to have signed a deal with Serbian President Milan Milutinovic calling for a temporary government in Kosovo.
Under the terms of their agreement, direct talks - without Western mediation - will be held in the near future of the province, Tanjug reported.
Serbian television reported that up to 20 civilians had died in the attack on Surdulica on Tuesday.
Nato spokesman Jamie Shea said one laser-guided missile veered off course from the army barracks it was targeting and impacted 200 to 300 metres away in a residential area.
The UN refugee agency, the UNCHR, on Wednesday warned of further deaths, saying it suspected that one of the most significant massacres of Kosovo Albanians so far had taken place around the north-eastern Kosovo town of Jakovica.
Some 2,000 people, most of them women and children, arrived in Albania on Tuesday night, and more than 3,000 refugees crossed into Macedonia on Wednesday, in the biggest refugee influx for more than a week.
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