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Thursday, April 1, 1999 Published at 05:50 GMT 06:50 UK


Kosovo plight compared with Holocaust

Several newspapers draw parallels between the plight of the Kosovan Albanians and that of European Jews during World War II.

The Mirror gives over much of its front page to a picture of a line of refugees making their way to Macedonia.

The picture is in black and white, with one child picked out in colour, echoing the technique used in a film about the Holocaust, Schindler's List.

The Express, which appeals to its readers to help fill an airliner with emergency supplies, speaks of the "spectre of genocide".

The Daily Telegraph says doubts are beginning to emerge in Washington about the Balkan War - as the public begins to worry that President Clinton is getting bogged down in a campaign he cannot stop and will not win.

The paper says there are fears that Nato may be running out of cruise missiles, and while the American navy has 2,500 capable of being launched from ships, the air force has only 100 that can be fired from aircraft.

The Sun presents a more jingoistic view - "Bomb, Bomb, Bomb" is its main headline. President Milosevic, it says, is close to despair, but determined to continue with his policy of ethnic cleansing.

Optimism over peace

The last-minute attempts to save the Northern Ireland Good Friday Agreement also appear on most broadsheet front pages.

The Guardian suggests that the wrangling over the decommissioning of IRA weapons may have rattled Sinn Fein enough to change its position.

The Times agrees, but warns that both Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams and Ulster Unionist leader David Trimble run enormous political risks, and might not survive if they shifted ground.

The Irish News is cautious but optimistic about the outcome.

"Privately, the atmosphere pointed towards at least making some considerable steps along the pathway to compromise", it reports.

The government's aid package for the Longbridge Rover plant is widely reported. The Sun says the workers are "Rover Joyed".

However, The Independent points out that 2,000 jobs are still to be lost at the plant, to bring its efficiency closer to that of its parent company, BMW.

April fool?

The Daily Mirror gives over almost two pages to the astonishing escape of a university student in America whose car became lodged under a moving train after an accident at a level crossing.

As it was dragged along, Amber Scott used her mobile phone to call for help. She rang her mother, then the emergency services, but neither could understand what she was saying.

Eventually her car broke free, and Amber was rescued with no more than cuts and bruises.

And of course, today is the day when you really can't believe all you read in the papers. The Sun has a picture of Clara, the four-foot hen which weighs five stone.

Clara, says the paper, was bred by Professor Evan Yuon at a farm in Egham, and lives on genetically-modified maize to keep her growing.

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