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Friday, June 4, 1999 Published at 12:53 GMT 13:53 UK

What the Serbs have been told

Josef Kasza said the mood in the Serb parliament was "lamentable"

The official Serbian media has highlighted the Kosovo peace plan's clauses on maintaining Yugoslavia's territorial integrity and confirming the role of the UN.

But it ignored the plan's requirements for a withdrawal of Yugoslav forces from the province and for substantial Nato participation in the peacekeeping forces.

Kosovo: Special Report
The state news agency Tanjug said the Yugoslav Government fully supported the plan, "considering that it guarantees the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the FRY [Yugoslavia], that it prevents terrorist and separatist activities and that it puts an end to the aggression against our country, the suffering of the population and the destruction of national resources".

The government described as "particularly important" the fact that the "decision-making process is being transferred to the United Nations, on the basis of the UN Charter" .

Welcoming the deal, the Socialist Party of Serbia (SPS) - the main party in the ruling coalition, led by President Slobodan Milosevic - praised the resistance of the Serbian people to Nato "aggression".

'Freedom, dignity and honour'

"Owing to the unity of our people, citizens, political parties, leadership, the heroic struggle of the army and the police, we have succeeded in defending the freedom, dignity and honour of our people from a notably superior enemy in military, political and technological terms, namely the Nato pact, which has carried out an aggression against our country with the aim of eradicating our sovereignty and territorial integrity in contravention of all standards of the international order," the party said in a statement quoted by Tanjug.

It said it supported the document "that represents the basis for peace" in view of the fact that "the paramount objective is to protect the people and the state".

"In line with the general determination to support peace, an appropriate resolution of the UN Security Council will be adopted,'' the statement added.

"By protecting the people from further suffering and the country from destruction, undefeated in the heroic resistance to the aggression, we will continue to defend successfully the vital national and state interests by political means in peacetime as well.''

'Creator of misfortune'

However, the tone of Montenegrin officials was less euphoric.

Montenegrin presidential advisor Miodrag Vukovic, quoted by the Bosnian Serb news agency SRNA, said: "The one pulling the strings of all our fates, the creator of misfortune for all the Serb people, has signed conditions which Serbia itself will find extremely difficult.

"This will cost Serbia immensely. We must ask if Serbia needed all this at all, and if it needs its authorities.''

Mr Vukovic said he expected "the heroes" who had vowed not to allow the deployment of foreign soldiers in Kosovo to apologise publicly to Montenegro and its people for deceiving them.

The foreign soldiers had been imposed "because we were unable seriously to take care of our own country", he said.

'Not yet peace'

The leader of the ethnic Hungarians in Serbia's northern Vojvodina province also reacted cautiously.

"It cannot be ruled out that it is not yet peace and it is not yet the end of things," Jozsef Kasza told Hungarian radio.

"However, there is a ray of hope that peace will come..."

He said it was "obvious" President Milosevic would now have to leave office.

"Milosevic and his regime must realise that there is no option but to fulfil the demands, and it is also obvious that this thing is signalling the end of this reign," he added.

Mr Kasza, who took part in the vote in the Serbian parliament on the peace proposal, said the atmosphere had been "oppressive and lamentable" during the debate.

At one stage it seemed fighting would break out between Vojislav Seselj's hard-line Serbian Radical Party and Vuk Draskovic's more moderate Serbian Renewal Movement.

"An exchange of words took place between Vuk Draskovic and Seselj... in a Balkan style at the level of pub brawls, and it came close to punches being traded, but it did not get that far in the end," he said.

BBC Monitoring (, based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages.

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