Belgrad, den 16.8.2000 (RADIO B2-92, serb.,Webseite)
(Volltext) “Der Präsidentschaftskandidat der Demokratischen Opposition Serbiens Vojislav Kostunica hat heute (16.8.) die Vereinigten Staaten beschuldigt, die Zerstörung Jugoslawiens und Serbiens zu planen. In einer schriftlichen Stellungnahme für die Medien bezeichnete Kostunica die amerikanische Entscheidung, in Budapest ein Büro zur Unterstützung demokratischer Kräfte in Serbien zu eröffnen als die gröbste Einmischung in die inneren Angelegenheiten Serbiens und Jugoslawiens und als Beispiel für die bekannten hegemonistischen und kolonialen Ansprüche der derzeitigen US-Administration. ‚Es bedarf schon einer enormen Portion an Arroganz und Heuchelei, zu behaupten, das langfristige Ziel der USA sei die Festigung der Demokratie in Serbien‘, so Kostunica. Demokratie in Serbien sei allein ein serbisches Ziel und niemand sonst könne es für sich in Anspruch nehmen. Anders als Europa habe Washington Slobodan Milosevic, ‚dem Mann, mit dem es die fatalsten Abmachungen für Serbien getroffen hat‘, erneut die Hand gereicht. Er bezeichnete die Eröffnung des Budapester Büros als Todeskuss für alle echten demokratischen und patriotischen Kräfte in Serbien und als Unterstützung für die nationalfeindliche, korrupte und unverantwortliche Staatspolitik.”
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State Department, Washington, 17. August 2000:
QUESTION: Have you seen yet the Yugoslav Government comments on the State Department forming this new Yugoslav Office you told us about earlier in the week? They say the US is setting up this office to run the Serbian opposition.
MR. REEKER: (Sprecher des State Dept) Yes, I did see some reports that quoted Mr. Sainovic of the Yugoslav Government. I would just remind you that Mr. Sainovic is an indicted war criminal and like his cohort Mr. Milosevic and others, belongs in the Hague rather than trying to make comments about the opposition or democracy in Serbia.
I think as we’ve indicated for a long time now, we support a democratic Serbia, we support a Serbia, a democratic Serbia taking its rightful place in Europe, where certainly the people of Serbia belong. We have maintained certain contacts with a wide range of democratic forces in Serbia for a long time, including political parties, media, nongovernmental organizations and local leaders. There is a democratic mainstream in Serbia and that’s something we very much want to support and we want those people to know that we support them.
We are going to continue to do so through the office in Budapest that we described earlier in the week and those forces that want to talk to us, those individuals that are interested in talking to us, we will continue to be happy to meet with. I think, as we pointed out, we are not in the position of endorsing particular candidates. What we want to do is support a unified opposition so that, again, the people of Serbia can elect leaders that can truly represent their goals, their aspirations and help Serbia to return to its rightful place, to have its economy recover and see a return of democracy there. (...)
QUESTION: To follow up on Terri’s question, not only government, but
the opposition leader, one of the presidential candidates in Serbia, was
very much against the opening of the office in Budapest.
And he is the person that this office should, or is supposed, to assist. And how do you comment that? I mean, he was very -
MR. REEKER: Well, again, this office in our efforts are not designed at any particular individual. This is a way for us to have people in the region, obviously not in Serbia - since our embassy there was closed - but in Budapest, where they can meet with representatives of Serbian democracy, whether they’re political parties, whether they’re media, whether they’re non-governmental organizations.
As I noted, we support a democratic Serbia, and support a democratic Serbia taking its rightful place in Europe. Mr. Kostunica, to whom you’re referring, is obviously entitled to his own opinion. We certainly aren’t insisting that he meet with us. As I said, for years, we’ve maintained these contacts with a broad spectrum of democratic forces within Serbia, and we’re going to continue to do so through the office in Budapest.
I think it’s obvious that we don’t share Mr. Kostunica’s views regarding US interest in a democratic Serbia, nor do those democratic forces who do want to talk to us. It’s not, as I indicated, our position to endorse any one particular candidate. We believe that Mr. Kostunica is indeed a genuine democratic leader, and he is entitled to his opinions. That doesn’t mean that we have to agree with him in all of those opinions and on all issues.
QUESTION: Are you suggesting that the idea behind the office is to sort of break up what remains of Yugoslavia?
MR. REEKER: I think that’s sort of a ridiculous suggestion. Slobodan Milosevic is responsible for the breakup of Yugoslavia. And we can certainly look to a library of books and other things that have been written on the subject, as Milosevic over the past decade has taken his country down the path of destruction and dragged a lot of other people with it. He is isolated now; his economy is in shambles; he’s cut off; he’s indicted; he should be in the Hague. He’s a war criminal.
He is responsible for all this, and what we want to see is an opportunity for the true democratic forces of Serbia, that represent the people of Serbia, to be able to get their country back on track and return to the mainstream of Europe, which is where they very much belong. They have a history and a heritage of being an important center of industry and of economy, of learning in Central Europe, and that’s what the people deserve; they’d like to get back to that. They won’t be able to do that until they have a democratic leadership, and until Milosevic is out of power, out of his country, and in the Hague.
MR. REEKER: Good afternoon. (...) I have one announcement—and we’ll post a small statement on that—that, at the request of Secretary Albright, US Ambassador to Croatia William Montgomery, has been named to lead a new Office of Yugoslav Affairs within the American Embassy in Budapest, Hungary. This office will consist of State Department and USAID officials who will work to support the full range of democratic forces in Serbia, and coordinate there in Budapest. (...)
QUESTION: Can you give us more details on what exactly his job will
MR. REEKER: Ambassador Montgomery will be dealing with issues solely relating to Yugoslavia in terms of, as we’ve discussed here, we think it’s very important to let those committed to true democracy in Serbia know that we support their efforts, and that we’re closely monitoring the situation in Serbia, both from Washington and also from Budapest, which is obviously the best location where we have facilities to do that.
We’ve been planning on this for a long time, and clearly Ambassador Montgomery will be working with the Serbian democratic opposition between now and the elections which are scheduled there. But that’s not the limit of his mandate. He will be addressing a full range of issues related to our long-term goal of advancing democracy in Serbia. So he will remain, as I indicated to Charlie, Ambassador to Croatia but he’ll be working in Budapest with this new office, and that will be the focus of his work. Our Charge d’Affaires in Zagreb will continue to act as chief of mission when Ambassador Montgomery is out of Croatia.