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(Sees negotiators at "beginning" of solution)  (530)
By Wendy Lubetkin
USIA European Correspondent
1eneva -- U.N. Secretary General Boutros-Ghali says he is more optimistic
about the situation in the former Yugoslavia than he was two days ago, and
he believes negotiators have arrived "at the beginning of a solution to the
"I believe that there is progress, and at least this is the feeling of my
special representative, Mr. Stoltenberg, that there is progress in the
whole peace process in the region," the secretary general said at a July 1
news briefing in Geneva.
He did not elaborate about reasons for his optimism, but he had talked
earlier with members of the Steering Committee of the International
Conference on the Former Yugoslavia, which was meeting in Geneva.
"My position is that we must find a solution and that the solution will not
be found unless all the protagonists in the conflict are in agreement.  So
what we must look for is a common denominator which would allow the
construction of a sustainable solution for the former Yugoslavia," he said.
Boutros-Ghali insisted that a negotiated settlement would have no impact on
U.N. plans for a war crimes tribunal.
"Crimes have been committed in the ex-Yugoslavia...and those crimes must be
punished by the tribunal," he said.
Asked about his Geneva meeting last week with Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq
Aziz, Boutros-Ghali said they had discussed all the disputes between the
United Nations and Iraq.
"We agreed that it was necessary to begin by implementing (U.N.) Security
Council resolutions 706 and 712," he said, referring to the 1991
resolutions which would allow Iraq to sell $1,600 million worth of oil to
obtain funds for humanitarian purposes.
Up to the present Iraq has protested that the U.N. monitoring of the sale
required in the resolutions would constitute a violation of its national
Boutros-Ghali said he and Aziz had agreed that finding a way to implement
the two resolutions might "allow us to create a new political atmosphere
which would help us to find solutions" to the other disputes between Iraq
and the United Nations.  He added that high-level negotiations are
scheduled to begin in New York July 7.
Asked when Iraqi oil might reach the world market, Boutros-Ghali said he did
not know because the negotiations "might be successful, or they might
In response to questions on the recent U.S. missile strike against Iraq's
intelligence service, Boutros-Ghali refused comment other than to say that
he was informed about the strike by President Clinton and that he had also
been informed of the U.S. decision to submit the action to the Security
Council for discussion.
At the briefing, the secretary general also announced the creation of a
"high-level advisory board on sustainable development" as part of the
follow up to last year's "Earth Summit" in Rio De Janeiro.
He said he had appointed 21 individuals, including business leaders,
diplomats, academicians and scientists, to serve on the board.

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