TITLE=CLINTON - CHECHNYA (L)
INTRO: President Clinton says he does not believe
ending U-S aid to Russia over Moscow's military
campaign in Chechnya is in the U-S interest, although
he says he does not believe the Russian effort will
succeed. Correspondent Deborah Tate reports from the
Text: Just days before the European Union is
expected to use a summit in Helsinki to consider
economic action against Moscow for its bloody campaign
in Chechnya, Mr. Clinton says he does not believe
cutting off aid to Russia is in the U-S interest. He
noted that U-S assistance is supporting Russian
efforts to dismantle its nuclear arsenal and
democratic reform - efforts Washington does not want
to see jeopardized.
At a wide-ranging news conference Wednesday, Mr.
Clinton also noted that Russia's veto power in the
United Nations Security Council would rule out any
sanctions through that body.
And on whether the United States would withhold
support for International Monetary Fund loans, Mr.
Clinton responded that it was not an issue at the
moment, as Russia had failed to meet economic
conditions demanded by the I-M-F for receiving another
installment on a four-point-five billion dollar loan.
But Mr. Clinton warned Russia that international
support could erode if its campaign in Chechnya
/// CLINTON ACTUALITY ///
The continuation of it, and the amassing of hundreds
of thousands of refugees, who will have to be cared
for by the international community, will further
alienate the global community from Russia, and that is
a bad thing, because they need support - not just from
the I-M-F and the World Bank, they need investors,
they need people to have confidence in what they are
/// END ACT ///
Russia defends its mission in Chechnya as necessary to
root out Islamic insurgents.
But Mr. Clinton - increasingly concerned about the
mounting civilian casualties - said the people of
Chechnya should not be punished for the actions of the
08-Dec-1999 17:55 PM EDT (08-Dec-1999 2255 UTC)
Source: Voice of America
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