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                       U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
                         DAILY PRESS BRIEFING

                               I N D E X

                       Tuesday, June 6, 1995

                                       Briefer:  Christine Shelly

UN Hostages: Exchanges w/Milosevic ......................1-3
--Greek Ministers of Defense & Foreign Affairs in 
   Belgrade .............................................4
Ambassador Frasure Discussions in Belgrade ..............1-3
Lord Owen Warning to UN .................................4
Report of Ukrainian Peacekeepers Held ...................5
Visit of Bosnian Prime Minister Silajdzic to U.S. .......5-6
Downed U.S. Pilot .......................................2-3,6
Update on Fighting: Croatia/Krajina .....................6
Next Contact Group Meeting ..............................15

Ambassador Ross Trip to Region ..........................6-7
Secretary Christopher's Trip to Region ..................7
Possibility of Israeli-Egyptian Meeting in Cairo ........7

Report on Enforcement of Sanctions Against Serbia .......7-8

Kuala Lumpur Nuclear Talks ..............................8-9
Heavy Fuel Oil Procedures ...............................9-10
Report of Request for Rice from U.S. ....................13

Secretary General Remarks on U.S. Policy Toward Cuba ....10

Miami Indictments of Cali Cartel Members ................10

Secretary Christopher/DS Talbott Meeting with 
  Yavlinskiy ............................................10-11
Search for Fred Cuny ....................................11

Report of Trial of Coup Plotters ........................11-12

Devine/Bamaca Deaths ....................................12

Parliamentary Resolution on Apologizing for World 
  War II Acts ...........................................12
Shoko Asaharo Charged with Murder .......................12

Violence in Bujumbura ...................................13
A/S Moose/Shattuck Trips to Region ......................13

Nuclear Testing .........................................14

Detained Americans ......................................14
--Visits by Wives/Deliveries ............................15
Reports of Disturbances in Baghdad Vicinity .............14


DPB #82

TUESDAY, JUNE 6, 1995, 1:16 P.M.

MS. SHELLY: Good afternoon. Welcome to the State Department briefing. I don't have any announcements. I'll be happy to go directly to your questions.

Q Anything on hostage releases in Bosnia?

MS. SHELLY: I don't have anything more than that which has been reported in the news media this morning. There isn't, to my knowledge, any concrete indication that hostages have been released yet.

There are reports that some or all might be released today. We certainly are following those reports very closely. But so far we're not in a position to confirm that any, in fact, have been released.

Q Do you have any sign that Milosevic is using what influence he has over the Bosnian Serbs on this issue?

MS. SHELLY: I don't really have anything to add to what I said yesterday. It certainly has been our impression in our exchanges with him that he is trying to use his influence to that effect, but certainly the results are what we're concerned about.

Q Do you have anything on the meeting between Ross and Assad and --

Q Let's stay on Bosnia.

MS. SHELLY: Before switching topics, we'll continue on the same line.


Q Is Frasure back? Is he coming back?

MS. SHELLY: I suspect that he would like to come back, but he's not back yet. He's still there. He remains in Belgrade. Still no progress to report.

He has had discussions, as I've mentioned, on both the U.N. hostages and the downed F-16 pilot with President Milosevic. We are talking stock on where things stand on his mission. I believe we'll certainly indicate in due course when and if he returns. We do expect he will return, but I don't have anything further regarding his mission at this point.

Q But if he's not making any progress, then what's the point of keeping him there?

MS. SHELLY: As we've already said, he has not made progress on the principal point of his going, which of course had to do with the Contact Group package which was being discussed with President Milosevic. But his presence there certainly has facilitated discussions with him on those other issues that I've mentioned.

I can't predict really how much more time he will be there, but up until this point having him there has been useful for our exchanges on those other issues.

Q Would you say that his talks with Milosevic on the principal issues of a peace agreement, or steps towards a peace agreement, are at an impasse?

MS. SHELLY: I don't know if we're just kind of playing with words. As I said specifically, we don't have progress to report at this time, which is certainly unfortunate. I guess that's probably a different formulation for using the word "impasse." But I wouldn't specifically avoid using that.

Q Your construction of words implies that we don't have progress now but you could have progress in the future, whereas "impasse" would imply a judgment about exactly how hard and fast the positions are.

MS. SHELLY: As to the more general point as to whether or not we believe that President Milosevic is no longer interested in reaching agreement on this, I don't think anybody has reached or jumped to that conclusion. What you have to look at, especially in terms of keeping a U.S. Government official there who obviously also has other responsibilities back here as well -- the question is, is this an agreement that can be reached at this point in time?

I don't have a signal to release on that, because I don't have any announcement regarding his either staying or returning. I certainly do expect him to return at some point. But I don't think we feel that the prospect of being able to reach agreement with him at some point has disappeared.

Q To put it another way, if the hostages were to be released shortly and the pilot issue resolved, would there be a reason for Frasure to stay?

MS. SHELLY: As I said yesterday -- I think several different times -- we don't see any linkage between the hostage issue and the general issue that was under discussion with President Milosevic. The issues related to the package are issues which are being worked on their own merit. So we don't see linkage, and I'm not sure that even release of the hostages would necessarily signal an immediate change in President Milosevic's current positions.

Q That wasn't the question I was asking. If Frasure convinced Milosevic to use his influence on those issues -- following up on Carol's question -- would there be a reason to stay and pursue the Contact Group plan?

MS. SHELLY: Again, since we're looking at the progress on that particular issue on its own track, I think certainly Ambassador Frasure has gotten as far as he can at this particular point. There could always be, of course, new developments which could arise which might affect the progress or lack thereof at this point. But, again, that gets me into the speculative, since in fact that has not happened so far.


Q Could you respond to a couple of things that have been reported? One is that he will leave Belgrade Wednesday. That was in an Associated Press report from Belgrade, I believe.

Second: The Bosnian Serbs -- in talking about the release of a second group of hostages -- have said that they were given assurances by NATO that there would not be further NATO air attacks.

MS. SHELLY: The second report, I am certainly not in a position to confirm that. I am not aware of any such assurances by NATO.

On the first point, as I said at the beginning, I'm not in a position to comment on travel plans of Ambassador Frasure.

To my knowledge, no decision has been taken that he should return on Wednesday.

Q Christine, could I go to a statement made by Sir David Owen?

MS. SHELLY: I think it's actually Lord Owen, isn't that right?

Q It is Lord Owen. If the Frasure matter is finished for the moment. The former British Foreign Secretary coupled his resignation statement with a warning to the United Nations that its peacekeepers were becoming inextricably embroiled in the Balkan conflict. Further, he said the U.N.'s authority was being undermined and it might be forced to leave by the autumn if there was no peace settlement by then. Those are attributed to Lord Owen.

One: Does this Department -- does this Administration have a comment on his very expert perspective? And then I have a second question.

MS. SHELLY: We always listen with interest to his views. But, no, I don't have any particular comment I would wish to make on those remarks.

Q And, second, there was an article in the Washington Times front page today that alleges that additional troops are being sent into Italy as preparation for possible extraction of the U.N. in the near future. Is there any validity to that?

MS. SHELLY: Again, that's a question that is most appropriately to the Pentagon. It's not a question in which the State Department would have the lead.

Q You are aware both the Greek Minister of Defense and the Greek Minister of Foreign Affairs were in Pale yesterday and they're in Belgrade today in an effort to release the U.N. hostages. Do you have any comment on that?

I wonder if your government was aware prior to this mission?

MS. SHELLY: On the second point, I believe that the correct answer to that is no. And on the first part of your question, I believe that the meetings in the region are still underway. We are expecting that we're going to get a full readout once those meetings have been concluded.

I think that it would be appropriate for us to withhold any specific comment about the mission until after we've had an opportunity to be briefed by the Greek Ministers.

Q Can we go to Syria, please?

Q Something else --

MS. SHELLY: On Bosnia?

Q On Bosnia.

MS. SHELLY: Let's try to wrap up at least the first round of Bosnia questions, if we might.

Q There is a wire service report that some Ukrainian peacekeepers are being held up on a road. Do you have any knowledge of that and any comment on that?

MS. SHELLY: Are you talking specifically about a new group?

Q Yes.

MS. SHELLY: I have not seen a report on that so far. We did know, of course, over the weekend there had been some additional -- I guess around the time that the first group of U.N. peacekeepers were released, there were additional ones that were picked up. I don't know whether this would be the same group. I have no seen anything suggesting that new peacekeepers were picked up today, but I certainly wouldn't rule that out given past patterns of behavior.

Q Bosnian Prime Minister Haris Silajdzic is in town today?

MS. SHELLY: I don't think he's in town today. I believe he's arriving later in the week.

Q Are there meetings scheduled here at the State Department with him?

MS. SHELLY: My information on his travel plans -- this was something that came up at the briefing yesterday; I didn't have exactly his arrival time; and, of course, as you know, Secretary Christopher is going off to the Middle East tomorrow afternoon.

The Secretary, of course, normally would have received him here at the State Department if their schedules had overlapped. I can confirm, however, that they have talked several times recently on the telephone.

Prime Minister Silajdzic will arrive tomorrow evening. I certainly expect that he will be received by the Acting Secretary during the course of his visit and by other U.S. Government officials at an appropriately senior level. I understand the schedule has not yet been finalized, and so I don't have further details beyond that at the moment.

Q On the pilot, you have nothing new, I assume?

MS. SHELLY: No, not that I'm aware of. I think there is still conflicting information out there regarding what the disposition of the pilot has been since the plane was shot down, but I'm sure that there's anything new out there since yesterday's briefing.

Q This may be a question for the Pentagon, but why was it released, the information that there is a radio signal coming from somewhere near the crash site? Why was that made public?

MS. SHELLY: Insofar as that was made public specifically out of the Pentagon, I think I would direct you to the Pentagon on that question.

Q Any comment on the report that Croatia is planning to invade Krajina?

MS. SHELLY: That Croatia is planning to invade Krajina?

Q Krajina.

MS. SHELLY: I haven't seen anything suggesting that something like that is about to occur. No new fighting has been reported in Croatia. Croatian forces had been advancing from Bosnia's Livno Valley. They remain within artillery range of the Krajina capital, Knin.

We, of course, continue to call on all parties to exercise restraint and to resume negotiations toward a peaceful settlement. Further fighting would damage the prospects for a negotiated peace there and elsewhere in the region.

We are working to ensure the safety of American and U.N. personnel in the region and to promote respect for the rights of civilians and POWs in all of the areas.

Q I wondered if there was anything new in the meeting between Ross and Assad and why a phone call was needed? Who did the phone call? The President? Whose initiative was it?

MS. SHELLY: As you know, our policy on this is not to get into a discussion of the specifics of what's happening in our exchanges with the parties on this except to be able to say generally, as you know, that Dennis Ross had gone out to the region prior to the Secretary's trip. He was in Israel yesterday and Syria today, and we do expect that he'll be moving on to Egypt tomorrow.

The Secretary, of course, will be departing tomorrow afternoon; his first stop will be Israel; and he will be going for some meetings in Jerusalem.

I have really no other details related to the substance of what is being discussed. We simply feel that we can play our role most appropriately by not getting into a detailed discussion of the exchanges that we're having.

Q The phone call was announced.

MS. SHELLY: Again, a phone call may have been announced. I simply don't have details on that to share at today's briefing.

Q Do you have any further information about a possible meeting in Cairo on Friday between Israel, Egypt and the Secretary?

MS. SHELLY: Obviously, because of what's been reported in the press, that possibility is out there, but I'm not in a position to confirm that one way or the other.

Q In yesterday's report on the Greek enforcement of the U.N. sanctions against Serbia, you are saying inter alia that the goods are not reaching actually Serbia via Greece but via Skopje, Bulgaria and Albania. Therefore, why you're singling (out) Greece and not the mentioned countries?

MS. SHELLY: I'm sorry. Why Greece and not other countries?

Q That's it exactly. The neighboring countries. Actually they're going into Serbia --

MS. SHELLY: Because this was not a report which was about all of the different countries that might or might not be involved in sanctions violations. It was specifically a requirement imposed in connection with the foreign assistance appropriations bill for Fiscal 1995 which mandated that two reports be submitted. Pending the submission of the reports, as I think you know, ten percent of the foreign aid under the Foreign Military Financing was withheld waiting for submission of those reports.

So the Turkish report was submitted last week. The Greek report was submitted, I guess, late on Friday, although I didn't actually get it until about midday yesterday.

So, therefore, the reason that it is only addressing Greece is not to suggest that Greece is the only country where there have been problems related to possible violations of the sanctions regime. It is simply because that is what is mandated in the particular Congressional reports; and, as you know, this was the first time that this report had been prepared.


Q Christine, what can you say about what's going on in Malaysia with the North Korean talks?

MS. SHELLY: I still don't have a lot of additional detail on that, except there's one general assessment that I would like to address -- a conclusion that people have come to, or at least some people have come to, and has been reflected in the media -- that as a consequence of a couple of the working-level members of the North Korean delegation having gone back to Pyongyang, somehow the talks have broken down.

That is definitely not the case. The negotiators, U.S. and DPRK, met for another three hours on Tuesday, today. As I mentioned the reports that they've somehow broken down, they're just not accurate. Meetings are scheduled to continue at the technical level again tomorrow.

I don't have any reason to offer for the departure of the two delegation members in question, but their departure is not expected to affect our discussions.

Q Do you feel like you're making progress?

MS. SHELLY: I think that my somewhat longer answer on Friday where we expressed, I think, a moderate amount of optimism about progress -- I took the pulse and tried to make sure that's in fact where we were, so I think that is in fact still where we are.

The talks have been serious. I think we feel that we are making progress, but again they're tough issues. We always expected that it was going to take time. We went out there without setting any kind of closing date by affixing a certain time or deadline artificially by which we would have to reach some kind of closure. So they're still going on, and I know there's a lot of impatience out there for results.

But, nonetheless, I think we still feel that continuing in the talks is the right thing to do.

Q Is there a sense in this building that you're coming toward a denouement, some sort of conclusion?

MS. SHELLY: That certainly is our objective, to bring the talks to a conclusion and, I would add, a positive, a successful one; and we certainly will let you know as soon as we can make that kind of announcement.

Q You have no prediction -- I mean, you're not looking at Friday as the day to wrap it up?

MS. SHELLY: No, there isn't any deadline at this point.

Q I didn't ask if there was a deadline. What is the -- is there a sense that you're coming to closure on this issue?

MS. SHELLY: I think that the parties involved feel that they have made a good amount of progress, but they certainly are not at the point yet where they can indicate agreement on all of the points. How far down the road toward a conclusion they are, I think it's impossible for me to make that kind of a judgment or to give you some kind of a numerical assessment about how far along they are.

I think as long as the talks continue to be useful and productive from both points of view, they'll continue. But again it's impossible for me to give you any kind of notional timeframe by which they might conclude.


Q Do you know if the working-level North Koreans who went home will be returning? Are they there for consultations, and would they then come back to rejoin the talks?

MS. SHELLY: I simply don't have any other information about what the reasons were for the departure of the two.

Q Were we given reasons why they departed?

MS. SHELLY: I do not know. I don't have that information.

Q When is the shipment of heavy fuel oil due to actually arrive in North Korea?

MS. SHELLY: I believe that other officials have talked notionally about a timeframe, although I confess I don't remember it off the top of my head. But, as I think you're aware, we also indicated, I think some days ago at a briefing, that there still is the issue regarding the exact procedures that need to be put in place for monitoring the disposition and the use of the heavy fuel oil. Those procedures have not yet been agreed and put in place.

Our offer to send a technical team to North Korea to discuss that is still an offer that's on the table; and once we have reached agreement on the procedures, we would be prepared to then discuss a phased delivery schedule for the heavy fuel oil. But there really has not been any movement on that particular point in the last several days.

Q Do you have any comment on the remarks of the Secretary General of the OAS, Mr. Gaviria, implicitly criticizing the policy toward Cuba that the United States has been pursuing?

MS. SHELLY: We obviously listened with great interest to the remarks that he made. This was in his speech, of course, at the opening of the 25th OAS General Assembly on Monday. We fully agree with the Secretary General that there must be in Cuba greater economic freedom and establishment of a pluralistic democratic system with political freedoms and respect for human rights.

But it is our view that only then would it be possible to initiate a new stage in the hemisphere's relations with Cuba.

Q Has the State Department been instructed to ask for the extradition of any of the Colombian officials named in the indictments handed down in Miami yesterday?

MS. SHELLY: I am not sure that that's an issue that we would be working independently of the Justice Department. I think you might need to ask that question to the Justice Department.

Q It would go through the State Department.

MS. SHELLY: Normally those kinds of requests do, but again I think this is one in which the Justice Department has the lead.

Q Christine, why was Deputy Secretary Talbott meeting with Yavlinskiy today? Do you have anything on that?

MS. SHELLY: I don't have a lot of details on this, but let me share with you what I do have. As you know, he's one of the Russian reform leaders, one of the political leaders who was also a participant in the breakfast in Moscow that the President had with Russian political leaders.

He was here in town. He had an appointment with the Deputy Secretary. They generally reviewed the situation in Russia with a specific focus on the elections. He also had the time and the Secretary also had the time so that they interacted briefly. So they had a short meeting as well.

I think probably the most important points that were also touched on in the meeting with the Secretary were, of course, the overall importance of the democratic process in Russia and the need for elections to be held on schedule.

So that's what I can tell you about the meeting. I'll be happy to check and see if there's any more detail available, but that's what I know so far.

Q Is this all part of the Administration's effort to continue to foster close ties with potential successors to Yeltsin?

MS. SHELLY: I certainly wouldn't couch it in those terms. I think that this Administration is interested in Russia as well as in all countries around the world and in having contacts with members of the democratic opposition, to meet with political leaders and to have as broad a range of contacts and as broad a dialogue as possible.

It's important to have many contacts to get the full reflection of all of the points of view on the political spectrum, and it should be seen in that context and as certainly a natural follow-on to the contacts that the President and the Secretary had at the breakfast out in Russia.


Q Is there anything new on Fred Cuny?

MS. SHELLY: There is not. We, of course, have continued to follow any reports that might have some credibility to them. We continue also to get information through any of the channels that are out there, be they NGO or OSCE or anything else. But to my knowledge there is not anything hard in the way of new information since his disappearance.

Q Is there any new plan to send any new personnel to look for him?

MS. SHELLY: Not specifically that I'm aware of at this point, but I'll be happy to check on that point.

Q Do you have anything on the start of the trial of coup plotters in Nigeria? You'd recommended they not do it. Now they have.

MS. SHELLY: Let me check and see. I don't have anything new with me on that today.


Q Jennifer Harbury. She says that documents given to her suggest that the Administration knew as far back as September 1993 that her husband had died in captivity.

MS. SHELLY: Legal restrictions, as you know, exist that prevent sensitive information from being passed directly to private citizens. Despite those regulations, the State Department officers in their meetings with Ms. Harbury on numerous occasions have gone to great lengths to try to provide her with the conclusions that the intelligence community drew from the information available at any given point in time.

As you know, this matter is a subject of a Presidential Intelligence Oversight Board review; and I think at this point we feel that it's inappropriate to comment further except to point out what the Secretary has pointed out repeatedly, which is that the Department of State does support the fullest possible disclosure to the American people of the facts surrounding the deaths of Michael Devine and certain other Americans, as well as that of Efrain Bamaca.

Q You say you went to great lengths to keep her informed, and she said there was a 14-month gap there between September '93 and November of '94. She would say, if she were here, I assume that it doesn't sound like great lengths to me.

MS. SHELLY: I'm afraid that I cannot help any further on that answer except with the answer I've given.

Q Japanese coalition parties today have agreed on the wording of the Parliamentary resolution which apologizes for what they had done during World War II. And the second part of my question is that the Tokyo prosecutor formally today charged the Aum Shinrikyo leader, Shoko Asaharo, and the other senior members with murder. Do you have any comment on (these) two issues?

MS. SHELLY: I don't have any specific comment I'd like to make. We're certainly aware of the developments in both of those cases. But I'm not sure that at this juncture we specifically would like to make a public comment on either of those developments.

Q This is the same question as last week. Has there been any request from North Korea for rice from America?

MS. SHELLY: Not that I'm aware of, no. I think that the question of those would involve licenses that would be issued by the Department of Commerce, so that might be a better place to ask. But I have not heard that requests along those lines have come in.

Q Conditions appear to be deteriorating in Bujumbura. I wonder, is the State Department following that, and are there any advisories for the U.S. personnel there?

MS. SHELLY: I don't know if we have issued any advisories, warnings or any of those things within the last couple of days or so. I did have something on this, I guess a couple of days ago. I don't have anything with me at this point. But I might counsel you to check with the Press Office, because two or three days ago, when in fact we got the first reports of the deterioration, I think in fact we did have something. But it obviously is a situation that we do watch with great interest and concern.

Q Is there any diplomacy that you might be getting into there to stop an upsurge in the violence?

MS. SHELLY: I don't have any reports on new visits out there. Of course, our broad interest is very much along the line of our humanitarian interest there in trying to prevent renewed ethnic conflict. We have had several visits, as I'm sure you're aware, in the April and May timeframe where we had Assistant Secretary George Moose -- he visited Rwanda and Burundi in late April -- and he was discussing the efforts to eliminate violence and to try to achieve a lasting reconciliation in both of those two countries.

I think you're also aware that in the middle of May we had our Assistant Secretary for Humanitarian Affairs, John Shattuck -- he was there, also in the region, for discussions along the same lines as Assistant Secretary Moose.

So we have been active politically. We've also been very active in terms of the extension of the humanitarian assistance; and we are doing our best, as we can, to try to stimulate the kinds of broad-based and multi-ethnic representational governments which are going to be necessary for the long-term stability of that region.

Q The French are moving towards an early resumption of their nuclear testing. Do you have any reaction or comment on that? There was an official report in Paris published yesterday.

MS. SHELLY: I have only seen one press report on that so far. I suspect that it's something that we might be having some exchanges on through government channels. I don't have anything to say on it specifically right now, but I'll be happy to check and see if we would like to put out a comment on that.

Q Do you have an update on the two Americans in the Iraqi prison? And when was the last time they were visited?

MS. SHELLY: I checked on that earlier this morning to see if there had been anything new whatsoever. I'm very sad to report that there still is absolutely nothing new.

Mr. Krystosik has still not been permitted to resume his regular visits with Mr. Barloon and Mr. Daliberti. He continues to press on a daily basis for access to the two men.

We are deeply concerned about their health. We call on the Iraqis to allow a visit so we can continue to monitor their condition. We fully expect the Iraqis to meet their obligations under the Vienna Convention on consular relations which would permit Mr. Krystosik to resume his regular visits with the Americans.

Q When was the last one?

MS. SHELLY: The last one, if I recollect correctly, was something in the range of the middle of April -- perhaps April 16, if my memory serves me correctly. But it was sometime in the middle April timeframe. He has not been permitted to see them since before the two men were visited by their wives.

Q Also on Iraq. Does the State Department know anything about apparent disturbances taking place in a town 30 miles west of Baghdad -- Ramadi, I think it's called?

MS. SHELLY: We had seen some reports of disturbances there. I don't know how much information we actually got on it, but let me check and see if we've got anything concrete.

Q A follow-up on the two Americans. Last week, I think you told us that a representative had been able to drop off messages and toiletries or some other items that they had signed for. Has that effort been successfully repeated? And also, have the two wives made any plans for a second go-around?

MS. SHELLY: On the latter point, not specifically that I'm aware of. I'm certain at an appropriate interval that will be very much on their minds as a possibility.

We've been told by the protecting power authorities with whom we're in nearly daily contact that they're preparing another package of items that would include mail and food, and things like that, to have delivered to the prison.

When we got the documents back the last time, it was, in fact, the signatures which were recognized. So we were at least aware of the fact that they had been delivered to the two gentlemen. But I'll be happy to check and see if there's anymore detail than that.

Q Christine, are these men able to pass letters out? The packages come in. Can they send letters out to the courier who delivers the package?

MS. SHELLY: It's been my impression that it has worked in both directions. I believe their communications going out are scrutinized in some way by the Iraqi prison authorities.

Q On Bosnia: Do you have any fixed schedule on the next Contact Group meetings?

MS. SHELLY: I do not. The Secretary has remained in contact with his Contact Group ministerial counterparts. So they continue their discussion through either telephone calls or written communications on the situation; but I'm not aware of any specific plans for Contact Group meetings at this point.

Q (Inaudible).

MS. SHELLY: I'm not aware of any Contact Group meetings planned at any level at this point, but I certainly wouldn't rule them out.

Q Thank you.

MS. SHELLY: Thanks.

(Press briefing concluded at 1:48 p.m.)


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