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Yugoslavia: NATO Air Strikes Target Sites Across Country

Belgrade, 25 March 1999 (RFE/RL) - NATO Secretary General Javier Solana said today that air strikes against military installations across Yugoslavia, which began late Wednesday, will continue for several days. Solana made the comment on French radio. There are no confirmed reports of NATO air strikes since sunrise this morning. Solana's comments seem to suggest that the air strikes will resume after darkness falls tonight unless Belgrade relents and accepts an international peace plan, including a NATO-led force, for Kosovo.

Air strikes so far have involved use of sea and air-launched cruise missiles and fighter planes. Targets have included radar installations and air defenses across Serbia, including its southern Kosovo province. Other primary targets included communications and logistics centers, airbases, military barracks, munitions warehouses and weapons factories.

Military targets were also hit in Montenegro, Serbia's smaller partner in Federal Yugoslavia. The government in Podgorica, which opposes Belgrade's policies on Kosovo, says it fears Milosevic may use the attacks as a pretext to oust them from power.

Russian President Boris Yeltsin suspended cooperation with NATO soon after the raids began, saying Moscow reserves the right to take "adequate measures" if the conflict worsens. Yeltsin is due to meet with aides and ministers today on Moscow's next response. China, India and Belarus also have condemned the attacks.

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan said force was justified and that Milosevic should have signed a western-backed peace plan on Kosovo. But he said the UN Security Council should have been involved in the decision to use force.

Belgrade today claimed again that at least one NATO aircraft was shot down overnight. But German, American and NATO officials are denying the claim.