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Serbia: U.S. Sending Observers To Elections

Washington, 17 September 1997 (RFE/RL) - The U.S. State Department has decided to send observers to Serbia's presidential and parliamentary elections on Sunday.

Spokesman James Foley said yesterday the U.S. expects the elections in Serbia to be flawed but nevertheless feels it is important that outside observers monitor the proceedings.

He said this will remind Serb authorities, including federal President Slobodan Milosevic, that the world is watching and will continue to hold him and his regime to standards of democracy and human rights.

But Foley said he understands the concerns of the U.S. Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe that the elections will not be free or fair and thus its decision announced last week that it will not participate in the international monitoring effort.

The Commission is an independent U.S. government agency formed after the signing of the Helsinki accords and reports to the U.S. Congress.