Serb Socialist Party: Seselj To Become President!

It’s possible to win the elections by uniting the patriotic forces
It finally happened! The Serb Socialist Party decided to support Vojislav Seselj as the single candidate of opposition during the repeat presidential election. This information was released by Belgrade’s radio B-52 with reference to the Socialist Party executive committee’s statement. According to the statement, the party made the decision after discussing the issue with the Party Chairman Slobodan Milosevic.

Incumbent Yugoslav President Vojislav Kostunica is the main rival of Seselj for the post of president. In addition, Party of National Unity leader Borislav Pelevic is also to take part in the election this time. The Party of National Unity was founded by famous Serb field commander Arkan / Zeljko Raznatovic in 1993. Yugoslav Vice-Premier Miroljub Labus refuses to take part in the election, which is scheduled for December. The term of incumbent Serb President Milan Milutinovic expires on January 5, 2003.

Meanwhile, Albanian separatists in Kosovo systematically destroy Serbian Orthodox churches and force the non-Albanian population out of the region. For instance, an explosion sounded near the settlement of Dzurakovac, 50 kilometers from Pristina last weekend, and a local church was partially destroyed by the explosion. informed that a second explosion sounded later in the village of Ljubovo. The windows and doors of a local temple were damaged. Bishop Artemy of Raska and Prizren claimed that UN and NATO are responsible for the blasts. Although representatives of the missions knew about the tense situation between Serbian Christians and Albanians, they all the same decided to stop protecting Serbian churches. According to Bishop Artemy, “reports of international peacemaking forces about the cessation of the conflict in the region and about a sufficient security level don’t correspond with reality.”

Under such conditions, the Serbian population pins their hopes on Vojislav Seselj. Certainly, Seselj won’t be able to settle the Kosovo problem completely and protect the Serb population in Kosovo (to be more precise, non-Albanian population) from bellicose Albanians. However, it is believed that at the very least, Belgrade’s obviously treacherous policy toward the local Serb population in the region will stop.

The leader of the radical Serb party said in an October interview to Russia’s newspaper Sovetskaya Rossiya: “Kostunica and I will be the obvious main rivals during the repeat election in December. A pro-western variant represented by Labus will be obviously no success. It is really very important to secure the unity of patriotic forces. Part of the Serb Socialist Party’s followers supported Milosevic’s appeal to nominate a single candidate from the patriotic forces during the last election. The people voted for me. However, some of the Socialists voted for two candidates nominated from the Socialist Party members. Some people ignored the election, as they failed to understand the pre-election situation. Some of the Socialist Party followers voted for Kostunica, as they believed him to be a lesser evil compared with Labus. This means a rather strong reserve. It’s possible to win the election by uniting the patriotic forces. However, this work meets strong opposition of the West and its servants in Yugoslavia. There were even people who said that Slobodan Milosevic sent no letters at all to urge people to support me at the elections! The people were said that if I win the elections, it will mean another blockade or even war in the country. Does it make sense to rely upon the unity? A patriotic coalition is highly possible. We are sure that the traditional division of political forces into the right-wing and left-wing coalitions is outdated. Our party is said to belong to the right-wing camp, as we stick to clearly outlined nationalist views. However, we are not a right-wing party from a traditional point of view. Our electorate are the poorest layers of the population. We seek social justice, which is why people support us.”

You can read the complete version of the interview with Vojislav Seselj on the Sovetskaya Rossiya official site, Rednews.Ru.

Sergey Stefanov PRAVDA.Ru

Translated by Maria Gousseva

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