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16 June, 1998
Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos yesterday referred to a decision taken by the European Union regarding Kosovo, terming it "balanced".
In briefing Greek reporters, he said the statement clarifies that there is no issue of supporting whatever effort aimed at Kosovo's independence, while in parallel, whatever use of military force by the government of a country against its population is condemned.
This decision has a wider significance since it concerns all countries and not only Yugoslavia, he said, adding that for countries with similar problems there is no prospect of EU accession.
Mr. Pangalos said that yesterday's session of EU heads of state and government focused primarily on problems faced by European economies, repercussions of the Asian crisis and the situation in Kosovo until early in the evening.
Mr. Pangalos said that the main priorities of member-states are strengthening the competitiveness of the European economy and the undertaking of initiatives aimed at combating unemployment. He added that the "15" also attribute great significance to the sectors of education and additional vocational training.
Commenting on the recent worsening of the Asian crisis, Mr. Pangalos said that the first lesson that can be concluded is the absolute refutation of all those who assessed that the so-called "Asian tigers" can constitute a model for economic development.
Mr. Pangalos said that during their luncheon at noon yesterday, the 15 heads of state and government had the opportunity of exchanging views on the EU's future and prospects. They agreed during the luncheon to have an informal summit convened in October to discuss the EU's prospects.
Summing up on this issue, Mr. Pangalos said that Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic must receive Felippe Gonzalez in Belgrade as an EU envoy.
Regarding relations between Turkey and the EU, Mr. Pangalos said that the issue has not been raised for discussion for the time being, adding that the Ankara government is mainly responsible for the current situation in relations between the EU and Turkey.
Source: Athens News Agency