Balkan crisis preoccupies European leaders

June 27, 1992|By Richard O'Mara | Richard O'Mara,Staff Writer

LISBON -- The war in what remains of Yugoslavia thrust itself onto the agenda of the European Community summit yesterday.

"We have been taken by the throat by what is happening to Yugoslavia," said French President Francois Mitterrand. It "demands strong action by the community."

The EC is meeting in Lisbon to consider membership applications from several European countries and to find a formula to finance its activities. The leaders of the 12 EC countries also reappointed Jacques Delors to two more years as president of its European Commission.

But as the summit began yesterday, it was agitated by Yugoslavia.

Strong words flew around, the strongest from the Italian Foreign Minister Gianni de Michelis, who seemed to urge military intervention in the Sarajevo.

"We cannot accept such a violation of human rights without having a reaction as we had before in northern Iraq last year," he said. "What Italy will propose is . . . facing more decisively the reopening of Sarajevo airport for a humanitarian corridor and to do it even by using military elements."

No one else was prepared to advocate such action.

"Europe has neither the means nor the aim of being a policeman in Yugoslavia," said Jean Musitelli, a spokesman for Mr. Mitterrand.

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