CEOL - EU Maintains Sanctions Against Yugoslavia

BRUSSELS, Nov 16, 1999 -- (Reuters) European Union foreign ministers ignored calls on Monday to drop sanctions against Yugoslavia.

Prominent members of the Serbian opposition and some EU member states have called for EU oil and flight embargoes to be lifted to ease problems in Serbia.

Ministers said they would address the issue of sanctions only at a later stage, after EU foreign policy supremo Javier Solana delivers a report on Serbia's democratic opposition.

"There was no decision to lift sanctions," an EU diplomat said.

The EU imposed a ban on flights between EU and Yugoslav airports in 1998 to try to force Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic to end repression against ethnic Albanians in Serbia's Kosovo province.

The EU added to the raft of sanctions with a ban on oil deliveries, a ban on giving visas to friends and allies of Milosevic and a ban on investment as NATO carried out a 78-day air campaign against Yugoslavia.

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