Angry Bosnian Serb pensioners call for demos

BANJA LUKA, Bosnia-Hercegovina, Aug 16, 2000 -- (AFP) The Bosnian Serb Pensioners Association called Tuesday for five days of demonstrations from August 21 to protest late or unpaid pensions.

Pensioners were angered when they discovered earlier this month that their check for the second half of March was also meant to cover the first two weeks of June.

The Republika Srpska government argued that earlier increases in pensions had compensated for this.

But the association rejected the argument, maintaining that pensioners are owed two months back payments.

Serb pensioners are also worried about their future pensions since the government recently announced that it would no longer subsidize the Serb entity's pension fund.

Many companies cannot, or do not pay into the existing which is not expected to be able to meet the future demands of 172,000 pensioners.

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