from: G 484:

Dear friends,

We are sending you the announcement, which explains the position of nongovernmental organizations of Serbia towards NATO bombing. The incredible events that have happened in Europe, more precisely in Serbia and Montenegro, will change our lives in many aspects. The decision "to use violence for humanitarian reasons" is a sign of impatience, incompetence and impotence of political elite. The bomb attacks in an undeclared war have destroyed human lives, army installations and all chances for Serbia to engage in a process of democratization in near future. Ten years of hard work of groups of courageous people in the opposition and the NGO sector, which tried to develop institutions of civil society, to promote modern European values, to teach about "non violent conflict resolution", has been erased in one night. The emerging democracy in Montenegro will be hard to maintain now. Milosevic regime will be stronger than ever, and the Kosovo problem will be unsolved. These are the long term results of bombing. It is difficult to estimate which of the following is less depressing:
1. the politicians knew the above mentioned consequences of their decisions or
2. they were incapable of foreseeing the impact of heir decisions. We hope that all involved will come to their senses and try to resolve problems by negotiations without further violence. We believe that you agree with us that violence is the worst solution and that the process of the democratization of our country will be completely stopped now. The worst thing now is that the civilians are the ones that suffer the most, especially those who are completely innocent - children. The efforts of NGO sector of Serbia to develop the institutions of the civil society had your significant support for the last few years. All our joint results are now being questioned. Even now, we hope that we can have your support by insisting, in your countries and to your government, TO STOP THE BOMBING IMMIDIATELY. We are convinced that it is never too late for the peaceful solutions and therefore we are calling to pledge together with us for them again.
Belgrade, March 26, 1999
For Group 484, Jelena Santic

Situation in Yugoslavia is getting worse because of NATO bombing. Our organization (Group 484) gathers 484 refuge families, who came from Croatia in Serbia in 1995. Coordinator of our Group is Mrs.Jelena Santic, peace activist since 1991. During the biggest war destructions in Croatia, she traveled from Belgrade to Pakrac, the town in Croatia which was divided between Serbs and Croats, where she led the project of renewal of trust. During 1996 and 1997 the Group was leading a big peace project of renewal of trust in Eastern Slavonija in Croatia. The refuge years in Belgrade, we devoted to pledge for peace and nonviolent conflict solutions. As civil victims of war, we know that violent solutions breads only more violence, and that they could not stop people's suffering. We all see now that this is true. For years, nongovernmental movement in Serbia pledged for raising the civil society in Serbia, but now, all our efforts are going to be lost. Nondemocratic and nationalistic forces are homogenizing and getting stronger, and civil initiatives are under pressure. Bombing must stop immediately, because the number of victims is increasing. We feel your support and it matters a lot in the times like this.
Best regards, Vesna Golic

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