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October 20, 1996
. Vreme News Digest Agency No 263
Election Campaign in Montenegro

False Start

by Velizar Brajovic

Despite everything, Podgorica's radio station Antena M is not changing its program scheme. Veselin Tomovic, editor-in-chief, has made that decision disregarding the threats of the Secretariat of Information which stated that the fact that the radio station does not have proper grounding, would be a sufficient reason to close it down. This radio station has withstood the test thunderstorms which the government had prepared in the form of interrogating one of the station's hosts at the police station. The listeners are still enjoying the sounds of the songs which mention Sloba, Moma, Milo, mafia men...

On the other side, the campaign is accelerating its pace and the "fight" between DPS and National Harmony is gaining in fierceness. The ruling party is getting help from the formerly forgotten SUBNOR (United Veterans League of the National Liberation War).

The minister of defense in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia's government, Pavle Bulatovic, is heading the federal DPS lists in Kolasin and in Mojkovac. There, he spoke to his sympathizers about how the military was de-politicized, of the honest DPS government, patriotism, the battle for the creation and preservation of the FR of Yugoslavia, the danger that is lurking from the opposition, with the conclusion that to vote for him is to vote for DPS.

The minister of the Montenegrin police, Filip Vujanovic, also didn't fail to appear at the DPS rallies. He even admitted that the police "wherever that is possible is filming National Harmony rallies, but only for the purpose of their safety."

The opposition is drawing up written announcements and protests, and the list of remarks which are endangering the regularity of the election race is way too long. This is most apparent in the state television program which is overflowing with DPS promotion clips and film reports of their conventions. A record was made on Sunday when, despite election regulations, a report from a DPS promotion was broadcast in the duration of 40 minutes.

From DPS circles we find out that the balance of power of DPS and National Harmony at this moment (according to the latest polls) is 30:28 for the ruling party. Some other polls give a different balance, but closest to the truth is that the powers are now equal. Which is why DPS is stepping up the campaign.

However, analysts estimate that this time DPS could be left without absolute power, by which one of the goals of National Harmony would be attained. The will of the Albanians and Muslims will play a major role in the election results. If they opt for national parties, DPS would be left without a few mandates which they had gained in the last elections. However, in case the Albanians and Muslims decide to place their fate with National Harmony - the DPS advantage would dwindle out.

The Social-Democrats also have chances for mandates while Seselj's radicals aren't left without any chances either.

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