WAR IN THE BALKANS: Conflict Briefing: Day 24

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The Independent Online
n More than 4,000 US marines and sailors boarded ships off the coast of North Carolina to head to the Balkans.

n The Pentagon will ask President Clinton to activate as many as 33,000 reservists and National Guard troops

n Yemen has sent tents, blankets and funds to Muslims who have fled Kosovo to Albania.

n Spain is sending two more F-18 aircraft.

n Nato leaflets urging Yugoslav soldiers to defect or "leave their bones" in Kosovo are being dropped there.

n 4,000 refugees arrived in Brazde camp. British engineer troops erected 235 tents for them.

n 4,623 refugees entered Albania and 7,000 Macedonia in the last 24 hours.

n Nato will supply another 11,000 tents.

n 35 Nato relief flights arrive in Skopje in Macedonia every day.

n British troops continue to provide food, water, blankets and other supplies.

n 5,000 wind-up radios will be distributed in refugee camps in Macedonia and Albania.

t Since the conflict began, British troops have distributed 264,000 litres of bottled water, 163,000 litres of milk, and 129,000 meals using 46,000 whole chickens, 129,000 loaves of bread, 102,432 jars of baby food, 3 tons of cheese, 16,000 hard boiled eggs.

t British troops have supplied a total of 20,000 baby bottles, 58,000 nappies, 35,000 toothbrushes, 58,000 items of female hygiene.

t The Dutch government has contributed more than 40 million guilders (pounds 12.25m) in development aid to Kosovo.

t Russia's opposition-dominated State Duma (the lower house of parliament) voted by 293 to 54 to allow Yugoslavia to join the loose Russia-Belarus union in the latest show of solidarity between Moscow and its traditional ally.