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Mrs. Dole: Ground Troops Possible

April 2, 1999

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) _ The United States shouldn’t rule out using ground troops to stop the forced expulsion of hundreds of thousands of ethnic Albanians from Kosovo, Elizabeth Dole said Friday.

``You don’t take any options off the table,″ the potential Republican presidential candidate told reporters after a speech at a Good Friday breakfast with 1,100 people.

President Clinton has said he is opposed to sending in ground troops.

Arizona Sen. John McCain, another possible GOP presidential candidate, on Thursday urged Clinton to prepare to send troops into Kosovo and to expect casualties if NATO’s objectives are to be achieved.

Mrs. Dole said she agrees wholeheartedly with NATO’s policy of airstrikes in Yugoslavia.

``What we are doing is the right course and we must not shrink from it. We’ve got to be firm, we’ve got to be resolute, we don’t back down,″ she said.

Mrs. Dole said she also favors expanding NATO warplanes’ targets to include ``the Serbian government’s infrastructure.″

Mrs. Dole, former president of the American Red Cross, urged Americans to donate money to humanitarian groups that are aiding the refugees fleeing the forces of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

Mrs. Dole announced three weeks ago the formation of a committee to help her explore the possibility of running for president. She said this week that she must raise more money before deciding whether to run.

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