A disagreement may be the shortest cut between two minds. - Kahlil Gibran
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 196, 15 October 1991



USSR--ALL-UNION TOPICS AND RSFSR



SIGNING OF ECONOMIC TREATY POSTPONED. According to TASS of October
14, acting prime minister Ivan Silaev said that day that the
treaty on an economic community will now be signed on October
18. Interfax of the same date cited the USSR President's press
service as giving 1700hours on Friday as the precise time for
the ceremony. Ten of the non-Baltic republics to date have declared
their willingness to sign. [Moldova has equivocated and Georgia
has been absent from the negotiations]. Silaev explained that
the accompanying agreements [it was previously reported that
there are 17 of these] were not yet ready for signature, and
notably an inter-republican treaty on the banking system. Interfax
further reported that the Presidium of the RSFSR Supreme Soviet
had appointed a group to "work out further proposals and supplements"
to the inter-republican economic treaty. (Keith Bush)

SITUATION IN CHECHENO-INGUSHETIA. As a result of negotiations
with an RSFSR Supreme Soviet delegation, the all-National Congress
of the Chechen People has handed over to the MVD the Council
of Ministers building and the television and radio studios which
had been occupied by units of the Chechen national guard, Russian
TV reported October 14. Moscow Radio reported, however, that
a 13-point agreement with the Executive Committee of the Congress
of the Chechen People, which would include the disbandment of
the national guard, was stalled because the RSFSR delegation
would not recognize the authority of the Executive Committee,
insisting that the Provisional Supreme Council--whose members
are in hiding--is the sole power structure. (Ann Sheehy)

RUTSKOI ON RUSSIAN NATIONAL GUARD. In an interview with Argumenty
i fakty RSFSR Vice-President Aleksandr Rutskoi said that the
size of the RSFSR National Guard would not exceed 3,000 in the
first year, TASS reported October12. In the second year the number
of guardsmen would rise to 10,000, and as the budget deficit
declined to 66,000. Rutskoi said the first training center would
be created on the base of the Dzerzhinsky division in Balashikha.
Recruitment would be on a competitive basis and would start after
the law on the national guard appeared. (Ann Sheehy)

AMNESTY FOR BUSINESSMEN IN JAIL? Mikhail Gorbachev's newly established
Council on Entrepreneurship has proposed that all persons convicted
of so-called "economic crimes" be amnestied. Gorbachev's advisor
on entrepreneurship, Konstantin Zatulin, told "TV-Inform" on
October 13 that some 127,000 people are currently imprisoned
for such "crimes" as "speculation" (the resale of goods for profit),
"private entrepreneurship," and acting as a commercial middleman.
Zatulin disclosed that decrees on an amnesty for such prisoners
have been prepared for the signatures of both USSR President
Gorbachev and RSFSR President Yeltsin. (Julia Wishnevsky)

PRICE TAG RAISED ON RUBLE STABILIZATION FUND? At its meetings
over the weekend with the G-7 nations, the Soviet delegation
asked the West to commit as much as $20 billion to a stabilization
fund to underpin the internal convertibility of the ruble. This
is claimed by The Los Angeles Times of October 15, which says
that it has obtained a copy of the Soviet proposal. Only three
months ago, in connection with President Gorbachev's presentation
to the post G-7 summit meeting in London, the Soviet side suggested
a stabilization fund of $10-12 billion. The newspaper also quotes
Grigorii Yavlinsky as saying that it could take the consenting
republics as long as three months to work out specific details
of the inter-republican economic treaty. (Keith Bush)

ENERGY OUTLOOK FOR THE WINTER. Media reports of the deliberations
of the Committee for the Operational Management of the Economy
on October 14 are conflicting. Radio Moscow-1 said that officials
at yesterday's meeting assured all republics and the Baltic states
that fuel, heat, and electricity will be supplied this winter
at 93% of last year's levels. According to Interfax, however,
Igor' Gavrilov declared that "the country will be without oil
and gas in two weeks" unless more than 10 billion rubles can
be found to pay operating expenses for oil producers. Interfax
also reported that republics which have officially discontinued
payments to the union budget might have their oil and gas supplies
cut off. (Keith Bush)

KGB DEPUTY CHAIRMAN ON REORGANIZATION OF AGENCY. The inter-republican
counterintelligence service will be responsible for the fight
against corruption and organized crime, and also for protecting
the economic system and for training personnel; it is to be modeled
on the structure and functions of the FBI, according to Anatolii
Aleinikov, First Deputy Chairman of the USSR KGB. His remarks
were published in Izvestia on October 14. Aleinikov said that
the current changes provide a unique opportunity to remove superfluous
functions from the KGB. Its eavesdropping and other covert functions
may now be conducted only with the approval of the State Prosecutor,
he added. (Victor Yasmann)

TATAR DEMANDS. October 13 was commemorated in Kazan' as a day
of memory for Tatars who fell when the city was captured by Ivan
the Terrible 439 years ago, Russian TV reported October 14. The
Tatar Public Center, the Ittifak party, the Azatlyk youth organization,
and the Muslim clergy used the occasion to hold a meeting, attended
by about 5,000 people, at which the demand was made that the
Tatarstan Supreme Soviet opening October 15 should adopt a declaration
of complete independence of Tatarstan. If it did not do so, the
participants wanted a vote of no confidence in the Tatar president
Mintimer Shaimiev. Russian TV added that Azatlyk was intending
to picket the building where the Supreme Soviet convenes on October15
to demand the reunification of all Tatar lands in the boundaries
of 1552. (Ann Sheehy)

PECHORA INHABITANTS PROTEST ESTONIAN TERRITORIAL CLAIMS. Over
17,000 of the 20,000 inhabitants of the Pechora area of Pskov
oblast to which Estonia has laid claim expressed their disagreement
with the Estonian authorities in a three-day opinion poll, TASS
reported October 14. The council of elders (dukhovnyi sobor startsev)
of the Pskov-Pechora monastery have appealed to Yeltsin not to allow
the monastery to be taken away from Russia. A protest meeting
is to be held in the town of Pechora on October 19, TASS added.
(Ann Sheehy)

POPULAR FILMMAKER CALLS FOR CREATION OF NATIONAL STATE. Filmmaker
Stanislav Govorukhin, director of the film "One Can't Live This
Way Any Longer," a searing indictment of Communist rule, said
on Central TV on October13, following a screening of the film,
that the RSFSR must proclaim full state sovereignty and end its
association with the Central Asian and Transcaucasian republics,
a recommendation reminiscent of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's prescription
for the future of Russia. Govorukhin also said that the people
should not trust any authority, but should arm themselves and
create self-defense committees to combat the current wave of
criminality and anarchy. The timing of the screening of Govorukhin's
inflammatory film may reflect the acute power struggle underway
among political elites in the RSFSR. (Victor Yasmann)

SOVIET-JAPANESE TALKS. Three days of talks between Foreign Minister
Boris Pankin and Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Nakayama opened
October 14 in Moscow. The USSR reiterated its intention to reduce
its troop strength by one-third on the islands--an offer made
originally by Gorbachev during his April, 1991, visit to Tokyo.
On the Kurile Islands question, Pankin described the Soviet position:
"The main thing is not to determine the final goal right now
. . ." TASS reported. According to Western agencies, Pankin also
said, "We should bring our relations to such a level of closeness
that, in principle, it would not even be very important from
a legal perspective and from the point of view of public opinion
in both countries, who actually had jurisdiction over those islands."
(Suzanne Crow)

MIDDLE EAST TOUR. Soviet Foreign Ministry Spokesman Vitalii Churkin
said October 14 that Boris Pankin is most likely to visit Israel,
Syria, Jordan and Egypt for talks on preparing the Middle East
peace conference. Talks in Israel will focus on the resumption
of full-scale diplomatic relations between the two countries,
Churkin said. "The logic of our relations, as well as the logic
of the situation in the Middle East has led us to this," Churkin
said and expressed hope that full-scale diplomatic relations
would be established on the eve of the peace conference. He also
said that meetings between Pankin and US Secretary of State James
Baker are expected to take place on the morning of October 18,
probably in Jerusalem. (Suzanne Crow)

MORE DENIALS ON AFGHANISTAN. Soviet Foreign Ministry Spokesman
Vitalii Churkin denied October 14 that Boris Pankin and Afghan
opposition representatives discussed in New York the possibility
of transferring the functions of president of the Republic of
Afghanistan to them. He stressed that the Soviet Union continues
to regard the matter of power structures in Afghanistan as the
prerogative of the Afghans themselves, TASS reported October
14. (Suzanne Crow)

SHEVARDNADZE ON PRIMAKOV. Interviewed on the TV show "Who Is
Who" on October 13, Eduard Shevardnadze said that Evgenii Primakov's
visits to Baghdad during the Persian gulf crisis were helpful
to his pro-Western policy, although there were tensions between
the Foreign Ministry and Gorbachev's advisors over the Gulf events.
Shevardnadze might not have been entirely happy with this particular
episode in Primakov's career, but he may see the present head
of the Soviet intelligence service, who is a friend of Shevardnadze's
friends Aleksandr Yakovlev and Vadim Bakatin, as a natural ally
against the conservatives. (Julia Wishnevsky)



USSR--OTHER REPUBLICS



OPPOSITION CRITICIZES KIRGIZ PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION. Western agencies
reported on October 13 that Topchubek Turgunaliev, one of the
leaders of Democratic Kyrgyzstan, the republic's largest non-Communist
political group, was critical of the October 12 election of republican
president Askar Akaev, who ran unopposed for the post he has
held since last December. Turgunaliev complained that potential
opposition candi dates were not given enough time to gather the
25,000 signatures necessary to register. His observations, and
Akaev's own unwillingness to chance immediate election of a new
Supreme Soviet, suggest that Akaev may be convinced that he is
indispensable to the further democratization of Kyrgyzstan. (Bess
Brown)

TURKMEN INTELLECTUALS ATTACK GOVERNMENT. In reaction to the ambivalent
attitude shown by Turkmenistan's leadership to the Moscow junta,
sixty-nine prominent Turkmen intellectuals signed an appeal to
republican president Saparmurad Niyazov in early September; a
copy has just reached the RL Turkmen Service. The appeal asks
that the editors of the two republican dailies be replaced and
the republican MVD chief be removed, and that opposition parties
be registered in Turkmenistan. Niyazov has shown little inclination
to grant any of these requests. (Bess Brown)

FIRST CONGRESS OF BELORUSSIAN UNION OF OFFICERS. More than one
hundred military officers from throughout Belorussia met on September
12-13 in Minsk for the founding congress of the Union of Officers
of Belorussia, an independent group that will devote itself to
the task of establishing a national army. In neighboring Ukraine,
the Second Congress of the Union of Officers of Ukraine is scheduled
to take place on November 1-2. The Ukrainian Union was founded
in July by six officers. Initially a somewhat risque undertaking,
membership in the Union of Officers of Ukraine has soared into
the thousands thanks to the abortive August coup and subsequent
events. (Kathy Mihalisko)

FIRST THEOLOGICAL LYCEUM OPENED IN LVOV. Ukrinform reported on
October 12 that the Greek-Catholic Church in Lvov has opened
the first humanitarian-theological lyceum in the city. The lyceum
is supposed to prepare teachers of religion for pre-school and
elementary school classes. 150 students have already enrolled
in the lyceum, although tuition is not free of charge. The teachers
include priests and monks; subjects taught include Latin, Greek,
Old Church Slavonic, and the history of philosophy and religion.
(Oxana Antic)

MOLDAVIAN DELEGATION IN BRUSSELS. Moldavian Prime Minister Valeriu
Muravschi and the chairman of the Moldavian Parliament's Foreign
Relations Committee, Vasile Nedelciuc, held talks in Brussels
October 9 through 12 with EEC officials and with business circles,
Muravschi told Moldovapres October 14. The delegates informed
the EEC officials of Moldavia's goal of "creating the prerequisites
for Moldavia's future integration in the EEC." A group of EEC
experts is to be sent to Moldavia "soon" to evaluate the republic's
economic situation, Muravschi said. (Vladimir Socor)

MOLDAVIAN PRESIDENT ON QUEST FOR RECOGNITION. Moldavian President
Mircea Snegur told Moldovapres October 11 that the republic will
step up its quest for international recognition. "Moldavia means
to keep knocking on the door of the civilized world, announce
its presence, show its calling card to the leaders of states,
set up meetings and talks with political and business leaders,
extend invitations, and pay visits," were Snegur's words. (Vladimir
Socor)

MOLDAVIAN DEMOCRATIC FORUM PROTESTS SOVIET PROPAGANDA MOVE. The
Democratic Forum of Moldavian Citizens, an umbrella grouping
of some 30 political and civic organizations including non-Moldavian
ethnic associations, has cabled the UN Secretary General to protest
against a statement disseminated at the UN by the USSR Committee
for the Defense of Peace. The statement alleged "massive violations
of human rights" in Moldavia and advised against the republic's
admission to the UN. As cited by Moldovapres October 11, Moldavia's
Democratic Forum countered that the USSR Peace Committee was
acting in a "politicized fashion" and making unsubstantiated
allegations which "completely ignored the realities in the republic."
The Forum urged international governmental and nongovernmental
bodies to examine the situation in Moldavia on the spot. (Vladimir
Socor)



BALTIC STATES



BALTIC STATES ENDORSE CSCE FINAL ACT. Radio Riga reported on
October 15 that the heads of state of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania
have arrived in Helsinki for the formal signing of the CSCE Final
Act that was adopted on August1, 1975. After the signing, the
Baltic leaders are to meet with Finnish President Mauno Koivisto.
(Dzintra Bungs)

ESTONIA AND LATVIA JOIN UNESCO. Estonia and Latvia have joined
the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization,
according to Western agency dispatches of October 14. Estonian
and Latvian representatives signed the formal agreements of membership
at UNESCO's offices in London, thus bringing UNESCO membership
to 162states. Lithuania joined UNESCO on October7. (Dzintra Bungs)


BALTIC STATES TO TAKE PART IN NATO MEETING. Diena reported on
October 14 that the Baltic States will participate as observers
in the NATO annual meeting in Madrid from October17 to 22. Talavs
Jundzis, Chairman of the Latvian Supreme Council Commission on
Defense and Internal Affairs, said that while Latvia does not
plan to join NATO in the near future, it looks to NATO to maintain
European security. Latvia will send to Madrid Jundzis and two
other deputies, Juris Dobelis and Mihails Stepicevs. Dobelis
said Latvia hopes to have NATO observers present when the USSR
starts the troop withdrawal process and to benefit from NATO
information and experience in such matters. (Dzintra Bungs)

BALTIC SEA PARLIAMENTARIANS TO MEET IN LUEBECK. A conference
on the ecological situation of the Baltic Sea will take place
from October 17 to 19 in the German port city of Luebeck, the
head of the German Bundestag delegation, Rolf Olderog, told the
press on October14. Attending the conference will be parliamentarians
from the countries around the Baltic Sea, and others, including
Czechoslovakia, Iceland, and Norway. Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania
will participate for the first time in the conference, according
to Western agency reports of October 14. (Dzintra Bungs)

EAST GERMANS WANT TO EXPAND BALTIC ECONOMIC CONTACTS. A high-ranking
German delegation from Saxony visited Lithuania last week, according
to Western agency dispatches of October 14. On October 9, Diena
reported on visits by delegations from Magdeburg and Rostock
to Riga. Among the issues discussed was the establishment of
a ferry link between Riga and Rostock. The purpose of all these
visits was to expand economic contacts between the two Baltic
States and Germany. (Dzintra Bungs)

LATVIAN OFFICIAL EXPECTS SOVIET TROOP WITHDRAWAL TO BE GRADUAL. Deputy
Juris Dobelis told the Baltic News Service on October11 about a recent
discussion among Baltic representatives in Jurmala concerning the departure
of Soviet armed forces from Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. He
said, "We cannot expect to solve this problem by a single accord;
it will be a lengthy and gradual process." Dobelis added that
detailed information about Soviet military territories and facilities,
as well as the exact size of the Soviet military presence in
Latvia needs to be obtained and clarified. (Dzintra Bungs)

LATVIAN-SPANISH, LATVIAN-FINNISH DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS RENEWED.
A communique has been signed on the restoration of diplomatic
relations between Latvia and Spain, and on the exchange of envoys.
For the time being, however, the Spanish ambassador to Sweden
will also represent his country in Latvia, according to the October
9 issue of Diena. The Baltic News Service and Diena reported
on October 11 that the Finnish diplomatic mission had started
to function in Riga, under charge d'affaires A. Boman. Finnish
diplomat Antti Lassila will take charge of the mission on December
1. (Dzintra Bungs)


[English] [Russian TRANS | KOI8 | ALT | WIN | MAC | ISO5]

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