We are all apt to believe what the world believes about us. - George Eliot
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 216, 13 November 1991



USSR--ALL-UNION TOPICS AND RSFSR



YELTSIN AGREES TO ABIDE BY RSFSR SUPSOV RESOLUTION ON CHECHENO-INGUSHETIA.
A communication distributed on November 12 by Yeltsin's press
secretary Pavel Voshchanov said that Yeltsin agreed with the
decision of the RSFSR Supreme Soviet not to endorse his decree
declaring a state of emergency in Checheno-Ingushetia and would
take all the necessary measures to carry it out, TASS reported
November12. The communication said that Yeltsin has "never been
an advocate of solving this conflict at any price." (Ann Sheehy)


GORBACHEV, STAROVOITOVA ON CHECHENO-INGUSHETIA. Asked by journalists
to comment on the situation in Checheno-Ingushetia, Gorbachev
said on November 12 that all problems concerning the revival
and self-determination of nations should be solved politically,
TASS reported on November 12. Gorbachev did not name Yeltsin
but said "comrades" had "impermissibly overestimated the importance
of force" in settling a complex problem. Galina Starovoitova,
RSFSR State Council member and Yeltsin's adviser on nationality
affairs, speaking to reporters on a visit to Finland on November
12, said Yeltsin had been given poor advice when he ordered a
state of emergency in Checheno-Ingushetia. (Ann Sheehy)

DUDAEV INSISTS RSFSR RECOGNIZE HIM AS LEGITIMATE LEADER. Chechen
President Dzhakhar Dudaev told reporters in Groznyi on November
12 that he would not negotiate with the RSFSR until he was recognized
as the legitimate leader of Checheno-Ingushetia, Western agencies
reported November 12. Moscow radio reported the same day that
the Chechen parliament was objecting to the clause in the RSFSR
Supreme Soviet resolution that the RSFSR would negotiate not
with the president and parliament of the Chechen republic, but
with the main political groups of the Chechen-Ingush republic.
Dudaev remained in a defiant mood, saying that the entire Caucasus
would rise in protest if Russia blocked his republic's drive
towards independence. (Ann Sheehy)

USSR MVD WAS AGAINST USE OF FORCE. The press service of the USSR
MVD said on November 12 that it had come out against the use
of force in Checheno-Ingushetia, TASS reported on November 12.
General Vyacheslav Kommissarov and the deputy commander of the
MVD troops in Checheno-Ingushetia, as well as Yeltsin's personal
representative in the republic Akhmet Arsanov and the RSFSR appointee
as head of the republic MVD Ibragimov, had all warned the ministry
of the possible tragic consequences of the use of force. The
ministry took its decision on November 9 and communicated it
to the RSFSR leadership. (Ann Sheehy)

KHASBULATOV APPEALS TO KARACHAEVO-CHERKESSIA. Chairman of the
RSFSR Supreme Soviet Ruslan Khasbulatov has issued an appeal
to the peoples of the Karachai-Cherkess republic in the North
Caucasus to engage in dialogue to solve their problems, TASS
reported on November12. His appeal follows a recent declaration
of sovereignty by the Cherkess. Earlier the Karachai had proclaimed
their own republic--they had their own autonomous territory before
they were deported in 1943--and the local Cossacks had also proclaimed
their own autonomous territory. Khasbulatov called on the population
to unite to prevent "a fire" which would incinerate the yearnings
of neighboring peoples. (Ann Sheehy)

AFANASEV CRITICIZES YELTSIN. Yurii Afanasev, a leader of the
Democratic Russia Movement, told a press conference in Moscow
on November 12 that he sees "dangerous imperialistic tendencies"
in RSFSR President Boris Yeltsin, Radio Liberty's Russian service
reported. He said the state of emergency declaration in Checheno-Ingushetia
was only the latest example of such tendencies which Yeltsin
has developed since the August coup attempt. Afanasev also said
that the Democratic Russia Movement would cooperate with the
present RSFSR leadership but does not want to be identified with
it. (Carla Thorson)

CENTRAL TV COVERAGE OF GORBACHEV'S PRESS-CONFERENCE. At the November
12 press conference--devoted to the publication of the Russian-language
edition of his recollections on the August coup--Gorbachev confirmed
that President Bush had warned him of the coup in advance, as
"Vesti" quoted CNN later that night. Although Central TV devoted
30 minutes to the press conference, this part was not included
in the report. Included were Gorbachev's remarks that the coup
organizers indeed committed many errors, and his explanation
that he had always believed that "only a madman" could launch
a coup in the Soviet Union. However, the democrats, according
to Gorbachev, did not learn the necessary lessons from the coup
either and continue to fight each other as they did before the
coup, thus losing the fruits of their victory. (Julia Wishnevsky)


MORE DETAILS OF THE COUP WARNING, KGB. During the press conference
Gorbachev admitted that President Bush had, in a telephone call
this summer, warned him about the possibility of a coup. Gorbachev
said that he failed to take the information seriously. Gorbachev
also expressed suspicions that the conversation was wiretapped
by the plotters, but he did not give specific names, according
to TASS on November 12. All communication channels before the
coup were the responsibility of the KGB's Government Communications
Administration. (Victor Yasmann)

CHURKIN ON UNSC SEAT. Vitalii Churkin, Chief of the Information
Directorate of the Soviet Ministry of External Relations, told
All-Union Radio that if the republics could not come up with
a unified foreign policy, Russia would probably acquire the permanent
seat on the UN Security Council. But he said that the question
would not be solved "automatically," and that Russia could not
expect simply to succeed to that seat after the USSR dissolves.
Churkin said he fears "a kind of cataclysm may take place within
the United Nations" and the permanent seat at the UN Security
Council may be lost altogether, according to an All-Union Radio
broadcast on November 8. (Suzanne Crow)

SHAPOSHNIKOV ON NUCLEAR ARMS. Defense Minister Evgenii Shaposhnikov
said in Bonn on November 12 that the USSR has begun withdrawing
nuclear weapons from some republics in order to scrap or destroy
them, Soviet and Western sources reported. He claimed that no
republic had asked for control over nuclear weapons currently
deployed on its territory, but granted that republican leaders
certainly had a right to information concerning the disposition
of those weapons. He added that republican leaders had also approved
the Soviet and American decision to liquidate tactical nuclear
weapons, and said that there are no Soviet nuclear weapons remaining
in Germany. (Stephen Foye)

ON INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS. Shaposhnikov reiterated that the
Soviet Union would honor agreements with other countries on arms
control and troop withdrawals, and said that the USSR had no
reason to demand more money from Germany for the pull-out from
that country that had been previously agreed upon. He nevertheless
asserted that the Soviet Union should be recompensed for investments
it made in bases there. He also addressed difficulties that have
been encountered in the construction of housing for returning
Soviet soldiers. (Stephen Foye)

ON REPUBLICS AND MILITARY SERVICE. Shaposhnikov again raised
fears that the creation of republican armies in what was the
USSR would be destabilizing. He argued that economic constraints
precluded the building of such forces and said that those advocating
republican armies had rejected reason and realism. He told reporters
that democratization would continue in the armed forces and,
according to the November 12 "TSN," said that Soviet conscripts
would next year begin serving for only eighteen months, and that
the Ministry of Defense would transfer to "self-financing." (Stephen
Foye)

BREAD PRICES UP IN MOSCOW. Moscow mayor Gavriil Popov announced
sharp increases in the retail prices for three kinds of speciality
bread on the "Vesti" TV program of November 12, according to
Western agencies on November 13. The two new prices given were
3.60 rubles for a loaf of Cherkizovskii dark bread [previously
0.60 rubles] and 5.52 rubles for a Saratov white loaf [from 0.88
rubles]. Popov said that the demand for bread has grown sharply
because of the lack of other foods. He hoped that further price
increases can be avoided until December 1, when rationing of
several staple foodstuffs begins in the city. Although one Western
newspaper described the price increases as applying to the whole
of the RSFSR, this has not been confirmed by the Soviet media
as monitored in Munich. (Keith Bush)

SECURITY EXPERT IN KEY RSFSR SUPSOV POSITION. An expert on strategic
security, Colonel Mikhail Aleksandrov, has been identified by
October 22 Golos Ukraiiny as the Secretary of the RSFSR SupSov
Committee for Inter-Republic Relations and Regional Policy. A
graduate of the Higher Military-Political Academy, Aleksandrov
has authored a new concept of national security as an alternative
to "new political thinking". His ideas, published in Literaturnaya
Rossiya on October 5, 1990 and February 22, 1991, reject "new
political thinking" as an extension of "proletarian internationalism."
He argued instead for a classic "nation state" approach based
on a balance of power. (Victor Yasmann)

RSFSR TV INVERVIEWS PETRAKOV. On November 12, RSFSR television
broadcast a 55-minute talk with Gorbachev economic adviser Nikolai
Petrakov. Petrakov analyzed the Soviet economic crisis, saying
that totalitarianism had been destroyed but that market reforms
have not yet taken effect. He argued that such reforms should
start with privatization (and marketization) of land. According
to Petrakov, foreign investors should enjoy the same property
rights as Soviet businessmen, including the right to buy land
in the Soviet Union. Asked who had changed more since Petrakov
resigned from Gorbachev's team in January, Petrakov said "Gorbachev;"
he added that Boris Yeltsin knows little about economics. (Julia
Wishnevsky)

THE BOLSHEVIK PARTY RESTORED. Militant Stalinist from St. Petersburg,
Nina Andreeva, fulfilled her promise and announced on November12
the recreation of the All-Russian Communist Party of the Bolsheviks,
"Vesti" reported. In a manifesto signed by Andreeva, the party
announced its adherence to the "dictatorship of the proletariat."
The same program of "Vesti" quoted the Lithuanian government
as saying an underground CP exists in Lithuania. (Vera Tolz)


UNKNOWN LENIN. About 4,000 unpublished documents by Lenin are
kept in the former Central Party Archives, TASS (November 12)
and Krasnaya zvezda (November 13) reported. A member of the RSFSR
parliamentary commission set up to inspect the CPSU and KGB archives,
Vladimir Ponomarev, said the documents have been kept secret
because they don't fit into the "idealized image" of the founder
of the Soviet state. Last month, historian, General Dmitrii Volkogonov,
told RFE/RL that he was working on a book based on Lenin's unpublished
documents. (Vera Tolz)

MORE ON THE MINFIN MYSTERY. The chief of the USSR Supreme Soviet's
Audit Commission, Aleksandr Orlov, told legislators on November12
about the two hidden USSR Ministry of Finance accounts, TASS
reported that day. He was referring to the disclosure first made
in Izvestia on November 6 (see the RFE/RL Daily Report of November
8). Orlov put the value of the two accounts at over 50 billion
rubles, whereas Izvestia had given a figure of 45.4 billion rubles.
USSR Gosbank chairman Viktor Gerashchenko was quoted as saying
that he was almost certain that the hidden funds had not been
reserved for CPSU use, but might have been set up as contingency
funds for natural disasters and the like. (Keith Bush)

ECLIPSE OF VNESHEKONOMBANK? The Journal of Commerce of November
13 carries an informative article on the growing competition
provided for Vneshekonombank by the RSFSR foreign trade bank,
Rosvneshtorgbank. A Vneshekonombank official attributed the bank's
liquidity crisis partly to the withholding by enterprises of
the 40% remittance tax on hard-currency earnings. The bank's
current commercial arrears are put at about $5 billion. It is
said that the bank is paying only companies from countries that
are lending money to the USSR. The Rosvneshtorgbank representative
was confident that Russia will be able to repay its 60% share
of the country's foreign debt, but this may take 5-10 years [most
of the obligations fall due in the next three years]. (Keith
Bush)

RUSSIAN ORTHODOX PRIEST GLEB YAKUNIN'S INTERVIEW. On October
26 Moskovskii komsomolets published an interview with Father
Gleb Yakunin, a Russian Orthodox priest who is active in politics.
(He is a people's deputy of RSFSR, a co-founder of the Russian
Christian Democratic Party, and the leader of the movement "Church
and Perestroika".) Father Gleb, who spent years in jail for defending
persecuted believers of all denominations, discussed his life
and religious and political activities. (Oxana Antic)

PATRIARCH WILL VISIT THE USA. Izvestia reported on November 9
that the Russian Orthodox Patriarch Aleksii II will pay an official
visit to the USA from November 8 to November24. The Patriarch
plans to meet the head of the Orthodox Church in America, high
officials of the Roman-Catholic Church, and representatives of
Jewish communities and organizations. The Patriarch will also
meet the President of the United States. (Oxana Antic)

GORBACHEV TO CS. Czechoslovak Deputy Premier Pavel Rychetsky
told CSTK during his visit to Moscow on November 12 that Soviet
President Mikhail Gorbachev will visit Czechoslovakia before
the end of 1991. Rychetsky said the new Soviet-CSFR treaty of
friendship will be signed during Gorbachev's visit. (Suzanne
Crow)

SOVIET-AFGHAN TALKS. The USSR is not insisting on any specific
make-up of a future government in Afghanistan, Minister of External
Relations Boris Pankin said on November 12. Speaking after talks
with leaders of the Afghan resistance, Pankin said the Soviet
side is willing to hold talks with all Afghan resistance groups.
Pankin also proposed the creation of a permanent Soviet working
delegation in Peshawar to ensure a continuous dialogue, TASS
reported on November 12. (Suzanne Crow)


USSR--OTHER REPUBLICS


ECONOMIC TREATY CRITICIZED IN UKRAINE. Ukraine's adherence to
the economic cooperation agreement has come in for harsh criticism,
Radio Kiev reported on November 12. "Rukh" has issued a statement
saying that there is now a "real danger" to Ukraine's statehood.
The agreement, it says, is above all a political document aimed
at salvaging the Soviet empire. Presidential candidate Vyacheslav
Chornovil also made clear his opposition to the treaty. Meanwhile,
Ukrainian state minister Volodymyr Lanovyi is quoted as saying
that, in effect, Russia blackmailed Ukraine into validating the
economic agreement by refusing to sign the Ukrainian-Russian
bilateral agreement unless Kiev agreed to the economic union.
(Roman Solchanyk)

UKRAINIAN-RUSSIAN INTER-PARLIAMENTARY COMMISSION. Moscow was
the venue for the first session of the Ukrainian-Russian inter-parliamentary
commission on cooperation between Ukraine and Russia on November
12, Radio Kiev and TASS reported the same day. The creation of
such a commission was agreed upon in the Ukrainian-Russian treaty
signed last November. (Roman Solchanyk)

REACTIONARY BELORUSSIAN PAPER GETS A BOOST. The weekly paper My i vremya,
which bills itself as "an independent leftist newspaper" but in fact is
controlled by the most reactionary elements of the Belorussian Communist
Party, was registered in October as a republic-level publication.
Previously, it was registered at the level of the city of Minsk.
My i vremya began its existence as an organ of the Party committee
of the Minsk Watch Factory under the chairmanship of Viktor Chikin.
Chikin, who went on to become second-in-command of the Minsk
City Party committee, in October launched the neo-Bolshevik "Movement
of Workers of the Republic of Belarus," which follows the ideological
line of Nina Andreeva and company. (Kathy Mihalisko)

GEORGIA CLAIMS ARMY EQUIPMENT. According to TASS on November
12, Georgian President Zviad Gamsakhurdia has ordered his Cabinet
of Ministers to begin negotiations with USSR authorities over
acquiring military equipment, weaponry, and other possessions
currently belonging to Soviet military forces in the republic.
(Stephen Foye)


BALTIC STATES


RSFSR OFFICIALS: BALTS TO BLAME. Top RSFSR officials continue
to allege that the Baltic states are partially to blame for the
ensuing crisis in Checheno-Ingushetia. RSFSR Supreme Council
of Nationalities Chairman Ramazan Abdulatipov told a November
10 press conference in Moscow that Georgia and the Baltics states
are behind the developments in the troubled area, according to
BNS. RSFSR Vice President Aleksandr Rutskoi agreed, giving as
evidence that emissaries from Latvia, Lithuania, Georgia, Azerbaidjan,
and other states had been visiting Gronzy. Abdulatipov's and
Rutskoi's remarks suggest that, despite independence, the Baltic
states still function as a convenient scapegoat for some Soviet
officials. (Riina Kionka)

NATO AND ESTONIA. NATO Secretary General Manfred Woerner announced
that Estonia would establish diplomatic contacts with the military
alliance. Woerner made the statement after meeting with Estonia's
Foreign Minister Lennart Meri on November 12 in Brussels. According
to a November 12 RFE Estonian Service interview with Meri, Woerner
said Estonia would set up a "liaison" with NATO. (Riina Kionka)


BALTIC STATES ADMITTED TO FAO. On November 12 in Rome, the United
Nations Food and Agriculture Organization admitted Estonia, Latvia,
and Lithuania as members. The vote was unanimous on the admission,
TASS reported the same day. (Dzintra Bungs)

SUZIEDELIS: UN DUES TOO HIGH FOR BALTIC STATES. Lithuanian delegate
Darius Suziedelis told the UN General Assembly's Administrative
Committee on November 12 that the dues for the Baltic states
are "neither fair nor equitable." He recommended the scale of
assesments be 0.06% of the regular UN budget for Estonia; 0.11%
for Latvia; and 0.13% for Lithuania. He said the Baltic states
would ask for a review of their case, the RFE/RL New York correspondent
reported the same day. He pointed out that in absence of their
own currency, the Baltic states should pay according to the "realistic
value" of the Soviet ruble (about 70 rubles per $1) and that
the UN calculations were made at the "artificial" valuation of
0.6 rubles per dollar. (Dzintra Bungs)

LANDSBERGIS ON USSR TROOPS AND OMON. While visiting Detroit,
Lithuania's Supreme Council Chairman Vytautas Landsbergis said
the US should press the Soviet Union to withdraw its troops from
Lithuania this winter, and should tie the troop withdrawal to
any offer of aid to the USSR, according to Western agency dispatches
of November 12. Landsbergis also said that fewer than half of
the OMON troops have left Lithuania and the rest have gone underground
and appear to be preparing for a chance to destabilize the Lithuanian
government. (Dzintra Bungs)

HAMBURG AIR LINES INAUGURATES FLIGHTS TO RIGA. Radio Riga reported
on November 12 that Hamburg Air Lines started regular flights
between Hamburg and Riga earlier that day. The flights are scheduled
for Tuesdays and Thursdays between the two cities. (Dzintra Bungs)


LATVIAN PARLIAMENT DEBATES CITIZENSHIP, GOVERNMENT STRUCTURE.
Radio Riga reported on November 13 that the Latvian Supreme Council
adopted in the first reading the draft law on citizenship on
November 12; given the heated debate on the draft law, major
changes are expected to be presented when the draft legislation
comes up again for consideration. Today (November 13) the Supreme
Council will discuss a draft law outlining the reorganizaton
of the government. The proposed law stipulates trimming the government
structure, eliminating certain positions, and calls for 16 ministries.
(Dzintra Bungs)

SWEDISH TRADE UNION MURDER TRIAL ENDS. The trial of six suspects
in the murder of two Swedish trade union officials in Tallinn
last January has ended, BNS reported on November12. The two men
who assaulted the Swedes and left them to die in sub-zero temperatures
received 14 and 15 year sentences in strict prisons. The three
women who robbed the Swedes, received 3 and one-half years, 2years
and 2 years plus 3 years parole in general prisons. The cabdriver
who transported the two male suspects was given 1 year plus 3
years parole for not having reported the crime. (Riina Kionka)



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