Treat your friends as you do your pictures, and place them in their best light. - Jennie Jerome Churchill
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 62, 30 March 1992



SUCCESSOR STATES TO THE USSR

MOLDOVA DECLARES STATE OF EMERGENCY AND ISSUES ULTIMATUM TO REBELS.
After weeks of escalating violence in Moldova, on 29 March President
Mircea Snegur declared a state of emergency throughout the republic,
Western and CIS agencies reported. Calling on the separatists
of the "Dniester Republic" to surrender their arms and acknowledge
the authority of the Moldovan government, he ordered Moldova's
security forces to "liquidate and disarm the illegitimate armed
formations" which were backing the Dniester "pseudo-state." The
leadership of the "Dniester Republic" has responded with a call
to arms and has appealed to Russia for protection, The Los Angeles
Times reported on 30 March.(Bohdan Nahaylo)

RUSSIA ON SETTLEMENT OF DNIESTER PROBLEM. The Russian Foreign
Ministry issued a statement calling on Moldovan authorities and
all parties concerned to act strictly in accordance with the
norms of international law, legality, and respect for the rights
of individuals and ethnic minorities. [No date of MFA statement
provided.] Russian Minister Andrei Kozyrev also sent a message
to the foreign ministers of Ukraine, Moldova, and Romania calling
for practical steps to be taken to settle the conflict, Interfax
reported on 29 March. On the same day, Romanian President Ion
Iliescu said that foreign ministry officials from the four countries
will hold talks in Chisenau on 30 or 31 March, Western agencies
reported. (Suzanne Crow)

UKRAINIAN REACTION TO DEVELOPMENTS IN MOLDOVA. Radio Bucharest
reported on 28 March that Ukrainian Prime Minister Vitold Fokin
had expressed his concern about developments in Moldova in a
telephone conversation with his Moldovan counterpart, Valeriu
Muravschi. On 29 March, the Presidium of the Ukrainian Supreme
Council issued a statement warning that the escalation of the
armed conflict in Moldova could have dangerous consequences for
the republic's neighbors, especially Ukraine, Radio Ukraine reported.
That same day, the head of the Ukrainian parliamentary commission
on external affairs, Dmytro Pavlychko, who had just returned
from Moldova, told Radio Ukraine that Ukraine considers the existing
border with Moldova as inviolable. (Bohdan Nahaylo)

NAGORNO-KARABAKH UPDATE. Despite an agreement on 27 March between
Armenia and Azerbaijan to extend the informal Iranian-brokered
cease-fire in Nagorno-Karabakh, a passenger plane flying from
Stepanakert to Erevan was hit by an Azerbaijani heat-seeking
missile on 27 March, and Stepanakert and other Armenian villages
were subjected to missile attacks on 28-29 March, killing at
least eight people, Western agencies reported. Iranian Deputy
Foreign Minister Mahmoud Vaezi told reporters on 29 March that
Russian representatives will participate in quadripartite talks
on Karabakh to be held this week. (Liz Fuller)

GAMSAKHURDIA SUPPORTERS SEIZE TOWNS IN WESTERN GEORGIA. Supporters
of ousted Georgian President Zviad Gamsakhurdia occupied the
towns of Abasha, Khobi, Senaki, and Tsalendzhik in western Georgia
on 28 March, and dismissed the local authorities, ITAR-TASS reported
on 29 March. The ruling State Council has ordered a mobilization
of National Guard reservists in order "to protect public order"
throughout Georgia. (Liz Fuller)

ONLY SEVEN STATES AGREE TO CIS INTER-PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY.
Only seven of the eleven states which are members of the CIS
agreed in Alma-Ata on 27 March to form an inter-parliamentary
assembly, ITAR-TASS reported. Moldova and Turkmenistan were not
represented at the meeting, and Ukraine and Azerbaijan did not
sign the agreement. The chairman of the Ukrainian parliament,
Ivan Pliushch, explained that Ukraine accepted the need for inter-parliamentary
consultations between the CIS states, but not for an inter-parliamentary
assembly. (Bohdan Nahaylo)

DETAILS OF RUSSIAN ARMED FORCES, MILITARY BUDGET. Lt. Gen. Valerii
Manilov told a press conference on 27 March that the Russian
armed forces would have 1.2-1.3 million men. According to Interfax,
he predicted that the Russian military would be formed by the
end of the current "transitional period" of perhaps two years.
Speaking on Russian TV that same day, Russian parliamentary deputy
Valerii Shinko revealed that the draft budget called for defense
expenditures of 50,727 million rubles in the first quarter of
this year, 118,802 million in the second, and an average of 132,612
million for each of the last two quarters. Shinko complained
that there had been no justification for the sharp increase in
the second quarter spending. (Doug Clarke)

STUDY: EX-SOVIET MILITARY COULD "EXPLODE." Rossiiskaya gazeta
on 27 March published a study warning that demoralization and
the decline of discipline in the former Soviet military had reached
a "dangerously explosive" point. The study had been prepared
by the Istina Research Center of the Russian Science Ministry.
The authors said that the military lacked state or public controls
and was at the center of the "contradictions" that were tearing
apart the CIS. (Doug Clarke)

UKRAINE CHANGES NUKE REMOVAL DEADLINE? Ukrainian President Leonid
Kravchuk told an audience in New Delhi on 27 March that all the
former Soviet tactical nuclear weapons would be removed from
Ukraine "this year." He was also quoted by Western agencies as
saying that Ukraine would sign the nuclear non-proliferation
treaty. Ukraine had agreed at the December 1991 Alma-Ata CIS
summit to transfer all the tactical nuclear weapons to Russia
by 1 July. The Ukrainian parliament has yet to ratify this agreement.
Reuters reported on 26 March that the parliament would discuss
a proposal to delay the withdrawal of strategic nuclear weapons
from its territory. These are due to be pulled out by 1995. (Doug
Clarke)

RUSSIA TO BUILD NEW BALLISTIC MISSILE. Postfactum on 27 March
carried a report that Russian President Boris Yeltsin had approved
the development of a new single-warhead inter-continental ballistic
missile. It referred to a supposition by military experts that
this new program was related to the possibility that Russia and
the United States might agree to eliminate multiple-warhead strategic
nuclear missiles. (Doug Clarke)

DROP IN DEFENSE INDUSTRY EXPORTS. The chairman of the All-Russian
Trade Union of Defense Industry Workers told Krasnaya zvezda
of 26 March that Russian defense industry exports were 3.8 times
less in 1991 than in 1989, ITAR-TASS reported. He attributed
some of the blame to "the Russian government's lack of a military
doctrine," and claimed that 21% of the defense industry enterprises
were on the verge of bankruptcy. No authoritative data appear
to have been published on Soviet or Russian arms exports, but
the trade union official's assertion contradicts other pronouncements.
For instance, Kommersant, as quoted by TASS on 20 January, reported
that the Soviet Union was the world's leading arms exporter in
1991, with $11.65 billion's worth of sales. (Keith Bush)

DRAFT PLAN PROPOSED FOR TATARSTAN-BASHKORTOSTAN CONFEDERATION.
On 27 March, the Presidium of the Tatarstan Parliament indicated
its opposition to a draft plan proposed by a group of Tatarstan
deputies on the creation of a "Volga-Ural Confederation" on the
territories of Tatarstan and Bashkortostan. The draft plan, which
the Tatarstan Parliament called a "political provocation on the
eve of talks with Russia," calls for a presidential republic
consisting of Tatarstan and Bashkortostan with its own legislation
and citizenship--a republic that would be open for entry to the
Chuvash, Udmurt and Mordovian republics, the capital of which
would be either Kazan or Ufa. (Charles Carlson)

BASHKORTOSTAN REJECTS RUSSIAN FEDERATION TREATY. On 28 March,
the Bashkortostan Parliament rejected the Russian Federation
Treaty in its present form, saying it would sign only if proposed
amendments are introduced that recognize the fundamental principles
of Bashkortostan's declaration of sovereignty, grant the republic
more rights, recognize the republics in the Russian Federation
as founders of the federation, and limit the powers given to
the Russian central government. The treaty, initialed by Bashkortostan
parliament Chairman Murtaza Rakhinmov last week, is scheduled
for signing on 31 March in Moscow. Tatarstan and the self-proclaimed
Chechen republic have also said they will not sign the federation
treaty. (Charles Carlson)

TATAR CONGRESS CONCLUDES. The first session of the Milli-Majlis--the
national congress of Tatars--has ended in Kazan, Interfax reported
on 29 March. At its opening session on 28 March, the Milli-Majlis
was proclaimed the supreme representative body of the Tatar people
vested with legislative powers to repeal any laws or decisions
passed by the parliament or the Cabinet of Ministers of Tatarstan
which contradict the declaration of national sovereignty or the
interests of the Tatar people. On its last day, the Milli-Majlis
focused on military matters and participation in the World Congress
of Tatars (scheduled for June), since official authorities have
denied the Milli-Majlis their recognition and have instead proposed
that the World Congress of Tatars form an alternative milli-majlis.
(Charles Carlson)

SIX MILLION UNEMPLOYED FORECAST. Russian First Deputy Labor Minister
Vladimir Kosmarsky told a Moscow news conference on 27 March
that some 6 million people are likely to be unemployed in Russia
by the end of 1992, and he expects that some 2 million of these
will receive unemployment benefits, Reuters reported. Social
payments will total tens of billions of rubles each quarter.
He was unable to say whether these have been provided for in
the state budget, but said that they must be paid, even if it
meant increasing the budget deficit. Russian First Deputy Prime
Minister Egor Gaidar repeated that estimate of 6 million unemployed
by year's end to the Russian parliament on 27 March, AFP reported.
(Keith Bush)

ONE-OFF PAYMENT TO PENSIONERS PROPOSED. The Russian minister
of social security told Rossiiskiy vesti on 26 March that it
was intended to make a one-off payment of 300 rubles to pensioners
in April. Additional payments to families with children were
also being considered. The minister hoped that the Russian parliament
would expedite the passage of the new pension law so that it
could take effect from May and not July, as had originally been
envisaged. This would, inter alia, raise the level of the minimum
pension to not lower than the officially-determined subsistence
level. (Keith Bush)

WEST URGED TO SPEED UP ASSISTANCE. At a conference in Turkey
on 27 March, representatives from the Central Asian and Caucasian
republics of the former Soviet Union asked the West to expedite
aid, Reuters reported. The two-day meeting at Antalya, focussing
on technical aid to these republics, was hosted by the Turkish
Export-Import Bank. The CIS and Georgian representatives said
that they have enough natural resources but need foreign technical
help in five main areas: human resources, health, ecology, restructuring,
and transportation. (Keith Bush)

BESSMERTNYKH REPLACES SHEVARDNADZE AT FPA. Eduard Shevardnadze
has resigned as president of the Foreign Policy Association,
a foreign policy think tank which he created in 1991. Former
USSR Foreign Minister Aleksandr Bessmertnykh was elected by the
Association on 28 March to succeed Shevardnadze. Shevardnadze,
whose duties as Chairman of the State Council in Georgia prevent
him from continuing as the FPA's president, was voted to be honorary
president by the Association, Interfax reported on 28 March.
(Suzanne Crow)

UKRAINE SEEKS ECONOMIC COOPERATION WITH JAPAN. Ukraine is keen
to develop good economic relations with Japan and in April is
planning to propose three agreements on bilateral economic cooperation,
ITAR-TASS reported from Tokyo on 26 March. The Ukrainian deputy
minister for foreign trade, Leonid Steshenko, explained in an
interview for a Japanese newspaper that Ukraine is anxious to
reduce its dependence on Russia and other former Soviet republics.
(Bohdan Nahaylo)

UKRAINE DEVELOPS TIES WITH INDIA. On 29 March Ukrainian President
Leonid Kravchuk concluded an official visit to India, ITAR-TASS
reported. The main result of the visit, according to Kravchuk,
was the signing of a bilateral agreement on friendship and cooperation,
and agreements on cooperation in the economic and trade spheres.
(Bohdan Nahaylo)

UNOFFICIAL RALLY CONTINUES IN DUSHANBE. An unofficial rally organized
by demonstrators demanding new parliamentary elections and the
release of former Dushanbe Mayor Maksud Ikramov was continuing
into its fourth day, Interfax reported on 28 March. Ikramov was
arrested earlier this month for misusing his authority and taking
bribes. The rally, which began after parliament dismissed Tajik
Interior Minister Mamadayez Navzhuvanov for ignoring orders by
top republican authorities, was discussed on Russian TV on 29
March by Tajik President Rakhmon Nabiyev, who said that he does
not have the power to dissolve parliament as long as the new
constitution has not been drafted and that the courts must first
decide whether Ikramov is guilty or not. If Ikramov is not guilty,
Nabiyev said, those authorities who authorized his arrest should
be held accountable. (Charles Carlson)

SPLIT AMONG UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX BELIEVERS COMPOUNDED. On 27 March,
Radio Ukraine reported on a split in the ranks of the Ukrainian
Autocephalous Orthodox Church, which unlike the Ukrainian Orthodox
Church (formerly, simply part of the Russian Orthodox Church)
was banned by the Soviet authorities. This Church now appears
to have divided into those, led by Metropolitan Ioann, who want
to join with the Ukrainian Orthodox Church led by Metropolitan
Filaret (who is currently pressing for autocephaly, or canonical
independence from the Moscow Patriarchate), and those who have
remained loyal to the Patriarch of the Ukrainian Autocephalous
Orthodox Church, Mstyslav. (Bohdan Nahaylo)

METROPOLITAN REJECTS CRITICISM. Zhizn published in no. 11, March
1992, an interview with Metropolitan Pitirim of Volokolam and
Yurev. The metropolitan, who is the head of the publishing department
of the Russian Orthodox Church, is one of its leading hierarchs.
He was accused recently in the press of being a "KGB operative."
The metropolitan told the interviewer that he thinks it "unnatural"
to defend himself against the campaign being waged now but that
he never did anything illegal or amoral. (Oxana Antic)

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

UK RETURNS ESTONIAN GOLD. British Ambassador to Estonia Brian
Buik Low signed a note on 27 March returning the gold Estonia
had deposited in the UK before World War II, ETA reported that
day. Bank of Estonia President Siim Kallas said the gold, worth
about $50-60 million, will remain in London to back the planned
Estonian kroon. (Riina Kionka)

LATVIA BECOMES MEMBER OF EBRD. Latvia's Deputy Minister for Economic
Reforms Dainis Ritins told Diena of 26 March that Latvia has
become a member of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
He said that Latvia's membership was announced in a letter dated
18 March from EBRD president Jacques Attali to Arnis Kalnins,
Minister for Economic Reforms. (Dzintra Bungs)

LATVIAN GOVERNMENT RECKONS WITH ECONOMIC STATE OF EMERGENCY.
The Latvian government has asked the Supreme Council to accord
it special powers to deal with an economic state of emergency,
should such a situation arise. Minister for Economic Reforms
Arnis Kalnins said that this request was included in a wide-ranging
economic stabilization program that the government had submitted
to the legislature. Kalnins told Diena of 26 March that the program
focuses on ways to keep essential enterprises working, secure
adequate supplies of energy and raw materials, provide social
security and unemployment benefits, and maintain public order.
(Dzintra Bungs)

NO LATVIAN TRAVEL DOCUMENTS FOR ALKSNIS. First Deputy Minister
of Internal Affairs Andris Staris told Diena of 27 March that
the ministry has received a request from the editor of the Moscow
newspaper Nezavisimaya gazeta to provide Col. Viktor Alksnis
with travel documents, since Alksnis has been invited to take
part in an international conference in Paris on 22 April on developments
in the East. Staris pointed out that Alksnis does not recognize
the independent Republic of Latvia and belongs to the armed forces
of a foreign country; the fact that Alksnis is registered as
a resident of Latvia is not an adequate reason for Latvia to
issue him with Latvian travel documents. (Dzintra Bungs)

WALESA SEEKS GERMAN INVESTMENT FOR POLAND . . . Before leaving
Warsaw on 29 March for a four-day official visit to Germany,
President Lech Walesa said that he feels there is still not enough
German investment in Poland. Interviewed by Zycie Warszawy on
27 March he acknowledged, however, that to attract foreign capital
"we must put our own house in order." Walesa also reminded Poles
who might still hold onto prejudices left over from World War
II that "the Germany of today is democratic, liberal and modern."
Poles must not keep looking to the past, "or else they will be
unable to move forward," he noted. Arriving in Bonn, the Polish
President told German television "it is time to close the last
chapter which has divided Europe into East and West." Western
and Polish wire services carried the story. (Wladyslaw Minkiewicz)


. . . CALLS FOR "PARALLEL" ALLIANCES FOR FORMER EAST BLOC. Walesa
called for former communist states of Eastern and Central Europe
to join new alliances, which, he said, would run "parallel" to
the EC and NATO. He made the comment to Italian President Francesco
Cossiga, who stopped in Warsaw on 29 March en route to meetings
in Moscow. Walesa told Cossiga that Eastern Europe "will never
accept Russian domination," Western and Polish media report.
He said the new parallel organizations he proposes could be created
under EC auspices. Cossiga promised support for "the Polish way
to a freemarket economy." (Wladyslaw Minkiewicz)

POLISH GOVERNMENT AGREES TO BROADEN COALITION. On 27 March the
Polish minority government agreed to start formal talks with
pro-reform parties on expanding the coalition. After meeting
leaders of his center-right coalition, Prime Minister Jan Olszewski
said he has been authorized to hold negotiations with all democratic
parties. He specifically seeks the support of two influential
parties, the Democratic Union and the Liberal Democrats, led
by former prime ministers Tadeusz Mazowiecki and Jan Krzysztof
Bielecki respectively. According to Western and Polish media,
their backing would give the government a legislative majority
in parliament. (Wladyslaw Minkiewicz)

POLISH OFFICIALS EXPRESS CONCERN OVER ARMS ARRESTS. Polish officials
have expressed concern over the arrest of seven Poles in Germany
on charges of trying to sell arms illegally. On 28 March Gazeta
wyborcza said the Polish embassy in Bonn protested the failure
of German authorities to inform Warsaw of the arrests. According
to the paper, Polish Consul Stanislaw Bijak called the case "a
misunderstanding." Meanwhile, Foreign Ministry spokesman Grzegorz
Dziemidowicz said the detained Poles have been provided with
legal and consular aid. (Wladyslaw Minkiewicz)

DUBCEK TO LEAD SLOVAK SOCIAL DEMOCRATS. Czechoslovak federal
parliament Chairman Alexander Dubcek was elected chairman of
the Slovak Social Democratic Party (SDSS) at the party's congress
in Bratislava on 28 March. Dubcek joined the SDSS only two weeks
ago. He told the congress that the basic goals of the SDSS program
are a prosperous social-market economy oriented toward ecology,
democratic rights, and freedoms for all citizens and a common
state of Czechs and Slovaks based on equality. He said, "Our
aim is a united Europe and a dignified place for Czechoslovakia
in it." He also said that the SDSS is going into the June elections
as a separate party but does not reject cooperation with other
parties, CSTK reports. On 29 March a faction in the Christian
Democratic Movement in Slovakia held a constituent congress.
It established the Slovak Christian Democrats as a separate party,
elected leader Jan Klepac Party Chairman and approved a platform
that calls for the declaration of Slovak sovereignty. (Barbara
Kroulik)

HUNGARIAN-ISRAELI COOPERATION AGREEMENT. On 27 March in Budapest
Hungarian and Israeli officials signed an interstate agreement
on scientific and technological cooperation, MTI reports. The
agreement provides for extensive cooperation between the two
countries' scientists and universities in the fields of biotechnology,
engineering, and mathematics. Lajos Nyiri, the deputy president
of Hungary's Technical Development Committee, commented that
the agreement serves as a "model" for similar agreements with
other countries. (Edith Oltay)

ROMAN SCORES VICTORY AT NSF CONVENTION. The NSF convention ended
its work on 29 March. On the 28th NSF leader Petre Roman accused
excommunists and the secret police of blocking progress and succeeded
in postponing the selection of a candidate for the presidential
elections. Hundreds of partisans of President Ion Iliescu walked
out while Roman's supporters shouted "Down with communism!" About
64% of those delegates who remained voted to support Roman's
reform program, and reelected him as leader with the new title
of NSF president. The new statutes define the NSF as a party
of the modern social-democratic type. Roman urged that presidential
and legislative elections be held by June at the latest. (Mihai
Sturdza)

ROMANIAN LEADERS ABOUT THE CONFLICT IN MOLDOVA. On 28 March President
Ion Iliescu met with Prime Minister Theodor Stolojan and several
ministers to consider the crisis in Moldova. They expressed readiness
to support Moldova in defending its territorial integrity, sovereignty,
and independence, and spoke in favor of a peaceful solution to
the present crisis. The same day, NSF leader Petre Roman hinted
that the key might be a land swap between Moldova and Ukraine.
Alluding to Stalin's annexation of Romanian territories in 1940,
Roman said that "the Dniester area was not part of Moldova in
1940, but at that time Moldova included some lands which are
not part of it today." (Mihai Sturdza)

BULGARIAN STRIKE UPDATE. The miners' strike that began on 26
March, involves some 40,000 miners, according to the Podkrepa
strike committee, but this figure could not be confirmed by the
government. Talks between the government and the strike committee
resumed early on 30 March, Bulgarian Radio reports. From various
publications and broadcasts, meanwhile, it is clear that the
strikers are protesting the intended discontinuation of uranium
and lead mining and are demanding payment of the wages due to
them for the past several months and the resignation of Minister
of Industry and Trade Ivan Pushkarov. Prime Minister Filip Dimitrov
said on Bulgarian TV on 28 March that money for the back wages
must be found, but he refused categorically to discuss Pushkarov's
resignation. (Rada Nikolaev)

BSP LEGITIMACY QUESTIONED. A Sofia regional court on 27 March
found that the Bulgarian Communist Party was never registered
as a legitimate legal entity, association, or party, BTA reports.
The court action had been initiated by Yanko Yankov, leader of
the Liberal Congress Party, who asked for invalidation of the
10 April 1990 court registration of the Bulgarian Socialist Party
since it merely meant renaming the BCP, which was not registered.
Yankov pointed out in Demokratsiya on 28 March that since it
is not a legitimate party, the BSP can not avail itself of the
protection of Bulgarian or international law. This will have
special significance for the BSP when the expected law on decommunization
is passed. (Rada Nikolaev)

CEASE-FIRE IN BOSANSKI BROD. International media report that
the Serbian-dominated federal army on one side and the Croatian
and Muslim militias on the other agreed on a cease-fire for this
embattled transportation hub on 28 March. A buffer zone has been
set up through the middle of the town, and the truce appears
to be holding. A number of Serbian civilians were apparently
massacred in a nearby village on 27 March, but the circumstances
of the incident are unclear. A Muslim member of the republic's
governing Presidency subsequently repeated his call for UN peace-keepers
to come to Bosnia-Herzegovina. Serbian, Croatian, and Muslim
leaders meet on 30 March in Brussels again in a new round of
talks on the republic's political future. Finally, on 27 March
the federal army completed its evacuation of Macedonia. (Patrick
Moore)

AGREEMENT SIGNED BETWEEN TURKEY AND BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA. On 19
March in Ankara a visiting delegation headed by Deputy Prime
Minister Muhamed Cengic signed a protocol aimed at boosting economic
links. Prime Minister Suleiman Demirel as well as opposition
politicians met with the guests from Bosnia-Herzegovina, whose
population is about 43% Muslim, many of whom feel a particular
attachment to Turkey. The Turkish authorities said they back
the territorial integrity of the ethnically mixed republic and
want good relations with all the former Yugoslav republics, including
Serbia and Montenegro. Cengic also met with the Turkish defense
minister and the two sides agreed to explore possibilities for
cooperation in the military industry, with a Turkish delegation
expected soon in Bosnia-Herzegovina to continue the talks. Oslobodjenje
ran the story on 20 and 21 March. (Patrick Moore)

US AMBASSADOR TO YUGOSLAVIA BACKS KOSOVO ALBANIANS. Media in
the Yugoslav area and Western agencies on 29 March quoted US
representative in Belgrade Warren Zimmermann as calling Kosovo
"the biggest human rights problem in Europe." He described the
scene there, where the Serbian authorities have virtually eliminated
human and political rights for the 90%-plus Albanian majority,
as a "typical colonial situation." Zimmermann said "time [is]
on the Albanians' side, and I think they will get their freedom."
(Patrick Moore)


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