As courage endagers life even so fear preserves it. - Leonardo Da Vinci
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 64, 01 April 1992





SUCCESSOR STATES TO THE USSR

RUSSIAN FEDERAL TREATY SIGNED. The federal treaty between the
central organs in Moscow and the constituent republics and other
territorial-administrative units of the Russian Federation was
ceremoniously signed in Moscow on 31 March, CIS and Western agencies
reported. The treaty was signed by Ruslan Khasbulatov, chairman
of the Russian parliament, and President Boris Yeltsin as federal
representatives, and by the leaders of 18 of the 20 republics,
Moscow, St. Petersburg, the krais, oblasts, and other territorial
subdivisions. Tatarstan and the Chechen Republic refused to sign
the document, which is to be ratified by the Russian Congress
of People's Deputies that opens on 6 April. Thereafter the treaty
will be incorporated into the new Russian constitution. The treaty
delineates the division of powers between the federal organs
and the subjects of the Federation. Yeltsin opened the ceremony
with a keynote address, saying that "a united Russia was, is,
and will be." (Roman Solchanyk)

TATARSTAN REFUSES TO SIGN FEDERAL TREATY BUT IS SATISFIED WITH
RUSSIAN TALKS. Interfax of 31 March quotes Tatarstan parliamentary
Chairman Farid Mukhametshin as saying Russia and Tatarstan had
common views on a bilateral agreement that is being drafted in
Moscow, but still differed on budget and tax issues. Tatarstan
would like to have a "one-channel" budget and a tax collection
system based on its own laws to transfer a portion of the money
to federal authorities. Tatarstan refused to sign the Russian
Federal Treaty but is in favor of signing this bilateral agreement
as soon as possible, preferably before the Congress of People's
Deputies in an effort to form a strong alliance with Russia,
Mukhametshin said. (Charles Carlson)

BASHKORTOSTAN RETREATS ON FEDERAL TREATY. Bashkortostan signed
the Federal Treaty, unexpectedly given its previous reservations:
Bashkir parliamentary leader Murtaza Rakhimov was quoted on 30
March as saying the treaty would not solve his republic's main
problems (see Daily Report of 31 March). However, Interfax of
31 March reported that Bashkortostan concluded a special bilateral
agreement with Russia specifying certain areas--property, mineral
deposits, foreign economic activity and taxes--in which the republic
could pursue its own policy. (Charles Carlson)

CHECHEN PARLIAMENT DECLARES STATE OF EMERGENCY. In what one spokesman
termed "an attempted coup," unidentified armed opponents of Chechen
President General Dzhakhar Dudaev seeking to force his resignation
seized the broadcasting center in Groznyi on 31 March and besieged
Dudaev's official residence; thousands of others gathered in
the town's main square, ITAR-TASS reported. At least five people
were killed and several wounded when troops loyal to Dudaev using
armored vehicles and rocket launchers retook the broadcasting
center. The Chechen parliament subsequently declared a state
of emergency throughout the republic "until the situation returns
to normal." (Liz Fuller)

SNEGUR SAYS TIME FOR TALKS OVER. As fighting continues between
Moldova and the breakaway "Dniester Republic," Moldovan President
Mircea Snegur told parliament on 31 March that the time for negotiations
between the two sides had run out, CIS and Western news agencies
reported. Snegur told Moldovan lawmakers that the leaders of
the "Dniester Republic" are not interested in resolving the conflict
in a peaceful manner. The Moldovan parliament approved the state
of emergency introduced by Snegur on 28 March. (Roman Solchanyk)


FOREIGN AFFAIRS EXPERTS MEETING IN CHISINAU. Experts from the
ministries of foreign affairs of Moldova, Romania, Russia, and
Ukraine gathered in the Moldovan capital on 31 March to discuss
a solution to the Dniester conflict, CIS and Western news agencies
reported. The participants were quoted as saying before the meeting
opened that they would be guided by the Helsinki agreements on
the stability of borders and would seek a peaceful resolution
while preserving Moldova's integrity. The talks will continue
on 1 April. (Roman Solchanyk)

GAMSAKHURDIA SUPPORTERS RETREAT. Armed supporters of ousted Georgian
President Zviad Gamsakhurdia removed roadblocks in western Georgia
on 31 March and began retreating to their stronghold in Zugdidi,
ITAR-TASS reported. A group of some 100 people staged a demonstration
in Tbilisi to mark Gamsakhurdia's birthday. In response to an
appeal by the ruling Georgian State Council, the Abkhaz leadership
gave assurances that it would not permit Gamsakhurdia's supporters
to take refuge in the autonomous republic. (Liz Fuller)

NAGORNO-KARABAKH UPDATE. The CSCE mission headed by Czechoslovak
Foreign Minister Jiri Dienstbier met in Baku on 31 March with
Azerbaijani Premier Hasan Hasanov and with acting President Yakub
Mamedov, Azerinform-TASS reported. Hasanov insisted that a solution
to the Karabakh issue can be reached only if it is accepted that
it is a military conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan. In
spite of Mamedov's continued insistence that representatives
from Karabakh should be part of the Azerbaijani delegation to
peace talks, a preliminary agreement was reached on holding a
peace conference under the auspices of the CSCE. The Secretary-General
of the Islamic Conference Organization, Hamid Algabid, stated
in Djiddah on 31 March that interested parties, including Russia,
Iran, Turkey, and UN special envoy Cyrus Vance, had reacted positively
to its proposal for a regional peace conference on Karabakh,
Western agencies reported. (Liz Fuller)

KOZYREV TO CAUCASUS. Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev
will travel to the Caucasus on 2 April as part of a Russian diplomatic
delegation for talks on settling the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,
Interfax reported on 31 March. (Suzanne Crow)

IMF APPROVES RUSSIAN ECONOMIC PROGRAM. The Executive Board of
the International Monetary Fund, meeting on 30 March, praised
the Russian government for its "bold and comprehensive economic
reform program" and recommended that Russia be given a 3% quota
when its joins the IMF, RFE/RL and The Washington Post reported
on 31 March. The quota would enable Russia to draw about $4 billion
a year for the next few years to support its economic reform
program. IMF Managing Director Michel Camdessus said: "The Russian
program presents a major step towards a market economy. If fully
implemented, it will lay the foundation for an economic program
that the IMF could support with its financial resources once
Russia becomes a member." (Keith Bush and Robert Lyle)

FURTHER RESCHEDULING OF SOVIET DEBT REPAYMENT. The 17-member
"Paris Club" of major Western creditor-countries agreed on 31
March to postpone by a further three months until 30 June payment
of principal on debts incurred by the former Soviet Union, Western
agencies reported. A previous rescheduling was granted in December
1991. It was not clear from the reports whether the creditor-
countries had also postponed the payment of interest. Last week,
Western banks had postponed for a further 90 days the repayment
of debts owed by the former Soviet Union. (Keith Bush)

SAKHALIN DEAL MOVES FORWARD. A US-Japanese consortium has signed
a first-stage agreement to develop offshore energy reserves off
Sakhalin, The Journal of Commerce reported 1 April. The group,
made up of McDermott, Marathon, and Mitsui, signed the agreement
with the Russian Ministry of Fuel and Energy calling for a feasibility
study for the exploitation of the Piltun-Astokhskoye and Lunskoye
oil and gas fields. The study will be conducted in cooperation
with P/O Sakhalinmorneftegas and representatives of the Sakhalin
island administration. The award of the project has been the
subject of considerable controversy and acrimonious debate within
Russia. (Keith Bush)

COMMISSION ON RUSSIAN DEFENSE. Boris Yeltsin has ordered the
creation of a state commission to be tasked with setting up the
new Russian Defense Ministry, ITAR-TASS reported on 31 March.
The commission will reportedly include representatives of the
president, the parliament, the government, and senior military
officers, scientists, and experts. ITAR-TASS said that the initiative
for setting up the commission came from the now defunct Russian
State Committee on defense issues. In another report on 31 March,
ITAR-TASS reported that a group of military experts, including
Sergei Rogov, Yurii Deryugin, and Vitalii Kovalevsky, has asked
Ruslan Khasbulatov to form a parliamentary commission to oversee
creation of the Russian Defense Ministry. (Stephen Foye)

SHAPOSHNIKOV: NEW RUSSIAN DEFENSE MINISTER? According to "Vesti"
on 31 March, sources close to the CIS central military command
say that the military leadership is recommending CIS Commander
in Chief Marshal Evgenii Shaposhnikov for the post of Russian
Defense Minister. Meanwhile, a deputy head of the Russian President's
Department of State and Legal Affairs said in Krasnaya zvezda
on 31 March that the Russian Defense Ministry and general headquarters
should have a staff of four to seven thousand, which he described
as a significant reduction in the size of the administration
now managing the armed forces. He also said that the Russian
army would be built on the basis of professional service. His
comments were reported by ITAR-TASS. (Stephen Foye)

SHAPOSHNIKOV IN KALININGRAD. Speaking to reporters during a one-day
visit to Kaliningrad, Evgenii Shaposhnikov said that troops would
always be stationed in the oblast, but that the size of the force
contingent there would be sufficient for defense of the region
but not so large as to threaten neighboring states. His remarks
were reported by ITAR-TASS on 1 April. Shaposhnikov also claimed
that the redeployment of military units from Poland and the Baltic
states to Kaliningrad oblast would not increase the size of the
contingent there and that the military situation in the oblast
was, in any event, an internal Russian affair. (Stephen Foye)


CHURKIN RESIGNS. Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Vitalii Churkin
resigned on 31 March. He was replaced by two people: Galina Sidorova,
who was recently appointed as an adviser to the Russian Foreign
Minister, and who will head up the Ministry's Information Service.
Sergei Yastrzhembsky, former editor of VIP magazine, will head
up the Ministry's new Department of Information and Press and
will serve as the main ministry spokesman. Igor Bulai was named
head of the ministry's press center, Western agencies reported.
(Suzanne Crow)

SIDOROVA ON CIS TIES. The Russian foreign minister's adviser,
Galina Sidorova, said on 31 March that Russia has still not developed
a foreign policy in relation to countries of the CIS. The Department
of CIS Affairs in the Foreign Ministry may become a "mini-ministry
or a ministry within a ministry," Sidorova said, "depending on
what emphasis Russia places or will place on republics of the
former USSR," Interfax reported. (Suzanne Crow)

SHAKHRAI OFFERS RESIGNATION. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Sergei
Shakhrai has asked President Boris Yeltsin, in a letter broadcast
on 31 March by Radio Rossii, to release him of his government
job so that he could fully concentrate on his parliamentary duties.
Shakhrai is resigning from the government in accordance with
a ruling that bars parliament members from holding government
posts, but Shakhrai criticized the ruling as a "hidden attempt"
to exclude Yeltsin supporters from active work at the forthcoming
Congress. As deputy prime minister, Shakhrai has been in charge
of legal affairs, control of the army and security organs. (Alexander
Rahr)

CHORNOVIL TO RESIGN FROM LVIV POST. Chairman of the Lviv Oblast
Council Vyacheslav Chornovil announced on 31 March that he will
be resigning from his post, Radio Ukraine reported. Chornovil,
who has become the center of political opposition to Ukrainian
President Leonid Kravchuk, said that he wants to concentrate
more fully on his work in the Ukrainian parliament, of which
he is a deputy. Last month Chornovil was elected to the new triumvirate
heading "Rukh," which is divided between Chornovil's adherents
and those of Kravchuk and his supporters. (Roman Solchanyk)

RALLY CONTINUES IN DUSHANBE. An unauthorized political rally
by 12,000 to 15,000 demonstrators demanding the resignation of
the Tajik Supreme Soviet and its chairman, Safarali Kendjaev,
has continued in Dushanbe for the fifth day, according to Interfax
of 31 March. Among the reasons for the protest is the resignation
of Interior Minister Navdjuvanov on charges of "abuse of office
and connivance in the waste of state property." The leader of
the Dushanbe chapter of the Democratic Party of Tajikistan, Sadyk
Ismailov, said that the opposition was dissatisfied with the
possibility that a person could still be persecuted for his or
her political views. However, the protest is still continuing
despite the fact that Navdjuvanov has been restored to his post.
(Charles Carlson)

KYRGYZSTAN TO HOLD INTERNATIONAL CONGRESS. Interfax of 31 March
reported that Kyrgyz President Askar Akaev has passed a decree
on holding the first international congress (kuraltai) in Bishkek
on 29-30 August. The organizing committee consists of the ministers
of culture, economy, and finance, leaders of the media, and heads
of the national parties: Asaba (the banner) and Erkin Kyrgyzstan
(free Kyrgyzstan), and of the national societies: Kyrgyz Zel
(the Kyrgyz People) and Manas Ata (father Manas). [Manas is a
national epic hero.] The decree says that the Kyrgyz people's
growing national awareness necessitates national consolidation
of the Kyrgyz living in the republic and abroad. (Charles Carlson)


CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

WALESA AND KOHL SPEAK ON IMPROVING RELATIONS. On 31 March in
Bonn German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and Polish President Lech
Walesa said they want to improve relations at all levels. Kohl
told reporters there can be no lasting peace in Europe without
good neighborliness and friendly relations between their people.
He welcomed Poland's participation in the NATO Cooperation Council
and its new dialogue with the West European Union. He also urged
Warsaw to open its economy further to foreign businessmen, expressing
confidence Poland can only profit from more foreign investments.
Walesa also spoke to the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry
in Bonn, where he urged businessmen to look toward long-term
investment in Poland. According to RFE/RL correspondents, the
businessmen urged him to help remove the obstacles to investments.
Earlier, the Polish President met German Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich
Genscher. They discussed how to create one Europe--in politics,
security, and the economy. Walesa travels on 1 April to Munich
for talks with Bavarian officials and a visit to the memorial
at Dachau, site of the former Nazi concentration camp. (Wladyslaw
Minkiewicz)

HAVEL IN RUSSIA. Czechoslovak President Vaclav Havel and Russian
President Boris Yeltsin sign a friendship and cooperation treaty
in Moscow on 1 April, CSTK reports. Work on the treaty began
two years ago. It is the first bilateral accord between the countries
and contains a condemnation of the Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia
in 1968. Havel is also expected to meet former Soviet President
Mikhail Gorbachev and Russian Parliament Chairman Ruslan Khasbulatov.
He will also sign an agreement regarding the settlement of property
and financial issues connected with the departure of former Soviet
troops from Czechoslovakia. (Barbara Kroulik)

BOSNIA TALKS SHOW PROGRESS. The sixth round of EC-mediated talks
among the three leading national parties in Bosnia-Herzegovina
concluded in Brussels on 31 March. Radio Serbia and Radio Sarajevo
reported that some progress was made on determining the governmental
structure for the multiethnic republic, but the sides remain
sharply divided over Muslim proposals to create an 18,000- man
armed force and for the withdrawal of the Yugoslav army from
the republic. Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic reiterated
his opposition to current plans to divide Bosnia-Herzegovina,
saying that "the maps show the absurdity of the task." The three
parties agreed to an unconditional cease-fire throughout the
republic, to start delineating the three national regions right
away, and to grant guarantees for human rights under the control
of European human rights institutions in all three national units.
International recognition of Bosnia-Herzegovina is expected on
6 April. Bulgaria and Turkey have already recognized the republic
and have called on other states to do so as well. (Milan Andrejevich)


POLAND TO TIGHTEN ARMS EXPORTS. Following the recent arrest of
seven Poles on suspicion of trying to sell arms to Iraq, Warsaw
is planning to implement new laws to restrict arms exports. A
Foreign Trade Ministry Official said on 31 March that the new
legislation will limit the number of arms export licences issued
by the government and prevent the reexport of modern weapons
technology purchased abroad. According to Western media, details
of the legislation will be published in full on 1 April. (Wladyslaw
Minkiewicz)

PRAGUE ARMS EXPORTS CONTINUING. Czechoslovakia admitted on 31
March that it was exporting arms to Peru but denied allegations
of sales to Pakistan. In its latest issue the weekly Respekt
said it had seen official records proving a license had been
issued to sell 100 T-55 tanks to Peru, a country listed as "risky"
by the Foreign Ministry. Deputy Foreign Minister Martin Palous
said that his ministry had nothing against the export to Peru,
but he refuted reports that a government commission had approved
the export of tank equipment to Pakistan, saying that arms trade
with that country had ended. Respekt also said that Czechoslovakia
agreed to reexport several MiG-29 and Sukhoi aircraft from Russia
to Pakistan. Palous said that no license had been granted since
a country of destination was not given. (Barbara Kroulik)

NATO AND EX-SOVIET TROOP WITHDRAWAL. After returning from a meeting
of NATO officials in Brussels, Latvian deputy Juris Dobelis told
the press on 30 March that NATO is interested in a stable situation
in the Baltic States. Dobelis added that the message that he
received in Brussels was that NATO could not address itself to
issues related to the withdrawal of ex-USSR troops from Latvia
until a formal accord is reached by Latvia and Russia on the
troop pullout, Diena reported on 30 March. (Dzintra Bungs)

HUNGARIAN SECRETARY ASKS FOR WEU PROTECTION. On 31 March, Hungarian
Deputy Defense Secretary Rudolf Joo appealed to the West European
Union to help East European countries to fend off security threats
posed by civil war and economic chaos in Yugoslavia and the former
Soviet Union, Western news agencies reported. Speaking in Berlin
at a three-day symposium on the WEU's role in maintaining peace
in a changed Europe, Joo called on the international community
to play a greater role in dealing with local ethnic conflicts.
He said that Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and Poland seek a "security
partnership" with the WEU, first as observers and later as associate
members. Joo said that Hungary's resources are strained by an
influx of 50,000 refugees from neighboring Yugoslavia and constant
violations of its borders by parties in the civil war there create
security problems. He warned that refugees from former Soviet
republics were also streaming westward, constituting an "unprecedented
challenge to the untested immigration policy and the fragile
economic and social balance of East European countries." (Edith
Oltay)

ILIESCU SUPPORTERS SET UP DISSIDENT GROUP. On 31 March Senator
Vasile Vacaru, who resigned as leader of the NSF group in parliament
the day before, announced the creation of a new parliamentary
group called the National Salvation Front-22 December. It comprises
hundreds of supporters of President Ion Iliescu, whom they describe
as the true leader of the movement born of the revolution of
22 December 1989 which ousted Nicolae Ceausescu. A committee
has been formed to transform the group into a political party,
and its leaders say that they will support the government of
Prime Minister Theodor Stolojan. (Mihai Sturdza)

BULGARIAN GOVERNMENT AND THE STRIKES. On 31 March the parliamentary
caucus of the UDF held a session that ended with a vote of support
for the government against the striking miners' demand for resignation
of minister Ivan Pushkarov. BTA said only one deputy supported
the call for Pushkarov's resignation. In the course of the day
the strike escalated to include a call for civil disobedience.
Police announced they would preserve order and protect those
willing to work. Four miners began a hunger strike in one 250-meter-deep
mine shaft, and early on 1 April Bulgarian Radio said they had
been joined by two women workers. (Rada Nikolaev)

RUBLE SHORTAGE IN THE BALTIC STATES. Radio Riga and Western agencies
reported on 31 March about a critical shortage of rubles in the
Baltic States. Consequently, Lithuanian Premier Gediminas Vagnorius
has suspended the pay of members of the government and legislature,
as well as the central bank staff; the government is also allowing
delays of one month in the payment of rents and housing charges.
The Estonian government is trying to overcome the ruble shortage
by selling some of its hard currency reserves. The Latvian government
is considering the possibility of introducing an interim currency,
the Latvian ruble, before going over to the lats, but most economists
feel that this would not stabilize the monetary situation in
the country. The ruble shortage can be attributed in part to
inflation and to the new conditions of trade with Russia. (Dzintra
Bungs)

STATUS OF EX-SOVIET DEFENSE PLANTS IN LATVIA UNCLEAR. Maris Grinsteins
of the Latvian Ministry of Maritime Affairs told Diena on 30
March that the Latvian government's decree concerning the takeover
of ex-Soviet military property by Latvian authorities "has a
hollow ring." Grinsteins said that ex-Soviet naval officials
in Liepaja and Bolderaja continue to claim that the property
belongs to Russia and refuse to recognize Latvia's authority
over it. The issue was discussed on 19 March between Latvian
and Russian experts in connection with the withdrawal of ex-USSR
troops from Latvia; the Russian officials were loath to discuss
the matter but later suggested that the plants might be turned
into joint ventures. (Dzintra Bungs)

NATIONALIZED PROPERTY IN LATVIA TO BE RETURNED TO OWNERS. The
Latvian Supreme Council has decided that business property (but
not land) owned by individuals before it was nationalized by
the Soviet regime is to be returned to their previous owners
or their heirs, BNS reported on 31 March. Applications must be
submitted by 20 July to local governments or Latvian legations
abroad, and the claimant must indicate if he wishes to have the
business property back or receive compensation. In 1940, there
were 4,888 private business establishments in Latvia. (Dzintra
Bungs)

ESTONIA ESTABLISHES ECONOMIC POLICE FORCE. The Estonian government
has created a special police force to combat economic crime,
BNS reported on 30 March. The previous government disbanded all
state control organs, but the recent sharp increase in organized
economic crime prompted the Vahi government to establish the
special force. The unit, planned to include 100-140 officers,
will be subordinated to the Interior Ministry. (Riina Kionka)


HUNGARY PROTESTS GREEK TRUCKERS' BLOCKADE. On 31 March the Hungarian
government launched a formal protest to Greece over a blockade
by Greek truck drivers opposed to an increase in Hungarian transit
fees, MTI reported. For the second time this year, Greek truckers
blockaded Greek-Yugoslav border crossings to prevent Hungarian
trucks from getting through. Hungarian Transport Ministry spokesman
Andras Varhelyi told reporters that 50 Hungarian trucks were
stranded. In February Hungary reached an accord with the EC under
which Budapest offered 4,000 free transit permits and 14,000
preferential ones to Greek truckers heading for northern Europe,
but Budapest has not been able to hand over the permits because
Athens has not formally recognized the accord. (Edith Oltay)


TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTER ENDS BULGARIAN VISIT. On 31 March Turkish
Foreign Minister Hikmet Cetin ended a two-day official visit
to Bulgaria, the first of its kind since 1983. Cetin assessed
relations between the two neighboring countries as a model of
friendship. Three documents were signed: a program for development
of relations, one agreement on easing visa requirements, and
another lifting travel restrictions for diplomats. BTA also said
signing a friendship treaty is envisaged, but gave no details.
The recent border conflict, including the Black Sea, will be
discussed at the level of experts slated to meet in Ankara on
28-29 April. It was also agreed to begin negotiations on cooperation
in culture and various other spheres. (Rada Nikolaev)

NO ESTONIAN CITIZENSHIP APPLICATIONS YET. Estonian passport officials
report that they have received no applications for Estonian citizenship
yet. According to the enabling legislation to the citizenship
law passed on 26 February, those wishing to become naturalized
citizens of Estonia could submit applications starting on 30
March 1992. Passport Office General Director Linnar Liivamagi
told ETA on 31 March that a number of applications forms have
been requested, but that no one applied for citizenship the first
day. (Riina Kionka)

ESTONIA'S RUSSIANS VOTING WITH THEIR FEET? Business is booming
for a consulting firm helping people resettle in Russia. The
company, called Edusamm (Step of Success), is located in the
largely Russian-populated city of Kohtla-Jarve and already has
some 300 clients. The company helps finance housing in Russia
with collateral from apartments in Estonia. According to the
31 March ETA report, most Edusamm clients want to be relocated
in central Russia, St. Petersburg, or Novgorod. (Riina Kionka)


LAST ALLIED WORLD WAR II COMMANDER TURNS 100. The sole surviving
senior allied commander in World War II celebrated his 100th
birthday on 31 March, PAP and Reuters report. Polish general
Stanislaw Maczek received goodwill messages at his home in Scotland
from world leaders including Pope John Paul II, Lech Walesa,
and George Bush. Civic delegations came from towns in France,
Belgium, and Holland liberated by Maczek's First Polish Armored
Division. There were even delegations from some German towns
he captured in 1945. After escaping from Nazi-occupied Poland
to France in 1939, Maczek formed his division and participated
in the 1944 Normandy landings. Among other cities, he liberated
Gandawa in Belgium and Breda in Holland, and captured a major
German port, Wilhelmshaven. Maczek never lost a single battle.
(Wladyslaw Minkiewicz) [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Carla Thorson
& Charles Trumbull







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