Samaya bol'shaya trata, kotoruyu mozhno sdelat', - eto trata vremeni. - Teofrast
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 150, 07 August 1992


editorial office has learned from "absolutely trustworthy sources"
that Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbaev is preparing
to submit an official proposal to establish a closer Union of
states instead of the amorphous CIS, the newspaper reported on
7 August. Nazarbaev is said to be proceeding on the assumption
that seven CIS member-states are ready to take this step. Nazarbaev
has long been frustrated by the unwillingness of Ukraine, in
particular, to agree to the creation of effective CIS bodies.
If the report is true, it would indicate that the 6 July summit
did nothing to convince him that Ukraine has had a change of
heart. The seven member-states he envisages as ready to form
a Union would be Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan,
Tajikistan, and Armenia. (Ann Sheehy)

Fleet commander, Admiral Igor Kasatonov, told Krasnaya zvezda
on 6 August that he believes the fleet will remain united following
the three-year transitional period agreed upon by Presidents
Kravchuk and Yeltsin in Yalta on 3 August. He based his belief
on what he portrayed as Kiev's and Moscow's commonalty of interests
in the Black Sea and predicted that the two countries would voluntarily
agree to maintain the unity of the fleet. He confirmed that the
fleet command would be removed from the CIS Joint Command and
would instead be subordinated directly to the two presidents.
(Stephen Foye)

head of the Ukrainian parliament, Vasyl Durdynets, told a group
of foreign diplomats in Kiev that the recent agreement on the
Black Sea Fleet in Yalta "made it possible to avoid serious and
unforeseen consequences" for the strained relations between Ukraine
and Russia, Radio Ukraine reported on 5 August. The Yalta agreement,
he said, was a classic example of political compromise that is
also in the interests of the world community. The agreement is
under fire from several fronts along the Ukrainian political
spectrum. (Roman Solchanyk)

of the Belarusian parliament issued a statement on 6 August saying
that the Yalta agreement between Russia and Ukraine on the Black
Sea Fleet violated various CIS agreements and that such matters
should be decided by the Council of CIS Heads of State, BelInform-TASS
reported. The chairman of the parliament, Stanislav Shushkevich,
who interrupted his vacation to attend the extraordinary session
of the presidium, said that Belarus was not claiming part of
the fleet but all member-states should have a say in the matter
in view of their share in creating and equipping this and other
fleets. (Ann Sheehy)

is expected to sell surface-to-surface and surface-to-air missiles
to China, according to a government official described by Moscow
News on 6 August as "a senior official responsible for arms export
policy." The official revealed that the Chinese government had
proposed buying tactical ballistic missiles and air defense missilesboth
with ranges of less than 500 kilometersduring the several rounds
of talks held this year. He also claimed that Malaysia was close
to a decision on whether or not to buy MiG-29 jet fighters. The
official estimated that Russia would sell China arms worth more
than $4 billion each year over the next 5 to 10 years. (Doug

ITAR-TASS reported that several once-secret aircraft and weapons
systems would be displayed at an air show to be held at Zhukovsky,
near Moscow, between 11 and 16 August. Among the aircraft will
be the Tu-160 Backfire strategic jet bomber and the attack helicopter
known in the West as the Hokumthe world's first single-seat close
support helicopter. The supersonic "jump-jet" fighter known in
the West as the Freestyle will also be on display. The Russians
will also be pushing their S-300 anti-aircraft missile systemknown
in the West as the SA-10 Grumble. The Russians claim that this
system can outperform the American Patriot missile. (Doug Clarke)

MOSCOW NEWS ON UKRAINIAN ARMY. Moscow News (No. 32) carried a
report on developments within the Ukrainian armed forces. Defense
Minister Konstantin Morozov and Rukh leader, Vyacheslav Chornovil,
were quoted to the effect that Kiev can count on neither the
loyalty nor the battle worthiness of the army. The persistence
of draft evasion, and of continued incidents of brutality among
Ukrainian conscripts was also noted. The report outlined the
debate over military doctrine, claiming that the Defense Ministry's
current draft has been challenged by the Ukrainian National Democratic
Party, which apparently views Russia as the major threat and
calls for the army to be maintained at a strength of some 500,000
men. It also discussed the activities of the Union of Ukrainian
Officers and the internal politics of the army, including efforts
to dismiss the current defense minister. According to the report,
Ukraine currently has 657,000 men in uniform. (Stephen Foye)

POSSIBLE SUCCESSORS TO KOZYREV. Moscow News (No. 32) mentioned
Ambassador Vladimir Lukin, Presidential Counselor Sergei Stankevich,
the chief of staff for the presidents office, Yurii Petrov, and
Deputy Prime Minister Mikhail Poltoranin as possible successors
to Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev. Rumors of Kozyrev's departure
are currently dominating Moscow's political life. Moscow News
stated, however, that Kozyrev's departure would signify a major
change in Yeltsin's political course. It warned that Kozyrev's
resignation would lead to endless debates in parliament during
which Yeltsin's foreign policy would become a target of new attacks.
(Alexander Rahr)

of the international section of the liberal newspaper Nezavisimaya
gazeta, has been appointed chief of the Russian Presidential
Press Service, Nezavisimaya gazeta reported on 6 August. Krasikov
was at one time a deputy director of TASS. He has published books
on the Vatican and on Spanish road from totalitarianism to democracy.
In 1991, he was demoted because of his reformist views. He joined
the staff of Nezavisimaya gazeta after the August 1991 failed
coup. The newly created press service will work under Yeltsin's
chief press spokesman, Vyacheslav Kostikov. (Alexander Rahr)

press conference on 6 August, Russian State Secretary Gennadii
Burbulis predicted that the presidential decrees banning the
Communist Party would be ruled constitutional, Interfax reported.
Burbulis argued that the president's position was amply supported
by witnesses' testimony. He also noted that, in his opinion,
the lawyers had provided convincing arguments that the Communist
Party is unconstitutional. Sergei Shakhrai, the president's chief
lawyer, said that he had not seen a single document indicative
of former Soviet President Gorbachev's involvement in the August
1991 coup attempt, and claimed that neither Gorbachev nor Yeltsin
would be called to testify when the hearings resume next month.
(Carla Thorson)

CLAMP ON RUSSIAN EXPORTS TO CIS? At a news conference and in
an interview with RFE/RL's Moscow correspondent on 6 August,
Russian Economics Minister Andrei Nechaev said that the cabinet
had that day discussed, inter alia, Russian exports to other
CIS members. He implied that Russia might clamp down on exports
to other former Soviet republics, as they were defaulting on
payment and owed Russia hundreds of billions of rubles. Export
bans might be applied to individual enterprises. Nechaev also
announced that Russia will conclude "specialized agreements"
for 1993 with other CIS members. (Keith Bush)

and in an interview with Trud on 6 August, Nechaev forecast a
continuation of the economic slump through mid-1993. Provided
that there is no interference in the reform program, stabilization
could occur in the summer of 1993, followed by renewed growth.
He estimated Russia's debt service in 1992 at over $22 billion,
and admitted that the federation could not even pay the interest,
let alone the principal. Nechaev put the current rate of inflation
at 15-17% a month, but expressed confidence that this could be
lowered to 9% a month by the end of the year. (Keith Bush)

multi-billion dollar American aid package is virtually assured
after a crucial House vote on 6 August, Western agencies reported.
The House approved $1.2 billion in bilateral aid and $12 billion
for increasing IMF lending resources. The package, a version
of which has already passed through the Senate, also sanctions
$3 billion for use in the IMF-sponsored ruble stabilization fund.
The final bill is expected to be approved this fall, after a
joint Congressional committee irons out the details. (Erik Whitlock)

is preparing to give Russia $600 million. The components of the
total, summarized by Western agencies on 7 August, include $350
million earmarked for purchases of much needed equipment in the
agro-industrial, energy and health sectors. The remaining $250
will be made available to the private sector to finance imports.
The World Bank is also expected to authorize another $1 billion
over the next year. (Erik Whitlock)

MORE GLASNOST ON RUSSIAN GOLD? According to Interfax, as cited
by Reuters on 6 August, the Russian government has passed a special
resolution agreeing to disclose details of the federation's gold
output. A Rosalmazzoloto official also told the agency that more
information on gold output and reserves would eventually be made
available. However, virtually all of the salient data on the
former USSR's gold output, sales, and reserves were published
in Moscow News of 17-24 November 1991. (Keith Bush)

TV reported on 5 August that deputies of the Moscow oblast council
have decided to give "urgent aid" to defense industry enterprises
in the oblast. The help will go to converting enterprises which
are suffering severe financial difficulties during the shift
to civilian production. (Brenda Horrigan)

by Rukh has resolved to complete the formation of initiative
groups on a referendum by early September, the Ukrainian TV news,
"Dnipro," reported on 6 August. Taking part in the session were
representatives from most Ukrainian political parties, according
to the report. The referendum is aimed at the dissolution of
parliament, dismissal of the cabinet of ministers, and the formation
of a coalition government. (Roman Solchanyk)

August an Uzbek Presidential bulletin was issued on the Law on
Defense (in effect since 4 August), Interfax reported. The law
rejects military action as a means of settling disputes, and
rejects any territorial claims on any other states. It describes
Uzbekistan as "aspiring to neutrality," which corresponds with
the decision to join the Non-Aligned Movement announced in late
June by President Karimov. Uzbekistan will not produce, acquire,
or station nuclear weapons on its territory. The law states that
the Uzbek Armed forces will be built according to the principle
of reasonable sufficiency, and that in case of martial law, the
president will serve as commander-in-chief. (Cassandra Cavanaugh)

TAJIK SUPREME SOVIET TO MEET. Tajikistan's Supreme Soviet is
to open a special session on 10 August, ITAR-TASS reported on
6 August. The deputies apparently want to try their hand at ending
the chaos in the country, which has been in a state of virtual
civil war since June. The Supreme Soviet, which is dominated
by conservative communists, was supposed to have been replaced
by an Assembly made up of parliamentary deputies and opposition
representatives, but deputies from some of Tajikistan's oblasts
refused to participate and the Assembly never met. The report
noted that deputies do not exclude a resumption of demonstrations
during the session, such as those that occurred during the spring.
(Bess Brown)

at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine warned that radioactive
material is continuing to erode the protective "sarcophagus"
surrounding the plant's reactor, "Vesti" reported on 6 August.
Vladimir Shcherbina said that crevices had formed in the "sarcophagus"
covering some 1,000 square meters and that the situation was
unpredictable. (Carla Thorson)

FOREST FIRES IN BELARUS. Prolonged forest fires and burning peat
bogs in the area of Belarus contaminated with radiation by the
1986 Chernobyl accident have raised fears of increased radioactivity
in the area, Western agencies reported on 6 August. Similar alarms
were heard last year. Head of the Belarus center for radiological
monitoring, Ivan Matveyenko, reported that while high levels
of radiation in the air had been registered, there was no spread
of radioactive material, and no significant increase in the form
of radiation most dangerous to humansgamma radiation. (Sarah

ANTHRAX CASES REPORTED IN GEORGIA. At least sixteen people in
western Georgia are known to have contracted anthrax as a result
of contact with or consumption of tainted meat, some of which
was sold at an unofficial market in Kutaisi, according to an
interview with a Georgian medical official in Sakartvelos respublika
of 28 July. One of those infected developed the most severe form
of the disease; whether any of those infected have died was not
clear. (Liz Fuller)


UN SARAJEVO HEADQUARTERS SHELLED. Four 122-mm artillery shells
struck UN headquarters in Sarajevo on the night of 6/7 August
in what the UN described as "a deliberate attack." Four French
soldiers were injured. A UN spokesman said it was unclear which
of the warring sides was responsible. Bosnian government forces
are reported to have suffered a "major defeat" and "heavy losses"
after the failure of their offensive against Bosnian Serbs besieging
Sarajevo. Attacks on Serb positions both north and south of the
city were repulsed, and the Serbs responded with an artillery
barrage of the city. UN Lt. Gen. Philippe Morillon met with Bosnian
officials 6 August in an unsuccessful attempt to have them call
a halt to the offensive, which has forced Sarajevo's airport
to be shut down. Meanwhile, UN spokesman Mik Magnusson said that
Bosnian government troops "had several times recently" broken
an agreement requiring both sides to keep their forces at least
500 meters away from UN positions. Magnusson said one Bosnian
government tank position was only 100 meters from UN headquarters
in Sarajevo. International media carried the reports. (Gordon

BUSH STATEMENT. International media on 6 August reported that
the US president for the first time raised the possibility of
using force to ensure delivery of humanitarian aid "to the people
of Sarajevo and elsewhere in Bosnia, no matter what it takes."
He attacked "the aggressors and extremists" for their "vile policy
of ethnic cleansing" and demanded international access to detention
camps, but noted that there is no "easy or simple solution to
this tragedy." Bush called on the Security Council to authorize
"the use of all necessary measures" to get the humanitarian aid
through. He took additional moves to "support the legitimate
governments of Slovenia, Croatia, and Bosnia-Herzegovina" by
setting up full diplomatic relations with them, and took further
steps "to isolate Serbia economically and politically." Finally,
he wants international monitors to help ensure that the conflict
does not spread to other areas of the former Yugoslavia or beyond.
The VOA noted that Bush is "under intense political pressure
to do something" amid increasing media reports of Serbian concentration
camps, where Muslims and Croats are allegedly beaten and killed.
(Patrick Moore)

MORE INTERNATIONAL REACTION. The BBC said on 6 August that British
TV crews obtained footage of one of the camps that seems to bear
out the reports. Some alleged camps visited by journalists turned
out to be nothing unusual, but many American dailies on 7 August
ran stories supporting the allegations that Serbs are following
a systematic and brutal policy of "ethnic cleansing" very much
along Nazi lines. Lady Thatcher, Anti-Defamation League national
director Abraham Foxman and other prominent Western figures called
for action, but British prime minister John Major again ruled
out using force to stop the conflict. Bosnia's vice president
appealed to the international community on 6 August to sell Bosnia
arms if there is to be no intervention, while Iranian leaders
urged Islamic states to meet to consider using force. Finally,
a Greek spokesman told the BBC that people in Athens were asking
themselves whether Russia's announcement in Bulgaria that it
intended to recognize Macedonia means that Moscow is trying again
to claim leadership of Balkan Slavs. (Patrick Moore)

PANIC VISITS CAMP, MEETS GREGURIC. On 6 August Milan Panic, prime
minister of the rump Yugoslavia, visited a refugee camp in Palic
near the Yugoslav-Hungarian border, a facility the governments
of Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina have described as a concentration
camp for Bosnian, Muslim, and Croatian refugees. After a two-hour
tour, Panic concluded that Palic is a refugee center and not
a concentration camp; he offered a reward of $5,000 to anyone
who can prove otherwise. Meanwhile, Hungarian foreign minister
Geza Jeszenszky said his country will do everything in its power
to help the talks taking place in Budapest on 7 August between
Panic and Croatian prime minister Franjo Greguric, Hungarian
Radio reports. The meeting is being organized by the International
Red Cross. (Milan Andrejevich & Karoly Okolicsanyi)

PANIC ON KOSOVO. During a news conference on 4 August Panic,
said that he is ordering the reopening of Albanian schools in
Kosovo. He did not specify the terms of his decision nor is it
clear whether he is prepared to meet the demands of local Albanian
leaders for tuition and textbooks in the Albanian language. Panic
also criticized countries sending commissions to investigate
human rights conditions into Yugoslavia, saying that most of
these countrieswhich he did not namehad at one time supported
Tito, "the greatest violator of human rights." Adding that "because
they are my people, the lives of Albanians are more dear to me
than any foreign commission" he warned that he will take any
foreign country to court if their commissions spark unrest. (Milan

NO BREAKTHROUGH AT BALTIC TALKS. Despite optimistic predictions
by Russian foreign minister Andrei Kozyrev, no breakthrough was
achieved in Moscow on 6 August about the withdrawal of Russian
troops from the Baltic States and the situation of the Russian-speaking
population there. Though all sides stressed the significance
of discussing these issues at a conference table and agreed to
work on a detailed timetable for the troop pullout, this meeting
also demonstrated how difficult it will be to find mutually acceptable
solutions. The Baltic side sees the presence of foreign troops
on its territory as the major obstacle to its economic and political
development, while Kozyrev claims that "aggressive nationalism
[on both sides] is responsible for the division between our peoples,
violations of human rights, and territorial claims," Western
agencies report. (Dzintra Bungs)

RUSSIA'S TOUGH CONDITIONS. According to BNS and Western agency
reports, Russia said the pullout of its forces from the Baltic
States in 1994 could proceed if the Baltic States agree: (1)
to grant legal status to the armed forces there in the interim
period so as to insure their normal functioning; (2) to accept
Russia's strategic installations for the time being; (3) to drop
compensation claims for the damage inflicted on their territories
by the USSR during 1940-91; (4) to help construct housing in
Russia for the departing troops; (5) to guarantee transit rights
of military cargoes destined for Kaliningrad; (6) to provide
compensation for the land and property vacated by the troops;
(7) to guarantee social security (including pensions) and human
rights for Soviet officers retired in the Baltics and their families;
(8) to alter laws that infringe upon the political and economic
rights of the Russian-speaking population; and (9) to drop territorial
claims on land annexed by Russia from the Baltic States after
World War II. (Dzintra Bungs)

LITHUANIAN REACTION. On 6 August Lithuanian Supreme Council Chairman
Vytautas Landsbergis expressed surprise to the VOA Lithuanian
Service that at the Moscow talks Russia presented conditions
for the withdrawal of forces that came as an occupying army.
Noting that Russia signed the CSCE document in Helsinki calling
for the swift withdrawal of the troops, he doubted that anyone
would call the proposed withdrawal by 1994 "swift." On 7 August
Foreign Affairs Minister Algirdas Saudargas told a press conference
that he welcomes an official Russian position at last on troop
withdrawal but particularly regrets that the Russian position
does not deal with the Baltic States individually. (Saulius Girnius)

ESTONIAN REACTION. Foreign Minister Jaan Manitski took particular
exception to the eighth point above and told reporters that his
country's legislation cannot be a topic of bilateral talks. If
at all, Manitski told BNS, discussion of the legislation should
come at the international level, with the participation of foreign
experts. Although Manitski described the meeting as "useful,"
he added that Estonia considers impossible Russia's suggestion
to maintain some strategic bases on the Baltic territories, and
reiterated that the 1920 Tartu Peace Treaty must be the point
of departure for bilateral talks. (Riina Kionka)

6 August that there may soon be a meeting between Russia's president
Boris Yeltsin and the Baltic leaders to discuss Baltic-Russian
relations. This was also suggested by Kozyrev, who told BNS that
the Russian position at the foreign ministers' meeting had been
coordinated with Yeltsin. He noted that "the sides have agreed
to keep the issues raised during the meeting in the focus of
their political attention and initiate preparations for bilateral
summits." (Dzintra Bungs)

on 6 August formally closed the books on new candidates for next
month's parliamentary elections. Candidates now have until 11
August to register themselves with the commission. Election coalitions
may continue putting up candidates for president until 11 August,
and those candidates must register themselves by 21 August. Elections
will be held on 20 September. (Riina Kionka)

BULGARIA ASKS FOR DEBT REDUCTION. Returning from a new round
of talks with Bulgaria's creditor banksto which it owes nearly
$9 billionFinance Minister Ivan Kostov told reporters he expects
his new compromise proposal to make creditors accept the idea
of an all-encompassing arrangement and a substantial debt reduction,
Demokratsiya wrote on 6 August. Kostov said the deal will include
a guarantee that Bulgaria repay all debts in case its finances
improved, immediate resumption of interest payments, and a special
clause on debt/equity swaps. (Kjell Engelbrekt)

POLISH-RUSSIAN DEBT TALKS. The foreign economic cooperation ministers
for Poland and Russia signed an agreement in Warsaw on 6 August
that paves the way for a treaty on trade relations between the
two countries. The Russian side pledged to maintain deliveries
of oil and natural gas in return for Polish goods. Turning to
the troublesome issue of mutual indebtedness, the two ministers
agreed to draw up a final balance at their next meeting in September
in Kaliningrad. According to the Polish Finance Ministry, Poland
owes the former Soviet Union 4.7 billion transferable rubles
and $1.6 billion, while the former Soviet countries owe Poland
7 billion transferable rubles and $336 million. The Russian delegation
also conveyed an invitation from President Boris Yeltsin for
Polish prime minister Hanna Suchocka to visit Kaliningrad in
September, when a conference of Baltic states is scheduled. (Louisa

POLISH STRIKE STANDOFF CONTINUES. The strike organizers at the
FSM auto plant in Tychy declared on 6 August that the strike
will go on until wage demands are granted. Privatization Minister
Janusz Lewandowski revealed that FSM runs a loss even at present
wage levels, effectively costing the state more than 100 billion
zloty ($7 million) per month. The government's only responsible
option, Lewandowski said, is to reject unreasonable wage demands
and accelerate the firm's transfer to Fiat, which could make
higher wages possible. Meanwhile, Labor Minister Jacek Kuron
said the package of legislation in preparation for state industries
is a "lifeline for the trade unions," as it allows them to shift
the focus from current pay conflicts to future structural reforms.
Radical union and party leaders continued to make the rounds
of troubled state firms, exhorting workers to demand pay concessions.
(Louisa Vinton)

WALESA ON MILITARY REFORM. Attending a session of the Defense
Ministry's military council on 6 August, Polish president Lech
Walesa emphasized the importance of the military's apolitical
status. Addressing the fears of high-ranking officers, most of
whom held posts in the communist party, the president ruled out
the "decommunization" of the armed forces. "We must be aware
of the past, but also build the future," Walesa said. Defense
changes should focus on the creation of a separate civilian control
structure, the adoption of a new defense doctrine, the even relocation
of forces, and overcoming financial problems, rather than sweeping
personnel changes, Walesa indicated. (Louisa Vinton)

STATE OF PRIVATIZATION IN ROMANIA. Adrian Severin, chairman of
the Romanian National Privatization Agency, told journalists
on 6 August that more than half of the 16.5 million Romanians
eligible to receive ownership certificates in accordance with
the privatization law have already received them over the period
1 June-31 July. Radio Bucharest quoted Severin as saying that
the pace of privatization is "slow, if we judge it by our over-optimistic
expectations, but normal if we take into consideration our possibilities."
He added that Romania is ahead of other East European countries
in implementing large-scale privatization programs. (Dan Ionescu)

ROMANIAN-AMERICAN RELATIONS. In a statement released on 6 August,
the Romanian government hailed recent recommendations made by
the US House Subcommittee for Trade and the Ways and Means Committee
to ratify the Romanian-American trade agreement. Ratification
would restore most-favored-nation status for Romania, which was
unilaterally renounced by Nicolae Ceausescu's regime in 1988.
The statement, broadcast by Radio Bucharest, expressed hopes
for prompt ratification, "thus leading to the complete normalization
of relations between Romanian and the US." (Dan Ionescu)

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

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©1996 "Druz'ya i Partnery"
Natasha Bulashova,Greg Koul
Updated: 1998-11-

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Please write to us with any comments, questions or suggestions -- Natasha Bulashova, Greg Cole