Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all. - Harriet Van Horne
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 151, 10 August 1992





SUCCESSOR STATES TO THE USSR

RUSSIAN-MOLDOVAN TALKS. On his first visit abroad, Moldova's
new prime minister, Andrei Sangheli, headed a government delegation
for talks with Russian Acting Prime Minister Egor Gaidar and
other Russian officials in Moscow on 7 and 8 August. According
to Moldovan media reports, the delegation obtained the resumption
of Russian fuel and raw material deliveries contracted for 1992,
which had come to a standstill in June in what President Mircea
Snegur and other Moldovan officials had charged were Russian
"economic sanctions" against Moldova. Gaidar told ITAR-TASS that
Russia was "satisfied with the new Moldovan government's constructive
approach to the whole range of issues in Russian-Moldovan relations,
its moderation and realism, and its evident wish to work toward
the stabilization of the situation in the region." Gaidar and
Sangheli also agreed that the two governments would set up a
joint commission to settle questions connected with the status
of Russia's 14th Army in Moldova. (Vladimir Socor)

ARMENIAN PRESIDENT PROTESTS AZERBAIJANI AGGRESSION. In a telegram
to those CIS heads of state who signed the collective security
agreement in Tashkent in May, Armenian President Levon Ter-Petrossyan
condemned as "the beginning of an undeclared war" the Azerbaijani
attack on the Armenian enclave of Artsvashen in western Azerbaijan
and requested that the cosignatories "fulfill their obligations
to the Republic of Armenia by using political, military or other
means to prevent a war," ITAR-TASS reported on 9 August. (Liz
Fuller)

A MONROE DOCTRINE FOR RUSSIA? The chairman of the Committee of
International Affairs of the Russian parliament, Evgenii Ambartsumov,
called for the development of a Russian foreign policy doctrine
similar to the US Monroe Doctrine. In a secret document, cited
by Izvestiya on 8 August, he proposed that the G-7 should assign
Russia the role of guarantor of political and military stability
on the territory of the former USSR, including the Baltic states.
He emphasized Russia's need to protect Russian minority rights
and Russia's military presence in other CIS states. He stated
that the independence and stability of Chinese foreign policy
should serve as a model for Russia. (Alexander Rahr, Moscow)


RUTSKOI ADDRESSES COSSACKS. Russian Vice-president Aleksandr
Rutskoi, addressing a two-day meeting of the Council of Atamans
in Moscow on 7 August, suggested there should be a department
for Cossack affairs in the Russian Center for Land and Agro-industrial
Reform, and a department for the rehabilitation of the Cossacks
in the Russian State Committee for Nationality Affairs, ITAR-TASS
reported. Rutskoi noted that they could revive their military
traditions by creating Cossack units and battalions within regiments
and also serve on contract. The Council of Atamans, which represents
over 70 Cossack organizations of Russia and several other CIS
states, was meeting to discuss implementation of recent Russian
legislation on the rehabilitation of the Cossacks. (Ann Sheehy)


RUTSKOI SAYS THE CRIMEA IS RUSSIAN. During his address to Cossack
leaders, Rutskoi once again staked Russia's claim to Crimea,
Western agencies reported. Rutskoi said that he did not recognize
any agreements that gave Russian land to other countries. "The
Crimea was Russian," he asserted, "it's covered with Russian
blood, and it must be Russia's." Rutskoi's position conflicts
with that of President Boris Yeltsin, who has stated that the
Crimean question is an internal Ukrainian matter. (Roman Solchanyk)


SHAKHRAI ON SECURITY COUNCIL. Former presidential legal advisor,
Sergei Shakhrai, believes that if the putschists had the same
law on security and the same functioning organ as the present
Security Council, they would not have needed to proclaim emergency
rule in the country through unconstitutional measures. Shakhrai
told Komsomolskaya pravda on 8 August that he would welcome the
authoritative structures of the new council if they were directed
toward stabilizing reform but warned that the council seems to
have escaped control of democratic institutions and has fallen
into the hands of hardliners who want a return to the administrative-command
system. (Alexander Rahr, Moscow)

COMMUNISTS SATISFIED WITH CONSTITUTIONAL COURT HEARINGS. At a
press conference on 6 August, representatives of the Communist
Party expressed their general satisfaction with the conduct of
the hearings by the Russian Constitutional Court, Interfax reported.
Valentin Kuptsov, former central committee first secretary of
the Russian Communist Party, declared, "we managed to successfully
block Yeltsin's decision to put an end to the CPSU since 7 July,
and Sergei Shakhrai's intention to prove the unconstitutionality
of the Party in 40 minutes." He said, that in his opinion, the
Party's witnesses had proven that the CPSU was not a state structure,
and that they had managed to debunk the widely-spread myths of
Party participation in the August 1991 coup attempt and of countless
hidden riches of the CPSU. (Carla Thorson)

LUKYANOV'S LAWYER WITHDRAWS FROM COUP CASE. The attorney for
former USSR Supreme Soviet Chairman Anatolii Lukyanov (accused
of complicity in the August 1991 coup attempt) has asked to be
taken off the case because he doesn't want to be part of a political
show trial. Nezavisimaya gazeta of 7 August published a letter
which lawyer Genrikh Pavda sent to Lukyanov in prison, in which
Pavda argued that the case against the coup plotters is not about
the administration of justice but a political settling of accounts.
He also suggested that the charges against Lukyanov should be
dropped because neither the state nor the authorities against
which the coup plotters allegedly conspired still exist. (Carla
Thorson)

RUSSIAN TROOPS IN GERMANY DESTROY ARMS BUT MAY NOT DISBAND. Troops
of the Russian Western Group of Forces (WGF) in what was once
East Germany began destroying some of their weapons on 8 August
in accordance with the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) treaty.
Western agencies reported that they began dismantling 2,500 armored
vehicles in Wuensdorf, the Group's headquarters. The previous
day ITAR-TASS had reported that Russia might not disband the
8th Guards Army when it is withdrawn from Germany. (The 8th Guards
Army is one of five ex-Soviet armies that made up the WGF. Two
of its four divisions were withdrawn in 1991 and the remainder
are scheduled to be pulled out this year.) Valerii Shuikov, the
secretary of the Russian parliament's committee for defense and
security, was quoted as saying that the 8th Armywhich fought
at Stalingrad and Berlinwas sacred for Russia, adding that "sacred
things are never thrown away." (Doug Clarke)

BELARUSIAN MILITARY WILL TAKE OATH IN DECEMBER. Belarusian Defense
Minister, Col. Gen. Pavel Kozlovsky was quoted in the Minsk newspaper
Vo Slavu Rodiny on 7 August as saying that all officers and warrant
officers of the Belarusian armed forcesregardless of their nationalityhad
the right to choose a state for their further military service
before they took an "oath of enlistment." In a summary of the
article by ITAR-TASS, Kozlovsky was reported to have said that
the majority of those who wished to serve in other republics
had already left Belarus, and those who had not taken "the final
decision" would have time to decide. The Belarusian oath would
be administered in December of this year. The minister said that
by then the republican parliament would have passed the necessary
laws to create a solid legal basis for the national forces, and
for the social protection of servicemen. (Doug Clarke)

RUSSIAN ARMS PURCHASES TO DECLINE. Russian arms purchases from
the former Soviet military industrial complex will decline by
68% from last year and the amount of money allocated to funding
military scientific research will fall by 16%, according to Deputy
Prime Minister Georgii Khizha. He met on 7 August with directors
of St. Petersburg's major enterprises and representatives of
commercial banks, Interfax reported. Khizha said that a reshaping
of the defense industries must take place, but that the process
would take at least ten years. (Stephen Foye)

GAIDAR AND GERASHCHENKO COMPROMISE ON NEW CREDITS. The clash
between government and central bank policy-makers over inter-enterprise
debts appears to have been resolved. The Central Bank will assume
financing of a significant portion of these debts, but not as
much as chairman Gerashchenko originally intended. Details of
the compromise, as reported by Western agencies and Russian TV
on 7 August, are still not clear, however. Originally, sources
claimed that the inflation-wary Gaidar had negotiated the new
credit or cash issue down to total 500 billion rubles. On 9 August,
"Ostankino" TV carried a report that suggested the sum would
amount to only 350 to 400 billion rubles. (Erik Whitlock)

GAIDAR ON FOREIGN AID, DEBT. Prime Minister Egor Gaidar said
that Russia would use the $1.04 billion dollar loan received
recently from the IMF to bolster low hard currency reserves.
Gaidar noted that added reserves would give Russia much need
flexibility in dealing with foreign creditors, according to ITAR-TASS
on 8 August. The prime minister also has discounted stories that
Russia will assume the foreign debts of other former Soviet republics,
Interfax reported on 7 August. He added, however, that Belarus
and Turkmenistan have offered to hand over claims on former Soviet
assets in return for Russia taking on their debt. (Erik Whitlock)


SLUMP IN OIL PRODUCTION TO PERSIST. Russian Energy Minister Viktor
Chernomyrdin expects oil production to continue to fall into
next year, Western agencies reported on August 7. The announcement
follows the release of figures by Goskomstat showing oil output
down 13% at mid-year from last year's June mark. The International
Energy Agency, according to the 7 August Wall Street Journal,
has forecast total oil output of the former Soviet Union dropping
from an average 10.4 billion barrels a day in 1991 to 9.2 billion
this year. The agency predicted that daily production will be
under 9 billion barrels by the fourth quarter of this year. (Erik
Whitlock)

STATE TO PAY MORE FOR FARM PRODUCTS? A grain harvest two weeks
behind schedule and growing peasant dissatisfaction may force
the Russian government to raise the price it pays for agricultural
output. Vice-president Aleksandr Rutskoi has called for a significant
rise in grain prices, Interfax reported on August 8. Earlier
in the week, on 5 August, according to Russian TV, Gaidar suggested
that such a hike would occur soon and result in higher consumer
food prices by fall. (Erik Whitlock)

YAVLINSKY AND THE RUSSIAN GOVERNORS. The well-known Russian economist
Grigorii Yavlinsky, who now heads a non-government economic think
tank organization in Moscow, has invited all local administrative
leadersor governorsto Nizhnii Novgorod in September to discuss
the state of the Russian economy, a local official from Nizhnii
Novgorod told the RFE/RL Research Institute on 7 August. The
governors are supposed to develop alternative proposals for the
government. Yavlinsky, a strong critic of the Gaidar government,
is presently touring Russian provinces seeking personal political
support and insights into economic problems in the periphery.
(Alexander Rahr, Moscow)

TURKMEN PIPELINE PROJECT PROCEEDING. The only concrete development
project to emerge from the May regional summit between Iran,
Turkey, Pakistan and four of the Central Asian states was the
construction of a pipeline to ship Turkmen gas to Europe via
Iran and Turkey. A coordinating council has now been formed to
design and carry out the project, Turkmenpress-TASS reported
on 7 August. The council is supposed to arrange for foreign construction
bids and set up a consortium of Turkmen organizations and foreign
investors to carry out the construction and utilization of the
pipeline. Earlier in the year, Iranian officials promised major
assistance to Turkmenistan in the pipeline project, but Iran
probably lacks the resources to make such a contribution. (Bess
Brown)

NEW PRESS LAW IN KYRGYZSTAN. Kyrgyzstan's new law on the press
was published on 7 August; the Kyrgyztag-TASS report noted that
despite revision by the Supreme Soviet, the law contains many
prohibitions. These include giving information about juvenile
offenders or current judicial investigations without the written
permission of the State Prosecutor's Office. The press is also
prohibited from inciting violence or ethnic friction, revealing
commercial and state secrets, insulting religious feelings or
using offensive language. (Bess Brown)

FEWER UNAUTHORIZED CROSSINGS AT THE AFGHAN-TAJIK BORDER. Officials
of the Central Asian border district told a Khovar-TASS correspondent
on 7 August that the number of Tajiks trying to slip across the
Afghan border had declined. But Tajiks who had already crossed
in May and Juneduring the confrontation between the government
and opposition in Dushanbeare now attempting to return home with
weaponry acquired in Afghanistan. In the last two weeks some
40 such border-crossers have been caught, the officials reported.
They also claimed that a training camp for Tajiks has been set
up in the Afghan border village of Imamsahib, where trainees
are provided with weapons and instructions on fighting the existing
order in Tajikistan. (Bess Brown)

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

UN DISCUSSING MILITARY INTERVENTION; VATICAN URGES ACTION. International
media report on 8 and 9 August that the US, Great Britain, and
France are nearing an agreement with other members of the UN
Security Council on a resolution approving the use of force if
necessary to ensure that humanitarian aid reaches civilians in
Bosnia-Herzegovina. Security Council members, however, are expressing
reluctance on committing ground forces. The Vatican renewed its
appeal for intervention in Bosnia-Herzegovina, cautioning the
international community against "cynical indifference." An editorial
in L'osservatore romano explained that the Vatican is not advocating
armed intervention, but rather asking that the world community
"not be passive in the face of barbarity." (Milan Andrejevich)


BOSNIAN MUSLIMS APPEAL FOR WEAPONS. Muslim leaders of the Republic
of Bosnia-Herzegovina are appealing for weaponsout of the necessity
for survival. Speaking in Islamabad, Pakistan, Foreign Minister
Haris Silajdzic condemned Europe's apathy toward the bloodletting
in his republic and reiterated his plea to Muslim countries to
intervene by providing military hardware and humanitarian aid.
Pakistan's foreign minister Mohammed Saddiq said that his country
is pledging $70 million in humanitarian aid and loans to Bosnia-Herzegovina.
During a visit to Teheran, Silajdzic also criticized Islamic
countries for indifference. Bosnia's UN ambassador, the US-raised
banker Muhamed Sacirbey, told CNN on 7 August that if the West
does not want to intervene militarily, then Bosnia should at
least be supplied with weapons for purposes of self-defense.
Bosnian president Alija Izetbegovic told reporters on 9 August
that he welcomes President Bush's statement that Americans should
not die in Bosnia, explaining that Bosnia has plenty of able
men but lacks the necessary weapons. (Milan Andrejevich)

PANIC WANTS CAMPS CLOSED; MEETS MITSOTAKIS. Milan Panic, prime
minister of the rump Yugoslavia, told reporters on 7 August that
he will order the Bosnian Serbs to dismantle the internment camps
within 30 days, adding that he will personally remove Karadzic
as leader of Bosnia's Serbs if the camps are not closed. Panic
also met with Croatian prime minister Franjo Greguric in Hungary,
where the two agreed to exchange 1,100 prisoners of war. On 10
August Panic is scheduled to meet with Greek prime minister Constantine
Mitsotakis in Athens to discuss the overall situation in the
Balkans, bilateral relations, and the Macedonian question. Panic
plans to recognize Macedonian independence, which Greece opposes.
Later in the day Panic travels to Tirana to meet with Albanian
leaders. According to Radio Serbia, Kosovo is on the agenda.
While in Athens and Tirana, Panic is also planning to discuss
the creation of a Balkan economic association. (Milan Andrejevich)


MECIAR ON THE FUTURE OF SLOVAKIA. Speaking at a meeting of the
Slovak Heritage Foundation in Martin on 8 July, Slovak prime
minister Vladimir Meciar said that Slovakia does not want to
orient itself toward the East but will be forced to do so if
the West "shuts the door on Slovakia." Meciar also said that
the world wants Slovakia to maintain democratic development and
respect the rights of national minorities. In Meciar's opinion,
if Slovakia complies with these requirements, its integration
into Europe will be without problems. He argued that "only our
own mistakes can halt the process." Meciar also said that Slovakia
will not be a destabilizing factor in Europe, nor will it be
isolated within Europe. (Jiri Pehe)

SUCHOCKA RESTATES GOVERNMENT'S WILL TO ACT. Poland's prime minister
Hanna Suchocka has pledged that her month-old government will
be "a working government." In a public relations visit to her
hometown of Poznan on Friday, Suchocka met with the local Catholic
Church hierarchy, local government officials, and members of
the public. She reaffirmed her determination to present within
one month specific action programs in the five priority areas
identified last week. She said that her government is doing something
constructive for the state and contrasted that with the activity
of strike leaders whom she accused of "anarchizing" the state.
(Anna Sabbat-Swidlicka)

MORE BALTIC REACTION TO FOREIGN MINISTERS MEETING. On 7 August
Radio Lithuania read a statement by parliament chairman Vytautas
Landsbergis on the talks between the Russian and Baltic foreign
ministers. The statement noted that some of the "wishes" expressed
by Russia can be viewed as interference in internal matters.
Russia's desire to maintain strategic objects in the Baltic States
contradicts the 10 July declaration of the CSCE in Helsinki that
call for the "early, orderly, and complete withdrawal of foreign
forces." Russia should take note, he said, of the 14 June referendum
in Lithuania that called for the complete withdrawal of its troops
this year with suitable compensation for damages. He also regretted
that Russia has not given a concrete reply to the schedule for
withdrawal that Lithuania had presented in June. The same day
Andrejs Krastins, deputy chairman of the Latvian Supreme Council,
told the press that Latvia cannot agree to the conditions offered
by the Russians for the withdrawal of troops or to having foreign
troops on its territory. Latvia's foreign minister Janis Jurkans
said earlier that he will be able to breathe easy only after
the last Russian soldier is gone, BNS reports. (Saulius Girnius
& Dzintra Bungs)

YELTSIN'S LETTER TO ANTALL. Ivan Aboimov, the Russian ambassador
to Hungary, handed a letter from the Russian president to Prime
Minister Jozsef Antall on 7 August, MTI reports. Yeltsin reinforces
the understanding between the two countries regarding financial
claims involved in the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Hungary
last year. It was agreed that Hungary will not reimburse Russian
for the cost of military facilities and materiel left behind,
nor will Hungary be reimbursed for the environmental damage caused
by the Russian troops. Antall expressed hope that the agreement
will be signed in Budapest and that with this problem solved,
attention can now focus on paying back Hungarian trade surpluses.
(Karoly Okolicsanyi)

BULGARIAN SATISFACTION WITH YELTSIN VISIT. Assessing the results
of the visit by Russian President Boris Yeltsin on 3 and 4 August,
leading politicians and economists have expressed satisfaction
over the signing of a friendship treaty. On 7 August, Foreign
Minister Stoyan Ganev noted that the treaty is a very positive
and pragmatic means of improving bilateral relations. The treaty
includes an agreement to cooperate in providing Bulgaria access
to the former USSR's communist party archives, as well as those
of the KGB and the foreign ministry. In Otechestven vestnik of
6 August, presidential advisor on economic affairs Boyan Slavenkov
said the outcome exceeds most expectations. While he did not
comment on the unsolved problem of $500 million in Russian debts,
Slavenkov said he was pleased that several barter deals were
underway, especially those ensuring oil imports. (Kjell Engelbrekt
and Duncan M. Perry)

HUNGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTER ENDS BALTIC VISIT. Geza Jeszenszky
returned from a three-day visit to Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuaniathe
first high ranking Hungarian visit to the area. Hungarian Radio
said his talks focused on three main areas: visa-free travel,
enhanced economic relations, and a Hungarian offer to mediate
diplomatically between the Baltic States and the Russian Republic.
(Karoly Okolicsanyi)

EXILED KING PLANS SECOND VISIT TO ROMANIA. Radio Bucharest announced
on 8 August that former King Michael will pay another visit to
Romania soon. The tour will include Timisoara, cradle of the
December 1989 revolution, and Brasov, a Transylvanian city where
workers staged the first anticommunist revolt in 1987. Michael
plans to attend religious ceremonies on St. Mary's day (15 August)
at the Orthodox cathedral in Timisoara, whose construction he
sponsored in the early 1940s. Last April Michael was cheered
by enthusiastic crowds on his first visit back in his homeland.
Michael recently declined an offer to run for the presidency
in the elections scheduled for 27 September. (Dan Ionescu)

POLISH LABOR ROUNDUP. Talks on 7 August between the government
and officials of Solidarity and the postcommunist OPZZ labor
alliance on compensating workers for energy price increases were
inconclusive. Solidarity's National Commission continues talks
with the Labor Ministry today. OPZZ expects to continue talks
later on in the week. Strikes are continuing in three major industrial
plants and new protest actions are threatened this week at the
Tarnowskie Gory rail junction and the Warsaw Steelworks. National
leaders of all the major unions except Solidarity met with the
striking Polska Miedz copper miners and pledged to start organizing
a nationwide general strike if the government persisted with
its policy of nonintervention and did not act to bring about
an agreement between the striking miners and their management
by today. OPZZ has called today for nationwide solidarity demonstrations
with the striking workers. (Anna Sabbat-Swidlicka)

UNEMPLOYMENT IN SLOVAKIA. According to new data, released by
the Slovak Statistical Office on 8 July, there are now 338,000
unemployed people, or about 13.5% of the work force in Slovakia.
This represents an increase over May, when 283,000 people, or
11.3% of the work force, were reported unemployed in Slovakia.
(Jiri Pehe)

BULGARIAN UNEMPLOYMENT DATA SHOW INCREASE. Velik Vanov, Bulgarian
minister of finance, reported in an interview printed in Kontinent
on 6 August, that as of 17 July, some 490,000 people were unemployed
in Bulgaria. Western media quoted him a day later that the current
unemployment figure is 506,094 or 13% of the active work force.
Vanov noted that experts estimate the figure will climb to about
750,000 by the end of 1992, although he expects the number to
be more like 620-630,000. He compared these figures to 1989 when
about 850,000 or 25% of the work force of 3.5 million was out
of work. (Duncan M. Perry)

SOCIAL CONDITIONS IN BULGARIA. In the same interview Vanov indicated
that a majority of Bulgaria's 1.5 million pensioners will realize
a pension increase effective 7 August. Before the onset of the
new program, the average pensioner received 508 leva per month
(about $22). Under the new program the average monthly pension
rate will increase to 715 leva, or about $31. (Duncan M. Perry)


HUNGARIAN HUMOR WEEKLY IMPOUNDED. The Budapest prosecution office's
investigating department ordered all copies of this week's Heti
Szuper Pszt! to be sized because of a government complaint about
an article referring to Foreign Minister Geza Jeszenszky MTI
reports. The action was taken in conformity with a 1978 law making
the distribution of libelous materials illegal. (Karoly Okolicsanyi)


ROMANIA CRACKS DOWN ON ILLEGAL WHEAT SALES. The government ordered
heavy penalties for anybody who sells wheat outside official
trade channels. Rompres said on 8 August that the move is directed
at eliminating black market sales of wheat and wheat flour. All
state farms will have to sell their 1992 entire wheat crop (with
the exception of seed grain for next year's planting) to the
Romcereal state corporation. Violators face fines of up to 100,000
lei and other penalties. (Dan Ionescu)

CENTRAL BANK OF RUSSIA DISLIKES LATVIAN RUBLE. The Central Bank
of Russia has frozen the corresponding account of the Bank of
Latvia, as a consequence of Latvia's monetary reform of 20 July.
At that time Latvia went over entirely to its own interim currency,
the Latvian ruble. Earlier the CBR reduced the technical credit
from 3 billion to 500 million rubles for the Bank of Latvia.
This latest step has further undermined Latvian-Russian commercial
activities: the Bank of Latvia is at this time insolvent and
new contracts on deliveries from Russia cannot be concluded until
the balance rises at least 0.5%. The Latvians hope that the account
might be restored by the end of August. (Dzintra Bungs)

NO EX-GDR WEAPONS FOR HUNGARY. Relations with Germany will not
be damaged after Chancellor Helmut Kohl's decision not to sell
Hungary weapons from the ex-GDR's arsenal, the Sueddeutsche Zeitung
reports in its weekend edition, quoting an advisor to Prime Minister
Antall. A lead editorial in Nepszabadsag on Friday said that
the German decision may force Hungary to buy Russian weapons
and confirms that Hungary is in a crisis area, not to be supplied
by weapons according to the German constitution. (Karoly Okolicsanyi)


"THE WANDERING ESTONIAN:" HAVE WASTE, WILL TRAVEL. An Estonian-registered
ship carrying three tons of radioactive waste finally sailed
out of Ukrainian territorial waters on 8 August after several
weeks of negotiating for docking privileges, BNS reports. The
Heltermaa, christened "The Wandering Estonian" by local journalists,
has been seeking a port since the early summer, when Bulgaria
refused it docking rights. The ship has been anchored 9 kilometers
off the coast of Odessa since 31 July, when authorities from
all Ukrainian ports collectively decided to provide the ship
with a fresh crew and supply food, but not to allow the Heltermaa
to dock. The ship will reportedly try Russia's Black Sea ports
next. (Riina Kionka)


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

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