If you wish to make an apple pie truly from scratch, you must first invent the universe. - Carl Sagan
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 211, 02 November 1992





SUCCESSOR STATES TO THE USSR

YELTSIN COMMENTS ON DIRECT PRESIDENTIAL RULE. Answering reporters'
questions in the Volga city of Astrakhan on 30 October, President
Boris Yeltsin said that introducing presidential rule would violate
the Russian Constitution. At the same time, the president said
his obligation to the Russian people would take priority over
his oath to uphold the constitution. Western and Russian media
quoted Yeltsin as saying: "I have sworn an oath first of all
to the people, and only after them, to other things." Presidential
rule would allow Yeltsin to govern without obtaining parliamentary
approval for laws and decrees and give him the right to dissolve
parliament. Yeltsin's statements on presidential rule came after
several of Yeltsin's advisers urged him to introduce such a measure
to avoid a confrontation with hard-liners at the upcoming Russian
Congress of People's Deputies. (Vera Tolz)

OFFICERS UNION ATTACKS YELTSIN, GRACHEV. The Chairman of the
Russian Officers' Union, Stanislav Terekhov, told Der Spiegel
on 31-October that union members "refuse to honor [their] oath
to Yeltsin because we are not obligated to an individual but
to the people and the state." He also suggested that Yeltsin
would be forcibly ousted before the convening of the Congress
of People's Deputies in December, and suggested that a Pinochet-style
regime would be installed. His remarks, reported by ADN, were
described as a call for the overthrow of the government. Meanwhile,
Pravda reported on 31 October that a union spokesmen had issued
an appeal during a National Salvation Front press conference
that called upon all officers to take a stand on the current
political situation. They again criticized recent statements
by Defense Minister Grachev that the army would remain loyal
to the president It is unclear how much support the union enjoys
within the Russian officer corps. (Stephen Foye)

GROMOV ON BALTIC WITHDRAWAL. Colonel General Boris Gromov, the
Russian Deputy Defense Minister with oversight responsibilities
for the withdrawal of Russian forces serving abroad, told Interfax
on 30 October that the pull-out from the Baltic States would
depend upon compliance with the conditions presented by President
Yeltsin on 29 October. Gromov was reportedly particularly concerned
over problems allegedly surrounding treatment of the Russian
minority in the Baltic, including 40,000 military pensioners.
He also said that it was "unlikely" that all Russian troops could
be withdrawn by 1994, as the Baltic governments have insisted,
and suggested instead that the end of 1994, or even the end of
1995, might be the most realistic target dates. (Stephen Foye)


KOZYREV OPTIMISTIC ON BALTIC WITHDRAWAL. Russian Foreign Minister
Andrei Kozyrev stated in an interview with Russian media on 30-October
that Russian military forces should withdraw from the Baltic
States as soon as possible, but in an orderly manner, Western
news agencies reported on 31 October. Kozyrev claimed that President
Yeltsin's suspension of the withdrawal was actually meant to
streamline the pull-out. Meanwhile, AFP quoted Estonian Radio
as stating that Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Vitalii Churkin
will visit Tallinn on 2 November for talks. Churkin was reported
by Western agencies quoting ITAR-TASS as stating that Russia
merely wanted to discuss discrimination against ethnic Russians,
and that there was no reason for anyone to get "overly excited."
(Hal Kosiba)

ORIGINAL "SECRET PROTOCOLS" FOUND. The original "secret protocols"
attached to the 1939 Molotov-Ribbentrop pact have been discovered
in the CPSU Central Committee archives, "Novosti" reported on
29 October. The first protocol delineated the division of Poland
between Hitler and Stalin, and most important, it set the stage
for World War II by assuring Hitler that Stalin would not oppose
a Nazi invasion of Poland. It also relegated Estonia, Finland,
Latvia, and part of Lithuania to the Soviet sphere of influence.
Until now, only a copy of the German document was available to
historians. The release of this information came on the same
day that President Yeltsin announced a suspension of the withdrawal
of Russian military units from Estonia and Latvia. (Julia Wishnevsky
& Hal Kosiba)

GENERAL ON WEAPONS TESTING, REDUCTIONS. CIS armed forces commander
Marshal Evgenii Shaposhnikov has been quoted in an Arab defense
journal as saying that the CIS is ready to halt nuclear tests
permanently if other nuclear powers do the same, AFP reported
on 1 November. Shaposhnikov said that the current CIS testing
moratorium was still in effect. He also called for a continuing
drawdown of nuclear arsenals and for closer supervision over
potential nuclear proliferation. According to the same report,
Russian Defense Minister Pavel Grachev said that Russia was ready
to cut its nuclear warheads to between 3,000 and 3,500, but suggested
that such reductions should be part of a broader agreement that
included not only the US, but Britain, France, and China as well.
(Stephen Foye)

UKRAINE BALKS AT SOME START PROVISIONS. Ukrainian Prime Minister
Leonid Kuchma reportedly told US Ambassador Roman Popadyuk that,
while Ukraine intended to adhere to the Strategic Arms Reduction
Treaty (START), it would not agree to the provision requiring
the destruction of missile silos. According to Interfax on 31
October, he indicated that this clause "required further discussion."
Kuchma also said that Ukraine was against turning the strategic
nuclear warheads over to Russia as had been done with the ex-Soviet
tactical nuclear weapons on Ukrainian territory. He suggested
that the nuclear material from the warheads could be used to
fuel nuclear power plants. Kuchma also pointed out that taking
the strategic missiles out of service would be very expensive
and the Ukraine would need US help in this matter. (Doug Clarke)


TOKYO CONFERENCE ON AID TO THE FORMER USSR. The third international
conference on aid to the former Soviet Union ended in Tokyo on
30-October, Western agencies reported. Some seventy countries
and nineteen international organizations were represented. New
aid of more than $500 million, together with technical and humanitarian
assistance, was promised. Participants stressed the necessity
of self-help for the former Soviet republics. An IMF spokesman
said that Russia will require at least $22 billion in aid in
1993 to meet its balance of payments requirements. The World
Bank is to coordinate much of future aid to the former USSR.
(Keith Bush)

MORE DETAILS ON 1993 RUSSIAN BUDGET. Components of the initial
draft consolidated Russian Federation budget for 1993 produced
by the Ministry of Finance were reported by Interfax on 1 November.
Revenues are to total 9.4 trillion rubles, with value-add taxes
making up 26% of all revenue, profit taxes 25%, and excise duties
and export taxes 13%. Expenditures are projected at 12.3 trillion
rubles and break down as 35% for social programs, 26% for investment
spending and subsidies, 15% for defence and 12% for servicing
debt. The Ministry of Finance has said that the budget deficit
for 1993 will be 6% of GNP. However, the price index and 1993
GNP projections assumed for its calculations are still unclear.
(Erik Whitlock)

RUSSIAN OIL OUTPUT DOWN 15% IN 1992. Production of oil, Russia's
top hard-currency earner, will reach only 380 million metric
tons in 1992, Western news sources reported on 30 October. The
total is down seventy million tons or 15% from the 1991 total.
The government has become convinced that only large-scale foreign
investment in the industry will reverse the output decline and
is currently preparing a special decree on privatization in the
sector. However, such efforts are not expected to show significant
short-term results. Oil output at year-end 1993, according to
various observers, should only amount to some 310-314 metric
tons. (Erik Whitlock)

VIOLENT CRIME UP IN RUSSIA. The Russian State Statistical Committee
(Goskomstat) has published data showing that the number of crimes
involving violence and firearms in Russia was almost twice as
high during the first nine months of 1992 as during the same
period of 1991, ITAR-TASS reported on 30 October. Reported crimes
had risen by 28% and the number of arrests by 20%. There has
been an increase of 4,000 in the number of murders committed.
(Keith Bush)

RUSSIA'S BIRTH RATE DOWN. During the first 9 months of 1992,
the birth rate in Russia fell to 11 per 1,000 population, compared
with 13 during the first 9 months of 1991, ITAR-TASS as cited
by Reuters reported on 29 October. Deaths outnumbered births
in 41 of Russia's 77 regions, and the federation's population
fell by 72,000. (Keith Bush)

YELTSIN, GROMOV ON CASPIAN SEA FLOTILLA. On 31 October, during
the second day of his visit to Astrakhan, President Yeltsin told
a gathering of sailors serving in the Caspian Sea Flotilla that
Russia's borders along the Caspian Sea should remain "semitransparent."
In related comments, also reported by Interfax, Russian naval
commander-in-chief Admiral Feliks Gromov said that the redeployment
of the flotilla would cost Russia approximately a half billion
rubles. Gromov characterized Iranian naval power in the Caspian
Sea as impressive. The same report said that a quarter of the
fleet-some fourteen to fifteen ships-have been turned over to
Azerbaijan. The flotilla was divided earlier this year among
the four republics bordering the Caspian Sea. In August, Moscow
announced that the flotilla headquarters would be moved from
Baku to Astrakhan. (Stephen Foye)

PARLIAMENTARY COMMITTEES DOUBTFUL ON COLLECTIVE SECURITY. The
Russian parliamentary committees on International Affairs, Foreign
Economic Relations, and Defense and Security advised on 30 October
that the Supreme Soviet should move carefully in ratifying the
15 May CIS Collective Security agreement. According to Interfax,
parliamentarian Aleksei Surkov said that the committees were
concerned over "legal and political ambiguities in the treaty's
text," and over the fact that it bore "certain similarities"
to the Warsaw Pact Treaty. (Stephen Foye)

KRAVCHUK DENIES AIRCRAFT CARRIER SALE TO CHINA. Ukrainian President
Leonid Kravchuk, on 31 October in Beijing, denied that Ukraine
intended to sell the 67,500-ton aircraft carrier Varyag to China.
The Japanese Kyodo news agency quoted him assaying that such
a sale "is not valid now and it will not be valid in the future."
ITAR-TASS on 29 October reported that Nikolai Khomenko, Kravchuk's
chief of staff, had said that arms sales to China would not be
discussed during Kravchuk's visit. There have been persistent
rumors that China was interested in obtaining the carrier, the
sister-ship of the Russian Navy's Admiral Kuznetsov. The Varyag
was launched in December 1988, but was never completed following
the breakup of the Soviet Union. (Doug Clarke)

KASATONOV: BLACK SEA FLEET TO STAY IN SEVASTOPOL. Admiral Igor
Kasatonov, the Russian commander of the disputed Black Sea Fleet
was quoted by Interfax on 29 October as saying that "Sevastopol
has been, is, and must remain the main base of the fleet." The
admiral was refuting rumors that the fleet would move to the
Russian port of Novorossiisk. He added that it was "inexpedient
to redeploy the fleet from the military point of view, besides
it is economically hard and ecologically dangerous." Kasatonov
has remained in command of the fleet despite his 1 October appointment
as the first deputy commander of the Russian navy. In mid-September
a Russian parliamentarian revealed that the Russian government
had allocated money for officers' housing in Novorossiisk. At
that time Kasatonov also denied that any move was planned. (Doug
Clarke)

RUSSIA, KAZAKHSTAN ENDORSE CHEMICAL WEAPONS BAN. On 28 October
Russia and Kazakhstan became co-sponsors of the United Nations
resolution endorsing the Chemical Weapons Convention. USIA quoted
Ambassador Ronald Lehman, the director of the US Arms Control
and Disarmament Agency, as saying this step was "an important
breakthrough" in controlling chemical weapons proliferation.
Lehman predicted that the convention, which would prohibit the
development, production, stockpiling, and use of chemical weapons,
would be signed next January. So far, 138 nations have co-sponsored
the resolution endorsing the draft treaty. (Doug Clarke)

TAJIK GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL KIDNAPPED BY UZBEK FIGHTERS. The commander
of Russian border troops in Tajikistan, General Vitalii Gritsan,
told correspondents on 1 November that a group of Uzbeks from
southern Tajikistan has kidnapped Kadriddin Aslonov, the recently-appointed
chairman of the Kurgan-Tyube Oblast Soviet Executive Committee,
Western correspondents reported from Dushanbe. Gritsan said he
was involved in negotiations to obtain the release of Aslonov
at the request of the Tajik government. The Uzbek group presumably
supports deposed President Rakhmon Nabiev. On 31 October the
deputy chairman of Tajikistan's parliament condemned rumors that
Uzbeks had supported the attack by anti-government fighters on
Dushanbe on 24-25 October, ITAR-TASS reported. (Bess Brown)

PEACE TALKS POSTPONED. Peace talks scheduled for 1 November between
Tajik government officials and members of the anti-government
Kulyab Popular Movement were postponed to the next day when the
latter did not show up in the town of Gissar as promised, Interfax
reported. On 31 October, Tajik TV reported that 18,500 people
have been killed in the fighting in southern Tajikistan since
May; a Western correspondent in Dushanbe reported on 1 November
that the commander of a pro-government fighting force had told
him that both sides in the Tajik conflict are arming themselves
with weapons smuggled from Afghanistan. Other arms are bought
or stolen from Russian troops. (Bess Brown)

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

SERBS FIRE ON BOSNIAN REFUGEES. International media reported
on 31 October and 1 November that Serbian sharpshooters and gunners
had been firing on a mileslong column of up to 40,000 refugees
fleeing from Jajce to Travnik. The 1 November Washington Post
likened the trek to "an epic scene reminiscent of World War II."
Jajce had fallen to the Serbs on 29 October, and Reuters on 1
November said that Croat and Muslim defenders alike suspected
that the Croatian leadership had allowed the town to fall as
part of a larger deal between Zagreb and Belgrade. Travnik remains
one of the few Muslimheld towns; two others, Gradacac and Maglaj,
were heavily shelled over the weekend. Western agencies reported
on 1 November that Croatian President Franjo Tudjman and his
Bosnian counterpart Alija Izetbegovic had met in Zagreb to shore
up the alliance between their republics and demand a stop to
the fighting between their forces in central Bosnia. (Patrick
Moore)

OTHER BOSNIAN DEVELOPMENTS. The BBC said on 31 October that the
selfstyled parliaments of the Serbian enclaves in Bosnia and
Croatia had met in Bosnia and agreed to establish a common currency
and armed forces. A referendum on unification would be held at
some future time in what the BBC said was a further step toward
setting up a greater Serbia. Meanwhile, heavy fighting continued
in and around Sarajevo on October 30 and 31. International media
added that the UNICEFsponsored "week of tranquility" had begun
there on 1 November with the arrival of aid shipments for children,
which were supposed to continue all week. Problems have arisen
in the past with overland convoys because of Serbian irregulars
looting the trucks and Muslim skepticism toward relief work in
general. The Muslims argue that it would be easier and cheaper
for the international community to help break the Serb siege
once and for all. Croat roadblocks have also held up convoys.
(Patrick Moore)

OFFICIAL RESULTS OF LITHUANIAN ELECTIONS. On 1 November Vytautas
Duoba, the deputy chairman of the Lithuanian election committee,
announced the official results of the 25 October vote. In the
vote on the referendum on the Lithuanian Constitution 75.25%
of the 2,549,952 eligible voters participated with 75.42% voting
"yes", 21.06% "no" and 3.08% of the ballots spoiled. The referendum
was approved since it won the support of 57.76% of all eligible
voters. In the parliamentary elections only five of the 17 lists
of parties and movements won mandates to the Lithuanian Seimas
for the 70 of the 141 seats apportioned proportionally. The Lithuanian
Democratic Labor Party (LDLP), the former independent Lithuanian
Communist Party, won 36 seats, the Sajudis coalition-17 seats;
the coalition of the Christian Democratic Party (LCDP), the Democratic
Party (LDP), and the Union of Political Prisoners and Deportees
(UPPD)-10 seats, the SocialDemocratic Party (LSDP)-5 seats,
and the Union of Poles (UP)-2 seats. Only 10 of the 71 seats
in single mandate districts were decided. The remaining contests
will be decided in a second round of elections on 15 November.
(Saulius Girnius)

ILIESCU TAKES OATH OF OFFICE. Taking the oath of office before
a joint session of Romania's bicameral parliament on 30 November,
president Ion Iliescu said that neither "exacerbated etatism"
nor "noninterventionism" in the economic realm suited the needs
of the present stage of transition. In a speech broadcast live
on Radio Bucharest Iliescu denounced "the politics of laissez
faire" liberalism while advocating state intervention cum decentralization.
In an allusion to the recent demands of autonomy raised by the
Hungarian minority, he said that against the background of a
constitution guaranteeing full rights, the "artificial constructions"
requested could have "destabilizing effects" and pledged to make
"no concessions" in this direction. He said he would "continue
to oppose" ethnic intolerance, xenophobia and antiSemitism which
"can harm national interests" but also expressed concern at the
"worrying" recrudescence of "aggressive nationalism, anti-Semitism
and xenophobia" in Romania's immediate "vicinity." (Michael Shafir).


A PRINCELY PREMIER FOR ROMANIA? Prince Dimitrie Sturdza, an exiled
businessman living in Switzerland and a former professional tennis
player is the latest subject of speculation on the identity of
Romania's future prime minister. The prince, who is the scion
of a family that gave Moldova several rulers in the nineteenth
century, was interviewed on Romanian television on 31 October.
He said that he was honored that his name had been mentioned
in this connection and conditioned acceptance on being supported
by the four largest political parties and four largest trade
unions. Sturdza's candidacy for the post was officially proposed
by the Party of Romanian National Unity on 29 October. (Michael
Shafir)

JAIL SENTENCES FOR FORMER INTERIOR MINISTER. Former Czechoslovak
Interior Minister Frantisek Kincl and two other highranking
security officals were given jail terms of between 3 and 4 years
for abuse of power while in the communist government, CSTK reported
on 30 October. Kincl, along with former Deputy Interior Minister
and General of the Corps of National Security (SNB) Alojz Lorenc,
and the former chief of counterintelligence, Colonel Karel Vykypel,
were charged with ordering mass detentions of dissidents prior
to planned demonstrations in the last two years of the communist
regime in Czechoslovakia. Lorenc was also accused of having ordered
the destruction of secret police files after the "velvet revolution."
(Jan Obrman)

BULGARIAN GOVERNMENT CRISIS THREATENS FINANCIAL NEGOTIATIONS.
On 30 October Bulgarian Finance Minister Ivan Kostov warned that
negotiations on financial cooperation with the International
Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank would slow down because
of the cabinet's resignation on the previous day. Kostov told
Reuters that the current political crisis might also delay talks
on solving the country's nearly $10 billion commercial debt.
On 31 October head of the IMF mission to Bulgaria Anoop Singh
arrived for talks with top Bulgarian officials, saying he would
stay only five days instead of the originally planned two weeks.
According to the IMF's permanent representative in Sofia, Emanuel
Zervudakis, it was still too early to say whether the crisis
would affect ongoing negotiations on an extended agreement between
Bulgaria and the IMF. (Kjell Engelbrekt)

POLISH ECONOMIC NEWS. Polish National Bank President Hanna GronkiewiczWaltz
announced on 28 October that inflation was still running too
high to enact a currency reform. (Inflation for 1992 is expected
to be 47%; for 1993, 38%.) The bank had planned to introduce
new zloty notes with three fewer zeros at the beginning of 1993.
PAP reported on 28-October that one of every four state firms
in Poland (or a total of 2014) has undergone privatization in
some form. Speaking to business representatives in Poznan on
28 October, Industry Minister Waclaw Niewiarowski called works
councils an anachronism. "The time of the dictatorship of the
proletariat has ended," he said. A labor ministry official announced
on 29 October that one million unemployed would lose their benefits
on 1 December. Finally, Poland's customs office chief told PAP
on 29-October that 85,000 more autos had left Poland traveling
eastward than had entered traveling westward. (Louisa Vinton)


SKODA PLZEN PRIVATIZED. CSTK reported on 30-October that the
giant engineering and manufacturing Skoda Plzen company has announced
its privatization plans. A company called Nero will hold 20%
of the shares and a consortium of the Czech Commercial Bank and
the Investment Bank will buy an additional 18% of the company
which is believed on the verge of economic collapse. The deal
was approved by the Czech government on 29 October. Skoda produces
a wide range of goods, including locomotives, heavy equipment
and components for nuclear plants. The German Siemens company
declared an interest in the acquisition of several divisions
of Skoda some time ago. (Jan Obrman)

LATVIA REACTS TO YELTSIN'S DIRECTIVE. In an address to Latvian
diplomats on 30 October, Latvian Supreme Council Chairman Anatolijs
Gorbunovs noted that Yeltsin's directive on halting troop withdrawal
indicated that Russia intended to defend its nationals in Latvia
with the help of the army, rather than diplomacy; he urged that
the issue be raised at the UN Security Council. The Foreign Ministry
stated that the directive ran counter to Latvian and Russian
efforts to negotiate solutions to existing problems. Acting Foreign
Minister Martins Virsis demanded a detailed explanation of Russia's
action from the Russian ambassador in Riga Aleksandr Rannikh.
Latvian authorities provisionally ordered that no military equipment
of the Russian armed forces be allowed to enter Latvia, Diena
reported on 30 October. Earlier, Latvia had allowed Russian military
equipment onto its territory if special permission had been obtained.
(Dzintra Bungs)

RUSSIAN OFFICERS IN LATVIA "GRATIFIED" OVER DIRECTIVE. Colonel
Vladimir Kandalovsky, Chairman of the Coordinating Council of
Officers' Assemblies of the Baltic area, said that he was gratified
that president Yeltsin had shown his awareness of their problems
and had made the decision his organization had requested on 9
October, Diena reported on 30 October. Vladimir Myagkov, press
officer of the Northwestern Group of Forces, said that Yeltsin's
directive was an official document and more specific orders to
the military would follow. Kandalovsky said that Russian Deputy
Defense Minister Boris Gromov had stressed during his threeday
visit in Latvia that Russia had very limited possibilities to
provide housing and other "social guarantees" for the returning
officers. Kandalovsky told Diena of 29 October that it was clear
to everyone that the troop withdrawal plans must be postponed.
Diena also noted that the Latvian authorities had not been informed
of Gromov's visit-a breach of earlier LatvianRussian agreements
and international protocol. (Dzintra Bungs)

LANDSBERGIS STATEMENT TO RUSSIA. Lithuanian Supreme Council Chairman
Vytautas Landsbergis sent a statement to the Russian president's
chancellery and the Russian Foreign Ministry on Yeltsin's directive,
Radio Lithuania reported on 2-November. Landsbergis said that
the directive's three day deadline for signing agreements with
the Baltic states could read as a pretext for halting the implementation
of economic agreements and suspending the already signed agreement
between Lithuania and Russia on troop withdrawals. Landsbergis
expressed the hope that a better way to solve these problems
would be found. (Saulius Girnius)

SKOKOV, MAYOROV TO DEAL WITH BALTIC TROOP WITHDRAWAL. Baltfax
and BNS reported on 30 October that on 29 October Yeltsin had
named Colonel General Leonid Mayorov, commander of the Northwestern
Group of Forces, to the newly created position of Russian Federation
Commissioner for Questions of Temporary Housing and Withdrawal
of Forces and Fleets from the Baltic States. It was not reported
what specific duties the new position entailed. Secretary of
the Russian Security Council, Yurii Skokov, has been designated
to coordinate negotiations with the Baltic States. (Dzintra Bungs)


ESTONIAN POLITICAL LINK TO MOSCOW? City officials from Narva
and Sillamae traveled to St.-Petersburg on 1 November to meet
with Russian Supreme Council Chairman Ruslan Khasbulatov, BNS
reported. The agenda of the meeting has not been publicized,
but most likely dealt with EstonianRussian relations in the
context of the internal political debate in Moscow. Before reaching
Petersburg, Khasbulatov spent a day behind closed doors with
border officials at Ivangorod, across the river from the Estonian
border city of Narva. (Riina Kionka)

POLAND PROBES KEY HISTORICAL QUESTIONS. President Lech Walesa
dispatched a special envoy to Russia with a request to President
Boris Yeltsin for access to archives that could explain unresolved
questions in PolishSoviet relations. National archive director
Marian Wojciechowski traveled to Moscow on 2 November with a
list of priority issues: collaboration between the Gestapo and
the NKVD in persecuting Polish prisoners; the death of Poland's
wartime commander General Wladyslaw Sikorski in a 1943 plane
crash; the Red Army's withholding of aid during the Warsaw Uprising;
the role of Soviet Marshal Konstanty Rokossowski, who served
as Poland's defense minister from 1949-1956; and preparations
for Soviet military intervention during the Solidarity period
of 1980-1981. Poland received copies of the six secret protocols
to the MolotovRibbentrop Pact from a Yeltsin adviser on 30 October.
(Louisa Vinton)

MECIAR URGES AUSTRIA TO SUPPORT GABCIKOVO. According to Austrian
media reports, Slovak Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar offered
to close down Slovakia's controversial nuclear power plant in
Bohunice (located near the Austrian border) by the end of 1995
in return for Austria's support for the equally controversial
hydroelectric plant in Gabcikovo. The nuclear power plant in
Bohunice has been a major point of contention between Czechoslovakia
and Austria in the past years. Meciar made the offer during an
official visit to Vienna on 30 October. There have not been any
official reactions to the proposal yet, but Austrian media dismissed
it as "blackmail." (Jan Obrman)

[As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Hal Kosiba & Anna Swidlicka































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