Be willing to have it so; acceptance of what has happened is the first step to overcoming the consequences of any misfortune. - William James
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 12, 20 January 1993





RUSSIA



SHAPOSHNIKOV ON NUCLEAR WEAPONS TALKS, CIS ARMED FORCES. The
Commander in Chief of the CIS Joint Armed Forces, Marshal Evgenii
Shaposhnikov, told reporters on 19-January that Presidents Leonid
Kravchuk and Boris Yeltsin had, at their recent meeting, found
the keys to resolving disagreements between the two sides over
the disposition of nuclear weapons still deployed in Ukraine.
According to reports by Interfax and Russian Radio ("Mayak"),
Shaposhnikov also linked the fate of the CIS armed forces to
broader political developments within the CIS. A move toward
political and economic integration would be reflected in the
security sphere, he argued, and his command would oversee joint
forces and peacekeeping forces, as well as strategic forces (until
their elimination outside of Russia). If broader integration
is not achieved and command over nuclear weapons is handed to
Russia, Shaposhnikov said, the CIS command would be abolished
and collective security renounced. Stephen Foye

CIVIC UNION DISCUSSES FOREIGN POLICY CONCEPT. The political council
of the Civic Union met on 16 January to discuss an alternative
Russian foreign policy concept, presented by the deputy director
of USA-Canada Institute, Sergei Rogov, Nezavisimaya gazeta reported
on 19 January. The concept foresees sanctions against CIS states
which violate the human rights of Russians on their territories.
Members of the Civic Union complained that President Yeltsin
remains reluctant to accept the idea of a round table discussion,
which would include members of the government and all the factions
in the Civic Union, but praised Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin
for favoring such talks. Andrei Fedorov, assistant to the Vice
President, warned that the upcoming referendum may fail because
less than 40% of the people might take part. Alexander-Rahr

CHERNOMYRDIN APPROVES PRIVATIZATION PLAN. The Russian deputy
prime minister in charge of privatization, Anatolii Chubais,
told Izvestiya on 19-January that Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin
had approved Chubais' draft proposal for further privatization
and had forwarded it to President Yeltsin. "There is no difference
in principle in our positions, except on the question of assistance
to privatization in rural areas," Chubais affirmed. The minister
warned of opposition to privatization in parliament. An article
in Komsomolskaya pravda on the same day said that a draft law
on privatization now before the parliament would make vouchers
virtually worthless. By giving priority to employees in the factories
being privatized, it would leave only about 1% of the shares
available to voucher holders. Keith Bush

CONTROVERSY OVER HOLDING CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY. Various democratic
leaders have been advocating for some time the idea of holding
a constituent assembly to adopt a new Russian Constitution. Advocates
of the plan say the adoption of the constitution should not be
entrusted to the conservative Congress of People's Deputies.
On 17 January, St. Petersburg mayor Anatolii Sobchak was quoted
by Ostankino TV as saying the Congress and many local soviets
had turned "into a stronghold of reaction" and therefore the
convening of the Constitutional Assembly was the only solution.
In contrast, President Yeltsin's political adviser Sergei Stankevich
rejected the idea of the Constituent Assembly as a step that
would further destabilize the situation in the Russian Federation
and contribute to centrifugal tendencies in it. Vera Tolz

NEW OSTANKINO CHIEF DENIES "INFORMATION BLOCKADE OF OPPOSITION."
The recently appointed new chief of Ostankino TV, Vyacheslav
Bragin, denied that communist and Russian nationalist opposition
to the government does not have access to Russian TV, ITAR-TASS
reported on 19 January. Earlier this month, representatives of
the opposition have started to reiterate demands for better access
to TV. Bragin argued that in reality opposition leaders regularly
appear on Ostankino. Vera Tolz

RUSSIAN-UKRAINIAN DEBT DEAL? A PROTOCOL ON AN AGREEMENT BETWEEN
RUSSIA AND UKRAINE ON THE SERVICING OF THE DEBT OF THE FORMER
SOVIET UNION WAS SIGNED IN KIEV ON 16-JANUARY AND MADE PUBLIC
ON 19 JANUARY, REUTERS REPORTED. The agreement reportedly provided
for the parties to service the external debt of the former Soviet
Union separately and to divide its assets by the end of March.
However, at a news conference later on 19 January, Russian Deputy
Prime Minister Aleksandr Shokhin played down the announcement
of the agreement, ITAR-TASS reported. "This option is technically
very complicated and it still has to be assessed by specialists...We
do not yet know whether it is possible to do it at all." Keith
Bush

RUSSIAN PARLIAMENTARIANS ASK FOR START-2 DOCUMENTS. Several committees
of the Russian parliament have officially asked the Foreign and
Defense Ministries to present to parliament the package of agreements
comprising START-2, Interfax reported on 18 January. Sergei Stephashin,
spokesman for the Defense and Security Committee said that he
thought the first round of hearings would begin on 2 or 3-February.
Another committee chairman, Evgenii Ambartsumov, said that the
Americans had suggested holding a TV "bridge" between Russian
and American lawmakers and arms control experts in preparation
for the ratification of the treaty. He added that he was against
"hasty evaluations of that treaty either in enthusiastic or utterly
negative terms." President George Bush submitted the treaty to
the U.S. Senate for ratification on 15 January. Doug Clarke.


CHEMICAL WEAPONS TREATY TO BE EXPENSIVE FOR RUSSIA. General Anatolii
Kuntsevich, President Yeltsin's advisor on the destruction of
chemical weapons, told the Russian parliament on 19 January that
the recently signed UN. convention on chemical weapons would
cost Russia approximately $500 million in inspection costs alone.
As quoted by Interfax, Kuntsevich explained that the cost of
international inspectors must be born by the country on whose
territory they are working. Since Russia had the world's largest
declared stockpile, it would have the largest inspection bill.
Kuntsevich suggested that others countries might wish to contribute
funds to an international pool to cover inspection costs. Doug
Clarke

RUSSIA'S CHEMICAL DESTRUCTION PLAN CRITICIZED. Parliamentarians
criticized the government's plans for destroying chemical weapons
(CW), which would entail moving them from their seven storage
sites to two or three destruction facilities. One of these facilities
is planned for a former CW production facility at Novocheboksarsk,
in the Chuvash Republic. However, that republic's parliament
has decided to ban the introduction of poisonous substances into
Chuvashia. Interfax quoted a Chuvash member of the Russian parliament
as saying the republic had no intention of giving in on this
issue. Moreover, a representative of Tartarstan said that the
republic would not give permission for chemical weapons to be
transported across its territory. Doug Clarke

SCIENTIST QUESTIONS CW STOCKPILE FIGURES. Dr. Lev Fedorov, a
chemist who has criticized the Russian chemical weapons program
in the past, told Interfax on 19 January that Russia was responsible
for destroying far more than the 40,000 tons officially acknowledged.
He estimated that from 500,000 to 1,000,000 tons of chemical
weapons had been manufactured during the Soviet era, and much
of it had been buried or burned, causing an enormous toxic waste
problem. Fedorov also made public the locations of the seven
major CW stockpiles. He said that two were in Urdmurtia, and
the others in the Kurgan, Penza, Kirov, Saratov, and Bryansk
Oblasts. Fedorov, a Chuvash, said that the weapons must be destroyed
where they were stored and not moved to other elimination sites.
Doug Clarke

YELTSIN CALLS FOR "TOTAL WAR" AGAINST CORRUPTION AND CRIME. In
a statement to an inter-agency Russian government conference
concerning ways and means of combating corruption, President
Yeltsin said that "All branches of power must begin a frontal
attack against corruption, organized crime and bribe-taking,"
ITAR-TASS reported on 19-January. According to Reuters, Yeltsin
claimed that mafia-type structures in Russia are becoming more
widespread and disruptive than in Italy. The border between legality
and illegality is, however, not always clearly defined in Russia,
since private businesses often have to bribe state officials
in order to operate. Minister of Justice Nikolai Fedorov said
that the law against "speculation" (broadly defined as including
all black market activities) should be reinstated; the parliament
abolished this law last year. Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Shakhrai
said that decisive measures must to taken to prevent organized
crime from becoming involved politically in ethnic conflicts
taking place in various regions within Russia, including the
North Caucasus. Victor Yasmann & Sheila Marnie

TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA



UZBEK SUPREME COURT SUSPENDS BIRLIK. Uzbekistan's Supreme Court
has suspended the activity of Uzbekistan's major opposition group,
Birlik, until 15-April, Interfax reported on 19 January. The
Ministry of Justice claimed that Birlik should be banned because
between 1991 and 1993, 166 of its members were charged with breaking
the law. Uzbekistan's Supreme Soviet had ordered the ministry
to investigate the movement to determine if it should be banned;
this order was widely interpreted as a revocation of Birlik's
registration. The authorities seem to have decided to observe
scrupulously the law on public organizations and entrust repression
of Birlik to the Supreme Court. Bess Brown

KYRGYZSTAN LOOKS TO SOUTH AFRICA. After the official visit to
Israel, Kyrgyz Foreign Minister Ednan Karabaev will travel on
to South Africa, he told Interfax on 18 January. The two countries
have already established diplomatic relations; the Kyrgyz side
hopes to gain South African assistance on projects to develop
Kyrgyzstan's mining industries. According to Karabaev, Kyrgyzstan
is particularly interested in South Africa's experience in creating
ethnic harmony. Bess Brown

INTERREGIONAL


NON-RUSSIAN CIS MEMBERS SEEK RETURN OF NATIONAL TREASURES. Representatives
from over half of the CIS states met in Minsk on 12-13 January,
to discuss renewing efforts to secure the return of national
cultural and historical treasures which were removed during the
Soviet and tsarist periods and which have largely ended up in
Russian museums. The states which took part were Ukraine, Belarus,
Moldova, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan; Armenia and Azerbaijan
sent observers. A year ago, at the CIS summit in Minsk of 14-February,
the heads of the CIS states signed an agreement on the return
of cultural and historical treasures but this accord was in effect
torpedoed when on 20 May the Russian parliament rejected it.
The head of the Ukrainian Commission on the Return of Cultural
and Historical Treasures, Oleksandr Fedoruk, told the RFE/RL
Ukrainian Service on 19 January that at last weekend's meeting
in Minsk it was decided to form an inter-state commission to
work on this problem and to enlist the help of international
experts. New documents are also being prepared for discussion
at forthcoming CIS summits. Bohdan Nahaylo

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE



BOSNIAN SERBS DEBATE GENEVA PEACE PLAN. The Assembly of the self-
proclaimed Serb Republic in Bosnia-Herzegovina began debate on
19 January on the peace plan proposed by international mediators
Cyrus Vance and Lord Owen. After hearing opening speeches by
the Bosnian Serb leadership, the assembly adjourned its session
until the 20th. Radio Serbia predicts that the assembly will
adopt the plan with some reservations, but the voting "will not
be easy or unanimous." Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic told
the assembly that the time has come to "look at the possibilities
of peace" and a "definite solution to the political crisis."
Biljana Plavsic, vice president of the Serb Republic, called
for the rejection of the plan. -Milan Andrejevich

BOSNIA MAY BRAND CROATIA "AGGRESSORS." Fighting between Bosnian
Muslim forces and units of the Croatian Defense Council (HVO)
around the key town of Gornji Vakuf in central Bosnia continued
on 19-January with no end in sight. In an address on Bosnian
TV on 18 January Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic warned of
a "new aggression" by Croats, accused Croatia of meddling in
Bosnia's internal affairs, and blamed some Croat units for instigating
the fighting. On 19-January Radio Bosnia reported that the Bosnian
government threatened to declare Croatia an "aggressor state"
and appeal to the UN if fighting between Bosnian Croats and Muslims
does not stop by 21 January. In a letter to Izetbegovic Bosnian
Croat leader Mate Boban rejected the Muslim condemnation of the
Croats, saying that evidence points to Muslim military commanders
ordering the attacks in central Bosnia. According to Radio Croatia
Boban also stated that accusations that Croatia is meddling in
Bosnia's internal affairs undermines the "friendship and cooperation"
between the two states. Boban threatened to withdraw Croat representatives
from the Bosnian government if Izetbegovic fails to halt the
fighting. Cyrus Vance and Lord Owen are due to arrive in Zagreb
and Sarajevo today. -Milan Andrejevich

BEROV SEEKS US SUPPORT IN BALKAN CRISIS. On 19 January Bulgarian
Premier and acting Foreign Minster Lyuben Berov discussed the
impact of the war in ex- Yugoslavia with the US ambassador to
Sofia, Hugh Kenneth Hill. According to a government press release,
Berov called on the US to show its determination and help stop
military actions in former Yugoslavia. Warning that tension is
spreading over the Balkans, he especially noted that the Republic
of Macedonia is lacking security guarantees. Berov also pointed
out that Bulgaria has lost over $1-billion in adhering to UN
sanctions. -Kjell Engelbrekt

STATE DEPARTMENT REPORT ON HUMAN RIGHTS IN FORMER YUGOSLAVIA-.-.-.
In its annual report on the status of human rights around the
world issued on 19 January, the US State Department roundly condemns
abuses in the former Yugoslavia. The report accuses the Serbian
forces in Bosnia-Herzegovina of conducting a campaign of "cruelty,
brutality and killing," notably the policy of "ethnic cleansing,"
unrivaled in Europe since Nazi times. "It borders on genocide."
All sides in the Yugoslav conflict have been guilty of atrocities,
the report says, but those of the Croats and Bosnian Muslims
pale in comparison to those of the Serbs. -Charles Trumbull

.-.-.-AND ELSEWHERE IN THE REGION. The State Department report,
however, is generally positive about the other countries in Central
and Eastern Europe. In Bulgaria, the report says, human rights
performance was generally good in 1992 and some progress is being
made in addressing the rights of ethnic Turks, Gypsies, and other
minorities, although more could be hoped for in establishing
a sound judicial basis for addressing human rights complaints.
Progress was also noted in Romania, where the government "generally
expressed willingness to comply with Western human rights norms,"
but was sometimes ineffective in responding to instances of ethnic
discrimination, especially against Gypsies and ethnic Hungarians.
Concern over the rights of these same two minorities in Slovakia
is also expressed in the report, which details in particular
"misgivings" by leaders of the new state's 600,000-strong Hungarian
minority about the Slovak constitution, social legislation, and
some government actions. Continuing social discrimination and
occasional incidents against Gypsies in the Czech Republic are
mentioned, as are isolated anti-Semitic incidents such as the
provocative publication in a Prague tabloid of a list of people,
allegedly Jews prominent in Czech culture. Human rights in Hungary,
the report says, are "generally respected in practice," but cautions
that right- wing populists, including some in the prime minister's
own Hungarian Democratic Forum (former HDF vice president Istvan
Csurka is specifically mentioned) have exploited popular discontent.
Examples of antidemocratic, anti-Semitic, and anti-Gypsy incidents
in Hungary are also given. Poland, the report says, has moved
from a communist state to a multiparty democracy with "a lively,
independent parliament" and "a vigorous free press," but the
country continues to grapple with all the issues of "social,
gender and ethnic intolerance." -Charles Trumbull

CZECH REPUBLIC, SLOVAKIA ADMITTED TO THE UN. On 19 January the
UN General Assembly admitted the Czech and Slovak Republics as
the 179th and 180th members of the UN, international agencies
report. The new members were admitted by acclamation, without
any voting. Assembly Chairman Stoyan Ganev of Bulgaria welcomed
the new members. Czech Foreign Minister Josef Zieleniec told
the assembly that the Czech Republic desires a stable Europe
"opened to natural integration trends and developing good neighborly
relations in its center." Slovak Foreign Minister Milan Knazko
said his republic intends to abide by human rights principles
and reject the use of violence. He said Slovakia will base its
domestic policy and foreign policy on the principles of pluralistic
democracy, socially oriented market economy, and the rule of
law. -Jiri Pehe

SLOVAK PARLIAMENT PASSES CITIZENSHIP LAW, REJECTS CREATION OF
NEW CHAMBER. The National Council of Slovakia approved a new
law on Slovak citizenship on 19 January. CTK reports that according
to the law all people who were citizens of Czechoslovakia's Slovak
Republic on 31 December 1992 automatically became citizens of
the independent Slovakia. Noncitizens can apply for citizenship
if they have resided in Slovakia for five years, have a good
command of Slovak, and have not been found guilty of committing
a crime in the last five years. In another vote on the 19th,
Parliament rejected a draft constitutional amendment providing
for the creation of a provisional second chamber of the Slovak
parliament consisting of the Federal Assembly deputies elected
in Slovakia. The vote contravened the constitutional law on the
abolition of Czechoslovakia passed by the Federal Assembly on
25 November 1992, which stipulated that after the split of Czechoslovakia
legislative power in Slovakia would belong to the deputies of
the National Council of Slovakia and the Federal Assembly deputies
elected in Slovakia. -Jiri Pehe

DIFFERING VIEWS ON SLOVAKIA'S NATO TIES? THE BUDAPEST DAILY NEPSZAVA
NOTED ON 12-JANUARY THAT THERE APPEAR TO BE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN
SLOVAK PRIME MINISTER VLADIMIR MECIAR AND THE FOREIGN MINISTRY
OVER THE COUNTRY'S TIES WITH NATO. In a 4 January statement,
Meciar told Defense Ministry members that Slovakia had to decide
whether to remain neutral, move towards NATO, or act within a
new kind of Central European security system. During a two-day
conference on NATO and East European security in Budapest on
9-10-January in Budapest, an unnamed official of the Slovak Foreign
Ministry said this is only Meciar's "private opinion"; the Foreign
Ministry view is that Slovakia wishes to participate both politically
and economically in both the EC and NATO. The only road for Slovakia,
he continued, is integration with the West, including the latter's
military security system. Foreign Ministry analyst Svetoslav
Bombik told Magyar hirlap on 11 January that Slovakia will not
depart from Czechoslovakia's West- oriented policy and that both
his country and Hungary face a common threat from the East, i.e.
the former Soviet Union, and thus cannot afford a conflict over
the national minority issue. -Alfred Reisch

CSURKA, ANTALL CLOSE TO BREAK. Istvan Csurka, controversial presidium
member of the ruling Hungarian Democratic Forum, said at a news
conference reported by MTI that in the party conference on 22-January
new leaders cannot be selected before the candidates are given
a chance to express their opinions as had been suggested earlier
by a conference steering committee. Csurka also rejected political
stability for stability sake. He said he does not want to attack
Prime Minister Jozsef Antall openly but that nobody is above
criticism. Csurka called attention to a lead editorial in the
weekly he edits, which says Antall has lost his political popularity
and is an obstacle to HDF success. Csurka and Antall cannot "paddle
together in the same boat", the article says. Earlier Csurka
announced that he will not challenge Antall for HDF leadership,
although these new developments now call that statement into
question. -Karoly Okolicsanyi

HUNGARIAN HIGH COURT REJECTS REFERENDUM. MTI reported on 19 January
that the Constitutional Court has ruled that holding a referendum
on new elections would violate the constitution. The referendum
would represent an amendment to the constitution, which cannot
be changed this way. The ruling was necessary because a signature
collection drive is under way calling on Parliament to announce
a referendum to decide whether to call for an unscheduled general
election. The Constitutional Court also recommended changing
the present law regulating referendums, which permit popular
votes to call for new elections. -Karoly Okolicsanyi

POLISH GOVERNMENT REQUESTS DECREES. The cabinet approved a draft
bill on 19-January that would grant the government the right
to issue decrees with the force of law. Decrees would apply in
all but a few restricted areas, including the constitution, the
budget, and civil rights. After consultations with the coalition
parties, the draft will be given "urgent" status and sent to
the Sejm, PAP reports. Prime Minister Hanna Suchocka said that
"special powers" would be used to accelerate economic transformations,
restructure state institutions, and bring the Polish legal system
into conformance with European Community norms. The government
has several dozen bills already earmarked for decree status.
Attending the cabinet session, President Lech Walesa, long a
supporter of "special powers," said that decrees would not limit
but rather strengthen and defend democracy. He pledged "to do
his utmost not to collide with the government." Under the "little
constitution" enacted in 1992, the president is empowered to
sign government decrees into law or refer them to the Constitutional
Tribunal. -Louisa Vinton

KATYN INVESTIGATION NEARING CONCLUSION? SERGEI STANKEVICH, AN
ADVISER TO RUSSIAN PRESIDENT BORIS YELTSIN, MET WITH MEMBERS
OF THE FEDERATION OF KATYN FAMILIES, THE ASSOCIATION FORMED BY
RELATIVES OF THE 21,000 VICTIMS OF THE KATYN MASSACRE, ON 19
JANUARY. According to Polish TV, Stankevich announced that Russian
military prosecutors will conclude their investigation of Katyn
in 1993. Katyn Family members gave Stankevich a standing ovation
when he stressed the need for justice to be done. Stankevich
also met with Walesa's representatives to discuss Yeltsin's upcoming
visit to Poland, which is expected to take place "in the next
few months." He told reporters that ten agreements would be signed
during the visit, on matters including the status of Kaliningrad,
energy supplies, and international crime. -Louisa Vinton

POLAND ARRESTS WOULD-BE URANIUM DEALER. Polish TV reported on
19 January that the State Security Office has arrested former
deputy culture minister Kazimierz Clapka and three others on
charges of attempting to sell large quantities of uranium and
plutonium to German journalists posing as arms dealers. A German
television program had aired footage of Clapka offering radioactive
materials for sale in December. Western agencies reported that
two Poles and a German were arrested on the Swiss-French border
on 19 January when police discovered four kilograms of cesium,
a rare metal used in the nuclear industry, in their car. The
cesium apparently originated in Lithuania. -Louisa Vinton

LILOV LOSES IMMUNITY. Aleksandar Lilov, former member of the
Politburo of the Bulgarian Communist Party and 1990-91 leader
of the successor Bulgarian Socialist Party, has been stripped
of his parliamentary immunity. Following a 12-hour debate at
an extraordinary session of the National Assembly on 19 January,
a slight majority of deputies-113 votes to 104-supported a request
by Prosecutor General Ivan Tatarchev to lift Lilov's immunity.
Tatarchev made the request on grounds that he would charge the
excommunist for his part in granting millions of dollars to communist
regimes in the Third World. On a proposal by the MRF party, however,
the parliament rejected Tatarchev's recommendation to put Lilov
under arrest, saying the National Assembly is not a court of
law. -Kjell Engelbrekt

UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT CONVENES TODAY. The Parliamentary Presidium
decided to convene a plenary session of Parliament on 20 January,
Ukrainian TV reports. Nearly 100-deputies demanded that Parliament
convene immediately, reportedly to discuss the question of Ukraine's
adherence to the CIS charter and the legalization of the banned
Communist Party. The Presidium ruled that social and economic
questions will top the agenda. -Roman Solchanyk

UKRAINE SEEKS SECURITY GUARANTEES. Konstantin Grishchenko, director
of the arms control department of the Defense Ministry, told
journalists on 19-January that Ukraine is conducting negotiations
with the French and Chinese governments on guaranteeing Ukraine's
nuclear security. His remarks were reported by Interfax. He expressed
hope that Ukraine and Russia will be able to agree on the destruction
of the nuclear warheads now in Ukraine, adding that they would
be destroyed in Russia if "Russia's position is rational." The
previous day CIS commander in chief Marshal Evgenii Shaposhnikov
told a Moscow briefing that he believes the problems between
Russia and Ukraine over the strategic weapons could be resolved
within the next month. He said that Presidents Yeltsin and Kravchuk
"found the key to solving these problems" during their 15 January
meeting. -Doug Clarke

FEW MOLDOVANS FAVOR UNIFICATION. In connection with recent calls
for a referendum to confirm Moldova's independence, the National
Institute of Sociology (which is directed by Romanian scholars)
conducted a public opinion survey. As reported by Interfax and
Basapress, the survey found that only 8% of citizens would vote
for unification with Romania in a referendum; 18% would vote
for Moldova joining the CIS; 67% would vote for independence
(the Moldovan leadership's option); while 7% expressed no definite
opinion. The survey area did not include the left bank of the
Dniester, where approximately 15% of Moldova's population resides
and where support for unification with Romania among the ethnic
Moldovan plurality of the population is known to be even lower
than on the right bank. -Vladimir Socor

MINISTERIAL CHANGES IN LATVIA. Diena reported on 19 January that
the Supreme Council has confirmed Aivars Kreituss as minister
of economic reforms. Kreituss, former head of the Latvian Stock
Exchange, replaces Arnis Kalnins, who resigned last fall. In
November the Supreme Council narrowly rejected the nomination
of Uldis Osis, deputy minister of finance, to replace Kalnins,
but endorsed Kreituss with a strong majority. Diena also reports
the resignation of Minister of Finance Elmars Silins but did
not offer an explanation. -Dzintra Bungs

ESTONIAN TANKER ACCIDENT NO "DISASTER." Minister for the Environment
Andres Tarand says the situation caused by the grounded oil tanker
Kihnu is an expensive accident but not yet a disaster. Tarand
told the RFE/RL Estonian Service on 19 January that the accident
was caused in part by sloppiness, including poor navigation.
As of 20 January most of the diesel fuel had been pumped out
of the grounded tanker to shore, and workers had begun pumping
out the remaining heating fuel. -Riina Kionka

[As of1200 CET]

Compiled by Hal Kosiba & Charles Trumbull






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

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