Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most times he will pick himself up and carry on. - Winston Churchill
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 68, 08 April 1993







RUSSIA



RADIOACTIVE CLOUD FROM TOMSK-7. CIS TV and Russian agencies reported
on 7 April that a radioactive cloud, formed after the explosion
in Tomsk-7, was moving north-east over sparsely populated areas
of Siberia. It was announced that the underground tank at the
nuclear processing facility in Tomsk-7 which had exploded contained
uranium. A spokesman for the nuclear energy ministry said that
Tomsk-7's production of weapons-grade plutonium had been phased
out during the past three years. Only one fireman was said to
have received a high dose of radiation. A US State Department
spokesman welcomed Russia's prompt notification of the accident,
but the explosion prompted widespread Western concern over the
safety of nuclear facilities in Russia and in other former Soviet
republics. -Keith Bush

US REPORTER QUESTIONED BY SECURITY MINISTRY. The Moscow correspondent
of the Baltimore Sun, Will Englund, was questioned by the Russian
Security Ministry on 7 April as a witness in connection with
the case brought against Russian scientist Vil Mirzoyanov, who
was arrested on 22 October 1992 for "revealing state secrets."
Englund said that his lawyer and a US diplomat had unexpectedly
been barred at the last minute from attending the session by
the investigator Viktor Shkarin. Englund was summoned for further
questioning on 8 April, and the US Embassy in Moscow expressed
concern to the Russian Foreign Ministry over the incident. Mirzoyanov
had co-authored an article in Moskovskie novosti of 20 September
1992, in which he claimed that Russia was continuing to develop
and test chemical weapons. Englund is concerned that the investigator
may want him to reveal other sources for articles he wrote on
Russian research projects, according to the New York Times of
8 April. -Wendy Slater

TRADE VOLUME DOWN, CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS STIFFENED. The Ministry
of Foreign Economic Relations reported that total trade volume
in 1992 was down to $80-billion, or by 18%, from last year, ITAR-TASS
reported on 7 April. Exports declined 12% to $45 billion, and
imports plummeted over 20% to $35 billion. The Ministry also
noted that the state's monitoring of capital and goods across
Russia's borders had deteriorated over the course of the year.
In a related move, the State Customs Committee announced new
restrictions on the amount of rubles which citizens may take
out of and bring into Russia. A limit of 500,000 rubles may be
taken into or out of another state in the ruble zone; and 100,000
rubles into or out of the Baltic States, Ukraine, or other foreign
countries. -Erik Whitlock

IMF AND SHOKHIN VERSUS GERASHCHENKO. The IMF is readying a new
facility of up to $8 billion to help Russia and other former
Soviet republics to purchase Western industrial equipment, the
Washington Post reported on 7 April. But Russia would not have
access to the new money unless the government gains control of
the Russian Central Bank (RCB), which the IMF blames for fueling
hyperinflation. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Shokhin
told a news conference on 6-April that the 25 April referendum
may give Yeltsin the opportunity he needs to take control of
the RCB: "We will do everything to achieve control of the Central
Bank," he said. However, RCB chairman Viktor Gerashchenko told
Russian TV on 7-April that he was prepared to resign "only if
the Supreme Soviet [parliament] agrees that I should." -Keith
Bush

YAVLINSKY CHALLENGES YELTSIN. The well-known economist Grigorii
Yavlinsky said in an interview with Russian TV on 4 April that
he does not support the view that there is no alternative to
Russia's current political leaders. In answer to the question
of whether he is considering standing for president at the next
elections, Yavlinsky said that he thinks the time has come to
start seriously promoting alternative candidates and ideas. He
asserted that after the Seventh Congress last December it became
clear that the present leadership was incapable of running the
country and that new presidential and parliamentary elections
should be held to resolve the political crisis. -Alexander Rahr


STANKEVICH MOVES TO THE RIGHT. Presidential advisor Sergei Stankevich
has criticized the Russian intelligentsia for failing to elaborate
a concept for the "new Russia." He told Ekho Moskvy on 6 April
that the intelligentsia had not managed to find a solution to
the problem of how to merge the principles of liberalism and
"enlightened patriotism." In another interview with Ostankino
TV on 5 April, he criticized the democratic movement for failing
to take advantage of the situation arising after the attempted
August 1991 coup. He rejected the democrats' concept of radical
economic reform and urged the present government to cooperate
with parliament on that issue. He did not exclude the possibility
that a new president could be elected by the Congress, and suggested
that a new government could be formed, which would work more
closely with parliament. -Alexander Rahr

OIL OUTPUT DOWN, PETROL PRICES UP. Russian oil output is reported
to have fallen by at least 15% in the first quarter of 1993 compared
with the same period in 1992, according to Reuters on 7 April.
The Ministry of Economics claims that output was 85.4 million
tons, and the Ministry of Fuel and Energy puts it at just below
89-million tons. First quarter output in 1992 was 104 million
tons. Meanwhile, petrol prices reportedly doubled to 70 rubles
per liter in Moscow, and further price increases for public transport
and heating are expected, due to the gradual reduction in state
subsidies for oil prices. -Sheila Marnie

CHURKIN IN BELGRADE. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Vitalii
Churkin traveled to Serbia on 7 April for talks with Serbian
President Slobodan Milosevic on the situation in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Churkin also met with Radovan Karadzic, the leader of the Bosnian
Serbs. Churkin declined to discuss any new initiatives on settling
the conflict in Bosnia, and stressed that Russia is continuing
to work within the framework of existing international efforts,
Western and Russian agencies reported. -Suzanne Crow

KOZYREV IN CENTRAL ASIA. Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev
initialed a document on Russo-Pakistani relations on 7 April
in Islamabad. Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif stressed
Pakistan's willingness to assist in the return of Soviet POW's
from the Afghan war. Kozyrev continues his tour of Central Asia
with a visit to Tajikistan starting on 8 April. There he will
discuss problems which have arisen along that country's border
with Afghanistan, Western and Russian agencies reported. -Suzanne
Crow

ST. PETERSBURG TV SHOW BACK ON AIR. Nationalist TV presenter
Aleksandr Nevzorov returned to broadcasting his popular news
show "600 Seconds" 6 April, after officials at St. Petersburg
TV said that they had exhausted all legal means for maintaining
his suspension, Reuters reported on 7 April. The local department
of the Ministry of Security said that it had found no legal grounds
for acting against Nevzorov, who had been suspended from broadcasting
after criticizing Yeltsin's 20 March speech and calling for armed
volunteers to defend the constitution. (See RFE/RL Daily Report
for 25-March and 2 April). -Wendy Slater

COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES



CIS DEFENSE PROPOSALS APPROVED. A conference sponsored by the
CIS military command concluded its work in Moscow on 6 April
by approving a packet of documents to be submitted for consideration
to the CIS Interparliamentary Assembly and to the next Council
of CIS Heads of State. According to ITAR-TASS, the package includes
proposals on standardizing defense-related legislation throughout
the CIS, on ensuring social protections for servicemen and their
families, and on coordinating activities among the security organs
of CIS member-states. Speaking to reporters prior to the conference
on 5 April, CIS Commander-in-Chief Evgenii Shaposhnikov said
that it was time to put an end to "unlimited sovereignty" in
the CIS and to promote greater economic and military integration.
He stressed the need to create a CIS Security Council, ITAR-TASS
reported. -Stephen Foye

TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA



ARMENIA-AZERBAIJAN. Azerbaijani army units launched a counter
attack on 7 April on villages in the Martuni and Gadrut raions
of Nagorno-Karabakh bordering Fizuli raion, where fighting is
also continuing, ITAR-TASS reported. Azerbaijan has asked for
an emergency meeting of the CSCE to discuss the latest Armenian
offensive. Responding to a request from Azerbaijani President
Abulfaz Elchibey "to use all means at your disposal" to halt
the Armenian offensive, Turkish Prime Minister Suleyman Demirel
argued that Turkish military assistance to Azerbaijan "would
solve nothing", as other nations would then aid Armenia. Turkey
and Iran are reportedly in contact over the possibility of bringing
pressure to bear on Armenia, according to a Turkish Foreign Ministry
spokesman. A Russian Foreign Ministry statement summarized by
ITAR-TASS on 7 April expresses "full support" for the UN Security
Council resolution calling for an immediate halt to hostilities
and the withdrawal of all troops. Following Turkey's refusal
at the weekend to send helicopters to evacuate the civilian population
from the conflict zone, Azerbaijani Presidential Advisor Vafa
Kuli-Zade made a similar request by telephone to Iranian Foreign
Minister Velayati, ITAR-TASS reported. -Liz Fuller

AGREEMENT REACHED ON CONTINUED STATIONING OF RUSSIAN TROOPS IN
GEORGIA. During the second day of talks in Sochi between Georgian
Prime Minister Tengiz Sigua and Russian Defense Minister Pavel
Grachev, it was agreed that the Russian troops currently stationed
in Abkhazia and elsewhere in Georgia will remain there until
the end of 1995, as stipulated in the draft agreement reached
in February, Western agencies reported. Agreement was also reached
on a 3-kilometer demilitarized zone between the Georgian and
Abkhaz forces, but not over control of the military laboratory
at Eshera, which has repeatedly been subjected to Georgian artillery
fire. No Abkhaz representatives were present at the talks which
are intended to prepare for a summit between Russian President
Yeltsin and Georgian parliament chairman Eduard Shevardnadze.
-Liz Fuller

KYRGYZ TROOPS WITHDRAWN FROM TAJIKISTAN. Kyrgyzstan's government
has withdrawn the border troops it had stationed on the Tajik-Afghan
border in March because Kyrgyzstan has no law on the status of
its citizens on active service in areas of tension within the
CIS, RIA reported on 7 April. The battalion of border troops
from Kyrgyzstan, whose participation in CIS efforts to secure
the Tajik-Afghan border had been agreed at the Minsk CIS summit,
had been brought up to full strength only on 23 March. An officer
of the Russian border troops stationed in Tajikistan attributed
the Kyrgyz withdrawal that was first reported on 3 April, to
an inadequate level of training of the troops from Kyrgyzstan
for service in mountainous terrain. -Bess Brown

OZAL IN CENTRAL ASIA. Turkish President Turgut Ozal arrived in
Kyrgyzstan on 7 April on the second leg of an official tour of
all the Turkic-speaking Central Asian states and Azerbaijan,
Russian news agencies reported. Kyrgyzstan's President Askar
Akaev thanked Turkey for its help in rebuilding his country's
economy and noted that Kyrgyzstan shares Turkey's political and
economic ideals. During his visit to Uzbekistan earlier in the
week, Ozal signed agreements on preventing dual taxation of investors
and cooperation against drug smuggling, and is expected to sign
similar agreements in Kyrgyzstan. Turkish businessmen accompanying
Ozal told a Reuters correspondent in Tashkent that they were
frustrated by bureaucratic obstacles surviving from the Soviet
era and by Uzbekistan's inefficient banking, telecommunications,
and transport systems. -Bess Brown

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE



GENERAL MORILLON RETURNING TO SREBRENICA. International media
reported on 7 and 8 April that the UN commander in Bosnia is
trying to return to the embattled town with 150 Canadian troops.
He was alarmed at the renewed Serbian offensive against Srebrenica
and has resumed "what has become a personal battle to save the
besieged Muslim enclave," the 8 April New York Times says. The
BBC noted the previous day that the attack reflects "the overt
bad faith of the Serbs," who had promised to observe the latest
cease-fire. Morillon's move is seen as a test-case for the UN's
ability to project force in carrying out its mission in Bosnia,
and one observer told the BBC that the UN will "have to rethink
everything" about that role if the Serbs succeed in blocking
Morillon, who has already been held up along the way after inconclusive
talks with Serbian military leaders in Belgrade. -Patrick Moore


SERBS AND CROATS SIGN CEASE-FIRE AGREEMENT. On 6 April representatives
of Croatia and its Serb minority agreed in Geneva to a seven-point
statement backed by EC mediator Lord Owen. The cease-fire calls
for Croatian forces to withdraw from the areas they acquired
since their 22 January offensive and for armed Serbs to be barred
from entering those places, which will return to UN control.
UNPROFOR troops will watch over the Maslenica bridge, Zemunik
airport, and Peruca dam to permit free civilian access, according
to the Serbo-Croatian version of the text carried by Vjesnik
on 7 April. The 8 April Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung quotes
Croatia's defense minister as calling the document "a step forward"
and "not a defeat for either side." Nonetheless, it should be
noted that the Tudjman government had taken much pride in retaking
these economically important installations and that it cannot
be happy to abandon what Croats regards as inalienable Croatian
territory. -Patrick Moore

MACEDONIA JOINS THE UN. RFE/RL's New York correspondent reported
on 7 April that Macedonia has been admitted to the UN albeit
under the provisional name of "the former Yugoslav republic of
Macedonia" and without a flag. This unprecedented step stems
from Greek opposition to that Slavic state's use of the name
"Macedonia," which Athens argues is Greek patrimony and in Slavic
hands reflects territorial ambitions against northern Greece.
Athens also objects to Skopje's use of the star of Vergina on
its flag, again claiming that the Slavs have usurped Greek cultural
property. An arbitration committee has two months to resolve
the dispute, the 8 April Los Angeles Times adds. -Patrick Moore


ROMANIA AND THE YUGOSLAV CRISIS. On 7 April Romania's government
issued a statement on the war in Bosnia and Hercegovina. The
statement, which deplores the escalation of violence, calls on
Bosnia's Serbs to accept the Vance-Owen peace plan as the only
possible way out of the current crisis. In a separate statement,
the cabinet stressed that Romania gave its "accord in principle"
to the recent decision of the Western European Union to support
the countries in the Danube region in enforcing the UN sanctions
against Serbia and Montenegro. The practical details of this
cooperation, the statement adds, should be settled through further
negotiations between Romania and the WEU. In another development,
Radio Bucharest announced that six patrol boats dispatched by
the US to help Romania and Bulgaria enforce the embargo arrived
on 7 April to the Black Sea port of Constanta. -Dan Ionescu

BRITISH DEPUTY DEFENSE MINISTER TO BUCHAREST. On 7 April a British
military delegation headed by Deputy Defense Minister Archibald
Hamilton held talks in Bucharest on issues of mutual interest.
with Romanian high-raking officials. Hamilton reportedly discussed
the conflicts in former Yugoslavia and the Russian crisis with
Romania's President Ion Iliescu, Prime Minister Nicolae Vacaroiu,
Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu and Defense Minister Nicolae
Spiroiu. Melescanu said that Romania would support democratic
political forces in Russia because any communist restoration
in Moscow could only have a negative impact on relations with
Romania and Moldova. -Dan Ionescu

ALBANIA AND BULGARIA SIGN MILITARY AGREEMENT. Officials from
Tirana and Sofia signed a five year agreement on Scientific and
Technical Cooperation in the sphere of military affairs on 7
April according to Reuters. Both states are seeking to protect
themselves in the event that the war in the former Yugoslav lands
escalates. -Duncan Perry

SLOVAK PARLIAMENT CHAIRMAN IN HUNGARY. A Slovak parliamentary
delegation led by parliament chairman Ivan Gasparovic visited
the town of Bekescsaba on 6 April, meeting with representatives
of Hungary's Slovak national minority, MTI reported on 7 April.
There are an estimated 80,000 to 100,000 ethnic Slovaks in Hungary,
only one-fifth of whom can still speak Slovak. Gasparovic said
Slovakia would contribute to the financing of a Slovak cultural
center in Bekescsaba. Asked whether Bratislava would set up a
relay station to enable ethnic Slovaks in Hungary to receive
Slovak-language television and radio programs, he said he would
forward the request to the Slovak government. After visiting
Bekescsaba, the delegation went to Budapest, where it met Prime
Minister Jozsef Antall and the chairman of the parliament, Gyorgy
Szabad. Antall emphasized the necessity of negotiating and signing
a basic treaty regulating bilateral relations, which should be
"substantial and not formal". It is not in Hungary's interest
to isolate Slovakia, Antall said. Gasparovic stressed that minority
problems have to be solved by the host country, and that all
problems could be solved with mutual goodwill. -Alfred Reisch
and Karoly Okolicsanyi

CZECH MINISTER OF ECONOMY IN MOSCOW. Vladimir Dlouhy arrived
in Moscow on 7 April for a three-day visit during which he is
to sign a bilateral accord on trade, as well as economic and
scientific-technical cooperation. CTK and Interfax report that
the accord would replace the 1947 Soviet-Czechoslovak trade pact.
Dlouhy is also expected to discuss with Russian government officials
Russia's debt to the former Czechoslovakia. -Jiri Pehe

DOLGOS CRITICAL OF THE RULING PARTY IN SLOVAKIA. Lubomir Dolgos,
the Slovak Minister of Privatization and vice-chairman of the
ruling Movement for a Democratic Slovakia, said at a press conference
in Bratislava on 7 April that his party has been losing popularity
owing to its inability to "lead a political dialogue with other
political groups." Dolgos argued that one political group, such
as his party, cannot by itself solve all problems of Slovakia.
He also criticized the situation within the ruling party's ranks,
where "some proposals for personal changes have raised eyebrows."
At the beginning of April, Dolgos criticized the government of
Vladimir Meciar (who is also the chairman of the ruling party)
for obstructing the privatization process in Slovakia. -Jiri
Pehe

FOUR AGREEMENTS ON CZECH-SLOVAK PROPERTY DIVISION SIGNED. Czech
Finance Minister Ivan Kocarnik and Slovak Finance Minister Julius
Toth, meeting in Bratislava on 7 April, signed four agreements
on the division of some assets of the former Czechoslovakia.
However, the ministers failed to reach an agreement on the division
of assets of the former Czechoslovak State Bank and other agreements
which are considered crucial for ending the current Czech-Slovak
conflict over the undivided assets. Kocarnik told journalists
that the Czech government will cancel its threat not to issue
shares in Czech companies purchased by Slovak investors as part
of the voucher privatization only when all property issues are
settled. -Jiri Pehe

HUNGARY AND SLOVAKIA TURNS TO THE WORLD COURT TO SETTLE DAM DISPUTE.
Hungary and Slovakia agreed on a text to be submitted to the
World Court in The Hague, Western agencies reported on 7-April.
Hungarian state secretary for Foreign Affairs, Janos Martonyi
and his Slovak counterpart Jan Lisuch signed a document to this
effect in Brussels. The EC mediated agreement came after prolonged
haggling about the text of the application. The agreement acknowledges
the jurisdiction of the court but ruling. may take years. The
application text has not been made public, pending endorsement
of both parliaments but there are two main questions: whether
Hungary had the legal right to cancel the 1977 Treaty for the
joint construction of the Nagymaros-Gabcikovo project and what
would be the water distribution between the new and old Danube
canals. The negotiation gridlock was broken on 6 April 1993 when
the Hungarian side gave up its initial claim for 95% of the river
flow and accepted the EC's compromise, which would distribute
50% of the water in the winter and 60 to 80% of the water in
the summer, reported MTI. -Karoly Okolicsanyi

TURMOIL AT CZECH PRESS AGENCY. More than 30-employees of the
Czech Press Agency (CTK), mostly managers, handed in their resignation
on 7 April. Five members of the agency's top management are among
the resigning employees, who cite as the main reason for their
decision the inability of the current general director of CTK,
Tomas Kopriva, and his deputy, Zuzana Bluhova, to lead the agency
effectively. At the beginning of April, a group of managers sent
a letter to Kopriva, demanding the firing of the agency's commercial
director, Pavel Dolansky, whom they accused of incompetence.
However, Kopriva reacted by suspending some of the authors of
the letter. The Board for CTK, an independent body that supervises
the agency, is to meet soon to deal with the crisis. -Jiri Pehe


PARLIAMENTARY OPPOSITION IN BELARUS AGAINST ECONOMIC, MILITARY
UNION WITH RUSSIA. At a press conference in Minsk on 7 April,
representatives of the opposition faction in the Belarusian Supreme
Council suggested a nationwide referendum to decide the whether
Belarus should be a neutral state and eschew military blocs,
Belinform-TASS reported. The suggestion comes in response to
prime minister Vyacheslau Kebich's recent initiative to have
Belarus sign the agreement on CIS collective security, concluded
last May in Tashkent. At the time, Belarus avoided becoming party
to the agreement because it would have contradicted the Declaration
of State Sovereignty. The opposition also termed Kebich's twin
proposal for a CIS economic union an "illusion" that demonstrated
the total failure of the government's economic policies. -Kathy
Mihalisko

KIEV DENIES NUCLEAR WEAPONS ACCUSATIONS; REBUFFED BY US. A host
of top Ukrainian government officials rejected a Russian government
declaration, published on 5 April, accusing Kiev of harboring
ambitions to become a nuclear power. Meeting with US congressmen
in Kiev on 6 April, Ukrainian President Leonid Kravchuk said
that talks with Russia on the fate of nuclear weapons in Ukraine
had reached an impasse and that he had proposed holding new discussions
between the Prime Ministers of the two countries. According to
Ukrinform-TASS, Kravchuk again rejected the charge that Ukraine
had nuclear ambitions, but he did reaffirm Kiev's ownership over
strategic nuclear weapons located in Ukraine. The same agency
quoted deputy Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk as saying that
Kiev does not havethe technical means to assume control over
nuclear weapons on its territory in any event, and that the Ukrainian
President still cannot block the use of the weapons. Meanwhile,
The New York Times reported on 8 April that the US Administration
had rebuffed Kiev's request for a meeting between Ukraine's Prime
Minister and the US Vice President, explaining the move as part
of an effort to pressure Ukraine to ratify the START-1 Treaty
and to give up its nuclear weapons. -Stephen Foye

NEW UKRAINIAN BODY FOR COORDINATING DISARMAMENT POLICY THE NEW
NATIONAL COMMITTEE ON DISARMAMENT, THE ESTABLISHMENT OF WHICH
WAS RECENTLY ANNOUNCED BY PRESIDENT LEONID KRAVCHUK, HELD ITS
FIRST MEETING IN KIEV ON 7 APRIL, UKRAINIAN RADIO REPORTS. Headed
by Deputy Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk, its main task is to
coordinate the formulation and implementation of Ukraine's policy
in the area of arms control, both nuclear and conventional. -Bohdan
Nahaylo

KRAVCHUK MEETS ROMANIAN PARLIAMENTARY DELEGATION. Ukrainian President
Leonid Kravchuk met on 7 April a visiting Romanian parliamentary
delegation headed by the speaker of the Romanian parliament,
Adrian Nastase, Ukrainian Radio reported. Kravchuk said bilateral
ties between Ukraine and Romania had not developed rapidly enough
- an allusion to the issue of Northern Bukovyna and Southern
Bessarabia - and called for the signing of a Ukrainian-Romanian
treaty reflecting new mutual understanding. For his part, Nastase
declared: "We have come to Ukraine not to demand the return of
territory but with the aim of developing friendship." Apart from
expressing support for cooperation in helping the Romanian minority
in Ukraine and the Ukrainian minority in Romania, Nastase was
reported to have shown "special interest" in Kravchuk's initiative
for "the creation of an Eastern-European security zone and holding
an international conference on this problem." -Bohdan Nahaylo


ANOTHER ROUND OF RUSSIAN-ESTONIAN TALKS COMPLETED. Russian delegation
head, Vasili Svirin said that the 10th round of negotiations
between Estonia and Russia in Nakhabino near Moscow on 6 and
7 April were "constructive, but difficult", BNS reports. The
two sides agreed to introduce a temporary most-favored nation
status in trade to replace the free trade agreement that had
never been implemented. Svirin said that the drawing up of an
agreement on Russian troops withdrawal had reached its final
stages though the date of its completion, as well as that of
agreements on ownership of Russian military land in Estonia and
compensation for environmental damages, have not been finalized.
-Saulius Girnius

RUSSIA TO ESTABLISH CONSULATES IN BALTIC STATES. According to
a TASS dispatch carried on 8 April by Radio Lithuania, Russian
Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin issued a decree for the setting
up of general consulates in Klaipeda, Liepaja, and Narva and
a consulate in Daugavpils. Each consulate would be staffed by
three diplomatic and five technical officers. -Saulius Girnius


SAVISAAR MAKES DEMANDS TO ESTONIAN TELEVISION. On 6 April former
Prime Minister Edgar Savissar sent a letter to Estonian Television
asserting that he had been asked by all the parliament's opposition
factions to pass on their proposal for a television debate to
be held on 19 or 26 April to discuss relations with both Russia
and the local Russian community, the RFE/RL Estonian Service
reported on 7 April. The proposal envisages the participation
of four representatives on each (the government's and the opposition's)
side, with Prime Minister Mart Laar being one of the participants.
Both sides would have the right to remove before the debate moderators
whose impartiality they question. When contacted, Estonian Citizens'
Union chairman Juri Toomepuu said that he did not know about
the letter and other opposition leaders, though knowing of it,
refused to comment. -Saulius Girnius

POLISH DRAFT EVADERS GET PRISON TERMS. A Silesian military court
on 7 April sentenced two young men to prison terms of one year
and nine months, respectively, for evading military service.
Both had applied for alternate service on moral and pacifist
grounds, but were turned down by their draft boards. Three other
young Poles are already doing time for draft evasion, and the
sentences appear to reflect official concern that opposition
to the draft is on the rise. More than 4,000 Poles are now performing
alternate service, and another 3,200 are waiting to be assigned
to appropriate jobs. -Louisa Vinton

NOTICE THE RFE/RL DAILY REPORT WILL NOT APPEAR 9 AND 12 APRIL,
WHICH ARE PUBLIC HOLIDAYS IN GERMANY.

As of 1200 CET]

Compiled by Wendy Slater and Michael Shafir





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