Standing, as I do, in the view of God and eternity, I realize that patriotism is not enough. I must have no hatred or bitterness toward anyone. - Edith Cavell 1865-1915 (Spoken to the chaplain who attended her before her execution by firing squad, 12 Oct. 1915.)
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 103, 02 June 1993



RUSSIA



YELTSIN EXPANDS CONSTITUTIONAL ASSEMBLY. A presidential decree
has expanded the special constitutional assembly due to open
on 5 June, according to Russian and Western agencies of 1 June.
The decree amends President Boris Yeltsin's 20 May decree convening
the assembly by including four representatives from each of the
republics and regions of the Russian Federation rather than two.
The delegates will represent equally the legislative and executive
branches of power in the republics and regions. Yeltsin also
set a 12-day limit for the assembly's deliberations, saying that
it must finish work on the draft constitution by 16-June. Speaking
during a visit to the town of Kondrovo on 1-June, Yeltsin said
that while other versions would be taken into account, the presidential
draft must form the basis of the new Russian Constitution. -Wendy
Slater

KHASBULATOV ADDRESSES DEPUTIES' CONFERENCE. Parliamentary chairman
Ruslan Khasbulatov addressing a meeting of some 2,000 delegates
from regional soviets on 1 June warned that any move to turn
the expanded constitutional assembly into a body with powers
to adopt the new constitution would be "tantamount to an attempted
coup," Reuters and ITAR-TASS reported. Khasbulatov stressed that
people's deputies must participate in the assembly, warning that
the executive branch of government had arrogated all power to
itself, and calling on local soviets to intensify their supervisory
functions. He said that the soviets were "in need of renewal"
and criticised them for passivity and inefficiency. The delegates
are due to examine the various drafts for a new constitution
on 2-June. -Wendy Slater

RUTSKOI CALLS FOR GOVERNMENT TO BE DISBANDED. Addressing the
same conference of local soviets, Rutskoi said that the parliament
should remove Yeltsin's government within three months. Accusing
Yeltsin of lying over the success of reforms, he said that the
government's economic policy was "an economic crime against the
people," and blamed Russia's problems on Western interference
in supporting "a 'great democrat' Boris Nikolaevich Yeltsin."
Meanwhile, ITAR-TASS reported on 1 June that the head of Yeltsin's
administration, Sergei Filatov, has raised the possibility that
Rutskoi may be moved out of his offices in the Kremlin. This
remark comes after Rutskoi was prevented from holding a press
conference in the Kremlin last week. -Wendy Slater

DEPUTIES MAY DENY CONGRESS A QUORUM. Sergei Filatov, head of
Yeltsin's administration, told journalists on 1 June that a group
of some 300 deputies had agreed to boycott the Congress of People's
Deputies in an attempt to deny it a quorum if its leadership
refused to consider Yeltsin's draft constitution. Some 340 deputies
would have to abstain from the over 1,000-strong Congress to
prevent it from functioning legitimately. According to Filatov,
Yeltsin would not object to the Congress adopting [his] new constitution.
However, if Yeltsin's opponents in the parliamentary leadership
refuse to cooperate the Congress may be unable to muster a quorum.
-Wendy Slater

ALEKSEEV PROPOSED AS HEAD OF CONSTITUTIONAL ASSEMBLY. President
Yeltsin suggested in a meeting with heads of administrations
that the former head of the USSR Committee for Constitutional
Control, Sergei Alekseev, should become the chairman of the Constitutional
Assembly which opens on 5 June, ITAR-TASS reported on 28 May.
Alekseev, together with Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Shakhrai,
prepared the presidential draft of the Constitution. The local
leaders suggested adopting the Constitution through a referendum.
They passed a resolution to the effect that the implementation
of the Federation Treaty and a new Constitution "are a single
and interlinked process." Yeltsin proposed three ways to ratify
the Constitution: through a referendum, by a newly elected parliament,
or by a Constitutional Assembly. -Alexander Rahr

MORE ATTACKS ON KHASBULATOV. Parliamentary speaker Khasbulatov
stated that Yeltsin supporters, centrists and communists should
be able to have their constitutional drafts approved by means
of a referendum, ITAR-TASS reported on 28 May. He added that
the communists' draft should be considered as they are gaining
popular support. Khasbulatov's deputy, Boris Zolotukhin, rejected
the proposal on the grounds that it was designed by Khasbulatov
to deny a majority of votes to any of the three drafts and thus
keep the present constitution alive. Khasbulatov clashed with
other members of the parliamentary presidium, including Nikolai
Ryabov, Aleksandr Pochinok and Veniamin Sokolov. Khasbulatov
admitted that there exists a split in the parliamentary leadership
but denied rumors that he would resign. -Alexander Rahr

COMMUNISTS FOR COALITION WITH CIVIC UNION. The leader of the
Communist Party of the Russian Federation (CPRF), Gennadii Zyuganov,
has offered to coalesce with the Civic Union in the next elections,
ITAR-TASS reported on 31 May. He stated that new elections were
the only "peaceful" way out of the crisis and said he thinks
that views of communists and centrists correspond on many issues.
He indicated that the CPRF is preparing its own constitutional
draft, based on "socialist" and "state-patriotic" ideals, which
it intends to present at the Constitutional Assembly on 5-June.
Zyuganov rejected President Boris Yeltsin's presidential constitutional
draft saying that "Russian society in the whole is not ripe for
the adoption of a capitalist constitution." -Alexander Rahr

HOMOSEXUALITY NO LONGER A CRIME. The parliament has voted to
repeal article 121.1 of the criminal code, which made male homosexuality
a crime, punishable with up to five years in prison or a spell
in a labor camp, according to various western sources on 29 May.
(Female homosexuality was never addressed by former Soviet law.)
The decree repealing article 121.1 was signed by President Yeltsin
on 29 April, but was published along with other changes to the
criminal code in Rossiskaya gazeta only on 27 May, and went into
effect from the day of publication. Homosexual acts involving
violence or minors remain punishable. In 1992 about 400 homosexuals
were jailed, only 25 of whom for consensual acts. According to
AFP on 1 June, the Ministry of Justice has announced that all
men currently serving prison terms for homosexuality (presumably
those cases involving consensual acts) will be freed. It is hoped
that the decriminalization of homosexuality will help the anti-AIDS
campaign in Russia, since many infected homosexuals have hitherto
been afraid to register with a doctor. -Sheila Marnie

CHECHEN PREMIER ON MOSCOW TALKS. A Chechen government delegation
headed by Yaragi Mamodaev, recently appointed prime minister
by the parliament against the wishes of Chechen president Dzhokhar
Dudaev, held talks in Moscow on 30 May with Russian vice-premier
Sergei Shakhrai, first deputy chairman of the Russian parliament
Yurii Voronin, and the chairman of the Council of Nationalities
Ramazan Abdulatipov, Ekho Moskvy reported. On his return to Groznyi
Mamodaev said that experts and representatives of Chechnya and
Russia would soon start work on a treaty to normalize relations
between Chechnya and Russia. The treaty would not be a federal
one, as the supporters of Dudaev were trying to maintain, but
"a new form of constitutional-treaty relations, . . . a sensible
variant of a confederation." This is the type of treaty with
Russia that Tatarstan is also trying to achieve. -Ann Sheehy


ATTEMPT TO ASSASSINATE DUDAEV. Ostankino TV, citing Dudaev's
press service, reported on 31-May that shots were fired at Dudaev
when he got out of his car and tried to address an opposition
meeting in Groznyi on the evening of 30 May. An opposition spokesman
later denied this report, saying that it was a provocation by
Dudaev. There are further signs that Dudaev is trying to use
the Islamic factor in his standoff with the opposition. On 29
May the Council of Ulema (Muslim divines) called for an article
on sharia courts to be included in the constitution and suggested
that Dudaev be given the right in individual instances to transfer
the functions of the executive to religious organs, ITAR-TASS
reported on 30 May. -Ann Sheehy

NEW REGULATIONS ON THE BUYING AND SELLING OF LAND. The government
has approved a set of regulations governing the buying and selling
(by Russian citizens) of plots of land, ITAR-TASS reported on
1-June. These regulations refer to plots of land within a certain
size limit, which can be used for individual housing construction
and gardening. The right to buy and sell such plots was granted
to Russian citizens in late 1992; larger tracts of land, or land
used for other purposes, can still not be sold on the market.
The new regulations set out the procedures for registration of
the sale, and spell out the rights of the buyer. The Ministry
of Finance has been asked to prepare regulations for taxation
of private land ownership and the imposition of a new tax on
every sales contract. -Sheila Marnie

PROJECTION OF GRAIN IMPORTS. An Eksportkhleb official told the
Bulktrans '93 conference in London that Russia will need to import
25-27 million tons of grain in 1993, The Journal of Commerce
reported on 28 May. (It was not made clear whether he was referring
to the calendar year or marketing year). Other former Soviet
republics will require about 10-million tons, he estimated, and
1994 imports would be of the same magnitude. -Keith Bush

RUSSIAN GOLD AND DIAMONDS. Yevgenii Bychkov, the chairman of
the Precious Metals Committee, told a Moscow news conference
on 28 May that gold output in 1992 totalled 146-tons and exports
98-tons, Reuters reported. A similar level of output is expected
in 1993. The committee currently holds 200.5-tons of gold in
its reserves. Bychkov reckoned that the gold industry will require
up to 80 billion rubles of investment each year merely to maintain
its current level of output. He also said that Russia wants to
renegotiate its contract with the De Beers diamond cartel in
order to sell 20% of its diamonds independently. -Keith Bush


FOREIGN AID FOR PRIVATIZATION. Deputy Prime Minister Anatolii
Chubais told a news conference on 1-June that $4 million of US
financial assistance would be used in the privatization of state
enterprises, according to AFP. The money reportedly will come
from a package of grants totalling $700 million pledged by President
Bill Clinton at the US-Russian summit in early April. Plans for
much larger sums for Russian privatization are afoot, however.
Reuters reported on 29 May that Clinton is lobbying the leadership
of other G-7 nations to pledge contributions to a privatization
fund of $2 billion, including a $500-million offer from the United
States. -Erik Whitlock

COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES



YELTSIN AND KRAVCHUK TO MEET OVER BLACK SEA FLEET. Russian Foreign
Minister Andrei Kozyrev will go to Kiev on 7 June to prepare
a summit meeting between Russian President Boris Yeltsin and
Ukrainian President Leonid Kravchuk over the Black Sea Fleet
dispute, ITAR-Tass reported on 1 June. Three more ships were
reported to have raised the Russian St.-Andrew's flag on 1 June.
In an interview with Narodna Armiia Ukraine's Defense Minister
Konstantin Morozov said Kiev would not pay wages to crews of
Black Sea Fleet ships flying the Russian flags. On the same day
Ukrainian Radio reported that Ukrainian Prime Minister Leonid
Kuchma proposed leasing the naval base in Sevastopol to Russia.
He said it would be a long time before Russia left the base so
it would be better to take money from them for it than use the
nation's own. Such proposals had previously been dismissed by
nationalists within the Ukrainian parliament. Reuters reported
on 1 June, however, that Rukh's leader Vyacheslav Chornovil said
a short-term-lease could be workable. -Ustina Markus

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE



ANGRY REACTIONS TO COSIC'S OUSTER. Several thousand demonstrators
took to the streets in front of the federal assembly building
in Belgrade to protest the ouster of federal president Dobrica
Cosic on 31-May by the ultranationalist Radical Party and ruling
Socialists. The violence was triggered after opposition Radical
Party deputy Branislav Vakic, a former professional boxer, punched
Serbian Renewal Movement (SPO) deputy Mihailo Markovic unconscious
in the assembly lobby. Markovic had verbally attacked Seselj
during a debate in which questions were raised about Radical
Party leader Vojislav Seselj's communist past and ethnic origins.
"Seselj sat there amused and Vakic later took care of the rest"
according to radio B92. SPO leader Vuk Draskovic, his wife, a
group of SPO deputies, and about 30 journalists were later arrested
for having incited the riot, according to Studio B TV and Borba
on 2 June. Draskovic told the protesters earlier, "Belgrade wake
up tonight-tomorrow will be too late." -Milan Andrejevich

CONSEQUENCES AND IMPLICATIONS. Nearly all political parties in
Belgrade agree that president Cosic's removal was hastened by
his meeting with military leaders on 27-May. The Radicals claim
that Cosic violated the Constitution because he failed to consult
the assembly and Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic about the
meeting. Ironically, Cosic is nominal head of the armed forces.
Borba, citing an unconfirmed report, says that only the dire
economic situation of the armed forces was discussed at the meeting
and that the Radicals and Socialists have refused to release
the minutes of the session to the media. Neither has there been
any explanation of how Cosic may have violated the Constitution,
a decision that would normally be made by the Constitutional
Court. Most opposition parties believe that the Radicals and
hard-line Socialists feared Cosic might have come to some kind
of agreement with the military "to stabilize" the situation in
Serbia-Montenegro. Political leaders from Montenegro who supported
Cosic are expressing concern that his ouster may seriously affect
that republic's federation with Serbia. In Belgrade the Radicals
are likely further strengthened, the democratic opposition weakened,
and-some Western reports notwithstanding-Cosic's ouster is not
likely to end the political rift between Milosevic and Seselj
over how Serbian interests should be advanced in the Balkans
or how to resolve the political and economic crisis. -Milan Andrejevich


IZETBEGOVIC AGAIN CALLS FOR ARMS. Inter- national media reported
on 1 June that the Bosnian president renewed his appeal for the
lifting of the weapons embargo on his embattled republic. In
a letter to the UN Security Council he wrote: "The enemy is destroying
everything in front of him and he can do that because you have
tied our hands." Meanwhile at the UN, the nonaligned countries
are planning to offer their own plan for Bosnia, which would
allow any UN member state to aid the Muslims. The proposal has
little chance of passing, but its sponsors may be in a position
to hinder the French plan that sets up safe havens, unless it
makes clear that the safe areas are not an end in themselves
but part of a larger political settlement. In Bosnia itself,
Serbs shelled a UN relief convoy near Maglaj in northern Bosnia,
killing two Danes and wounding two more. On 30 May soldiers wearing
Muslim uniforms killed three Italian aid workers. Finally, on
1 June two Serbian shells hit an improvised soccer field in a
Muslim suburb of Sarajevo, killing eleven and wounding 50. The
BBC described the scene as "carnage," calling it the worst civilian
slaughter in the Bosnian capital since the explosion in a bread
line in 1992. The soccer game was held to mark the Muslim holiday
of Kurban Bajram, and local residents told the BBC that they
"refuse to live like animals, in cellars." -Patrick Moore

MILOSEVIC WANTS UN TROOPS OUT OF MACEDONIA. International news
agencies said on 1-June that during his one-day surprise visit
the Serbian president asked his Macedonian counterpart Kiro Gligorov
to tell the 700 peace-keepers stationed on the Macedonian-Serbian
border to leave Macedonia. Milosevic reportedly promised as a
quid pro quo to help Skopje settle its dispute with Athens. Macedonian
Radio said that Gligorov turned down the offer, adding that "Macedonia
alone will determine whether the presence of foreign soldiers
is needed or not." -Patrick Moore

HDF CAUCUS EXPELS SIX DEPUTIES. During a late-night meeting on
1 June, the parliamentary caucus of the ruling Hungarian Democratic
Forum expelled six parliamentary deputies of the populist national
and liberal wings, MTI reports. With an overwhelming majority,
the deputies voted to expel Istvan Csurka, Gyula Zacsek, Izabella
B. Kiraly, Istvan Balas, Jozsef Debreczeni, and Istvan Elek.
The two liberals, Debreczeni and Elek, suspended their memberships
in the party before the voting, complaining in a letter to HDF
Chairman Jozsef Antall that the mood in the party has turned
against them. Csurka remains a party member and still serves
on the HDF Presidium. Interim HDF Executive Chairman Sandor Lezsak
told reporters that he is saddened and said he feels that many
people in Hungary sympathize with Csurka's criticisms of the
party. He also expressed hope that HDF members belonging to Csurka's
Hungarian Path circles will not quit the party. In a statement
issued by the caucus following the expulsions, the deputies stressed
that they support the government and the resolutions accepted
by the Sixth National HDF Congress last January. -Judith Pataki


WALESA'S PRESS CONFERENCE. Speaking at a press conference on
1 June reported by PAP, President Lech Walesa spoke of a new
date for parliamentary elections and pledged to nominate a prime
minister from the party that gets the most votes. Walesa noted
that he "wishes the center to win, but if the nation chooses
the left wing, then I will have to respect that." He promised
to consult with Prime Minister Hanna Suchocka before making any
changes in the composition of the government. Walesa first proposed
12-September as the date for the elections, but early on 2-June
after consulting with the State Electoral Commission, he advanced
the date one week, to the 19th. -Jan de Weydenthal

CZECH COALITION AGREES ON DIALOGUE WITH SUDETEN GERMANS. The
leaders of the ruling coalition parties agreed to "low-level
talks" with ethnic Germans on the sensitive issues of resettlement
and compensation rights for those expelled from Czech territory
after 1945, Czech media report on 1-2 June. While the Prague
government will not be directly involved in the talks, the four
coalition parties will set up a working group to negotiate with
the Germans. Prime Minister Vaclav Klaus said in an interview
with Rude pravo that there is "a need to negotiate and not to
leave questions unasked." At the same time he stressed that the
dialogue with the Sudeten Germans will be "purely unofficial."
President Vaclav Havel released a statement welcoming the decision.
Several opposition parties, most notably the Communists, the
Social Democrats, and the extreme-right Republicans have expressed
their categorical opposition to any dialogue with the Sudeten
Germans. -Jan Obrman

EX-COMMUNISTS DEMAND EARLY ELECTIONS IN SLOVAKIA. The deputy
chairman of the ex-communist Party of the Democratic Left, Pavol
Kanis, is calling for early elections, CTK reported on 1 June.
At a press conference in Bratislava Kanis said that there is
a need for a "new distribution of power" in Slovakia. The PDL,
currently the second strongest party in the National Council
of the Slovak Republic, has been supporting Meciar's minority
government so far, but the willingness to continue with this
practice may be evaporating. According to most recent opinion
polls, the PDL would win if parliamentary elections were held
now. At the same time, however, many analysts believe that none
of the opposition parties, including the PDL, is overly eager
to take over responsibility for Slovakia at this point. -Jan
Obrman

BRITISH FOREIGN MINISTER IN BUCHAREST. On 1-June Douglas Hurd
began an official visit to Bucharest as part of a diplomatic
tour that also includes Bulgaria and Macedonia. Radio Bucharest,
says that talks scheduled for 2 June with Foreign Minister Teodor
Melescanu are expected to focus on international sanctions against
Serbia-Montenegro and related economic losses for Romania. Hurd
will meet with President Iliescu, Premier Vacaroiu, and parliamentary
and opposition leaders. -Dan Ionescu

BSP REFORMISTS DEFECTING? FIFTEEN REFORMIST LEGISLATORS OF THE
BULGARIAN SOCIALIST PARTY, ALONG WITH OTHER LEFT-WING POLITICIANS
AND INTELLECTUALS, HAVE FORMED A CIVIC ALLIANCE FOR THE REPUBLIC.
At a meeting on 1 June, a prominent BSP parliamentarian and former
deputy prime minister, Aleksandar Tomov, and former UDF deputy,
Slavyan Saparev, were elected cochairmen of the CAR. Tomov, who
is also the chief initiator of the organization, told BTA that
it is premature to judge whether the CAR will form a separate
party or parliamentary faction. In a platform presented to journalists,
the CAR pledged to improve the social and political climate in
Bulgaria by putting an end to confrontation. In their first comments,
BSP and UDF leaders expressed skepticism about the viability
of the new group. -Kjell Engelbrekt

GOVERNMENT CRISIS IN UKRAINE. Parliament resumed its session
on 1 June with the government crisis at the head of the agenda.
Two weeks ago Prime Minister Leonid Kuchma offered his resignation
and President Leonid Kravchuk said that he was prepared to take
control of the government. Both proposals were rejected by the
lawmakers. In his address to parliament on 1 June, Kuchma, again
offered to resign. Lawmakers today are debating changes in the
constitution with a view toward granting Kravchuk additional
powers to deal with the economic crisis in the country. -Roman
Solchanyk

UKRAINE TO POSTPONE START-1 VOTE UNTIL AUTUMN. Parliament will
not hold a formal ratification vote on the START-1 and nonproliferation
treaties until at least early autumn, according to deputies interviewed
by Reuters on 1 June. Debate on the treaties was originally planned
for 2 June, even though parliamentary committees had not completed
what were expected to be months of extensive hearings on the
treaty. If today's debate takes place, it will likely give some
indication of the likelihood of ratification. The ongoing political
crisis in Ukraine has left the government unable to push forward
on what has become an increasingly controversial policy of nuclear
disarmament. -John Lepingwell

US INTELLIGENCE CONCERNED OVER UKRAINIAN NUCLEAR WEAPONS CONTROL.
A report in the Washington Post of 31 May quotes US intelligence
sources as warning that Ukraine could obtain full control of
the ICBMs and nuclear warheads on its territory in 12-18 months.
An editorial in the 1 June New York Times by nuclear weapons
expert Bruce Blair estimates that it would take Ukraine only
"a matter of months." Full control would entail the ability to
retarget the missiles, arm the nuclear warheads, and launch them.
At present the codes enabling missile launch are possessed only
by two people, the CIS commander and the Russian president, although
the Ukrainian president must agree to any launch decision. The
warning that Ukraine is seeking the ability to take full control
over the weapons echoes recent statements by Russian parliamentarian
Sergei Stepashin, who claimed that such control could be achieved
in less than a year. While such a control capability may be under
development, no political decision to implement it has been made.
-John Lepingwell

UKRAINE ON DNIESTER CONFLICT. A spokesman at the newly opened
embassy in Moldova told journalists on 28 May, as cited by Basapress,
that Ukraine stands for a negotiated resolution of the Dniester
conflict, based on "Moldova's territorial integrity and sovereignty
and on noninterference in Moldova's internal affairs;" internationalization
of the negotiations with the active involvement of the CSCE and
other organizations; withdrawal of Russia's army from Moldova;
the principle that "the status to be granted the Transdniester
is to be determined solely by Moldova;" observance of the rights
of ethnic groups in accordance with existing international norms;
and self-determination of Transdniester if Moldova unites with
Romania. Ukraine's position on all points closely parallels Moldova's,
while on the second, third, and fourth points it runs counter
to the position of Russia. -Vladimir Socor

BELARUSIAN POPULAR FRONT SETS UP PARTY, CALLS FOR REGIONAL GROUPING.
With a parliamentary election expected in the near future, the
Belarusian Popular Front has decided to establish a political
party. The founding congress of the party was held on 30 May
in Minsk in conjunction with the Third Congress of the BPF. Among
the invited guests were Vyacheslav Chornovil, leader of Ukraine's
Rukh, former Lithuanian president Vytautas Landsbergis, and a
member of the Polish Sejm, all of whom took part in discussions
of an initiative to create a regional union linking Belarus,
Ukraine, the Baltic States, and other East European countries.
Chornovil was expected to acquaint Belarusian leader Stanislau
Shushkevich with the so-called "Baltic to Black Sea" proposal
in a meeting scheduled for 2-June. -Kathy Mihalisko

RUSSIAN SERVICEMEN'S WIVES PROTEST IN BELARUS. The women have
been blocking the runway of an air base at Lida to protest being
transferred to Russia, Reuters reports on 2-June. Many of the
servicemen had previously been stationed in East Germany and
are to be withdrawn to Russia. The wives claim they will have
no housing in Russia and want access to the housing Germany is
building in Belarus for the troops being withdrawn from East
Germany. -Ustina Markus

RUSSIA WON'T OBSERVE LATVIAN ELECTIONS. Russian Foreign Ministry
press spokesman Sergei Yastrzhembsky told the press on 1 June
that his country had turned down an invitation from Latvia to
observe on 5 and 6 June the parliamentary elections there. Those
Russians who are not citizens of Latvia are not allowed to participate
in the voting, Yastrzhembsky explained, and Russia "does not
find it possible to participate in an act that can be assessed
as a recognition of the legitimacy of abuse of political rights
of a significant part of the population of Latvia." -Dzintra
Bungs

LATVIAN LEGISLATORS INVALIDATE ACCORD ON RUSSIAN MILITARY PLANTS.
On 1-June, meeting in its last session before the parliamentary
elections, the Supreme Council endorsed a motion from the Satversme
faction to reject a Latvian-Russian accord on the conversion
of Russian military plants in Latvia that was signed in mid-May.
The deputies decided that the accord is not in Latvia's best
interest since it could be interpreted as allowing Russia to
manufacture arms in Latvia and sell them abroad. The parliament
did not endorse the faction's other proposal to end on 1 June
the authority of the Latvian team negotiating with Russia on
the withdrawal of Russian troops from Latvia. Having flown in
from Moscow for the session, Minister of State Janis Dinevics,
who heads the team, expressed concern about the outcome of the
talks and the future of Latvian-Russian negotiations. -Dzintra
Bungs

ESTONIAN VISAS. On 1 June Estonia stopped issuing visas to visitors
from CIS countries on the border, BNS reports. About 10-15 people
from every train arriving in Narva without visas were sent back
to Russia by bus. Visitors from 20 European countries as well
as South Africa and Korea are still able to obtain visas on the
border. Visas will not be required from citizens of the US, Canada,
Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Vatican, Andorra, San Marino,
Liechtenstein, and Monaco. Estonia has signed visa-free travel
accords with Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Great Britain,
Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Slovakia and is near
completing similar agreements with Finland, Iceland, Norway,
and Sweden. From 1 July citizens of the CIS and Georgia will
be able to enter Estonia only with travel passports and not the
domestic passports. -Saulius Girnius

[As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Keith Bush and Charles Trumbull



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