The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain. - Dolly Parton
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 125, 05 July 1993



RUSSIA



KOZYREV DEFENDS STANCE ON RAIDS. In an interview with Ostankino
television's "Itogi" program on 4 July, Russian Foreign Minister
Andrei Kozyrev defended Russia's acceptance of US justifications
for its cruise missile strike against Iraq in late June and rejected
claims that Russian foreign policy was simply following the lead
of the United States. He stressed that Moscow had been presented
with detailed evidence from Washington that US prestige and security
had been damaged, and Russia accepted these arguments. Kozyrev
also noted that the Russian Foreign Ministry had provided the
parliament with such evidence. Suzanne Crow, RFE/RL, Inc.

LEAD-UP TO THE G-7 SUMMIT. US President Bill Clinton told foreign
journalists on 3 July that "the commitment to do more for Russia"
at the G-7 summit "will be clear, substantial, and generous."
US Secretary of State Warren Christopher told a news conference
on 2 July that the US wants Russia to have closer ties with the
G-7 but he "would not expect to see Russia as a member of the
G-7 or to make it a G-8." Egor Gaidar told ITAR-TASS on 3 July
that President Yeltsin will undoubtedly raise the issue of his
country's access to Western markets at the summit. And Ukrainian
President Leonid Kravchuk has written to the leaders of the G-7
nations appealing to them not to overlook Ukraine when they discuss
aid issues with Russian President Yeltsin and repeating a request
for a $1.5 billion stabilization fund. Keith Bush , RFE/RL, Inc.


SOMBER FORECAST BY GOVERNMENT CENTER. During the weeks leading
up to the G-7 summit in Tokyo, most Russian government spokesmen
have been emphasizing the positive aspects of economic performance:
the industrial slump has bottomed out, monthly inflation rates
are falling, and stabilization is in sight. In contrast, Yakov
Urinson, the director of the government's Center for Economic
Activity, painted a far more pessimistic picture for The Financial
Times of 2 July. He forecasts a drop of 13-15% in industrial
output in 1993, followed by a decline of 3-7% in the GDP in 1994.
Economic growth could resume in 1995. In Urinson's opinion, only
if the government maintains moderately restrictive credit policies,
begins to focus social welfare payments, and launches an industrial
policy, can inflation be kept down to 950-1,150% in 1993, with
the monthly rate falling to 5-7% by the end of the year. Urinson
puts the blame for the continuing economic crisis on a government
that contains "people with diametrically opposed views on reforms."
Keith Bush , RFE/RL, Inc.

"RUSSIA'S CHOICE" TO HOLD PLEBISCITE ON CONSTITUTION. Leaders
of the newly created pro-Yeltsin reformist bloc "Russia's Choice,"
Egor Gaidar and the head of the presidential apparatus, Sergei
Filatov, held a press conference where they spoke in favor of
early parliamentary but not presidential elections. They also
announced intentions to hold a plebiscite on who is entitled
to adopt the new Russian Constitution, Ostankino TV newscasts
reported on 4 July. The "Russia's Choice" questionnaire, which
was reportedly published in the weekly Argumenty i fakty, consists
of two questions: (1) whether the citizens agree that the Congress
of People's Deputies, is not to be trusted with the task; and
(2) whether they think that the new Constitution should be adopted
by a referendum or by a constitutional assembly to be elected
specially for this deed. According to the existing constitution,
the results of such a plebiscite will not be legally binding.
Julia Wishnevsky and Alexander Rahr, RFE/RL, Inc.

SVERDLOVSK OBLAST GOVERNOR THREATENS TO WITHHOLD BUDGET PAYMENT.
The head of the administration of the Sverdlovsk region (oblast),
Eduard Rossel, said the region would withhold payments from the
Russian budget if it was not recognized as a republic by Moscow,
Russian and Western agencies reported on 2 July. (On 1 July,
the Sverdlovsk regional council proclaimed that the region had
become the Ural republic.) The agencies also quoted the chairman
of the regional council, Anatolii Grebenkin, as saying the region
would ask the next session of the Russian Congress of People's
Deputies to approve its status. So far President Boris Yeltsin
has not made any statement on the developments in the Sverdlovsk
region, but the head of the presidential administration, Sergei
Filatov, condemned the creation of the Ural republic as a "serious
blow" to Russia's constitutional reforms. (Currently, the Constitutional
Assembly is attempting to find a compromise between Russia's
republics which want a new constitution to identify them as "sovereign
states" and regions which want the same rights as the republics.)
Vera Tolz , RFE/RL, Inc.

DEPRIVED OF BODYGUARDS, JUDGES ARE THREATENED. Since 23 June,
when President Yeltsin deprived the Russian Constitutional Court
of bodyguards, its members, including the judges Vladimir Oleinik
and Nikolai Seleznev, have systematically been threatened, Komsomolskaya
pravda reported on 29 June. After the Constitutional Court had
ruled unconstitutional a large number of his decrees, Yeltsin
took away the judges' bodyguards, as well as the state dacha
and official limousine of the chairman, Valerii Zorkin. According
to Komsomolskaya pravda, there have been also attempts to enter
the headquarters of the Constitutional Court as well as of the
private apartment of its secretary, Yurii Rudkin, by force. Julia
Wishnevsky, RFE/RL, Inc.

MANPOWER LEVELS FALLING RAPIDLY IN RUSSIAN ARMY? IN A LONG INTERVIEW
PUBLISHED BY NEZAVISIMAYA GAZETA ON 2 JULY, THE CHAIRMAN OF THE
RUSSIAN PARLIAMENTARY COMMITTEE ON DEFENSE AND STATE SECURITY,
SERGEI STEPASHIN, CLAIMED THAT DRAFT PROBLEMS HAVE LEFT THE RUSSIAN
ARMY TODAY SHORT SOME 910,000 MEN. He also said that 580,000
draftees were scheduled to be demobilized this year (including
322,000 in the fall, when two draft contingents will be released
from duty), while 180,000 new recruits would begin serving. The
result, Stepashin claimed, was that following the fall draft,
the Russian armed forces would have 630,000 officers and only
540,000 conscripts. Aside from the obvious imbalance that situation
would create in the forces, it would also mean that, even with
100,000 contract soldiers (they don't appear to be included in
Stepashin's figure for officers), the Russian armed forces would
number less than 1.3 million, a drastic decline that would be
lower than the 1.5 million level planned for 1995. Stephen Foye,
RFE/RL, Inc.

DEPUTY MINISTER OF SECURITY ARRESTED FOR CORRUPTION. Nikolai
Lisovoi, one of the deputies of Minister of Security (MB) Victor
Barannikov, has been arrested on corruption charges, reported
Argumenty i Fakty No. 26, 1993. Lisovoi was responsible for the
financial, supply, construction and medical divisions of the
MB. According to the weekly, his arrest is linked to the criminal
case against the commander of the Tenth Air Defense Army, Yuriy
Aleksandrov. (Last year, Lt.-Gen. Aleksandrov and his deputy,
Maj. Gen. Vladimir Makaid were dismissed from their positions
for embezzlement of public funds and bribery. Makaid was subsequently
arrested). Argumenty i fakty did not report how Lisovoi was connected
with the officers of the Tenth Air Defense Army, but he was until
1991 deputy commander for logistics and supply of the Air Defense
Forces. Victor Yasmann, RFE/RL, Inc.

TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA



ABKHAZ FORCES LAUNCH MAJOR OFFENSIVE. A Georgian parliament statement,
reported by Reuters on 4 July, said that Abkhaz forces had downed
a Georgian Su-25 attack aircraft. This is the latest incident
in the Abkhaz offensive, launched against Sukhumi late on 1 July,
in which at least 30 people have been killed and 126 wounded.
The Georgian Defense Ministry asserted that on the night of 1-2
July, 2,000 Russian servicemen from the 14th Army crossed the
Psou River into Abkhaz territory. The Russian Defense Ministry
strongly denied the accusation and stated that the 14th Army
remains in Moldova, where it is based. Reuters also reported
that Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev warned both sides
on 4 July that Russia would exert the "harshest" economic pressure
against any side refusing to sign the deal worked out at recent
talks in Moscow. The agreement provides for a cease-fire, recognition
of Abkhaz autonomy, and maintenance of the territorial integrity
of Georgia. Meanwhile, the Georgian parliament on 2 July granted
its Chair, Eduard Shevardnadze, special powers to issue decrees
and to appoint and dismiss all cabinet ministers except the prime
minister. At Shevardnadze's request, the UN Security Council
met on 2 July to discuss the conflict and called for an immediate
cease-fire, ITAR-TASS reported. Catherine Dale, RFE/RL, Inc.


AZERBAIJAN'S NEW LEADERSHIP CONSOLIDATES POWER. Azerbaijani security
forces attacked several thousand supporters of ousted President
Abulfaz Elchibey in Baku on 3 July, but subsequently withdrew
and allowed the demonstration to proceed, Western journalists
reported. Elchibey himself was quoted by Turkish TV and Radio
as calling for new parliamentary elections. Also on 3 July, the
Azerbaijani National Assembly approved the appointment of proteges
of acting president Geidar Aliev as Ministers of Security and
the Interior. Meanwhile Armenian forces continued to advance
on the town of Agdam just east of Nagorno-Karabakh; Azerbaijani
Prime Minister Surat Huseinov called for a general mobilization
and threatened "the heaviest punishment" for deserters. Addressing
the National Assembly on 3 July, Aliev accused Armenia of taking
advantage of Azerbaijan's political instability and thus jeopardizing
the CSCE mediation attempt, ITAR-TASS reported. Whether a scheduled
visit by CSCE mediator Mario Raffaelli to Baku on 5 July will
go ahead as planned is not clear. Liz Fuller, RFE/RL, Inc.

CIS

CIS SUMMIT POSTPONED. The Armenian president's press secretary
Aram Abrahamyan told a press conference on 2 July that the CIS
summit scheduled for 16 July in Erevan had been postponed, Armenian
radio reported. The reason was that the agreement on setting
up an economic union, which was to be the most important item
on the agenda, was not yet ready. Abrahamyan said it was hoped
that a version of the document would be drawn up by the end of
the summer. Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc.

BLACK SEA FLEET AGREEMENT DEBATED. On 2 July, Russian Defense
Minister Pavel Grachev was quoted by ITAR-TASS as suggesting
that a joint Black Sea Fleet would be preferable to splitting
the fleet and suggested that changes in the 17 June Moscow agreement
on the fleet might be necessary. Grachev's comments echo those
of Admiral Eduard Baltin, the fleet's commander, and are a striking
indication of the lack of military support for the agreement.
The same day Radio Rossii reported that the Russian naval ensign
was still flying on 220 support vessels, the Ukrainian naval
ensign had been hoisted on 3 vessels, while combat vessels are
still flying the Soviet-era flag. On 3 July, Ukrainian Defense
Minister Konstantin Morozov responded to Grachev's comments,
noting that they contradicted previous agreements and asserting
that Ukraine intended to uphold the Moscow agreement and create
its own fleet, UKRINFORM reported. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc.


CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE



SERBS POUND SARAJEVO. International media reported on 3 July
that some 1,500 shells hit the embattled Bosnian capital from
nearby Serb positions on that day. The BBC said it was the worst
such attack in over a month. CNN reported on 5 July that local
medical personnel warn of impending epidemics following the continued
destruction of Sarajevo's power- generating plants and the consequent
breakdown of water- pumping facilities. Elsewhere in Bosnia,
international media reported over the 3-4 July weekend that Serbs
and Croats continued to cooperate in operations directed against
Maglaj, a Muslim-held town on the republic's main north-south
road. Finally, in Serb-controlled Banja Luka more explosions
took place at local mosques, two of which were destroyed. Earlier
in the spring, Serbs placed explosives in and demolished the
city's two most historic mosques, which were international cultural
properties registered with UNESCO. Some Bosnian Serb nationalists
are determined not only to drive out the Muslim population but
also to remove all physical traces of Bosnia's Ottoman and Muslim
heritage, including place names, buildings and cemeteries. Patrick
Moore, RFE/RL, Inc.

DRASKOVIC SUPPORTERS RALLY. On 4 July more than 5,000 supporters
of the opposition Serbian Renewal Movement (SPO) leader Vuk Draskovic
demonstrated in Belgrade demanding the release of the jailed
opposition figure and his wife. It was the third protest rally
since the Draskovices were arrested on 2 June during violent
anti-government riots. Both were severely beaten by police. On
3 July some 15 members of his party and another 30 supporters
began a hunger strike in Belgrade to press for the Draskovices
release and reports on 5 July say SPO members in other parts
of Serbia are joining in the action. Meanwhile, Vojislav Seselj,
leader of the nationalist Radical Party told Borba on 3 July
he feels "very sorry" for Draskovic and expressed the hope that
he would be released soon to resume his career as a best-selling
author. Belgrade media reported that Draskovic met Seselj and
had asked for his help. Draskovic denied the report. Serbia's
Pen Club named Draskovic an honorary member on 2 July. Milan
Andrejevich, RFE/RL, Inc.

ALBANIAN - GREEK RELATIONS REMAIN STRAINED. Reuters reported
on 4 July that Albanian President Sali Berisha called the Greek
actions "shortsighted" but nevertheless hoped that good relations
could be maintained. The leader of the Albanian Orthodox Church,
who has offered to mediate in the dispute, called on both countries
"to stop violent acts," according to Reuters on 4 July. The Archbishop
also claimed that Tirana has threatened to ban foreigners from
serving in the Orthodox Church. The Albanian government's decision
to expel an Orthodox priest on 25 June for allegedly promoting
Greek separatism in southern Albania and Greece's subsequent
decision to begin deporting all Albanians illegally working in
Greece has put tremendous strain on relations between the two
countries. Robert Austin, RFE/RL, Inc.

BRZEZINSKI VISITS SLOVAKIA. The former US National Security Advisor
Zbigniew Brzezinski arrived in Bratislava on 3 July for a two-day
unofficial visit, which included meetings with Premier Vladimir
Meciar and President Michal Kovac. Assessing Slovakia's degree
of "economic and political evolution," Brzezinski classified
Slovakia as being in the second league, behind Poland, Hungary,
the Czech Republic, Slovenia and Estonia. Although "optimistic"
that Slovakia can "overcome the transformation process in the
next decade," Brzezinski expressed concern that some Slovak politicians
"tend to underestimate" the difficulties which Slovakia faces.
Meciar disagreed with Brzezinski's ranking, and said it is his
goal to persuade others that "Slovakia's path to democracy and
a market economy is irreversible," TASR reports. Sharon Fisher,
RFE/RL, Inc.

SLOVAK PREMIER REJECTS BORDER TALKS WITH CZECHS. Although 1 July
talks between Czech and Slovak presidents Vaclav Havel and Michal
Kovac ended in agreement to open border negotiations, Slovak
Premier Vladimir Meciar rejected this possibility. Meciar claimed
that "strengthening border controls would violate existing treaties
between the Czech and Slovak republics;" the two nations do not
need an "iron curtain" dividing them, CTK reported on 2 July.
Havel said on 4 July that negotiations between the two presidents
could add impetus to resolving the border question as well as
other Czech-Slovak issues; he expressed hope that Meciar would
agree with their approach. Stronger border controls are being
pushed by the Czech Republic as a result of Germany's strict
asylum law, which went into effect on 1 July. Sharon Fisher,
RFE/RL, Inc.

OPPOSITION TO WAGE CONTROL IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC. A decision
taken by the Czech government on 30 June to control wage increases
beginning 1 July has been strongly criticized by several groups.
The move has created discord within the ruling coalition as ministers
of the Civic Democratic Alliance (ODA) voted against the measure.
ODA's Vice Chairman Libor Kudlacek suggested at a press conference
on 2 July that wage control in this form could be ineffective
and counterproductive. The Confederation of Employers and Entrepreneurs
(KZP) echoed Kudlacek's concerns at a press conference on 2 July
and charged that the decision contradicts several legally binding
accords as well as the Czech constitution. KZP claimed that the
measure is unwarranted, given the stability of the Czech economy.
The trade unions have also voiced intense opposition to the measure,
CTK reported. Milada Vachudova, RFE/RL, Inc.

SLOVAK REACTION TO CE RECOMMENDATIONS. In his regular radio address
on 2 July, Premier Vladimir Meciar said that Slovakia's entry
into the Council of Europe "proves" it is a country "with a democratic
legal order," TASR reported. Although Meciar said Slovakia "will
observe every right of the national minority," he declared "disagreement"
with the CE's recommendation that the 1945 Benes-decrees be abolished.
Meciar said that the decrees mainly concern the Czech Republic,
CTK reported on 4 July. Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL, Inc.

NACC SEMINAR CONCLUDED IN PRAGUE. A three-day seminar held by
the NATO Cooperation Council ended in Prague on 2 July, CTK reported.
The seminar examined several facets of peace- keeping missions
and explored how NATO should cooperate with its partners in future
missions. Czech participants hailed it as the most important
initiative of the Czech Republic within the framework of the
NACC this year. Milada Vachudova, RFE/RL, Inc.

CSURKA ELECTED CHAIRMAN OF NATIONAL MOVEMENT. On 3 June, the
national congress of the Hungarian Road Circles (HRC), elected
former Hungarian Democratic Forum (HDF) presidium member Istvan
Csurka as its chairman, MTI reported. Csurka founded the HRC
as a movement last February in order to gather popular support
for his political ideas, which emphasize "national solutions"
to Hungary's problems and the creation of a "Hungarian Hungary."
Csurka and some of his followers have recently been expelled
from the HDF because their views were found to be incompatible
with those of the party's centrist leadership. Csurka denied
charges that the HRC called for a revision of Hungary's borders
with neighboring states where ethnic Hungarians live stressing
that "the movement does not want territories but demands the
"preservation of [Hungarian] souls," meaning a preservation of
Hungarian identity. He declared that the movement would assist
the election campaign of the recently established Hungarian Justice
Party (HJP) which he characterized as the HRC's "own child."
The HJP was set up by Csurka and followers including rebellious
HDF deputies. The acting chairman of the HJP Lajos Horvath told
the congress that the HJP will be "the HRC's extended arm in
parliament" following the 1994 elections. Csurka conceded that
HRC members are "pretty much alone in today's Hungarian society"
but stressed that "this condition will not last much longer and
society will understand the movement's call." Edith Oltay , RFE/RL,
Inc.

POLISH ELECTION CAMPAIGN. The pre-election political landscape
in Poland is still confused as election coalitions, aimed at
overcoming the 5% threshold for individual parties, begin to
take shape. According to PAP reports of 2,3 and 4 July, several
weaker parties are running their candidates on the lists of parties
expected to win more than the 8% threshold for coalitions. The
former Solidarity labor union deputies. cast off by the union,
are not running as a bloc: of the prominent personalities, Wojciech
Arkuszewski and Jan Rulewski will run for the Democratic Union
and Bogdan Borusewicz is expected to announce his decision to
run for President Walesa's nonparty reform bloc. The right-of-center
opposition to the outgoing Suchocka government, which recently
founded a coalition called the Polish Union, has run into trouble
over the formation of an election committee. Jan Olszewski, leader
of the Movement for the Republic and potential leader of the
coalition, refused to join the committee, accusing the remaining
parties and two of his own members of acting without consultation.
Anna Sabbat- Swidlicka, RFE/RL, Inc.

EMBARRASSMENT OVER POLISH COUNCIL OF EUROPE APPOINTEE. The leader
of the Polish delegation and Deputy Chairman of the Council of
Europe's Parliamentary Assembly, Andrzej Wielowieyski, told PAP
on 3 July that the decision of the assembly's Law and Human Rights
Commission to appoint Wlodzimierz Cimosiewicz to be a rapporteur
on the legislative and practical aspects of decommunization in
the countries of Central and Eastern Europe was "accidental and
ill- considered." Cimosiewicz, a member of the Polish delegation,
although not formally a member of the successor to Poland's communist
party, is, nonetheless, a leader of the postcommunist Democratic
Left Alliance and was the former communist's candidate for president
in 1990. Six other members of the Polish delegation had submitted
a formal protest against the appointment on 1 July. Wielowieyski
said that no-one should be "a judge in his own case" and hoped
that a compromise solution might be found. Anna Sabbat- Swidlicka,
RFE/RL, Inc.

ROMANIAN GOVERNMENT, OPPOSITION TRADE ACCUSATIONS. In a statement
broadcast by Radio Bucharest on 2 July, Romania's government
sharply attacked both the opposition and the independent press
for allegedly staging a "slander campaign" in connection with
charges of corruption against high-ranking officials and other
controversial issues. The statement, which denounced criticism
by the opposition as "unfounded, tendentious and disparaging,"
listed what the cabinet saw as positive developments in the economic
and social field since it came to power last November. On 3 July
Romania's main opposition parties responded by a declaration
rejecting the cabinet's standpoint as "absurd." The declaration,
signed jointly by the parties belonging to the Democratic Convention
of Romania and the Democratic Party (National Salvation Front),
accused the cabinet of boasting about "imaginary achievements,"
while trying to put the blame for multiple failures on the opposition.
It concluded the cabinet should resign in view of growing public
mistrust in its activity. Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL, Inc.

ROMANIA WELCOMES CLINTON'S LETTER TO THE CONGRESS. Romania's
Foreign Minister welcomed on 3 July the letter addressed by US
President Bill Clinton to the Congress on the previous day in
support of the ratification of the US-Romanian trade agreement,
initialed in May 1992 in Bucharest. The agreement includes mutual
granting of the most-favored-nation trade status. During a reception
on 3 July at the US embassy in Bucharest, Romania's Foreign Minister
Teodor Melescanu described Clinton's letter as "a beautiful present"
to Romania. on the eve of the US National Day. President Ion
Iliescu also attended the reception. US-Romanian ties were clouded
recently by attempts by Romania's Military Prosecutor to reinstate
a prison sentence against former Romanian diplomat Mircea Raceanu.
Raceanu, who currently lives in the United States, had been convicted
as an US spy under Nicolae Ceausescu's regime in 1989. On 2 July
Iliescu's spokesman Traian Chebeleu said on Radio Bucharest that
the case against Raceanu had been officially closed, adding that
it was not clear whether the prosecutor's move was "a mistake,
incompetence or something else." Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL, Inc.

UKRAINE ASSERTS OWNERSHIP OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS. The Ukrainian parliament
on 2 July voted 226 to 15 in favor of an amendment to a document
on Ukraine's foreign policy objectives that asserted that the
nuclear weapons on Ukrainian territory are Ukraine's property.
According to a Reuters report, the amendment was offered by Dmitri
Pavlychko, the chairman of the parliament's Committee on Foreign
Affairs, during the document's second reading. A third reading
will be necessary before the document is officially adopted.
The amendment appears to stop one step short of declaring Ukraine
a nuclear weapons state, for it does not assert Ukraine's right
to operational control over the weapons. Ukraine has been claiming
for the past year that it owns the components of the weapons,
but that since it does not fully control them it is not a nuclear-weapons
state. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc.

"DNIESTER REPUBLIC" CLAIMS SUPPORT FROM PRO-RUSSIAN FORCES IN
UKRAINE. Nicolae Andronic, head of Moldova's delegation to the
talks with the "Dniester" leaders, told the Social- Democrat
weekly Respublika on 3 July that in recent negotiating sessions
the "Dniester" side has openly claimed to enjoy support in Crimea
and the Donbass and Odessa regions of Ukraine, and that it has
predicted that their cooperation will eventually lead to the
formation of "Novorossiia". This is the most explicit admission
to date of Tiraspol's otherwise known links with the influential
pro-communist and Russian-oriented forces in southern and eastern
Ukraine, which have supported the idea of creating an autonomous
"Novorossiia" region that would include also the "Dniester republic."
Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc.

LUCINSCHI SCORES RUSSIAN SUPPORT FOR "DNIESTER REPUBLIC". Interviewed
in the weekly Rossiia, no. 25, Moldovan Parliament Chairman Petru
Lucinschi (former Moldovan CP leader and CPSU Politburo member)
observed that if Russia recognizes Moldova as a state, it ought
to abide by "the appropriate norms," but that it had continued
to maintain direct economic, political, and military ties with
a part of the state. Lucinschi said such a policy "violates all
international rules." He also asked whether Russian policy sought
to help Moldova's Russian minority through cultural and educational
programs or "with the gun." Russia ought to have a clear policy
on this issue, he said, concluding, "We don't ask for much, only
that we be respected as a state." Vladimir Socor , RFE/RL, Inc.


ESTONIA TO MODIFY ITS ALIEN LAW? THE LAW ON ALIENS PASSED BY
THE ESTONIAN PARLIAMENT ON 21 JUNE WILL PROBABLY BE AMENDED IN
THE WAKE OF THE STRONG PROTESTS AMONG THE RUSSIAN COMMUNITY IN
THE REPUBLIC AND IN RUSSIA. President Lennart Meri has delayed
signing the law, awaiting comments from experts of the CSCE and
the Council of Europe. On 1 July, after visiting predominantly
Russian-inhabited areas in northeast Estonia, CSCE High Commissioner
on National Minorities Max van der Stoel sent a letter to Meri
recommending various amendments to the law. After a visit to
Tallinn on 4 July, during which he met with Estonian leaders,
Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt expressed his support for the
recommendations and indicated that some amendments would be made,
Baltic and Western media report. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc.


UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY CHAIRMAN VISIT TO BALTIC STATES. After a
three-day visit in Latvia, the Chairman of the UN General Assembly
Stoyan Ganev arrived in Lithuania on 4 July, Radio Lithuania
reported. In Riga Ganev held talks with Latvian parliament chairman
Anatolijs Gorbunovs and other high officials, as well as the
commander of the Northwestern Group of Forces Leonid Mayorov
and Russian ambassador to Latvia Aleksandr Rannikh. Ganev noted
that Russia was failing to comply with the 25 November UN resolution
calling for the complete, early, and orderly withdrawal of its
troops from the Baltic States. There was no policy of discrimination
against minorities in Latvia and any violations could be handled
at the local level. On 5 July Ganev meets with President Algirdas
Brazauskas and Seimas chairman Ceslovas Jursenas. Before departing
to Tallinn on 6 July he will hold talks with Lithuanian foreign
and defense ministers. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc.

[As of 1200 CET]

Compiled by Anna Sabbat-Swidlicka and John  Lepingwell

RFE/RL Daily Report

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

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