This is the true nature of home-- it is the place of Peace; the shelter, not only from injury, but from all terror, doubt and division. - John Ruskin
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 141, 27 July 1993







RUSSIA



YELTSIN EASES CURRENCY REFORM. On 26 July, President Boris Yeltsin
signed a decree "On Ensuring the Normal Functioning of the Monetary
System of the Russian Federation," easing some provisions of
the Russian Central Bank's instruction of 24 July, ITAR-TASS
reported. Under the decree individuals may exchange up to 100,000
rubles' worth of old banknotes, and they have until 31 August
to effect the exchange. 10,000ruble notes, first printed in
1992, will retain their validity, and may be exchanged without
any limit. Some smaller denomination ruble notes will also be
retained for the time being. The decree came in the wake of considerable
confusion and panic, and after censures of the original currency
reform from, among others, the Ministry of Finance, Parliamentary
Speaker Khasbulatov, the Prosecutor General, and spokesmen for
several former Soviet republics. The countermeasure raises questions
about who knew of the original measure and when did they know
it, about the president's relationships with his prime minister
and with his reformist ministers, and about who's in charge.
-Keith Bush

YELTSIN REINSTATES MAY PRIVATIZATION DECREE. With another decree
signed on 26-July, President Yeltsin reinstated and expanded
his 13 May decree aimed at guaranteeing Russian citizens' rights
to participate in privatization, Radio Rossiya reported. The
new decree provides for 80% of the value of an enterprise up
for sale to be purchased with vouchers, and it raises the number
of medium and large enterprises that must be auctioned off by
the end of 1993. The decree appears to override or supersede
the suspension by parliament on 20 July of the May decree, and
its referral to the Constitutional Court. It apparently did not
touch on the parliament's resolution of the same date to strip
the State Property Committee of its control over the privatization
program. -Keith Bush

MINISTER OF SECURITY REPRIMANDED, BORDER TROOPS COMMANDER DISMISSED.
President Yeltsin announced at a meeting of the Security Council
that Minister of Security Viktor Barannikov has been reprimanded
for his ministry's lack of preparedness for events on the Afghanistan-Tajikistan
border, ITAR-TASS reported on 26 July. Yeltsin also dismissed
Barannikov's deputy and Commander of Russian Border Troops, Vladimir
Shlyakhtin. During a recent clash between Russian Border Troops
and Tajik anti-government rebels backed by Afghan forces more
than 20-Russian soldiers were killed; the Border Troops are part
of the Ministry of Security. Yeltsin also criticized the lack
of coordination between the Ministry of Security, the Ministry
of Defense and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Security
Council decided to entrust coordination of the Russian response
to the crisis to the Minister of Defense, Pavel Grachev. -Victor
Yasmann

CHECHNYA, INGUSHETIA AGREE NOT TO DEMARCATE COMMON FRONTIER.
Chechen President Dzhokhar Dudaev and Ingush President Ruslan
Aushev agreed in Grozny on 23 July that there would be no demarcation
of the frontier between Chechnya and Ingushetia and that it would
not be a state frontier, ITAR-TASS reported. The agreement also
stipulates that no third party will be allowed to take part or
mediate in talks on territorial questions. The frontier is a
disputed one, with Chechnya laying claim to sizable portions
of two of the three raions of the former Chechen-Ingush ASSR
that Ingushetia considers belong to it, and it is not at all
clear how this new agreement will work in practice. -Ann Sheehy


PARLIAMENT RESTRICTS FOREIGN BANKS. Parliament passed a resolution
on 22 July restricting the activity of foreign banks on Russian
financial markets, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported
on 24 July. According to the resolution all banks with foreign
ownership shares of 50% or more will be limited to conducting
business with foreign businesses and individuals over 1994 and
1995. These banks are also required to reregister with the Central
Bank before 1-January 1994 or have their licenses revoked. The
Russian Central Bank head and members of the government have
strongly criticized the action. -Erik Whitlock

GRAIN IMPORTS DOWN IN 1993. Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin
has forecast that grain imports in 1993 may be cut to 14 million
tons, and that imports in 1994 could be reduced to 5-6 million
tons. His statement appeared in Argumenty i fakty, as quoted
by Reuters on 23 July. This and similar projections are based
on the prospects for a good grain harvest in 1993. Estimates
of the gross outturn range from 107 million to 125 million tons,
although Agricultural Minister Viktor Khlystun has warned of
possibly heavy losses owing to shortages of equipment and fuel.
-Keith Bush

NATIONAL SALVATION FRONT "GOES ON OFFENSIVE." The organization
grouping Russia's pro-communist and nationalist opposition, the
National Salvation Front (NSF), held its second congress on 24-25
July. Delegates from about 60 Russian regions and from other
CIS countries attended. The congress' concluding statement said
that the NSF was going "on the offensive," according to Ostankino
TV. It called for the formation of a "government of national
salvation," subordinated to the Congress of People's Deputies
and entitled to introduce emergency measures; and for the abolition
of the presidency. Communist leader Gennadii Zyuganov told ITAR-TASS
that organizational changes would require the total obedience
of NSF member organizations to the leadership; other reports
implied that some member organizations on the nationalist wing
had quit the NSF. -Wendy Slater

BELEAGUERED STEPASHIN DISMISSES ARMY CORRUPTION CHARGES. Visiting
the headquarters of the Western Group of Forces on 26 July, the
chairman of Russia's parliamentary Committee for Defense and
State Security, Sergei Stepashin, said accusations that corruption
is rife among military commanders in Germany are groundless and
should be dropped, ITAR-TASS reported. Vice President Aleksandr
Rutskoi has been among the loudest critics of alleged illegal
economic activity by Russian military leaders in Germany. Stepashin
himself has come under fire increasingly of late, and there have
been rumors of threats to dissolve his committee. On 22 July
Russian television reported that a group of hard-line deputies,
including a leader of the Army Reform faction, Vitalii Urazhtsev,
had issued a declaration blaming Stepashin for the enduring failure
to produce a Russian military doctrine and for what they said
were catastrophic conditions within the army. -Stephen Foye

KOZYREV PROPOSES ASIAN SECURITY GROUPING. Foreign Minister Andrei
Kozyrev, addressing a consultative meeting of ASEAN foreign ministers
in Singapore on 24 July, proposed the creation of a "regional
security community" in the Asian-Pacific region whose mechanisms
would include centers for preventing conflicts and for overseeing
arms trading in the region, and a Russian-ASEAN committee to
coordinate Russia's broader dealings with Southeast Asian nations.
Kozyrev also urged the establishment of joint ventures with ASEAN
states for processing raw materials, shipbuilding, port management,
fishing, and conversion of Russian defense industries, ITAR-TASS
reported. On 23 July, according to The Straits Times, Kozyrev
defended Russia's efforts to sell arms to ASEAN member states,
insisting that Russian military hardware is "beneficial to stability
in the region." Kozyrev was in Singapore as a guest of the ASEAN
foreign ministers. Reports by Reuters and AFP suggested that
Washington, fearful of potential instability in the region, had
pushed hard for inclusion of both Russia and China in the proceedings.
-Stephen Foye

TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA



ABKHAZIA ACCEPTS CEASEFIRE PLAN. Following a meeting late on
26 July between Abkhaz Parliament Speaker Vladislav Ardzinba
and Russian Special Envoy, the Abkhaz parliament debated and
approved a plan to end the conflict with Georgia, Reuters reported.
Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev arrived in Sochi on 26-July,
and observers expect that Russia, Georgia, and Abkhazia will
meet there to sign the ceasefire agreement, which Shevardnadze
has already approved. -Catherine Dale

GAMSAKHURDIA FORCES, KITOVANI UNITE AGAINST SHEVARDNADZE? THE
ARMED CONTINGENT LOYAL TO OUSTED GEORGIAN PRESIDENT ZVIAD GAMSAKHURDIA
UNDER ITS COMMANDER LOTI KOBALIA AND THE GEORGIAN NATIONAL GUARD
UNDER FORMER DEFENSE MINISTER TENGIZ KITOVANI CONVERGED ON THE
WEST GEORGIAN TOWN OF SENAKI (FORMERLY TSKHAKAYA) LATE LAST WEEK
AND BEGAN A GENERAL MOBILIZATION OF THE POPULATION, A CORRESPONDENT
FOR RADIO MAYAK REPORTED FROM BATUMI ON 26 JULY. This move was
construed by the Georgian government as portending a strike against
Adzharia; government forces were deployed in the Adzhar capital,
Batumi, on 25 July. After a telephone conversation between Kobalia
and Adzhar Supreme Soviet chairman Aslan Abashidze the former
agreed to withdraw from Senaki. -Liz Fuller

NEW UZBEK FOREIGN MINISTER APPOINTED. Saidmukhtar S. Saidqasimov
has been appointed Foreign Minister of Uzbekistan, replacing
Sadiq S. Safaev, the official Uzbek-language daily Ozbekistan
avazi reported on 23 July. According to the announcement, Safaev
will become Uzbekistan's Ambassador to Germany. Prior to his
appointment as Foreign Minister, Saidqasimov was president of
the Jihan University of Foreign Languages in Tashkent. -Yalcin
Tokgozoglu

RUSSIA AND UZBEKISTAN SIGN AGREEMENT ON COOPERATION IN INTELLIGENCE
ACTIVITIES. ITAR-TASS reported on 23 July that an agreement on
cooperation in intelligence activities was signed between Russia
and Uzbekistan on 22 July. In the agreement both sides called
for mutually beneficial cooperation in guaranteeing security;
and in defending the political, economic, ecological and defense
interests of Russia and Uzbekistan. In the document the two countries
also underlined that they would be guided by the principles of
equality and non-interference in each other's internal affairs.
-Yalcin Tokgozoglu

CIS

RUSSIAN ENERGY EXPORTS TO CIS DECLINE SHARPLY. Russian exports
of crude oil to other members of the Commonwealth of Independent
States (CIS) in the first half of 1993 dropped 40% from what
they were over the same period last year, the Journal of Commerce
reported on 26 July citing Russia's State Committee on Economic
Cooperation with the CIS. This year's January to June exports
totaled 26.6 million metric tons as opposed to last year's mid-year
figure of 44.4-million tons. Natural gas deliveries are also
down from last year's level by 50%. These declines seem to exceed
the Ministry of Economy's projections of export reductions made
earlier this year. The Ministry had planned, for example, on
a 30% drop in crude oil exports to the CIS by year-end. Russia
has been intentionally lowering its exports of energy products
to the CIS over the last two and a half years because of unfavorable
terms of trade, payment problems and excessive trade surpluses
with the other CIS states. -Erik Whitlock

SEVASTOPOL DEMONSTRATION. About 2,000 people demonstrated in
Sevastopol on 24-July, demanding that the port city be returned
to Russia and criticizing the UN Security Council decision backing
Ukraine's jurisdiction over the city, Western agencies reported.
The demonstrators were reported to be supporters of the local
branch of the Russian National Salvation Front. Among the demonstrators
were three Russian parliamentary members, including Yevgenii
Pudovkin, head of the parliamentary commission that recommended
Sevastopol be recognized as belonging to Russia. -Roman Solchanyk


CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE



IZETBEGOVIC ARRIVES IN GENEVA. UN commander Lt. Gen. Francis
Briquemont accused the Bosnian Serb leaders of breaking promises
given to him that the Serbian forces would fully cooperate with
the UN, international media reported on 26 July. French peacekeepers
in Sarajevo came under heavy, deliberate artillery fire on 25
July. The Serb chief of staff, Gen.-Manojlo Milovanovic, expressed
"deep sorrow and condolences," blaming Muslim provocateurs for
the attack. The UN commander for Bosnia, Gen. Jean Cot, bitterly
dismissed the Serbian explanation and warned of immediate retaliation
for attacks on the UN. French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe called
for air cover to protect peacekeepers, since NATO has positioned
60-combat aircraft in Italy. UN troops have rarely utilized orders
to use "all available means" to fulfill their mission, but on
11 June they killed two Bosnian Croats attacking an aid convoy.
Meanwhile, Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic arrived for peace
talks in Geneva. He was unable to get the preconditions he wanted
and said: "If there is a way out, this delegation will find it."
Izetbegovic came under pressure to negotiate from Fikret Abdic
and other Muslims, who see the choice as being a three-way partition
of Bosnia or physical extermination of the Muslims. Elsewhere,
Serbs advanced, pushing the Muslims back with tank and rocket
bombardment in the area around Brcko. Hina of 27 July quotes
Muslim commanders in the besieged town as saying on 26 July,
that they will not hesitate to use all means, including chemicals,
to defend Brcko. -Fabian Schmidt

CROATIAN UPDATE. Hina reports on 27 July that Serbian forces
the previous day shelled Karlovac near Zagreb and Sinj in the
Dalmatian hinterland, while Borba of the same date notes that
Canadian UN troops have begun to arrive in the zone near the
Maslenica bridge and the Zemunik airport. They will actually
take control of the facilities by the end of the week, once the
Croatian army has left the area that it retook in its January
offensive. Meanwhile, the Croatian press on 27-July continues
to run sometimes bitter articles suggesting that the outside
world has unjustly victimized that country. Vecernji list notes
that Britain and France criticize Croatia for allegedly wanting
to carve up Bosnia, while at the same time they urge the Bosnian
government to accept just such a partition. Vjesnik carries a
tongue-in-cheek article suggesting eight ways in which Croatia
could improve its image abroad. They include: accept all international
diplomatic initiatives, even those at Croatia's expense; demobilize
the army as a good-will gesture; and hold parliamentary elections
every six months. Finally, it might be noted that not all foreign
affairs coverage in the Croatian media is negative, and that
recent weeks have seen a number of positive and even warm articles
about and interviews with Peter W. Galbraith, the new US ambassador
to Croatia. -Patrick Moore

UNIONS CALL FOR GENERAL STRIKE IN SERBIA. Radio Serbia and AFP
report on 26 July that the presidium of Serbia's independent
trade unions have called for a general strike to begin on 5 August
to protest the failure of the government to curb hyper-inflation
and the dramatic fall in living standards. Presidium member Tomislav
Sanovic reportedly said "the day of reckoning has come" and warned
if the government fails to act "a social revolt" is inevitable.
Borba reports on 27 July that presidium chairman Milorad Vujasinovic
cautioned that the strike must be well-organized and controlled
in order to avoid violence-as well as a repeat of the transit
strike in Belgrade last March, when the city's transportation
system operated more efficiently without unionized drivers. Meanwhile,
farmers in the northern Serbian province of Vojvodina blocked
several main roads to protest low grain prices. Farmers are demanding
that the price of grain be pegged to the German mark and want
quick delivery of gasoline and diesel fuel. Vreme in its latest
issue comments, "Big politics has destroyed the Serbian economy
and reduced it to the level of the poorest African economies."
-Milan Andrejevich

ALBANIAN PROSECUTOR MOVES AGAINST NANO. According to a 27 July
report in Zeri i-Popullit, formal corruption charges against
Fatos Nano, leader of the Albanian Socialist Party, are one step
nearer. The prosecutor-general has asked parliament to consider
removing Nano's parliamentary immunity and the issue has been
placed on the parliamentary agenda for this week. The charges
against Nano stem from his alleged abuse of his position as prime
minister from April to June 1991. The Socialists, the main opposition
party, are boycotting parliament because of disagreements that
include deep rifts over Albania's new constitution. Sources in
Tirana claim that party leaders will meet this evening to discuss
strategy, which could mean returning to parliament to block the
action against Nano. -Robert Austin

ROMANIAN OFFICIALS CLEARED OF CORRUPTION CHARGES. Radio Bucharest
reported on 26 July that the general prosecutor's office has
decided to take no legal action against three senior officials
in the finance ministry who had been accused of corruption. The
three-Finance Minister Florin Georgescu and state secretaries
Ioan Mihai Popa and Eugen Corneliu Gorcea-figured on an 18-person
list produced two months ago by Gen. Gheorghe Florica, former
head of a special anticorruption unit. The decision to clear
the three of charges of influence-peddling and abuse of office
came three days after Defense Minister Nicolae Spiroiu fired
Florica for having allegedly offended President Ion Iliescu in
a broadcast interview. The prosecutor's move is likely to step
up public distrust in the judiciary, which is generally perceived
as being packed with former Communists. -Dan Ionescu

GASOLINE PRICES RAISED IN ROMANIA. Radio Bucharest reports that
gasoline prices were raised by 30% on 23 July to bring prices
in line with the devaluation of the leu. -Michael Shafir

ILIESCU IN SOUTH AMERICA. On 26 July Romanian President Ion Iliescu
began a visit to Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, and Columbia; he
will return to Bucharest on 5 August, Radio Bucharest announced.
He is accompanied by Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu and other
government officials and businessmen and will sign "general cooperation
agreements" during his visits. -Michael Shafir

ROMANIA BREAKS UP BIG COCAINE RING. Romanian police broke up
a ring involved in smuggling hundreds of kilograms cocaine from
the Medellin cartel in Colombia to Western Europe through the
Balkans. Reuters reported on 26 July that 10 people were detained
but the alleged ringleader escaped arrest. A police spokesman
said that Romanian police worked together with the Interpol for
one year to smash the ring, which comprises mainly young Romanians
who had lived abroad for some time. -Dan Ionescu

BULGARIA SETS UP ANTI-DRUG AGENCY. On 26-July the Bulgarian government
ordered the establishment of a National Council for the Struggle
against Drug Abuse and Drug Trafficking and charged it with overseeing
everything from the production and distribution of narcotics
for medical use to the struggle against drug abuse and trafficking.
The agency will be headed by the minister of health, backed up
by expertise from several other ministries. Apart from the fact
that drug abuse is spreading in Bulgaria, there has been growing
pressure on Sofia to stop drug smuggling to Western Europe via
the so-called "Balkan route." -Kjell Engelbrekt

BLACK SEA CLEANUP PROJECT LAUNCHED. According to an RFE/RL correspondent
in Washington, in a few days a $9.3-million grant from the World
Bank and the UN Global Environmental Facility will be announced
to support a three-year project to clean up the Black Sea. Bulgaria,
Georgia, Romania, Russia, and Ukraine are banding together in
the cleanup effort, and Turkey is expected to join shortly. Funds
from the GEF grant will be used to launch the first phase of
the project, measuring how badly damaged the Black Sea environment
has become. Environmental experts in the World Bank's Europe
and Central Asia Division say 10 to 20-years may be needed before
the Black Sea fishing industry can be revived. -Stan Markotich


SNEGUR CRITICIZES RUSSIAN LEADERS. Moldovan President Mircea
Snegur said in a televised speech on 26 July that the power struggle
in Russia is having a negative effect on Moldova and other former
Soviet republics, ITAR-TASS reports. He cited the current dispute
in Russia over the withdrawal of old rubles as a "vivid example"
of the problems the power struggle is creating. Without naming
anyone, he also criticized the "unpredictable" behavior of certain
Russian leaders. Snegur said that Moldova's economy has been
badly hurt by its heavy dependence on the resources of Russia
and other CIS states. At the same time, he added, it would be
wrong to overrate such factors. A lot depends on the actions
of the Moldovan government. He reiterated the need for Moldova
to introduce its own currency before the end of 1993. -Ann Sheehy


GASPAROVIC COMMENTS ON OFFERS TO REPLACE MECIAR. Parliament Chairman
Ivan Gasparovic told Slovak Radio on 26 July that a deputy of
the ruling Movement for a Democratic Slovakia, of which Gasparovic
is a high-ranking member, has asked him whether he would consider
replacing the movement's leader, Vladimir Meciar, as prime minister.
Slovak National Party honorary chairman Jozef Prokes approached
Gasparovic with the same offer during the recent SNP-MDS talks
on forming a coalition government. Gasparovic denied as "absolute
nonsense and fabrication" a CTK report of 25 July that such a
possibility was recently discussed in the MDS parliamentary caucus.
CTK said it obtained the report from "a reliable source" in parliament.
Gasparovic found it "interesting" that the report was carried
by the Czech, not the Slovak, press agency. The parliament speaker
speculated that spreading such information is aimed at disrupting
political life. -Jiri Pehe

CZECHS SHOW LITTLE SUPPORT FOR DIALOGUE WITH SUDETEN GERMANS.
A public opinion survey conducted in early July by the Institute
for Public Opinion Research (IVVM) found that only one quarter
of the inhabitants of the Czech Republic support dialogue and
negotiations with the Sudeten Germans, CTK reported on 26 July.
Asked whether talks should take place, 6% answered yes, definitely;
20% yes, probably; 23% no, probably not; and 39% no, definitely
not (12% did not answer). Three quarters of those surveyed believed
that the Sudeten Germans are primarily seeking financial compensation
or property restitution; other motives such as moral rehabilitation
were deemed secondary. Of the 26% who supported dialogue, 48%
favored talks at the level of the government or the prime minister;
9% between representatives of regional bodies; 7% between parliamentary
representatives; and 5% between experts (historians, sociologists).
Opposition to dialogue with the Sudeten Germans stems from the
widespread support of the population for the expulsion of the
Sudeten Germans at the close of World War-II. According to the
survey, 49% consider the policy of expulsion absolutely correct;
27% rather correct; 7% rather incorrect; and 3% completely incorrect
(14% did not answer). -Milada Vachudova

HUNGARIAN UNEMPLOYMENT RATE DROPS. Hungarian dailies, quoting
National Labor Center sources, report that at the end of June
unemployment dropped to 657,300, or 12.6% of the total labor
force, from 13% in May. Observers are skeptical that the figures
reflect a real improvement in the labor market but rather attribute
the decline to increased availability of seasonal employment
and to fewer people making the effort to register as unemployed,
a group estimated at about 60,000 in June alone. Average monthly
unemployment compensation was 9,558 forint (about $106). -Karoly
Okolicsanyi

POLAND PROTESTS LONDON CLUB DEBT TERMS. Finance Minister Jerzy
Osiatynski held a press conference on 26 July to express Poland's
"concern" at the debt-reduction offer made by the London Club
of commercial creditors on 19 July. Poland owes the commercial
banks a total of $12.3 billion. Osiatynski argued that Poland
cannot afford the repayment terms offered by the club and instead
proposes a 50% reduction along the lines of the agreement reached
with the Paris Club of government creditors in 1991. In contrast,
the London Club has proposed only a 28% reduction that, moreover,
would apply only to sums borrowed before 1981. This restriction
would bring the real value of the reduction to only about 8%
of Poland's total commercial debt, PAP reports. The price for
accepting these terms would be the "collapse of reform," Osiatynski
warned. He added that the banks had been aware in the 1970s that
loans made to Poland were politically rather than economically
motivated and were designed to keep a communist government in
power. "Poland needs an agreement," Osiatynski concluded, "but
not at any price." Commercial bank representatives have argued
that Poland's improving economic health means it no longer qualifies
for special treatment in debt talks. -Louisa Vinton

PROGRESS ON POLISH-LITHUANIAN TREATY. Meeting in Warsaw on 26
July, Polish Prime Minister Hanna Suchocka and her Lithuanian
counterpart, Adolfas Slezevicius, agreed to try to sign a bilateral
treaty by the end of August 1993. Slezevicius, in Poland to take
part in ceremonies at a monument to Lithuanian aviators in Pszczelnik
on 25 July, invited Suchocka to attend the opening of a new border
crossing at Kalvarija-Budziski on 1-September. In the interest
of speeding the completion of the treaty, the two leaders agreed
to confine "historical questions" to a separate declaration.
This was interpreted by the Polish media to mean that Slezevicius
had agreed to drop a contentious clause in the Lithuanian draft
of the treaty that would have condemned the "invasion" of Vilnius
by Polish troops in 1920. Lithuania is the only one of Poland's
seven neighbors with which a bilateral treaty has not been concluded.
Talks were stalled for years because of disagreements over the
rights of the Polish minority in Lithuania and differing assessments
of historical conflicts between the two nations. Negotiations
on two draft versions of the new treaty opened on 19 July in
Warsaw, however, and were reported to be amicable. A second round
of talks is scheduled for 16-17 August in Vilnius. -Louisa Vinton


BALTS LARGELY UNAFFECTED BY RUSSIA'S RUBLE EXCHANGE. The turmoil
in Russia caused by the government's decision to exchange the
older rubles did not spill over into the Baltic States, principally
because they have their own currencies. Latvian bankers pointed
out that some impact may be felt by financial institutions that
do business in cash rubles. Baltic media reported on 26 July
that the Bank of Estonia has about 2 billion Russian rubles which
are to be turned over to Russia; it is not clear what effect
the ruble exchange will have on this process. The Lithuanian
Central Bank is reported to have about half a billion rubles
in cash-mostly worn out notes. -Dzintra Bungs

US, SWEDEN HELP FUND ROUND TABLE IN ESTONIA. On 26 July a State
Department spokesman announced that the US is contributing $15,000
for administrative costs of holding round-table talks between
national minorities in Estonia and the government, a RFE/RL correspondent
in Washington reports. Swedish Foreign Minister Margaretha af
Ugglas announced in Stockholm that Sweden would give 50,000 kronor
for the same purpose, Baltic media report. At the initiative
of Estonian President Lennart Meri, two such round tables were
held in July with representatives of the Russian communities
in Narva and Sillamae, where referendums on local autonomy were
held after the passage of a law on aliens that they deem discriminatory.
A third round table is scheduled in August. -Saulius Girnius


RUSSIA TO GIVE UP PALDISKI IN MID-AUGUST? ESTONIAN MINISTER OF
INTERNAL AFFAIRS LAGLE PAREK TOLD THE PRESS THAT SHE EXPECTS
ESTONIA TO REGAIN JURISDICTION OVER PALDISKI AND THE RUSSIAN
MILITARY BASE THERE ON 10-AUGUST WHEN ESTONIANS WILL TAKE OVER
PATROLLING THE INSTALLATIONS AND THEIR SURROUNDINGS FROM THE
RUSSIAN MILITARY POLICE. -Dzintra Bungs

[As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Bess Brown and Charles Trumbull





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(A DIVISION OF RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY, INC.) with the
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