If there is anyone listening to whom I owe money, I'm prepared to forget it if you are. - Errol Flynn
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 169, 03 September 1993



Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc.

RUSSIA



CHERNOMYRDIN MEETS CLINTON, SIGNS AGREEMENTS. Prime Minister
Viktor Chernomyrdin held meetings with US President Bill Clinton
on 2 September in Washington, ITAR-TASS and Western agencies
reported. Both sides hailed agreements signed during Chernomyrdin's
US visit, including trade agreements setting up a joint investment
fund, a protocol on US aid for the development of the Russian
oil and gas industry, and an agreement to cooperate on space
exploration. The White House says Washington and Moscow also
reached an understanding on the divisive question of Russian
exports of cryogenic rocket engines to India. -Suzanne Crow

MORE ON FEDERATION COUNCIL. President Boris Yeltsin has approved
the drafts of the constituent documents of the Federation Council
and they have now been sent to the republics and regions for
discussion, Rossiiskie vesti reported on 2 September. Yeltsin's
deputy chief of staff, Vyacheslav Volkov, told RFE/RL on 2-September
that Yeltsin's staff estimated that all the republican presidents
and heads of administration, as well as most of the chairman
of regional parliaments, support the creation of the council
and therefore parliamentary chairman Ruslan Khasbulatov has no
choice but to accept it. Reports show, however, that even if
the heads of representative and executive power in the republics
and regions support the creation of the council, the local parliaments
do not necessarily do so, and Rossiiskie vesti warned that the
council will not be an obedient tool in the hands of the federal
authorities. -Ann Sheehy

CONSTITUTIONAL UPDATE. In the same interview, Volkov told RFE/RL
that Yeltsin has improved his relations with the Russian Constitutional
Court and considers it to be an important part of Russia's administration.
The president plans to challenge in the court any actions of
the Russian parliament which he considers unconstitutional, according
to Volkov. Meanwhile, the debate over Russia's new constitution
continued with a meeting on 2-September between Sergei Filatov,
head of Yeltsin's administration, and Oleg Rumyantsev, secretary
of the parliament's Constitutional Commission. ITAR-TASS reported
Rumyantsev as saying that the final draft of a new constitution
should be submitted to the Congress of People's Deputies at its
November session. -Wendy Slater

YELTSIN MAKES STATEMENT ON PRESS FREEDOM. President Yeltsin issued
a statement on 2 September condemning as undemocratic a controversial
law being debated by the parliament which envisages the creation
of a surveillance committee to control broadcasting and financing
of the media. ITAR-TASS reported that Yeltsin said that he would
not send his representatives to such a committee. The president
was also quoted as saying that he hoped journalists would not
send their representatives to the committee either. The draft
bill has provoked considerable criticism from individual journalists
and journalists' professional organizations. -Vera Tolz

SHUMEIKO, POLTORANIN ORDERED TO APPEAR IN COURT. On 2 September,
AFP reported that former Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir Shumeiko
and the former Director of the Federal Information Center Mikhail
Poltoranin have been summoned to appear in court to testify on
corruption charges. According to the report, Poltoranin and Shumeiko,
who are close associates of President Yeltsin, have been warned
that they could be detained if they fail to appear. This summer,
Deputy Prosecutor General Nikolai Makarov accused them of corruption
and abuse of power but no formal charge has so far been brought
against either of the two. Instead, both have repeatedly been
invited to be questioned as witnesses, but Poltoranin and Shumeiko
have so far opted to ignore requests to meet the investigators.
Although the Russian Constitution prohibits forcing people to
give self-incriminating evidence, it is common practice to question
a suspect as a witness with the aim of changing his status to
that of the accused when the prosecution finds it appropriate.
-Julia Wishnevsky

RUTSKOI IN VORKUTA. Temporarily suspended Vice President Aleksandr
Rutskoi told coal miners during his trip to the Arctic Vorkuta
region that he has sufficiently strong support in the country
to launch a presidential pre-election campaign. ITAR-TASS on
2 September quoted him as saying that he will not call on coal
miners to strike because he is against such measures; but he
also told miners that they could bring a case against the government
for compensation for damage caused by years of freezing coal
prices. He said that on his return to Moscow he would ask President
Yeltsin to return control over agriculture and anti-corruption
measures to him. The Civic Union political bloc, to which Rutskoi's
party belongs, issued a statement saying that it will ask the
Constitutional Court and parliament to overturn Yeltsin's decree
suspending Rutskoi. -Alexander Rahr

YELTSIN LOSES TOP PLACE IN APPROVAL POLL TO YAVLINSKY. The spectacle
of Russian senior officials making unproved corruption allegations
has indeed inflicted considerable harm for the prestige of Yeltsin's
administration, Russian TV "Vesti's" anchorman announced on 2
September. The newscast cited the most recent opinion poll, according
to which the Russian president, who has enjoyed the highest rating
in all surveys held in Russia for the past three years, has for
the first time lost the top place to the liberal economist Grigorii
Yavlinsky. According to the "Public Opinion" poll cited by "Vesti"
33 percent of the respondents said they trust Yavlinsky more
then any other politician in Russia, whereas 25 percent named
Yeltsin, 21 percent trust Vice President Aleksandr Rutskoi, and
19-percent opted for deputy Prime Minister Sergei Shakhrai. All
of these politicians have announced their wish to run for president
at the next elections. -Julia Wishnevsky

CIS

CFE TREATY STATEMENT. The defense ministers of Russia, Uzbekistan,
and Kazakhstan (Pavel Grachev, Rustam Akhmedov, and Sagadat Nurmagambetov)
initialed a joint statement on principles directed toward implementing
the CFE Treaty, originally signed in 1990. In the agreement,
which must yet be signed by the heads of state of the relevant
countries, the parties pledge to reduce forces stationed on their
territories to the level of quotas established at meetings in
Moscow in late August. -Suzanne Crow

DIFFICULT RUSSIAN-UKRAINIAN SUMMIT IN CRIMEA? A "WORKING" MEETING
OF RUSSIAN AND UKRAINIAN LEADERS IS BEING HELD IN CRIMEA ON 3
SEPTEMBER, RUSSIAN AND UKRAINIAN MEDIA REPORTED. Apart from the
presidents and prime ministers, the foreign and defense ministers
of both countries are taking part. Among the thorny issues on
the agenda are the fate of the Black Sea Fleet and problems of
nuclear disarmament and bilateral economic relations. The head
of Russia's negotiating team with Ukraine, Yurii Dubinin, sounded
an upbeat note on the eve of the Russian-Ukrainian summit. According
to Radio Ukraine, he told journalists that "we are going to the
meeting in Crimea with the best intentions. . . . There are no
problems between Russia and Ukraine which we cannot resolve."
On the other hand, President Yeltsin indicated the extent of
the differences between the two states when he declared in a
statement made in Moscow before leaving for Crimea, and reported
by Russian and Western agencies on 3-September, that Russia cannot
allow Ukraine to be a nuclear power. -Bohdan Nahaylo

TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA



TURKEY, IRAN AND AZERBAIJAN. On 2 September ITAR-TASS quoted
the head of the Nagorno-Karabakh government, Robert Kocharyan,
as saying that Iranian troops "had been visually observed" crossing
the Azerbaijani-Iranian border on 1 September; officials in Baku
denied that any Iranian troops were in Azerbaijan, but warned
that the buildup of Armenian and Azerbaijani forces close to
the Iranian border had created "a dangerous situation", according
to AFP. In Ankara, a Turkish government spokesman said Iran was
demanding a 20 km security zone along the Azerbaijan-Iranian
border, where the Iranian troop buildup was close to becoming
a threat to peace, and he warned that Turkey "would not remain
a distant onlooker" in the event of a clash. A statement from
the office of Turkish President Suleyman Demirel called for an
unconditional Armenian withdrawal from occupied territories,
and said that Turkey had decided to take unspecified new measures
to safeguard the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and regional
peace and stability, Reuters reported. -Liz Fuller

AZERBAIJAN NAMES NEW GOVERNMENT MINISTERS. Hasan Hasanov, who
served as CP Central Committee secretary for industry from 1981-1990
before being appointed Prime Minister, and since the ouster of
President Ayaz Mutalibov in March 1992 has been Azerbaijan's
Ambassador to the UN, has been named foreign minister, Reuters
reported on 2-September. Maj. Gen. Mamedrafi Mamedov, who served
with the Soviet Army in Afghanistan before being appointed deputy
director of the General Staff Academy, was named defense minister;
Lidiya Rasulova, trade union head in the 1980s, is the new minister
of education. The Azerbaijan parliament also amended the law
on the presidency, abolishing the upper age limit of 65-and thus
removing the last obstacle to the candidacy of 70-year old parliament
chairman Geidar Aliev. -Liz Fuller

GAMSAKHURDIA'S ALTERNATIVE PARLIAMENT OPENS SESSION. Georgian
parliament chairman Eduard Shevardnadze flew to western Georgia
on 2-September to assess the situation there following the occupation
by armed supporters of ousted President Zviad Gamsakhurdia of
the towns of Senaki, Abasha, and Khobi, Reuters reported. Speaking
in Groznyi, Gamsakhurdia denied having commanded his supporters
to blockade the town of Poti; in an interview with ITAR-TASS
Gamsakhurdia alleged that members of the paramilitary organization
Mkhedrioni had blocked the railway line from Poti to Tbilisi
as a pretext for precipitating a civil war. Meanwhile 62 Gamsakhurdia
supporters who had been elected deputies to the Georgian parliament
in October 1990, including Gamsakhurdia's prime minister and
deputy prime minister, congregated in Zugdid for a session of
what they insist remains the legally-elected Georgian parliament
and issued an appeal to Gamsakhurdia to return from exile to
resume his duties as head of state, ITAR-TASS reported. -Liz
Fuller

TURKMENISTAN AND RUSSIA SIGN AGREEMENT ON MILITARY COOPERATION.
Turkmenistan and Russia have signed a bilateral agreement on
military cooperation, ITAR-TASS reported on 2 September. According
to the agreement, described by President Niyazov as very beneficial
for the Turkmen side, Russian citizens may carry out their military
service in Turkmenistan and Turkmen officers can be trained in
Russian military institutes. The agreement stipulates that after
1 January 1994 Turkmenistan will pay the entire cost of maintaining
armed forces on its territory. Russia will continue to maintain
some strategic military bases in Turkmenistan. Niyazov emphasized
that Turkmenistan wishes to stay out of any military blocs but
is very interested in developing cooperation with Russia. Russian
Defense Minister Pavel Grachev, signing the agreement for Russia,
expressed his personal hope that Turkmenistan would join the
CIS collective security agreement. -Yalcin Tokgozoglu

UZBEK OPPOSITION POLITICIAN AND POET KHASANOV IN POLICE CUSTODY.
Uzbek politician and poet Dadakhan Khasanov has been in police
custody for four days in Tashkent. His wife Karomat Khasanova
told RFE/RL Uzbek Service on 2-September that his detention was
a preventive measure on the eve of Uzbekistan's independence
day celebrations on 31-August. Khasanov is a former leader of
the opposition movement Birlik (Unity). -Yalcin Tokgozoglu

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE



SESELJ FORMS SHADOW GOVERNMENT. Vojislav Seselj, leader of the
Serbian Radical Party (SRS), announced on 2 September that his
party is forming a shadow government to challenge the Socialist-dominated
federal Yugoslav and Serbian governments. The SRS is the second
largest party in Serbia and regards itself as the country's largest
opposition group. Seselj stated the SRS is leaving open the possibility
of forming a coalition government, but he warned, however, the
SRS had enough political power to topple the government and that
the party will continue to prepare for the takeover of power
in "a democratic and parliamentary way." Seselj stressed that
the SRS is closely following the implementation of the governments'
latest austerity measures and said his governments' fate is directly
linked to their success. He said the governments might fall in
February if the economy shows no improvement. Seselj said that
details of his shadow government will probably be announced on
4 September, but revealed the name of the prime minister-Tomislav
Nikolic, SRS faction leader in the Serbian parliament. Seselj
further stated that the ruling Democratic Socialists (ex-communists)
have a firm grip on power in Montenegro and cannot be toppled.
Belgrade Radio and TV carried the report. -Milan Andrejevich


SLOVENIAN PRESIDENT DENIES ROLE IN ARMS DEAL. In an open letter
published in Slovenian dailies on 2 September, President Milan
Kucan denied charges leveled by Defense Minister Janez Jansa
that he was involved in illegal arms smuggling. Kucan was accused
of arranging a shipment of more than 120 tons of arms destined
for Bosnian Croats and Muslims that was discovered at Maribor
airport in July. Kucan also denied that he and Bosnian presidency
member Fikret Abdic contracted a deal for the training of Bosnian
Muslim troops in Slovenia in exchange for a $2-million helicopter.
Kucan explained that his office simply made political recommendations
on helping Croatia and Bosnia to defend themselves, and final,
specific decisions were made by the government and the Defense
Ministry without his knowledge. The scandal has rocked the government
and could force new elections in the autumn. -Milan Andrejevich


BOSNIAN ROUNDUP. A relative lull in diplomatic activity appears
to have set in following the breakup of the Geneva talks on 1
September. The BBC's Croatian Service reported on 2-September,
however, about a meeting between Bosnian Serb leader Radovan
Karadzic and his Croat counterpart, Mate Boban, in the Montenegrin
resort of Herceg Novi, presumably to discuss a joint strategy
following the Muslims' rejection of the latest peace plan. The
3-September Sueddeutsche Zeitung, meanwhile, notes that Bosnian
President Alija Izetbegovic has gone to Ankara for talks with
Turkish leaders. International media report, moreover, that US
Secretary of State Warren Christopher has urged the Serbs and
Croats to be more flexible toward Muslim requests for changes
in the proposed map of the future three ethnically-based republics.
Finally, the Wall Street Journal carries the text of an open
letter from numerous prominent individuals calling for tough
military action against Serbia. Signatories include Margaret
Thatcher, George Shultz, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Jeane Kirkpatrick,
George Soros, and Czeslaw Milosz. -Patrick Moore

BURGLARY AT THE BELGRADE CENTER FOR ANTIWAR ACTION. Borba reported
on 25-August a break-in at the Citizens Union and the Center
for Antiwar Action, institutions well-known as constituting an
important center for the Belgrade nonpartisan opposition and
for independent humanitarian work. Burglars stole fax-machines,
computers, and important diskettes with data files, but no money.
The head of the Citizens Union, Vesna Pesic, said, "we are left
without of any of our documentation," and suggested that the
break-in "has a certain political origin." In November 1991 a
group of youths demolished the rooms of the Center for Antiwar
Action and destroyed the equipment with hammers. -Fabian Schmidt


POLISH JUSTICE MINISTER OPENS KATYN INVESTIGATION. Citing Russian
tardiness, Justice Minister Jan Piatkowski announced on 2 September
that the Warsaw prosecutor's office has opened a "sovereign Polish
investigation" into the Katyn massacre. The prosecution in the
Soviet murder of 21,000 Polish officers and civilian officials
in 1940 has until now been considered a Russian prerogative,
with Polish prosecutors assisting in the case. Piatkowski said
the three NKVD executioners who are still alive should be extradited
to Poland and punished. He also announced that he had removed
Deputy Chief Prosecutor Stefan Sniezko, who represented Poland
up to this point, from the case. As became clear in the course
of the day, Piatkowski, a Christian National Union member, had
made his decision without consulting the rest of the government.
Polish TV reports that the decision was "a shock" to Foreign
Minister Krzysztof Skubiszewski. President Lech Walesa's spokesman
criticized it as well. Sniezko protested that the Russian investigation
had been properly conducted and had been expected to reach its
conclusion by the end of 1993. The Federation of Katyn Families
also issued a protest against Piatkowski's decision. Press commentary
linked the justice minister's move to the upcoming elections;
Zycie Warszawy said Piatkowski's decision reflected either ignorance
or disloyalty. An adviser to Russian President Boris Yeltsin
called it "unexpected" and "unjustified." -Louisa Vinton

KOHL SUGGESTS MORE HELP FOR EASTERN EUROPE. On 2 September, participating
in the European Democratic Union conference in Budapest, German
Chancellor Helmut Kohl called for more support from Western Europe
for the Eastern and Central European countries that were freed
from communism, MTI and Radio Budapest report. It is not enough
to give these countries only friendly words of solidarity, Kohl
said, but they must have concrete support as well. A signal must
be sent that these countries are welcome in the European Community
so that they are encouraged and motivated to continue reforming
their postcommunist economies. In his opening address to the
three-day conference of the association of Christian-democratic,
conservative, and peasant parties, Hungarian Prime Minister Jozsef
Antall also suggested NATO membership for these countries as
a means to ensure the security of the region. Returning from
Budapest on 2-September, Polish Prime Minister Hanna Suchocka
said that Polish membership in NATO will probably be considered
during the alliance's summit in January, PAP reports. Suchocka
also met with Kohl, who urged Poland to push on with its economic
transformation program and, when it qualifies for membership,
to join the EC. She also met with Hungarian Prime Minister Jozsef
Antall to discuss possible joint responses to protectionist and
isolationist tendencies in the EC. -Judith Pataki and Louisa
Vinton

UPBEAT ECONOMIC REPORT FROM SLOVAKIA. Marian Jusko, deputy chairman
of the Slovak National Bank, said on 27 August that the recent
devaluation of the Slovak koruna has helped trade and national
finances but also increased the inflation rate. TASR reports
Jusko as saying that the inflation rate before the devaluation
in July was just over 14% but since then has risen to about double
that level. The koruna was devalued at the beginning of July
by 10%. Jusko said that no further devaluation is contemplated.
According to Jusko, the July devaluation dramatically increased
Slovakia's surplus from trade and the country's foreign exchange
reserves. Jusko also said that his bank will now focus on attempting
to lower the inflation rate. -Jiri Pehe

SLOVAK PRESIDENT ON MINORITIES. On 2 September, President Michal
Kovac met with representatives of Slovakia's ethnic minorities.
Speaking on Slovak TV after the meeting, Kovac said that he had
pledged to ask political parties represented in the parliament
to adopt a law on ethnic minorities. If his proposal is accepted,
Kovac would ask political leaders in Slovakia to refrain, until
the law is adopted, from any measures that could adversely affect
the solution of minority problems. Kovac also said that a group
of experts will be set up in Slovakia to evaluate the so-called
Benes decrees, on the basis of which more than 30,000 ethnic
Hungarians were expelled from Slovakia after World War-II and
their property confiscated. Commenting on the current controversy
surrounding the forcible removal of bilingual road signs, Kovac
said that it must be solved on the basis of law and he criticized
"illegal installation of bilingual signs" by some Hungarian mayors.
In a reference to a letter sent by ethnic Hungarian leaders to
the Council of Europe complaining about the government's minority
policies, Kovac said that Slovakia's minority problems should
above all be solved "at home." He said he would soon set up a
committee of experts which would examine minority policies in
Slovakia. -Jiri Pehe

MAGYARS PULL OUT OF ROMANIA'S MINORITIES' COUNCIL. The leaders
of the Hungarian Democratic Federation of Romania decided to
withdraw from the Council for National Minorities. In a declaration
carried by Radio Bucharest on 2 September, the federation's leaders
say the decision was adopted on 31 August. It was prompted by
what was termed the government's lack of "political will" to
implement council recommendations that had been adopted in accordance
with federation recommendations. Csaba Takacs, the federation's
executive president, was quoted by Radio Bucharest as saying
that the federation remains open to dialogue to prepare laws
on minority rights. Western agencies quoted other federation
leaders as saying the council was set up only as "an instrument
of propaganda for the West" and the government has no intention
to address the Hungarian minority's problems. In a related development,
Socialist Labor Party senator Adrian Paunescu harshly attacked
the HDFR memorandum to Catherine Lalumiere, the secretary-general
of the Council of Europe. The HDFR was accused of "treason" by
speakers representing the Party of Romanian National Unity. -Michael
Shafir

RAILWAY WORKERS THREATEN NEW STRIKE IN ROMANIA. In Brasov on
2 September representatives of the locomotive drivers' trade
union discussed what steps to take in light of the dismissal
of some 65-members of the union following the strike last month.
Radio Bucharest said they decided to hold a protest meeting in
Bucharest on 9 September and to stop traffic on 20-September
if by then their demand to have the dismissed members reemployed
has not been met. On the other hand, an RFE/RL correspondent
quoted Ioan Vlad, president of the union, as saying that the
new board of the railway company has assured the union that the
case of the dismissed drivers will be reconsidered. -Michael
Shafir

BEROV OUTLINES PRIORITIES. In an apparent effort to counter recent
criticism that his cabinet is inefficient, at a press conference
on 2 September Bulgarian Prime Minister Lyuben Berov outlined
what he said should be key priorities for the months to come.
Berov called on all four parliamentary factions to assist in
adopting 42-different laws-all described as crucial to the reform
process-as well as to identify and help resolve the country's
chief economic problems. He repeated the promise that the government
will return 55-60% of farm land to precommunist owners before
the end of 1993, although he conceded that the plan is currently
behind schedule and that the Ministry of Agriculture is partly
to blame. A few hours earlier, government spokesman Raycho Raykov
announced that Berov himself had asked for the resignation of
Deputy Prime Minister Neycho Neev on the previous day, and that
the request had received the unanimous support of the cabinet.
-Kjell Engelbrekt

JIMMY CARTER IN ALBANIA. Reuters reports on 2-September that
former US president Jimmy Carter, who arrived in Albania on 31
August, told a news conference in Tirana that the privatization
of television and radio should be a high priority. Currently,
Albania has only one, state-owned radio and TV station. Opposition
leaders and analysts have suggested Albanian news is highly biased
in favor of the ruling Democratic Party and that opposition activities
are almost completely ignored. Carter also noted that he met
Albanian opposition leaders, although according to a 3 September
article in Zeri i Popullit, members of Albania's Socialist Party
deny that Carter met with them. -Robert Austin

US AMBASSADOR REBUFFS "DNIESTER REPUBLIC." The US Embassy in
Moldova released to the local media on 1 September the text of
a message to "Dniester republic" president Igor Smirnov from
Ambassador Mary Pendleton, turning down Smirnov's invitation
to attend an anniversary celebration in Tiraspol. "You must know
that the US promotes a peaceful settlement of the conflict on
the basis of Moldova's territorial integrity" and of respect
for human rights, the message continued. It also expressed concern
over the fate of the six Moldovans on trial in Tiraspol and reiterated
the Embassy's position in "urging, jointly with the representatives
of international organizations, that the detainees be handed
over to the legitimate Moldovan authorities." -Vladimir Socor


RUSSIAN HARD-LINERS IN TIRASPOL. The anniversary celebrations
are being attended by a group of Russian parliamentary deputies
and several prominent ultranationalist figures, Basapress reported
from Tiraspol on 2 September. A rally and a parade of Transdniester
military units were addressed, among others, by Nikolai Pavlov,
leader of the Rossiya group of deputies in the Russian parliament,
Viktor Alksnis, representing the leadership of the National Salvation
Front, and Lt. Gen. Aleksandr Lebed, commander of Russia's 14th
Army in Moldova. A message of salute was read on behalf of Crimean
Supreme Soviet Chairman Nikolai Bagrov. The speakers from Moscow
called for the restoration of the USSR and for the prosecution
of Yeltsin and other leaders of newly independent states. -Vladimir
Socor

UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT ADJOURNS. On 2 September parliament adjourned
its work in plenary session until 21 September without taking
a crucial vote on whether or not to go ahead with a national
referendum on confidence in the president and parliament (as
demanded in the summer by striking miners and agreed to under
pressure by parliament) or to call early elections. The procrastination
and indecision by parliament is likely to aggravate Ukraine's
economic and political crises. -Bohdan Nahaylo

CONFLICTING STATEMENTS ON SAFETY OF CHERNOBYL PLANT. On 31 August
Ukrainian Energy Minister Vilen Semenyuk urged parliament to
extend the operating life of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant
beyond the deadline of 31 December 1993, Reuters reports. He
claimed that, after the introduction of safety measures, the
plant was "among the safest, and not only in Ukraine." However,
the chairman of the parliamentary commission on Chernobyl, Volodymyr
Yavorivsky, took issue with this claim. In an interview with
an RFE/RL correspondent on 1 September, Yavorivsky said that
he would produce evidence disputing the minister's statement.
-Keith Bush

RUSSIAN PARLIAMENT DELEGATION VISITS LITHUANIA. On 2 September
a delegation from the Russian parliament, headed by the chairman
of its Committee for International Affairs, Evgenii Ambartsumov,
held talks with Lithuanian parliament chairman Ceslovas Jursenas
and members of its foreign affairs committee as well as President
Algirdas Brazauskas, Radio Lithuania reports. Ambartsumov told
a press conference that he was very satisfied with the talks.
He said that Lithuania could serve as an example for other former
Soviet republics on dealing with Russia and placed most of the
blame for the recent crisis in Lithuanian-Russian relations on
the inadequate coverage by the press. -Saulius Girnius

ESTONIAN FOREIGN MINISTER IN CHINA. On 2-September Trivimi Velliste
began an official visit to the Republic of China, BNS and Xinhua
report. He held talks in Beijing with Foreign Minister Qian Qichen
on Russian troop withdrawal from Estonia, cooperation in the
UN on security issues, and cultural cooperation. Velliste and
Minister of Foreign Trade and Trade Cooperation Wu Yi signed
an agreement on mutual protection of investments. On 3 September
Velliste is expected to sign an agreement on cooperation in culture,
education, and scientific research between the two countries
and to meet China's vice president. He is scheduled to visit
Tientsin before returning to Estonia on 4 September. -Saulius
Girnius

[As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Wendy Slater and Charles Trumbull





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