|Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought. - Albert Szent-Gyorgyi|
No. 173, 09 September 1993
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc. CIS MASSANDRA PROTOCOLS PUBLISHED. After much confusion and disagreement both between and within the Russian and Ukrainian governments concerning what was agreed at the Massandra summit, two of the signed protocols have been published in the 9 September issue of Kievskie vedomosti. The protocol concerning the Black Sea Fleet calls for both sides to within a month, "work out all questions connected with the development of an agreement to the effect that all of the Black Sea Fleet, including its infrastructure in the Crimea will be used by Russia and will fly the Russian flag, with the understanding that the Russian side will pay for that half of the Black Sea Fleet, including infrastructure, which, in view of previous agreements would belong to Ukraine." Thus, the protocol would seem to cede to Russia almost all of the fleet's assets in return for an indeterminate sum. While Ukraine and Russia have in the past agreed in principle to a 5050 split of the fleet, there has been no agreement on how to implement that general principle, or on how to price Ukraine's portion. It seems highly unlikely, moreover, that such an agreement will be forthcoming within the next month. -John Lepingwell PROTOCOL ON DISMANTLING NUCLEAR WEAPONS. According to press reports, three agreements on nuclear weapons were signed, one governing the "general principles" of nuclear warhead dismantling, one more specific agreement on the same issue, and one governing maintenance of the weapons. Only the more general protocol on warhead transfer, signed by Kuchma and Chernomyrdin, has been published. It states that "after the ratification by the Supreme Soviet (Rada) of Ukraine of the START-1 treaty, the government of Ukraine will provide for, no later than 24-months from the date of ratification, the withdrawal of the nuclear warheads of the strategic nuclear forces falling under the treaty deployed in Ukraine, to the Russian Federation with the goal of their dismantling and destruction." -John Lepingwell RUSSIA PROTOCOL RAISES MORE QUESTIONS. The protocol on dismantling nuclear weapons is surprising in two respects. First, the proviso that the protocol covers only the warheads from launchers limited by START-1 means that in Ukraine's view (but not Russia's) it excludes the 460 warheads on SS-24 ICBMs and possibly several hundred cruise missile warheads as well. (This proviso was inserted by hand into the prepared text, presumably by the Ukrainian side.) Second, the protocol says nothing about Russian payment to Ukraine for the fissile materials in the warheads, although this may be specified in the unpublished agreements. The Ukrainian side has been claiming that it will also be compensated for the tactical nuclear warheads withdrawn in spring 1992. This claim was explicitly rejected, however, by the Russian Ambassador to Ukraine, Leonid Smolyakov, in remarks to the Ukrainian media on 8-September. Overall, the protocols signed at the summit appear even vaguer than previous Russian-Ukrainian agreements, which does not auger well for their implementation. -John Lepingwell SKOKOV ENTERS POLITICS. Former Secretary of the Security Council Yurii Skokov has officially announced the formation of a new political organization-the Interregional Public Committee "Concord for Fatherland," ITAR-TASS reported on 8 September. Skokov has already formed subcommittees in 20 regions. He denied that the committee was a pre-electoral bloc as formed by other politicians. He did not, however, rule out that if elections do take place, his organization would participate in them. His immediate goal is to convene an "Assembly of People and Citizens of Russia" next month with the aim of appeasing the conflicting powers in the center. A presidential spokesman commented that Skokov, supported by the conservative parliamentary leadership, has joined the present fight for support from the regions and that the idea of the assembly was directed at neutralizing President Boris Yeltsin's attempts to set up the Council of the Federation. -Alexander Rahr VOLSKY PRESENTS HIS INDUSTRIAL PARTY. The leader of the "industrial lobby" Arkadii Volsky is planning to set up a branch of his recently created Industrial Party in St.-Petersburg, ITAR-TASS reported on 8-September. At a press conference, also attended by St.-Petersburg mayor Anatolii Sobchak, he said that the Industrial Party wants to take part in future parliamentary and maybe in presidential elections. He said that organizational committees of his party already exist in 36 regions. Volsky added that he had quit the Civic Union. He and Sobchak criticized the Civic Union's remaining coleader, Vice President Aleksandr Rutskoi, for the latter's shift to the far right. Sobchak, who demonstratively sided with Volsky, called for new parliamentary elections in the spring of 1994 and presidential elections in the spring of 1995. -Alexander Rahr TAX WAR BETWEEN MOSCOW AND REGIONS. At last count, 30 of the 89 republics and regions of the Russian Federation were withholding taxes from the center and the number is growing daily, Nezavisimaya gazeta reported on 1 September. Chechnya is paying no taxes at all; other regions are following the example of Bashkortostan and Tatatstan and declaring fiscal sovereignty-i.e., deciding unilaterally how much tax revenue they will send to Moscow. The regions say they have been driven to this step by the failure of the Russian Finance Ministry to send them enough money to pay local uniformed police and Security Ministry officers, teachers, and grain producers. A decision by the Russia Federation to withhold federal taxes was one of the nails in the coffin of the USSR in 1991. -Elizabeth Teague CENTRAL RUSSIAN REPUBLIC PROCLAIMED. Eleven Central Russian regions, headed by Orel Oblast, have decided to unite as the Central Russian Republic, Nezavisimaya gazeta reported on 1 September. The new unit seems to be based on Russia's already existing Central Economic Region which also includes Moscow Region. -Elizabeth Teague COUP TRIAL POSTPONED AGAIN. The trial of those accused of participating in the failed August 1991 coup was postponed again on 8 September, having resumed only the previous day, ITAR-TASS reported, because one of the defense lawyers had fallen ill. The hearing is due to resume on 14 September, when the court will sit on Tuesdays to Fridays from 10am to 2pm with a break. The reduced hours have apparently been introduced because of the advanced ages of the accused. -Wendy Slater SHAPOSHNIKOV ASSIGNED TO NEW ZEALAND. Marshal Evgenii Shaposhnikov's resignation from the position of acting secretary of the Russian Security Council has evidently been accepted, and he has been appointed Ambassador to New Zealand according to Radio Rossii on 8 September. The new position will distance Shaposhnikov from the ongoing disputes over Russian and CIS security policy. The new acting secretary has not been announced, but it is expected to be Vladimir Rubanov who was appointed deputy secretary of the council in August. -John Lepingwell GRACHEV, ASPIN SIGN COOPERATION AGREEMENTS. During the first day of a four-day trip to the United States, Russian Defense Minister Pavel Grachev signed a number of accords on military cooperation with his US counterpart, Les Aspin. The agreements provide for joint peacekeeping exercises, the establishment of a direct military-to-military "hotline" between the Pentagon and Russian Defense Ministry, annual exchanges of visits between the US Secretary of Defense and the Russian Defense Minister, and the enrollment of some military personnel in each other's defense academies. Grachev is to visit the US Strategic Command (formerly Strategic Air Command) headquarters in Omaha Nebraska on the second day of his visit. -John Lepingwell KOZYREV IN KABUL. Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev arrived in Kabul on 8-September for talks with Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani and other Afghan officials. The main subject of the talks was the increase in tension along the Afghan-Tajik border, but officials agreed in a joint communique to the release of some prisoners of the Soviet war with Afghanistan in exchange for Russian assistance in rebuilding the war-torn country. Kozyrev's last visit to Afghanistan was in April 1992, ITAR-TASS and Western agencies reported. In August and September 1992 the Russian embassy in Kabul was evacuated after attacks left one diplomat and two members of Russia's trade mission in Kabul dead. The embassy is still out of operation. From Kabul Kozyrev travelled to Dushanbe for talks with the Tajik leadership. -Suzanne Crow TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA MINFIN NEW PROPOSAL TO STRENGTHEN RUBLE. Deputy Minister of Finance Anatolii Golovaty told an ITAR-TASS correspondent on 8 September that his ministry has proposed requiring all domestic business in Russia conducted through bank accounts be transacted in rubles starting in October. The move seems to represent an attempt to reduce the widespread "dollar economy" in Russian and to strengthen the value of the ruble. The Russian Central Bank made similar suggestions throughout last year, but never took any action, choosing to wait until some confidence in the value of the ruble vis-‡-vis the dollar had been restored. The Ministry of Finance now apparently feels that the ruble, which has held to just under 1000 to the dollar for some 3 months, is steady enough to begin squeezing out parallel currencies circulating in Russia. The proposal does not call for the banning of dollar cash transactions. -Erik Whitlock RUSSIA/TURKEY/IRAN/KARABAKH. Meeting in Moscow on 8 September, Turkish Prime Minister Tansu Ciller and Azerbaijan Parliament Chairman Geidar Aliev agreed on applying joint pressure, in coordination with Russia, to effect a withdrawal of Armenian forces from occupied Azerbaijani territory, Reuters reported. Aliev further stated his readiness to meet with Armenian leaders to discuss the Karabakh conflict. A scheduled meeting in Moscow between representatives of the Armenian leadership of Nagorno-Karabakh and the Azerbaijani government was cancelled after the Azerbaijani delegation failed to materialize. IRNA on 8 September reported that Armenian President Levon Ter-Petrossyan had assured Iranian President Rafsanjani that the Armenian forces will soon withdraw. Turkish Foreign Minister Hikmet Cetin stated that Turkey is not concerned by the presence of Iranian troops inside Azerbaijan, but he characterized the Armenian occupation of Azerbaijani territory as an invasion comparable to Iraq's invasion of Kuwait, Reuters reported. -Liz Fuller CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE TAJIK REFUGEE REPATRIATION IN TROUBLE. A program of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees to repatriate some 20,000 Tajik refugees who fled to northern Afghanistan in early 1993 is being hampered by reports that fifteen refugees who returned home from Afghanistan or from other parts of Tajikistan have been murdered in the last two months, Reuters reported on 8 September. UN officials in Dushanbe were quoted as saying that the program, suspended in mid-July due to fighting on the Tajik-Afghan border and an outbreak of cholera in the region, was to be restarted in September but stories of killings of returnees to the towns of Shaartuz and Kabodien in Khatlon Oblast have discouraged other refugees. UN officials said they had documented the murders. -Bess Brown IZETBEGOVIC MEETS CLINTON. International media on 8 and 9 September report on the Bosnian president's talks in Washington with US President Bill Clinton. Clinton told his visitor that US troops could be used to help enforce a fair peace settlement, but with congressional approval and under NATO command. Izetbegovic had hoped that Washington would set a deadline for air strikes against Serb positions besieging Sarajevo, but CNN notes that the United States has declined to do so. The New York Times quotes a State Department spokesman as saying that the Bosnians "do need to return to the bargaining table and get an agreement." -Patrick Moore VIOLENCE CONTINUES IN BOSNIA. Meanwhile on the ground in that embattled republic, Croat forces launched a successful offensive against Muslim units near Vitez in central Bosnia, the BBC's Croatian and Serbian Services reported on 8 September. CNN ran footage of an explosion apparently caused by a Serb mine at a Croat wreath-laying ceremony in the UNadministered part of Croatia, killing four and injuring seven. Hina adds on 9 September that Croatian Vice President Vladimir Seks, who has long been sharply critical of UN forces in his republic, has demanded that the UN take action against those responsible for this "terrorist act." The Croat news agency further notes that Serb forces have apparently reinforced their positions on Mt. Igman near Sarajevo, which they were supposed to have evacuated last month. Finally, Reuters reported on 8 September that two Bosnian peace negotiators in London accused Britain of trying to pressure them into accepting an unworkable plan, and at the same time they called for the resignation of Lord Owen as mediator. The Muslim and Croatian media generally portray Owen as sympathetic to Serb interests. -Patrick Moore CROATIAN OPPOSITION AGAINST DIVISION OF BOSNIA. Leaders of the five main Croatian opposition parties condemned what they called Croatian collusion with Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic in a plan to divide Bosnia into three ethnic ministates, Reuters reported on 8 September. They said the policy is damaging their country's image abroad and undermining Croatia's struggle to reincorporate almost a third of Croatian territory held by rebel Serbs. "Unified Bosnia is the strategic interest of the Croatian state and people," Ivica Racan of the Social Democratic Party said. -Fabian Schmidt ALBANIAN PRESS HIGHLIGHTS. With parliament now in session, and all parties in their seats, the main battle lines have become clear. The Social Democrats returned, noting that their "demands have been met" and have vowed to fight extremism on the left and right. The Socialists have also returned, and that party's agenda has not changed-it remains a purely obstructionist force hoping to thwart Albania's further integration into Europe, discredit Albania's ruling Democratic Party, and force new elections. Both the Socialist and Democratic Party media are focusing on Albania's attempt to gain membership in the Council of Europe. Zeri i Popullit notes on 9 September that David Atkinson, head of a the CE Parliamentary Commission, noted that Albania will not be accepted until a constitution has been approved. Socialist leader Fatos Nano, currently in jail, has written several letters to European organizations hoping to link his case with Albania's further integration into Europe. A copy of a letter from Miguel Angel Martinez, president of the Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly, acknowledged receipt of a letter from Nano and noted that his appeal had been passed on to those reviewing Albania's application for membership. The ruling Democrats, in the 9 September issue of Rilindja Demokratike, note the destructive and "antinational" policies of the Socialist Party. -Robert Austin SLOVAK-CZECH SQUABBLE OVER CTK STORY CONTINUES. Officials of CTK said on 8-September that the Czech press agency "in no way distorted remarks made by Slovak Premier Vladimir Meciar on 3-September" when it reported Meciar as saying in reference to Romanies that it is necessary to reduce family welfare payments so that "the extensive reproduction of socially unadaptable and mentally retarded people drops." The Slovak government has criticized the report as inaccurate and hurting the image of Slovakia abroad. The official Slovak press agency TASR accused some CTK editors of intentionally harming Slovak interests. On 6 September Simon Wiesenthal, citing the CTK report, accused Meciar of "harboring Nazi sentiments." CTK officials said that the tape with Meciar's speech provided by the Slovak government contains even "worse statements than those originally reported by CTK" and said that the report merely paraphrased Meciar's statements but did not distort the main idea of his speech. For its part the Slovak government continues to claim that CTK distorted the speech. Roman Zelenay, deputy chairman of the ruling Movement for a Democratic Slovakia, said he regrets that CTK, which he had considered "a reliable institution," published this "unconfirmed and slanderous news." Zelenay also said "I do not know of any other state where a department for Gypsies is set up at a university." Roman Kovac, deputy premier and MDS deputy chairman said that "Meciar did not refer to Gypsies when he used the term 'asocial population'" but rather to "the socially unadaptable inhabitants of Slovakia who often suffer from genetic disorders," TASR reports. Quoting Reuters, "The [Slovak] government requests all news organizations who quoted the report by CTK with the incriminating statements to apologize for doing so . . . If this does not happen, then we will see to it that it is done through legal means." Jozef Conka, chairman of the Association of Romany Intelligentsia in Slovakia told Reuters it is "naive" that the government requests an apology since "Meciar only confirmed what was written in the CTK report and even articulated it in a broader way." -Jiri Pehe and Sharon Fisher DLOUHY TO CENTRAL ASIA. On 8 September Vladimir Dlouhy, the Czech Minister of Industry and Trade, left for a visit of Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan. At a press conference before his departure, Dlouhy said that the three countries are "important areas for exporting consumer goods and machinery." The Czech Republic would accept deliveries of cotton, oil, and gas as forms of payment for goods exported to the three countries. Dlouhy further said that he will transmit to the three countries' leaders an invitation from President Vaclav Havel to visit the Czech Republic. -Jiri Pehe JESZENSZKY TO ROMANIA. Spokesman Janos Herman reports that Hungarian Foreign Minister Geza Jeszenszky will make an official visit to Romania on 15-September-the first such visit since December 1989. Hungary expects "concrete, tangible results" in at least some areas from the visit, during which Jeszenszky will also travel to several cities in Transylvania, where the bulk of Romania's Magyar minority lives, MTI reports. -Alfred Reisch ILIESCU TO TURKEY, QIAN QICHEN IN ROMANIA. On 9 September Romanian President Ion Iliescu starts a two-day visit to Turkey that will include discussions on trade, Radio Bucharest reported on 8 September. On the 8th Iliescu received Chinese Foreign Minister Qian Qichen, whose Romanian visit is the second leg of his present tour in Eastern Europe. Qian also held talks with his Romanian counterpart, Teodor Melescanu. On 9-September he meets Prime Minister Nicolae Vacaroiu and other officials. -Michael Shafir OPPOSITION PARTY SUPPORTS HUNGARY'S FOREIGN POLICY. Top leaders of the opposition Alliance of Young Democrats (FIDESZ), shown by opinion polls to be Hungary's most popular political party today, have come out in favor of preserving the existing political consensus in the field of foreign policy, MTI reports on 8 September. According to FIDESZ, an end of the consensus, hinted at by the other two opposition parties, the Alliance of Free Democrats and the Hungarian Socialist Party, would bring party politics into a very sensitive area, hurt Hungary's image abroad, and above all be detrimental to the Hungarian minorities abroad. FIDESZ also came out in firm support of Hungary's membership in NATO now that Russian President Boris Yeltsin no longer opposes it, of French Premier Edouard Balladur's plan based on effective guarantees for collective minority rights, and of improved relations with Hungary's neighbors. -Alfred Reisch ROMANIA AND THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE. In Tirana on 7 September the commission for nonmember countries of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe approved a recommendation for Romania's admission to the council, Rompres reported on the same day. A Foreign Ministry spokesman said Romania's application will be submitted to the plenary session of the assembly at its next meeting. -Michael Shafir EC AID PROGRAM. On 8 September the Executive Commission of the European Community approved granting 62.5 million ecu ($73.7 million) for aid projects in the three Baltic States, Slovenia, and Albania, Western agencies report. Lithuania's share, $26.5 million, will be given to encourage private investment, modernize transport and energy infrastructures, and improve the education system. The $18.9 million to Latvia will help improve environmental protection, develop transport and energy, and adapt the social security system to cope with rising unemployment. Estonia's $12.4-million share will be used to restructure its banking and finance sectors and reform health care and labor markets. Slovenia plans to restructure energy and railroad networks and encourage privatization of state firms with its $8.8 million, while Albania's $7.1 million is earmarked for a three-year program to modernize the health system. -Saulius Girnius PARLIAMENT ACCEPTS RESIGNATION OF BULGARIAN DEPUTY PREMIER. On 8-September Bulgaria's parliament accepted the resignation of Deputy Premier Neycho Neev by a vote of 129 to 81, the RFE/RL Sofia Bureau reports. Neev has been the target of censure from fellow government officials since holding a private meeting with four officials from rump Yugoslavia on 25-August. On 2 September BTA and Western sources reported that Premier Lyuben Berov stated that he himself would suggest that Neev be stripped of his office, implying that Neev's meeting with the rump Yugoslav leaders was a factor in the decision. Parliamentary deputy Ventseslav Dimitrov has speculated that Neev's removal from the cabinet is not connected to any personal or private disputes with Premier Berov, but concerns disagreements over policy. -Stan Markotich FORMER POLISH MINISTER CHARGED. The district prosecutor's office for the city of Warsaw has charged former Minister of Internal Affairs Antoni Macierewicz with violating state secrets rules when he sent to the Sejm a list of prominent politicians and officials who allegedly collaborated with communist secret police. Macierewicz has always claimed that he acted under instruction from the Sejm itself and assumed that the list would remain secret, but the document was immediately leaked and eventually was made public by the media. The disclosure of the list prompted the dismissal of the government on 4 June 1992. Macierewicz is currently active in the right-wing groups opposed to the current government. -Jan de Weydenthal ANOTHER ENERGY DEAL BETWEEN UKRAINE AND RUSSIA. At a meeting between Prime Ministers Viktor Chernomyrdin of Russia and Leonid Kuchma of Ukraine on 8 September, an "unconventional" energy deal was reached, Reuters reports. The agreement calls for a third party, the Swiss firm Nordex Group Holding Company, to act as an intermediary by buying Russian oil for Ukraine and selling Ukrainian farm and other goods throughout Russia and other former Soviet states. Russia will also sell an additional 12 million tonnes of oil annually to Ukraine, on top of the 20 million already pledged. Although this falls short of the 40 million tonnes Ukraine needs, Kuchma commented that at least now Ukraine can complete its harvest. -Ustina Markus FOUR KILLED AT ICBM COMPLEX IN UKRAINE. An explosion at the Dniprodzerzhynsk Metallurgical Combine on 8 September killed 4 workers and injured 27, agencies report. The industrial complex includes the world's largest factory for building ICBMs. The explosion occurred when workers tried to reactivate a blast furnace that had not been working at full capacity for two days because of a shortage of raw materials. The accident comes at a sensitive time: in the past few months some Russian military officials have accused Ukraine of attempting to break the launch codes and control mechanisms on the Russian controlled nuclear missiles in Ukraine. There is some speculation that this clandestine project is being carried out in Dnipropetrovsk, close to the Dniprodzerzhynsk complex. -Ustina Markus UKRAINE COMMEMORATES STALIN FAMINE. On 9 September President Leonid Kravchuk and Deputy Prime Minister Mykola Zhulynsky opened an international two-day conference in Kiev on Stalin's man-made famine in Ukraine of 1933, Ukrainian media report. An exhibition, including previously concealed official documents dealing with Stalin's use of hunger as a political weapon against the Ukrainian peasantry, has also begun. They are part of the official countrywide commemorations this week to mark the 60th anniversary of the artificial famine which, it is now claimed in Ukraine, resulted in the loss of up to seven and a half million lives. -Bohdan Nahaylo CANDIDATE LEBED FORESEES UNION WITH RUSSIA. Fresh from leave in Moscow, Lt. Gen. Aleksandr Lebed, commander of Russia's 14th Army in Moldova and candidate for a seat in the "Dniester republic" supreme soviet, made public his electoral program on 7 September, Basapress reports from Tiraspol. "The Dniester republic's state bodies must be shaped as the organs of local administration of a territory which will in the foreseeable future join, on a federative or confederative basis, the reborn state." he said. Lebed has more than once called for Transdniester's accession to Russia (on the model of Kaliningrad Oblast, which also lacks contiguity with Russia) but this is the first time that he has taken this position in a formal political program. Lebed was chosen as Transdniester's "man of the year" in 1992. -Vladimir Socor POPE IN LATVIA. On 8 September Pope John Paul II was greeted at the Riga airport by Latvian President Guntis Ulmanis and other top officials. Despite heavy rain tens of thousands of people lined the streets of the pope's route to St. Jekabs Cathedral where he held a brief liturgy for elderly priests and nuns before crossing the street to the Saeima where he held talks with Ulmanis. The pope then went to the Lutheran cathedral where he held an ecumenical prayer service. In the afternoon he held an outdoor Mass in the Mezaparka attended by about 35,000 people. -Saulius Girnius ESTONIA TO REORGANIZE REBEL INFANTRY COMPANY. On 7 September the government decided to reform the Laanemaa volunteer infantry company, some of whose members signed a statement on 25-July stating that they were withdrawing from the Estonian armed forces, BNS reports. The conflict led to the resignation of Defense Minister Hain Rebas. A 20-page report on the company by a government commission said that the mismanagement of the General Staff that had allowed many volunteers not to take the Estonian army oath and illegal business activities of the company had been responsible for the conflict. It recommended that the statement signers be discharged from the army within two months although they can apply for readmission on an individual basis. The company's command was replaced. -Saulius Girnius [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Suzanne Crow and Charles Trumbull THE RFE/RL DAILY REPORT IS PRODUCED BY THE RFE/RL RESEARCH INSTITUTE (A DIVISION OF RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY, INC.) with the assistance of the RFE/RL News and Current Affairs Division (NCA). The report is available by electronic mail via LISTSERV (RFERL-L@UBVM.CC.BUFFALO.EDU), on the Sovset' computer bulletin board, by fax, and by postal mail. For inquiries about specific news items, subscriptions, or additional copies, please contact: in North America: Mr. Brian Reed, RFE/RL, Inc., 1201 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC-20036 Telephone: (202) 457-6912 or -6907; Fax: (202) 457-6992 or 828-8783; Internet: RIDC@RFERL.ORG or Elsewhere: Ms. Helga Hofer, Publications Department, RFE/RL Research Institute, Oettingenstrasse 67, 80538 Munich, Germany;.Telephone: (+49 89) 2102-2631 or -2624; Fax: (+49 89) 2102-2648, Internet: PD@RFERL.ORG 1993, RFE/RL, Inc. 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