History is made out of the failures and heroism of each insignificant moment. - Franz Kafka
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 185, 27 September 1993

	Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc.





RUSSIA



REGIONAL LEADERS PROPOSE ELECTION COMPROMISE . After meeting
in St.-Petersburg, representatives of 40 soviets of the subjects
of the federation and nine representatives of heads of administrations
issued a declaration calling for simultaneous elections of both
the legislature and president before the end of 1993, ITAR-TASS
and Western media reported. The declaration also stated that
the Federation Council should meet not later than 1 October to
discuss the elections, and that-in order to give constitutional
legitimacy to the elections and the new parliament-the Congress
of People's Deputies should transfer the powers to adopt acts
on the federal organs of state power in the transitional period
and the manner of their election, and on the organization of
elections "to a body formed by the subjects of the federation"
in a manner provided for by the federal treaty. The declaration
also called for the suspension of all acts adopted by the federal
authorities after 2000 hours on 21 September. -Ann Sheehy

SHAKHRAI, ABDULATIPOV PRESENT AT MEETING. Deputy Premier Sergei
Shakhrai, who attended the meeting on behalf of the government,
Chairman of the Council of Nationalities Ramazan Abdulatipov,
deputies of the Supreme Soviet and members of the Constitutional
Court, who were present as observers, did not sign the declaration,
according to ITAR-TASS. While the call for simultaneous elections
enjoys considerable support in other quarters, the call for the
transfer of legislative powers to a body created by the subjects
of the federation, which would presumably not be subordinate
to the president or the parliament could be much more controversial.
-Ann Sheehy

RYABOV DISCUSSES NEW ELECTIONS. The chairman of Russia's central
electoral commission, Nikolai Ryabov, told the Russian media
on 25 September that simultaneous presidential and parliamentary
elections as advocated by the majority of Russia's republics
and regions may be possible. He said the timing of the elections
would depend on the political situation in Russia. Ryabov also
added that the parliamentary elections decreed by Yeltsin for
December would be difficult to arrange for technical reasons.
Yeltsin so far has strongly opposed simultaneous presidential
and parliamentary elections, saying that this would create a
power vacuum in the country. -Vera Tolz

SITUATION CALM, BUT SOME WEAPONS STILL FEARED IN CIVILIAN HANDS.
The situation in Moscow was reported calm on 27 September. The
chief of Russian President Boris Yeltsin's apparatus Sergei Filatov
told Ostankino TV on 26 September that only about 180-people's
deputies still remained in the Russian parliament building, where
they had been holed up since the night of 21 September, but they
were without electricity, water or telephones and the crowd of
supporters outside the Russian White House had also dwindled.
On 26 September, Khasbulatov said that he believed an attack
was imminent and that the White House would be defended by force
of arms, but volunteer units were already reported to have begun
handing over their weapons to government authorities. Moscow
magistrates were still expressing concern on 27 September, however,
that some weapons, said to have been distributed by parliament-appointed
rival Defense Minister Vladislav Achalov, were in the hands of
civilians. -Elizabeth Teague

RUTSKOI CALLS FOR DEFIANCE. Vice President Aleksandr Rutskoi,
Yeltsin's rival for the presidential post, left the parliament
building on 25 September to appeal for support and call for public
disobedience to the Yeltsin government. Reuters said he reviewed
"a rag-tag group" of about 200 men parading outside the White
House, describing them as "parliament's own regiment." Rutskoi
remained with Khasbulatov in the White House for the rest of
the weekend, apparently determined to fight to the end, but on
26 September he was reported by ITAR-TASS to be helping arrange
for the turnover to the government authorities of some of the
weapons handed out to civilians, said to include Kalashnikov
rifles and submachine guns. -Elizabeth Teague

KHASBULATOV RESISTS. According to ITAR-TASS on 26 September Parliamentary
speaker Ruslan Khasbulatov announced that if parliament is dissolved
by force and the chairman of the Supreme Soviet detained, several
deputies have the authority to convene a parliamentary session
in any of five or six other cities. He said that he expects the
present conflict to last another two-three weeks. Meanwhile,
the head of the Council of Nationalities of the dissolved Supreme
Soviet, Ramazan Abdulatipov, claimed at a meeting of regional
representatives in St.-Petersburg that many deputies are prepared
to turn against Khasbulatov and open negotiations with the executive
power. President Boris Yeltsin is quoted by ITAR-TASS on 25-September
as saying that soon only Khasbulatov and Aleksandr Rutskoi would
remain in the parliament building. -Alexander Rahr

CALLS FOR KHASBULATOV'S RESIGNATION. As the remaining participants
of the Congress of People's Deputies continued their session,
their chairman Ruslan Khasbulatov came under criticism, ITAR-TASS
reported on 24 September. His proposal to end the session and
continue its work in the parliament was defeated. Veniamin Sokolov,
chairman of the Council of the Republic, one of the parliament
chambers, said that Khasbulatov deserved the deputies' gratitude,
but had "exhausted his potential." Sergei Baburin, a nationalist
deputy, supported Sokolov in calling for the "renewal of the
parliamentary leadership." Russian Vice-President Aleksandr Rutskoi,
whom parliament elected "acting president" on 21 September, defended
Khasbulatov. -Wendy Slater

DEMOCRATS DEMONSTRATE FOR YELTSIN. Over 10,000 demonstrators
assembled in front of the Moscow City Council on 26 September
to voice their full support for the actions of President Boris
Yeltsin, ITAR-TASS reported. Speakers from the Movement for a
Democratic Russia said that the campaign for elections to the
State Duma had begun that day. Leaders of the Movement for a
Democratic Russia have called on Yeltsin to dissolve the reform-resistant
parliament and introduce presidential rule in the country since
October of last year. -Alexander Rahr

SOME REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVES FAIL TO ATTEND CONSTITUTIONAL ASSEMBLY.
The Constitutional Assembly convened in Moscow on 25 September
to continue work on a new draft constitution, but representatives
from key regions and republics failed to attend. ITAR-TASS did
not name these regions. Addressing the assembly, chief of the
presidential apparatus Sergei Filatov accused leaders of regional
councils of attempting to prevent the adoption of a new constitution.
Filatov recalled that a number of regional leaders blocked the
formal approval of the draft constitution worked out by the assembly
in July. Filatov stated that the failure of the assembly's delegates
to approve formally the draft constitution in July "was one of
the reasons which forced the president to sign his 21-September
decree" dissolving the parliament. Filatov said that to carry
out provisions of the decree, the assembly must finalize the
draft constitution by December. -Vera Tolz

CONSTITUTIONAL ASSEMBLY TO RECOMMEND CHANGES TO ELECTION DECREE.
The Constitutional Assembly will propose to President Yeltsin
on 27-September that he change some of the provisions for elections
to the new parliament, ITAR-TASS reported on 25-September. According
to Viktor Sheinis, who chaired the meeting and who was responsible
for drafting an earlier law on elections, the main recommendations
include increasing the number of seats in the State Duma (the
elected lower house) from 400 to 450; allowing half the deputies
(rather than one third) to be elected by proportional representation;
and halving the number of signatures needed to nominate a candidate
-Wendy Slater

POLITICAL PARTIES ON EVENTS IN MOSCOW. Opinions of leaders of
Russia's political parties on the latest events in Moscow range
from unequivocal support to condemnation of Yeltsin's actions,
ITAR-TASS reported on 23 September. The Democratic Russia movement
supported the president and called on Russian citizens to actively
participate in the upcoming elections. Some businessmen's organizations,
such as the Moscow Association of Entrepreneurs, sided with the
president but others, such as the influential "Entrepreneurs
for New Russia," called for simultaneous parliamentary and presidential
elections. The dissolution of the Russian parliament was condemned
by the centrist groups, including the Civic Union, as well as
by communist and nationalist organizations. -Vera Tolz

OSTANKINO TV CENSORSHIP. VID, the Ostankino TV news show, has
tried to be fair in their coverage of the dispute among the various
branches of Russian government , but has been censored. On 24
September, anchor Aleksandr Politkovsky complained that he had
had problems when he invited liberal economist Grigorii Yavlinsky,
front-runner in the campaign for the Russian presidency, to appear
on the show. The Ostankino management also forbade Politkovsky
to interview Sergei Glazev, former minister of foreign trade
who had resigned his post in protest against Yeltsin's 21 September
decree. On 25 September the TV management banned a segment of
VID because it contained an interview with Constitutional Court
Chairman Valerii Zorkin. Later on 25 September the anchors of
VID told Ekho Moskvy that VID intends to sue the Ostankino management
for violation of the Russian Press Law. -Julia Wishnevsky

YELTSIN TRIP TO JAPAN SCHEDULED. Following meetings at the United
Nations, Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev and his Japanese
counterpart Tsutomu Hata announced on 26 September that Boris
Yeltsin will travel to Japan on 12 October for an official visit,
Kyodo and ITAR-TASS reported. This is the third scheduled visit
to Japan since September 1992; previous visits have not taken
place owing to domestic pressure in Russia against making concessions
to Japan on the Kuril Islands dispute. The outcome of the current
political struggle in Russia will affect Yeltsin's room for maneuver
on this question. -Suzanne Crow

CIS

TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA

ECONOMIC UNION TREATY SIGNED. The leaders of 9 former Soviet
republics signed a treaty in Moscow on 24 September creating
an economic union, ITAR-TASS and other agencies reported. The
treaty was signed by Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. Ukraine
signed as an associate member; Georgia signed some of the provisions,
as an observer; and Turkmenistan said it might join later if
amendments were made in the provisions on taxes, company law,
and finance. In the view of the Financial Times of 25 September,
the document provides a framework for the gradual construction
of a common economic space on the basis of market relations.
It envisages the gradual reduction and eventual abolition of
all customs tariffs and other internal trade barriers; equal
legal status for companies of all member states to encourage
the creation of jointly-owned enterprises; and a payments union,
or multi-currency clearing system, to be run though an Inter-State
Bank and which could eventually become a currency union. -Keith
Bush

FALL OF SUKHUMI IMMINENT? DURING INTENSE STREET FIGHTING OVER
THE PAST THREE DAYS ABKHAZ FORCES HAVE EXTENDED THEIR CONTROL
OVER MOST OF SUKHUMI, WESTERN JOURNALISTS REPORT. Some 4,000
civilians were evacuated by sea on 25 September, according to
ITAR-TASS. Contradicting earlier claims that reinforcements had
arrived, Georgian parliament chairman Eduard Shevardnadze said
in a television address on 26 September that only 300 men had
reached the town, and the main force was pinned down 15 km to
the south. Georgian officials in Tbilisi told Reuters on 27 September
that the fall of Sukhumi was virtually inevitable, but that Shevardnadze
had refused an offer to be evacuated by the Russian military.
-Liz Fuller

GAMSAKHURDIA RETURNS. Ousted Georgian President Zviad Gamsakhurdia
flew from Grozny to Senaki in western Georgia on 24 September
and proceeded to the Mingrelian capital of Zugdidi, where he
told supporters that Shevardnadze should resign; his return was
not reported by Georgian TV, according to Western agencies. On
25 September Gamsakhurdia told AFP he would return to Tbilisi
within a few days; on 26-September he told Reuters that in the
interests of "saving Georgia and his people" he had ordered his
troops to proceed to Sukhumi to assist in the town's defense.
-Liz Fuller

ALIEV, TER-PETROSSYAN OPTIMISTIC OVER KARABAKH SETTLEMENT. Following
a meeting at the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 26 September,
Azerbaijani parliament chairman Geidar Aliev and Armenian president
Levon Ter-Petrossyan expressed cautious optimism at the enhanced
prospects for a peaceful settlement of the Karabakh conflict,
ITAR-TASS reported. -Liz Fuller

AZERBAIJANIS DEMONSTRATE TO PROTEST CIS MEMBERSHIP. Thousands
of Azerbaijan Popular Front members staged a demonstration on
24 September in Nakhichevan's Ordubad Raion, where ousted President
Abulfaz Elchibey has taken refuge, to protest the signing by
parliament chairman Geidar Aliev of documentation committing
Azerbaijan to membership of the CIS, Turan News Agency reported
on 24 September. -Liz Fuller

KAZAKHSTAN, RUSSIA MERGE MONETARY SYSTEMS. On 23 September Kazakhstan's
Prime Minister Sergei Tereshchenko and his Russian counterpart
Viktor Chernomyrdin joined the heads of the two countries' national
banks in signing an accord unifying the monetary systems of Kazakhstan
and Russia, Russian and Western news agencies reported. Tereshchenko
later told journalists that the unification is important for
economic stability in Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan's President Nursultan
Nazarbaev, arriving in Moscow for the CIS summit, was quoted
by ITAR-TASS the same day as telling journalists that the economic
union to be created at the summit is not a resurrection of the
USSR but an aid in coordinating the internal economic ties of
the CIS and the foreign policies of the participating states.
-Bess Brown

UZBEK OPPOSITIONISTS SENTENCED. Uzbek oppositionists reported
to RL on 23-September that Uzbekistan's Supreme Court had sentenced
five persons associated with the Islamic opposition group Adolat
to labor camp terms of between ten and fifteen years. The five
had been charged with attempting to overthrow the government;
they were arrested trying to slip across the Tajik border into
Afghanistan. The chairman of Adolat, a group that enjoyed considerable
influence and a degree of official tolerance in Namangan in early
1992, said that the five were not Adolat members; the state prosecutor,
in an apparent attempt to discredit Adolat, said that they were.
-Bess Brown

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE



CROAT-MUSLIM COMBAT CONTINUES. Fighting continued over the weekend
in the Mostar area and in central Bosnia between the two former
allies. Vjesnik reported on 25 September on moves to implement
the latest Croat-Muslim cease-fire, with an emphasis on freeing
prisoners, but it appears that a separate supplemental agreement
for Mostar may have to be hammered out by those directly involved.
The New York Times writes on 26 September about tensions between
Muslim and Croat troops still nominally allied for the defense
of Sarajevo, while Reuters the previous day reported on Croat
threats to blow up an explosives factory near Vitez rather than
give it up to attacking Muslims. -Patrick Moore

TUDJMAN STRESSES UNITY OF CROATIAN STATE. President Franjo Tudjman
addressed a special session of parliament on 24 September to
mark the 50th anniversary of the union of Istria with Croatia,
Vjesnik reported the following day. He used the opportunity to
blame communists and foreigners for regionalism and to reaffirm
his well-known opposition to regional autonomy. Istria is home
to the country's strongest regional movement, with other such
parties existing in Rijeka, Dalmatia, and eastern Slavonia. Tudjman
also has worries, however, about possible Serb-sponsored moves
to partition Croatia on the Bosnian model, and is placing great
weight on the ongoing discussions to renew UNPROFOR's mandate
on the 30th as a chance to reaffirm international support for
Croatia's territorial integrity. This probably accounts for Hina's
report on 26-September that Tudjman is taking a high-powered
delegation with him to New York and the UN General Assembly meeting.
Critics charge that Tudjman has gotten himself-and Croatia-into
a mess partly of his own making as a result of the ending of
the Croat-Muslim alliance this spring and of Tudjman's willingness
to join the Serbs in partitioning the neighboring republic. Vecernji
list of 25 September reported on the debate in parliament that
led to a tough, four-point resolution urging Tudjman to stand
firm on all Croatia's demands, although views ranged from speakers
wanting to throw UNPROFOR out immediately to those suggesting
that Croatia might get precious little of what it wants and should
already "be thinking four moves ahead." Finally, Croatian Radio
on 26-September said there were anti-UNPROFOR demonstrations
across the country. -Patrick Moore

COALITION TALKS STALL IN POLAND? LEADERS OF THE VICTORIOUS DEMOCRATIC
LEFT ALLIANCE (SLD) ANNOUNCED ON 26 SEPTEMBER THAT THEY MAY GIVE
UP THE ATTEMPT TO FORM A GOVERNMENT IF THE POLISH PEASANT PARTY
(PSL) FAILS TO RESPOND FAVORABLY TO ITS OFFER OF A JOINT COALITION,
POLISH TV REPORTS. The PSL issued an enigmatic statement on 25
September, expressing distress at remarks by some SLD officials
on its proper role in a coalition government. The PSL has meanwhile
forged an informal alliance with the leftist Union of Labor;
together, the two parties control more seats than the SLD. They
appear to hope to convince the Democratic Union to form a coalition
that would exclude the SLD. SLD leaders met with the diplomatic
corps in Warsaw on 24-September in a further attempt to reassure
the West that Poland will remain on its course of market reform.
SLD leader Aleksander Kwasniewski said the SLD is prepared to
consider "continuity" in the strategic foreign, defense, and
internal affairs ministries and will not conduct "purges" in
the state administration. Wlodzimierz Cimoszewicz stressed that
the "SLD has the same goal as previous governments" but simply
wishes to achieve it through different means. -Louisa Vinton


ILIESCU ENDS VISIT TO SLOVAKIA. On 24 September, Romanian President
Ion Iliescu ended a two-day official visit to Slovakia. Before
his departure, Iliescu and his Slovak counterpart, Michal Kovac,
signed a friendship and cooperation treaty between the two countries.
At a press conference after signing the treaty, Iliescu said
that his country and Slovakia want to "start building a zone
of stability in this part of Europe." Earlier in the day, deputies
from parties representing ethnic Hungarians in Slovakia walked
out of the parliament when Iliescu spoke about minority issues.
Reuter quoted Iliescu as telling deputies that "the demagogy
that is spread in connection with the position of minorities
in Romania and Slovakia has to be unmasked." Iliescu also said
that the protection of ethnic rights must be given appropriate
attention, but there was no need to emphasize it too much, "as
some European countries do." -Jiri Pehe

SLOVAKIA TO ALLOW SPELLING NAMES IN FOREIGN LANGUAGES. Slovak
media report that the Slovak parliament passed a law on 24 September
that makes it possible to use foreign names as they are spelled
in the particular foreign language. The law will affect above
all the large Hungarian minority in Slovakia. A similar law was
approved by the parliament earlier this year but was returned
to the parliament by the country's president, who objected to
some of the law's provisions and asked for changes. Not all of
the changes demanded by the President were adopted by the parliament.
In another development, a special mission from the Conference
on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) has been investigating
Slovak-Hungarian ethnic tensions. On 24 September, the CSCE team
heard Hungarian complaints about a ban on bilingual road signs.
After their Slovak visit the CSCE investigators are scheduled
to spend five days in Hungary. -Jiri Pehe

1994 ELECTION DATES FOR HUNGARY PROPOSED. Hungarian radio reported
on 24-September that the government favors the 1994 general election
to be scheduled in two rounds sometime between 3 May and 2 August
1994. The proposal was made in a letter written by Prime Minister
Jozsef Antall to Hungarian President Arpad Goncz. The Hungarian
Socialist Party, which advocates new elections as early as possible,
said in a comment that both rounds of elections ought to be organized
in May 1994. -Karoly Okolicsanyi

HUNGARIAN SOCIALIST PARTY VIEWS FORMER COMMUNIST UNION AS "NATURAL
ALLY." At a public meeting organized jointly with the MSZOSZ
on 23 September in Debrecen, the Hungarian Socialist Party (HSP)
leader Gyula Horn said that, although there is no political pact,
he regards the former communist trade union as a "natural ally"
in domestic politics, MTI reports. Together with MSZOSZ Chairman
Sandor Nagy, Horn was criticizing several aspects of government
policy. While Horn sharply attacked the government's agricultural
policy, Nagy said the transition could have been accomplished
with less sacrifices and less unemployment. The HSP also revealed
that it will nominate union leaders, who scored a major victory
in the May 1993 union elections, in the next parliamentary elections.
The MSZOSZ has over one million registered members and has been
able to preserve its considerable wealth despite attempts by
parliamentarians to legislate a splitting up of assets. -Karoly
Okolicsanyi

HEAD OF COUNCIL OF EUROPE BACKS ROMANIA'S ENTRY. Catherine Lalumiere,
Secretary-General of the Council of Europe, told journalists
in Paris on 24-September that she was optimistic about Romania's
admission to the organization in the next few days. Lalumiere
was quoted as saying that to further delay Romania's application
"would risk discouraging not only Romanian authorities but also
all Romanian democrats." In a related development, Radio Bucharest
reported that the Romanian delegation to the 44th session of
the Council's Parliamentary Assembly arrived in Strasbourg on
25-September. The delegation is headed by Senator Florin Radulescu
Botica from the ruling Party of Social Democracy of Romania.
The Council has repeatedly postponed accepting Romania as a full
member over the past four years, mainly because of Strasbourg's
dismay over the country's human rights record and slow pace of
reforms. The Hungarian Democratic Federation of Romania asked
the Council last month to review Romania's treatment of ethnic
minorities before admitting Bucharest into the group of parliamentary
democracies. -Dan Ionescu

RUSSIAN DEFENSE MINISTER POSTPONES ROMANIAN VISIT. The Romanian
Defense Minister announced on 24 September that Gen. Pavel Grachev,
defense minister of the Russian Federation, has called off a
three-day visit to Romania as a result of the political turmoil
in Moscow. The visit was scheduled to begin on 27 September.
In Bucharest, Grachev was expected to sign a new military cooperation
agreement with Romania. Radio Bucharest said the two sides are
to fix a new date for the visit. -Dan Ionescu

BULGARIA ASKS UN TO COMPENSATE FOR SANCTIONS. In a declaration
adopted on 24-September, the Bulgarian parliament has asked the
United Nations to establish a mechanism to compensate countries
which suffer from side-effects of international embargoes. As
quoted by BTA, the declaration addressed to the 48th session
of the General Assembly says Bulgaria has due to the UN sanctions
against rump Yugoslavia, and earlier, against Iraq and Libya,
lost revenues commensurable with its $13 billion foreign debt.
The document suggests that Bulgaria be awarded economic support
in an indirect form, such as preferential trade access to Western
markets, financial support for infrastructure projects, or reduction
of its foreign debt. Although acknowledging that all estimates
are based on shaky ground since Bulgarian trade and payments
balance statistics are being reorganized, a commission of the
Bulgarian government last week endorsed a report putting the
total costs of upholding the UN embargo against Serbia and Montenegro
between July 1992 and June 1993 at $2.71 billion. -Kjell Engelbrekt


MOLDOVAN OFFICIALS ON DRAWBACKS OF CIS MEMBERSHIP. Although Moldova
joined the Economic Union and signed 13 out of 17 agreements
at the CIS summit in Moscow on 24 September, at a news conference
back in Chisinau officials who had accompanied President Mircea
Snegur to Moscow expressed reservations, Radio Bucharest and
Basapress reported on the 25th. President Mircea Snegur's chief
economic adviser, Ceslav Ciobanu, said Moldova's participation
in the Economic Union will make Moldova's economic reforms hostage
to the fate of Russian reforms and will maximize the impact on
Moldova of any political crisis or civil conflict in Russia.
Ciobanu and Foreign Trade Minister Andrei Cheptine explained
that Moldova's decision to join the Economic Union was dictated
by the need to lift the prohibitive customs duties and excise
taxes recently imposed by Russia on goods imported from Moldova
as a non-member of the CIS. The officials also said they worried
that participation in economic institutions will eventually compel
Moldova to take part in the political undertakings of the CIS.
-Vladimir Socor

LATVIA'S WAY BECOMES POLITICAL PARTY. On 25-September in Riga
more than one hundred members of Latvijas Cels (Latvia's Way),
the largest faction in the Latvian parliament, held a meeting
at which it was decided to transform the election coalition into
a formal political party, Diena reports. Latvia's Way describes
itself as a "liberal, conservative party" that stands for a free-market
economy with private property as its corner stone, committed
to a parliamentary democracy protecting individual freedoms.
Prime Minister Valdis Birkavs was elected the party's chairman
and Andrejs Pantelejevs will continue to be the party's faction
leader in parliament. -Saulius Girnius

BALTIC ASSEMBLY PRESIDIUM MEETING IN TALLINN. On 25-26 September
the presidium of the Baltic Assembly met in Tallinn and discussed
ways of restructuring the organization, Baltic media report.
The presidium recommended that documents adopted by the Baltic
Assembly be submitted to the parliaments of Estonia, Latvia,
and Lithuania for ratification. Earlier the documents had been
purely of an advisory nature and had little chance of implementation.
The meeting was attended by the president of the Nordic Council,
Jens Syse, who showed a particular interest in developments around
the planned withdrawal of Russian troops from the Baltic States,
an issue that will be discussed at the Nordic Council meeting
on 10-12 November. -Saulius Girnius

PETITION FOR INDEXING LITHUANIAN SAVINGS. On 23 September a petition
with 274,000 signatures calling for a retroactive indexation
of bank savings was presented to Lithuanian parliament chairman
Ceslovas Jursenas, BNS reported on 25 September. The petition
initiated by the Homeland Union (Conservatives of Lithuania)
demands that savings held in Lithuanian banks on 26 February
1991 should be indexed 100 times to compensate for the decline
in the value of the ruble. The parliament on 1 July decided to
index the savings only 10 times but is expected to consider the
proposal this week. If 300,000 signatures are gathered, a referendum
on the proposal may be held. -Saulius Girnius

[As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Bess Brown and Kjell Engelbrekt







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