|We have flown the air like birds and swum the sea like fishes, but have yet to learn the simple act of walking the earth like brothers. - Martin Luther King Jr|
No. 196, 12 October 1993
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc. RUSSIA YELTSIN OFFERS CONDOLENCES; TENSIONS REMAIN. Russian President Boris Yeltsin on 12 October began his visit to Japan by officially offering condolences for "the inhuman treatment of Japanese prisoners of war" who had been interned in the USSR in 1945 and subsequently, ITAR-TASS reported. Yeltsin, who had arrived in Tokyo the previous evening, spent the morning meeting with the Japanese Emperor and Empress. Later he was to confer with Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa and his top economic advisors. At the Moscow airport just prior to embarking for Tokyo Yeltsin was quoted by Reuter as saying that he hoped the Japanese would "not raise the territorial question and spoil the visit." That remark reportedly provoked an indignant response from Japanese Foreign Ministry officials, one of whom, according to AFP on 11-October, called it "impolite." Another asked why Yeltsin was coming to Tokyo if he did not intend to discuss the territorial issue. Both in Moscow and after his arrival in Tokyo Yeltsin singled out the promotion of economic cooperation as the primary goal of his trip. -Stephen Foye YELTSIN NOT TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT? PRESIDENT YELTSIN'S PRESS MANAGER MIKHAIL POLTORANIN TOLD EKHO MOSKVY ON 9 OCTOBER THAT HE EXPECTS YELTSIN NOT TO RUN FOR PRESIDENTIAL REELECTION IN 1994. He stated that Yeltsin's aim is to make the democratic process in the country irreversible and prepare the way for new politicians. Talking on possible crown princes, Poltoranin expressed the opinion that economist Grigorii Yavlinsky has no chance because he does not fit the Russian traditional image of a leader. But a high ranking member of the presidential staff, Nikolai Medvedev, said that Yeltsin may cancel early presidential elections altogether and stay until 1996. Other Moscow observers say that Yeltsin is considering holding presidential elections, together with parliamentary elections, on 12-December. Poltoranin also said that the coup leaders in parliament had carefully prepared their actions on 3-October. He revealed, for example, that they had given orders to the Russian custom services at Sheremetevo airport to prevent government officials leaving the country. -Alexander Rahr COMMENTS ON PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS. Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Shokhin told Ekho Moskvy on 11 October that the government should avoid suspicion that it is trying to usurp power by financing the electoral campaigns of its own ministers. He said if government members want to participate in parliamentary elections, they should first resign from the executive structures. As of today, four deputy prime ministers, including Egor Gaidar, want to run for parliament seats. Ostankino TV on the same day quoted its media expert, Evgenii Khlov, as saying that the Democratic Party of Nikolai Travkin would receive all opposition votes since all other parties on the conservative side have been banned. Travkin himself believes he will receive 30 percent of the votes. -Alexander Rahr YELTSIN'S REGIONAL CRACKDOWN CONTINUES. Yeltsin on 11 October dismissed another regional administrator for failing to carry out his orders during the recent crisis, namely, Viktor Berestovoi, head of administration in western Russia's highly conservative Belgorod Oblast. Meanwhile, regional administrators loyal to Yeltsin took over the property and functions of the local soviets in Perm' Oblast in the northern Urals, in the city of St.-Petersburg, and in Leningrad Oblast, Russian news media reported. Banks in St. Petersburg were ordered to conduct no transactions with the disbanded councils, Radio Liberty reported. -Elizabeth Teague HUMAN RIGHTS GROUPS EXPRESS CONCERN OVER SITUATION IN MOSCOW. A Russian human rights group expressed concern on 11 October about what it said were violations of human rights in Moscow under the state of emergency. A statement circulated by the human rights center of the "Memorial" society complained of incidents of "cruel, inhuman and humiliating treatment" of citizens by security forces in the Russian capital. Meanwhile, a group of former Soviet dissidents, including Larisa Bogoraz, one of the seven people who took part in the demonstration in 1968 in the Red Square in Moscow to protest the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, set up an independent "Oversight Commission" to monitor violations of human rights in Russia. On 9-October, Nezavisimaya gazeta published a letter to President Yeltsin by the US Helsinki Watch human rights organization, which expressed concern over the crackdown on opposition groups and the media in Russia. -Vera Tolz PEOPLE'S PARTY OF FREE RUSSIA TO BE REHABILITATED? ON 11 OCTOBER THE PUBLIC COUNCIL OF DEMOCRATIC ORGANIZATIONS IN RUSSIA PROTESTED THE SUSPENSION BY THE GOVERNMENT OF THE ACTIVITIES OF THE PEOPLE'S PARTY OF FREE RUSSIA, AN RFE/RL CORRESPONDENT IN MOSCOW REPORTED. One of the leaders of the party, which is a part of the Civic Union, was Aleksandr Rutskoi, but in the past few months the party had issued several statements dissociating itself from the former Vice-President. The RFE/RL correspondent said the government might rethink its ban on the party and permit it to participate in the parliamentary elections in December. -Vera Tolz TRADE UNION CHIEF RESIGNS. Igor Klochkov has resigned as chairman of Russia's formerly communist-dominated Federation of Independent Trade Unions (FNPR), ITAR-TASS reported on 11 October. He is clearly another casualty of the recent crisis. In an emotional speech on 22 September, Klochkov denounced Yeltsin's dissolution of parliament and called for a general strike. On 4 October, when it was clear Yeltsin had won, the FNPR did an about-turn and called on its 50 million members "not to yield to extremist slogans." Yeltsin meanwhile seized the opportunity to strip the unions of the right they have enjoyed since Stalin's time to administer the social security system. FNPR leaders will meet on 14 October to elect a new chair. -Elizabeth Teague RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT APPROVED NEW CIVIL CODE. The Presidium of the Government of the Russian Federation has approved the draft of the new Civil Code, which supercedes the acting Code inherited from Communist regime, ITAR-TASS reported on 8-October. Presenting the draft, Vice-Premier, Sergei Shakhrai said that new Code will be a "heart-core of market legislation". The new Civil Code includes provisions on freedom of movement of capital and goods and legal guaranteesof the inviolability of private property. The Minister of Justice, Yurii Kalmykov stressed that the significance of the new Civil Code is second only to that of the future Constitution. The Code must be approved also by President Boris Yeltsin. -Victor Yasmann NO AGREEMENT ON COMMERCIAL DEBT RESCHEDULING. Talks in Frankfurt between Russia and representatives of 600 Western creditor banks ended on 8 October without the hoped-for rescheduling of an estimated $37.5 billion in commercial debt, Western agencies reported. Russia declined to abandon its sovereign immunity, that is, to offer assets, including natural resources and property, as collateral. Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Shokhin subsequently announced that Russia will make no further repayments until an agreement on restructuring its commercial debts is reached. Deliberations will continue on the repayment of the debt incurred mostly by the former Soviet Union but now assumed in its entirety by Russia. -Keith Bush MALEI ON DEFENSE INDUSTRY COMMISSION. In an interview with Nezavisimaya gazeta on 2 October 1993, Mikhail Malei noted that he had resigned as Yeltsin's advisor on defense industry affairs due to his lack of influence over the industry. He remarked that many mistakes had been made concerning the defense industry and that he was the only one in government with a good overview of the situation. Consequently, Malei accepted an appointment on 28 September as Chairman of the Inter-Departmental Commission of the Security Council for Scientific-Technical Questions Concerning the Defense Industry. The exact role of the new commission is unclear, but Malei clearly opposes what he termed attempts by the defense ministry to control the defense industry and wants to make his commission a strong coordinating body for the defense industrial sector. -John Lepingwell CIS RUSSIAN-GEORGIAN TROOP AGREEMENT SIGNED. On 9 October the heads of the Russian and Georgian General Staffs signed a treaty on the legal status of the Russian troops currently stationed in Georgia together with eight protocols inclsuding one on the joint use of all port facilities and airfields, ITAR-TASS reported. According to the Russian Chief of Staff Colonel-General Mikhail Kolesnikov, the treaty does not specify a date for the final withdrawal of Russian troops from Georgian territory. -Liz Fuller GAZPROM TO OFFER UKRAINE DEBT-FOR-LEASE DEAL? IN UPCOMING PAYMENT NEGOTIATIONS, THE RUSSIAN NATURAL GAS MONOPOLY, GAZPROM, WILL OFFER TO FORGIVE UKRAINIAN DEBT FOR GAS DELIVERIES IN EXCHANGE FOR LONG-TERM LEASES ON SEVERAL UKRAINIAN GAS DISTRIBUTING FACILITIES, ACCORDING TO THE JOURNAL OF COMMERCE ON 8 OCTOBER. Gazprom will ask for leases on supply facilities in Kiev, Uzhhorod and Mykolaiv, two storage facilities in Western Ukraine and some port installations in Illichivsk and Odessa. Ukrainian overdue payments, according to Gazprom, now total 710.5 billion rubles ($598 million). Gazprom also accuses Ukraine of siphoning off gas from transit pipelines, which has cost it $10 million in penalties for breach of contract with West European customers between the beginning of the year and 20-September. -Erik Whitlock and Ustina Markus TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA ALIEV SWORN IN AS AZERBAIJAN'S PRESIDENT. Following his landslide victory in the 3-October elections, Geidar Aliev was sworn in as President of Azerbaijan on 10 October, ITAR-TASS reported. Aliev pledged his loyalty on the Koran and the Constitution of Azerbaijan, which deputies to the National Assembly had amended the previous day to excise all references to "Soviet", "socialist", and "the Communist Party", and vowed to work for an end to the Karabakh conflict and the strengthening of Azerbaijan's independence and the implementation of economic reform. -Liz Fuller GEORGIA UPDATE. Fighting between Georgian government troops and forces loyal to ousted President Zviad Gamsakhurdia around the strategic rail junction of Samtredia continued on 11 October, Radio Tbilisi reported. Ostankino TV reported, quoting Georgian TV, that Gamsakhurdia had demanded a ransom of $200,000 for the release of kidnapped Georgian Deputy Interior Minister Giorgi Gulua. Speaking at a press conference in Tbilisi, Georgian parliament chairman Eduard Shevardnadze characterized Gamsakhurdia's actions as treacherous and immoral, according to Radio Tbilisi. Shevardnadze has appointed Igor Giorgadze as head of the Georgian intelligence service in place of Irakli Batiashvili, who on 11-October announced that he was resigning to protest Shevardnadze's decision that Georgia should join the CIS, Radio Tbilisi reported. -Liz Fuller NAZARBAEV AND POPULAR UNITY. Popular Unity, one of the largest of Kazakhstan's political movements, held an organizational congress on 9 October in preparation for next year's parliamentary elections, which the organization intends to contest. ITAR-TASS, reporting on the congress, said that Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbaev has agreed to be the unofficial head of the organization. He supported the rival People's Congress of writer and political activist Olzhas Suleimenov when that group was set up, but the People's Congress quickly turned into a vehicle for the political ambitions of Suleimenov. -Bess Brown CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE CROATIA QUESTIONS REPORTS OF MASSACRES. The BBC's Croatian Service on 12-October said that Foreign Minister Mate Granic denied reports from local Serbs and UN officials that retreating Croatian troops carried out a wholesale massacre of Serb civilians in the Gospic area in September. Two officers have subsequently been sacked for what the Croatian media call "human rights violations," but the normally cautious Granic reportedly said that most of the Serb dead were wearing uniforms and killed in the course of combat. No additional report on Granic's remarks is as yet available. Meanwhile, Vjesnik on 12 October carries an article urging readers to heed the message of the highly popular US Ambassador Peter Galbraith to the effect that any reunification of Croatian territory must be carried out peacefully. -Patrick Moore BOSNIAN CROATS "PREPARE FOR THE WORST." For weeks the Croatian press has been running articles about the plight of the makeshift hospital in the church at Nova Bila, near Vitez in central Bosnia. The Bosnian Croats, who have a better history of living at peace with their Muslim and Serb neighbors than do the more militant Herzegovinian Croats, tend to feel that their interests have been betrayed by Zagreb in favor of the Herzegovinians. Cardinal Franjo Kuharic and other prominent figures in Croatian public life have similarly warned against letting Herzegovinian interests dictate Croatian policy in the embattled neighboring republic. Now the 70,000 Bosnian Croats near Vitez are threatened with being swamped and ethnically cleansed by Muslim forces, and The Guardian of 11 October speculates that the Muslims will not sign the peace plan until they can rack up more territory in central Bosnia. One Croat described the situation in Nova Bila as like being in "a room with two doors, one saying no entrance, one saying no exit." Some people, however, do seem to be planning for the future in Bosnia. On 10 October The New York Times quoted Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic as hoping for a peaceful life with the Muslims. He said: "we are all of the same blood. We are all Slavs." Meanwhile in Zagreb, Vecernji list of 12 October quotes President Franjo Tudjman as telling his regular press conference that he hopes for better relations in the future with the Muslims and wishes an end to the fighting in central Bosnia. -Patrick Moore RUGOVA DENIES KOSOVARS PLAN ARMED UPRISING. The president of the self-proclaimed Republic of Kosovo, Ibrahim Rugova, said that "Serbian propaganda is trying to call into question the peaceful policy of the Democratic League of Kosovo and all Albanians when it claims that big armed groups have allegedly been discovered in Kosovo," Rilindja reports on 9-October. Meanwhile, in Mitrovica the police raided currency black markets, arrested high officials of ethnic Albanian political parties, and confiscated documents of the Council for the Protection of the Rights and Freedom of Man, an ethnic Albanian human rights group. Elsewhere, the party leader of the ethnic Albanian Democratic League of Montenegro, Mehmet Bardhi, said in connection with a meeting with Geneva conference representatives that "the constitution of the Republic of Montenegro is discriminatory [because] it says nothing about citizens rights but [talks] only about the rights of one nation." In Montenegro there is a minority of about 50,000 ethnic Albanians. Finally, Reuters on 12-October reports from London that Amnesty International says that Serb authorities have denied its representatives access to Kosovo. AI concludes that the Serbian authorities have something to hide, adding: "without any monitors in place, we know that abuses continue unabated." -Fabian Schmidt SERBIAN AND MONTENEGRIN GOVERNMENTS SURVIVING UNDER PRESSURE. It appears that the Republic of Serbia's government will survive a no confidence motion while Montenegro's won a vote of confidence. After two days of intense debate, the Socialist (SPS) government of Prime Minister Nikola Sainovic is countering an attempt by 73 deputies of the Serbian Radical Party (SRS) to pass a no confidence motion. Tomislav Nikolic, parliamentary head of the SRS, accused the SPS of "criminal mismanagement and treason." SPS deputies leveled similar charges against the SRS. Vuk Draskovic's opposition Serbian Renewal Movement made good on its promise not to support the SRS motion as its 27 deputies walked out of parliament on 8 October. Debate resumes on 12 October. On 9-October Montenegro's Socialists, headed by Prime Minister Milo Djurkanovic, held to power in the 85-seat parliament. The session was characterized by fierce verbal exchanges between the 11 deputies of the nationalist People's Party (NS), who initiated the no confidence motion, and the government ministers and most of the 46 deputies of the majority Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS). NS leader Novak Kilibarda accused the government of violating the republic's constitution and for failing to implement a 7-point program for economic and social reform. Fifty-one deputies voted to support the government, 11 against and the remaining opposition deputies did not participate. Radio and Television Serbia carried the reports. -Milan Andrejevich POLISH COALITION PARTIES JOSTLE FOR POSTS. A decision is expected on 12 October as to the fate of the government coalition under negotiation by the Democratic Left Alliance (SLD), the Polish Peasant Party (PSL), and the Union of Labor (UP). With the outlines of a government program agreed upon, conflict has now centered on the division of ministerial and parliamentary posts. SLD spokesman Zbigniew Siemiatkowski presented his party's potential coalition partners with an ultimatum on 11 October, PAP reports. If the PSL and UP fail to support the election of the SLD's candidate (either Wlodzimierz Cimoszewicz or Jozef Oleksy) for Speaker of the Sejm, he warned, the coalition deal is off. PSL and UP leaders have been discussing candidates for the post from their own ranks. Siemiatkowski added that the SLD wants "influence" over the following ministries: finance, industry, foreign trade, privatization, agriculture, transport, construction, communication, and public administration. He stressed his party's determination to maintain control over the economic posts in any new government. PSL leaders indicated on 11-October that they will fight for one of the four key economic ministries, PAP reports. The real first test of the viability of the coalition thus seems likely to come on 14 October, during the elections of the Sejm leadership. -Louisa Vinton WORLD BANK CONFIDENT ABOUT POLISH REFORMS . . . Polish Finance Minister Jerzy Osiatynski and World Bank managing director Ernest Stern signed an agreement on 11-October granting Poland a $450-million loan to pursue a program of debt relief for state firms and banks, Polish TV reports. Stern also met with President Lech Walesa, who pledged that there will be no change in Poland's reform course, despite the new political situation. Walesa criticized Western Europe for its lack of solidarity with the reforming Eastern democracies. After meeting with leaders of the three parties preparing to form a government coalition, Stern expressed confidence that reforms will proceed uninterrupted and pledged continued support from the World Bank. In other news, Osiatynski announced on 11-October that the government is suspending energy price hikes scheduled to take effect in August and November. Osiatynski's reasoning was both economic and political. Tax revenues are running ahead of schedule, making price hikes less urgent. Moreover, he does not wish to tie the new government's hands, especially if it is formed by parties that campaigned against price hikes. -Louisa Vinton . . . SUCHOCKA CONCERNED. Addressing a final meeting of regional officials in the state administration on 11-October, Polish Prime Minister Hanna Suchocka defended her government's performance and criticized charges by the victorious SLD, PSL, and UP that Poland remains stagnant and has not really embarked on economic growth. "Poland has genuinely overcome the decline in production characteristic of postcommunist countries," she said. Suchocka also expressed concern that the new coalition will treat posts in the state administration as "political booty" rather than pursue her own plans to create an apolitical civil service. The regional officials present at the meeting said they expected rapid personnel changes under pressure from local SLD and PSL organizations. Suchocka and her public administration minister, Jan Maria Rokita, pledged to fight such practices in the parliament. -Louisa Vinton CZECH, SLOVAK PARLIAMENTARIANS MEET. Representatives of the Czech and Slovak parliaments met in Casta-Papiernicka, Slovakia, on 11 October to discuss Czech-Slovak relations and cooperation. CTK reports that Slovak deputies raised the possibility of introducing dual Czech and Slovak citizenship for some citizens of former Czechoslovakia, such as those who are now citizens of one of the two states but reside permanently in the other. The Czech Republic currently does not allow former Czechoslovak citizens who have become Czech citizens to hold dual citizenship. According to CTK, Milan Uhde, chairman of the Czech parliament, rejected the Slovak proposal, saying that the Czech Republic currently "does not want and cannot afford" to tackle the issue of dual citizenship. -Jiri Pehe ECONOMIC NEWS FROM SLOVAKIA. The Slovak Ministry of Labor announced on 11 October that there were some 350,000 unemployed people in Slovakia at the end of September. The unemployment rate was 13.73%, showing a 1.2% increase since June 1993. Also on the 11th, the Bratislava Stock Exchange began daily operations. Before that date, the market had been open only every 14 days. TASR quotes exchange manager Marian Sasik as saying the change is designed to keep prices up-to-date and increase trading volume. The exchange now trades a total of 15 types of state and industrial bonds and provides a market for shares issued by 497 Slovak enterprises. Sasik said he expects a big increase in trading in Slovak capital markets within the next six months. -Jiri Pehe HUNGARIAN, SLOVAK FOREIGN MINISTERS MEET. Geza Jeszenszky and his Slovak counterpart Jozef Moravcik met in Vienna on 8 October at the Council of Europe's summit, Radio Budapest reported on 9 October. Moravcik said Slovakia would fulfill its commitment to the Council of Europe and allow the use of Hungarian family names and locality signs and had invited Jeszenszky to visit Slovakia within a month or two to discuss the two countries' bilateral state treaty, including the guarantee of minority rights asked by Hungary and a clause on the inviolability of borders demanded by Slovakia. According to TASR, Jeszenszky said Budapest intended to support the right of self-determination of its own national minorities, including the Slovaks living in Hungary, whose present exact number (estimates run as high as 150,000) is not known because of a post-World War II population exchange between the two countries. -Alfred Reisch HUNGARY TRIES TO REPAIR ENVIRONMENTAL DAMAGE. On 11 October an international conference on the ecological damage caused during nearly 50 years by the Soviet troops stationed in Hungary began in Budapest, MTI reported. According to Minister of Environmental Protection Janos Gyurko, the cleaning up of the 20 most polluted installations out of a total of 171 had begun in the past two years at a cost of 930-million forint. To continue the task would require an additional 600 million forint in 1994, while only 200-million can be allocated for this purpose from the state budget. -Alfred Reisch US DEFENSE OFFICIAL IN BUCHAREST. US State Undersecretary of Defense Frank Wisner paid an official visit to Romania over 10-11 October. Wisner, who was heading a Defense Department delegation, was received by Romania's President Ion Iliescu and Labor and Social Minister Dan Mircea Popescu. On 11-October the US delegation attended the first meeting of a newly-created bilateral working group on defense issues. The Romanian delegation was headed by Ioan Mircea Pascu, Secretary of State for Defense Policy and International Relations with the National Defense Ministry. According to a joint communique, released on Radio Bucharest, the meeting was held in a "friendly and very constructive atmosphere." The two delegations exchanged views on European and regional security, the future of NATO and its possible eastward expansion, the military responsibility of the US in Europe, and the reorganization of the Romanian army. They also agreed to hold the next meeting in spring 1994. -Dan Ionescu ROMANIAN WRITERS' UNION SPLITS OVER CORRUPTION ALLEGATIONS. Romanian poet Mircea Dinescu, a former opponent of Nicolae Ceausescu's regime, resigned on 7 October from the leadership of the country's Writers' Union over allegations of corruption, Romanian media reported on 7 October. Dinescu has been accused in the media of misusing printing machinery donated by the German government as well as union funds in his own interest. In an open letter, the poet dismissed the charges as slander. Two other writers, including former dissident poet Ana Blandiana, also quit the union's management earlier last week in protest at being allegedly insulted by Dinescu at a meeting to clear the accusations. -Dan Ionescu BULGARIAN PRESS REACTS TO US DIPLOMAT'S CONCERNS. Bulgarian media have reacted sharply to US Ambassador-designate to Sofia William Montgomery's testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in September wherein he noted dissatisfaction with the status of minorities in Bulgaria. Papers such as Podkrepa, Standart, Otechestven Vesnik, Trud, and 24 Chasa have criticized what many seem to regard as interference in internal Bulgarian affairs. National leaders have been cautious in their responses and have reserved judgment while awaiting further data. -Duncan Perry KRAVCHUK APPOINTS NEW NAVAL COMMANDER. President Leonid Kravchuk has appointed Vice-Admiral Volodymyr Bezkorovainy as Ukraine's new navy commander. He replaces Borys Kozhyn. Previously Bezkorovainy had commanded the nuclear submarine force of Russia's Northern Fleet. While no reason was given for Kozhyn's replacement, it comes just days after the appointment of a new defense minister. Currently the Ukrainian navy consists of five ships with others under construction. The disputed Black Sea Fleet has some 300 vessels, Radio Ukraine and Reuters reported on 11-October. -Ustina Markus SEVASTOPOL NATIONAL SALVATION FRONT RECONSTITUTED. The Sevastopol branch of the National Salvation Front has announced its self-dissolution, ITAR-TASS reported on 11 October. The organization said that it had taken this step in connection with the formation of the Russian People's Council and the Bloc of Patriotic Forces in Sevastopol. At the same time, it was announced that a regional branch of the Russian National Party had been formed in the city. The latter is headed by Aleksandr Kruglov, who was head of the Sevastopol branch of the National Salvation Front. -Roman Solchanyk DEATH PENALTY DEMANDED IN TIRASPOL TRIAL. On 11 October the "Dniester republic's" prosecutor in the trial of six Moldovans in Tiraspol demanded the death penalty for three of the defendants and prison terms for the others, Basapress reported. The defendants have been in jail since May-June 1992 and on trial since April 1993 on charges of terrorism. Numerous appeals during the course of the trial from international human rights organizations, European bodies including CSCE and the Council of Europe, and Western embassies in Moldova have noted multiple legal flaws and demanded that the defendants be turned over to a lawful court in Chisinau. -Vladimir Socor BALTIC LEADERS ON NATO MEMBERSHIP. Latvian president Guntis Ulmanis told the press on 11 October that Latvia would like to join NATO and added that Russia's neighbors would feel more secure if Russia also joined the alliance. Lithuanian president Algirdas Brazauskas said he hopes to improve contacts with NATO and noted that he had been invited to visit NATO headquarters in Brussels in January. Brazauskas added that Lithuania will need time and money to join the alliance, and he stressed that Lithuania's aim is to join the European political, economic, and security alliances. Estonia has nominated Rein Helme to take part in a North Atlantic Assembly working group on the possible expansion of NATO membership, BNS reported on 11 October. -Dzintra Bungs [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Liz Fuller and Stan Markotich 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. All rights reserved.RFE/RL Daily Report
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