Our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children's future. And we are all mortal. - John F. Kennedy
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 214, 08 November 1993







RUSSIA



YELTSIN WANTS TO SERVE OUT TERM. President Boris Yeltsin told
media representatives on 6 November that he planned to groom
a successor to the presidency for the presidential elections
due in 1996, various Russian and Western media reported. Yeltsin
said that he wanted to serve out his full term as president rather
than holding early elections in June 1994, as he had decreed
on 23 September shortly after the suspension of parliament. He
denied, however, that he would stand for a second term of office.
Presidential Chief of Staff Sergei Filatov said on Russian Radio
on 6 November that the decree on early presidential elections
had been a compromise forced upon Yeltsin which it was no longer
necessary to implement. Yeltsin may be hoping that the future
parliament will disregard his decree. -Wendy Slater

YELTSIN MEETS MEDIA CHIEFS. Yeltsin met on 6-November with the
chief editors of 25-Russian news organizations to discuss media
coverage of the election campaign and other problems of the media,
ITAR-TASS reported. On 29 October Yeltsin issued a decree urging
equal access to the state-run media for all electoral blocs.
Yet, many participants in the election campaign and the independent
Russian press are complaining that the pro-Yeltsin election bloc,
"Russia's Choice," enjoys far more extensive publicity than the
others. On 5-November, even deputy chairman of Ostankino Television
Valentin Lazutkin acknowledged charges of biased coverage, an
RFE/RL correspondent reported. Talking to chief editors, Yeltsin
again confirmed his support for complete freedom in the election
campaign for all groups regardless of their political orientation.
-Vera Tolz

TWENTY-ONE PARTIES REGISTERED 100,000 SIGNATURES. By the deadline
of midnight on 6 November, 21 parties and blocs out of the 35
which had initially registered their intention to participate
in the elections had presented lists of the required minimum
of 100,000 signatures in support of their participation. Many
lists arrived at the last minute; according to ITAR-TASS on 6-November
only seven parties had qualified by 8 p.m. Among the final 21,
however, were both pro-democratic and opposition far-right and
communist parties. Those failing to qualify included the liberal
"August" bloc, which includes the Party of Economic Freedom.
The nationalist Russian All-People's Union, meanwhile, made an
official complaint that petition sheets had been confiscated
from its headquarters on 6 November, allegedly by members of
the security forces. -Wendy Slater

BLOCS ENTITLED TO PARTICIPATE IN ELECTIONS. The blocs entitled
to participate in the elections, as reported by Reuters on 7
November, are: Pro-communist Agrarian Party (500,000 signatures),
liberal-centrist Party of Russian Unity and Concord (222,000),
Russian Communist Party (187,000), pro-Yeltsin bloc Russia's
Choice (200,000), Liberal Democratic Party of Vladimir Zhirinovsky
(173,000), Yavlinsky-Boldyrev-Lukin bloc (170,000), Civic Union
(150,000), Constructive Ecologist Movement (150,000), Russian
Movement of Democratic Reforms led by St. Petersburg mayor Anatolii
Sobchak (135,000), Dignity and Charity Movement (130,000), Women
of Russia (130,000), Association of Independent Professionals
(114,000), Democratic Party of Russia led by Nikolai Travkin
(109,000), The Future of Russia-New Names (109,000), Russian
All-People's Union headed by hard-liner Sergei Baburin (108,000),
conservative Constitutional Democratic Party (103,500), National
Republican Party (102,000), Consolidation Party (100,000), New
Russia (100,000), Russian Christian Democratic Party (100,000),
Transformation Party (no numbers given). -Alexander Rahr

PREPARATION FOR ELECTIONS IN RUSSIA'S REGIONS. "Russia's Choice"
bloc is fielding candidates in the overwhelming majority of Russia's
regions. Regional pro-reform organizations are generally cooperating
with the bloc in the election campaign. However, according to
Radio Rossii of 1 November and Rossiiskaya gazeta of 5 November,
the majority of the bloc's regional and local candidates are
former deputies of the Russian parliament or regional and local
soviets. In addition, most heads of regional administrations
are running for seats in the new parliament. -Vera Tolz

OBSERVER ON PARTICIPATION OF GOVERNORS IN ELECTIONS. Commenting
on the participation of heads of regional administrations in
the election campaign, political scientist Andranik Migranyan
told Nezavisimaya gazeta on 4 November that by allowing governors
(appointed by the president) to stand for parliamentary elections,
Yeltsin made a political mistake. According to Migranyan, a parliamentary
mandate will give heads of administrations a power base and legitimacy
independent of Yeltsin, creating the situation that the president
wanted to avoid by issuing a decree that cancelled popular elections
of governors for the next two years and stipulated that governors
would be appointed and dismissed only by the president. This
decree was interpreted as an attempt by Yeltsin to ensure the
governors' support for orders from Moscow by making them totally
dependent on the president. -Vera Tolz

CHECHNYA AND THE ELECTIONS. Deputy premier Sergei Shakhrai, who
is also chairman of the State Committee for the Affairs of the
Federation and Ethnic Relations, told correspondents that a joint
statement, drawn up by the Committee and the Central Electoral
Commission on 6 November, states that Chechnya is part of the
Russian Federation and is therefore violating the Russian constitution
by refusing to hold elections to the Russian Federal Assembly
on its territory, Ekho Moskvy reported. Shakhrai said that Moscow
was preparing to hold further talks with Chechnya, and that he
and the committee would support any efforts to hold the elections
in Chechnya. -Ann Sheehy

KOMI, TATARSTAN LEADERS OBJECT TO NEW CONSTITUTION. The chairman
of the Komi parliament Yurii Spiridonov said in Syktyvkar on
4 November that he did not rule out appealing to the world community
over the dropping of the sovereignty of the republics and the
federal treaty from the new Russian constitution, Interfax reported.
Spiridonov said that, if the treaty was not included, he would
personally campaign against the new constitution. Tatarstan President
Mintimer Shaimiev told journalists on 6 November that he would
not be taking part in the referendum on the constitution on 12
November, Radio Rossii reported. Shaimiev said that attempts
to reduce the republic's sovereignty to nought was a fruitless
exercise. -Ann Sheehy

NO VIOLENCE AT OCTOBER REVOLUTION ANNIVERSARY DEMONSTRATIONS.
Police forces took steps to prevent demonstrations to mark the
anniversary of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution in central Moscow,
ITAR-TASS reported on 7 November. The Moscow and St.-Petersburg
authorities had banned demonstrations for that day in their cities.
Only a few hundred hard-line demonstrators disobeyed the ban.
1,500 communist followers met in the Medvedkovo forest in the
north of Moscow and staged a demonstration there. Further demonstrations,
with modest turnouts, were reported from other parts of Russia,
such as Krasnoyarsk, Ekaterinburg and Volgograd, as well as in
former Soviet republics. The biggest demonstration was reported
from the Belarus capital Minsk with 7,000 demonstrators. The
gatherings were conducted without violence. -Alexander Rahr

RESTRICTIONS ON FOREIGN BANKS TO BE MAINTAINED. The Ministry
of Finance has issued a statement to the effect that it will
maintain current restrictions on foreign banks for up to 3 years,
Interfax and Western agencies reported on 5 November. "Hasty
access for foreign banks, which have vast experience and resources,
could leave Russian banks in an unequal position," the statement
explained. In an interview with Izvestiya of 6-November, First
Deputy Prime Minister Egor Gaidar said that the government was
looking at "supplementary steps" to regulate foreign banking
activity in Russia. In the debate over limits on foreign banks,
Russian Central Bank Chairman Viktor Gerashchenko has, atypically,
been on the side of the angels in that he has consistently advocated
greater access to the banking industry for foreign competitors,
while the Ministry of Finance has recommended limiting foreign
banks to 12% of all statutory capital in the commercial banking
sector. -Keith Bush

TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA



GAMSAKHURDIA'S FORCES RETREAT. Georgian government forces took
the town of Chkhorotsku late on 5 November and advanced west
to occupy Gamsakhurdia's stronghold, Zugdidi on 6 November; Gamsakhurdia's
forces retreated from Zugdidi without resistance and are reportedly
concentrated near Gali in southern Abkhazia, Western agencies
and ITAR-TASS reported. An Abkhaz government spokesman has denied
this, according to Interfax. A curfew was introduced in Zugdidi
and Georgian government troops withdrawn on 7 November to preclude
friction between civilians and government forces; order in Zugdidi
will be maintained by police and interior ministry forces. -Liz
Fuller

AZERBAIJAN ENLISTS AFGHAN MERCENARIES. Following a secret visit
to Kabul in August by a top level Azerbaijani official, Azerbaijan
has enlisted a force of Afghan mudjahedin to bolster its shambolic
army in the fighting in the south of the country, The Washington
Post and The Boston Globe reported on 8 November. The US press
gives the number of Afghan mercenaries as between 1,000 and 1,500;
however, Azerbaijani President Geidar Aliev referred to up to
10,000 Afghan veterans, reported Interfax on 5 November. Aliev's
requests to the US, Iran and Turkey for military assistance were
reportedly rejected. On 5 November the Azerbaijani parliament
elected to the vacant post of chairman 48 year old first deputy
premier Rasul Guliev, a prominent businessman and Aliev associate,
according to a correspondent for Radio Liberty's Azerbaijani
BD. -Liz Fuller CIS

KOZYREV, ZLENKO MEETING. Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev
met with his Ukrainian counterpart, Anatolii Zlenko, in Odessa
on 5-6 November, various agencies reported. The two discussed
implementing agreements reached during the Massandra summit regarding
nuclear weapons and the division and sale of the Black Sea Fleet.
The sale of Russian gas and oil to Ukraine was also on the agenda.
Both Zlenko and Kozyrev admitted that little progress was made
in the talks. Russia and Ukraine have differing interpretations
of the unratified Massandra agreement. Russia claims it covered
the dismantling of all nuclear weapons on Ukrainian territory
which should begin to be delivered to Russia by 1-January, while
Ukraine excludes 46-SS24s from the accord and will not deliver
them to Russia until an agreement on compensation is reached.
In regards to the fleet, Russia claims it was agreed that Ukraine
would sell its half to Russia to cover its energy debt, while
Ukraine insists this had only been a proposal. -Ustina Markus


CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE



END-GAME FOR THE CROATS IN CENTRAL BOSNIA? INTERNATIONAL MEDIA
REPORT ON 6-NOVEMBER THAT THE MAINLY MUSLIM BOSNIAN ARMY STAGED
A CRACKDOWN ON CROAT MILITIA UNITS (HVO) IN SARAJEVO, WHICH HAVE
BEEN HELPING DEFEND THE CAPITAL. The Croats were told to disband
and join the Bosnian army, to which they have been vaguely subordinated
on paper, although in practice the HVO is linked to the military
of the Republic of Croatia. The traditional Croat-Muslim alliance
collapsed in the spring, but joint anti-Serb defense has continued
in Sarajevo, Gradacac, and a few other places. Meanwhile, Vecernji
list of 5-November prints a letter by Croatian Foreign Minister
Mate Granic to the UN, in which he warns that the latest Muslim
offensive in central Bosnia could send as many as 150,000 Croatian
refugees fleeing. But Vjesnik of 8 November says the powerful
Istrian autonomy movement (IDS) is objecting to taking further
migrants, while the latest issue of Nedjeljna Dalmacija attacks
the IDS standpoint as stingy and unpatriotic. Finally, the central
Bosnian HVO is reportedly regrouping in and around Kiseljak,
just west of Sarajevo, but Politika of 8-November says cholera
has broken out there. -Patrick Moore

SERBIAN WAR AIMS SPELLED OUT? ALTHOUGH SERBIAN PRESIDENT SLOBODAN
MILOSEVIC HAS LONG BEEN ON RECORD AS SAYING THAT THE KEY ISSUE
IS BORDERS AND THAT FRONTIERS ARE SET BY THE STRONG, OBSERVERS
HAVE FREQUENTLY NOTED THAT NO OFFICIAL MAP OF SERBIA'S ULTIMATE
WAR AIMS HAS EVER EMERGED. Politika of 8 November, however, publishes
an article about a presentation by the Military-Geographic Institute
and "some exceptionally important state and scholarly institutions"
which includes a map that spells out what might be the Serbs'
ultimate "borders drawn with guns." Bosnia-Herzegovina is shown
as virtually completely Serb territory, while the Croats appear
to have lost large chunks of Dalmatia as well. Croatia seems
to be limited to a Slovenia-sized state based around Zagreb,
including Dubrovnik plus Split and some sections of the Adriatic
coast. Meanwhile, Vecernji list of 6 November runs a poll showing
almost universal backing among Croats for President Franjo Tudjman's
latest peace package, but considerable pessimism as to its implementation.
In a final Croatian development, Reuters said on 5 November that
far-right politician Dobroslav Paraga was acquitted on charges
of high treason, which his supporters maintained was a thinly
veiled form of political persecution. -Patrick Moore

SERBIAN ELECTION CAMPAIGN UPDATE. Belgrade media on 5 and 6 November
gave extensive coverage to the arrests of at least 17 members
of the Serbian Radical Party (SRS) during the previous week.
The men were accused of terrorizing civilians, illegal arms trade
and rape. Most of them are key regional SRS leaders, and the
move is widely regarded as an attempt to discredit the SRS and
distance the ruling Socialists (SPS) from their nominal allies
in parliament. SRS leader Vojislav Seselj told Radio B92 that
most of those arrested were either expelled from the SRS as early
as last year or left to join small right-wing extremist groups,
while Vreme on 8 November quotes Seselj as saying the arrests
are part of Slobodan Milosevic's pre-election campaign and a
pretext for a state of emergency. Maja Gojkovic, SRS official
and vice president of the Federal Assembly, told Borba on 8 November
that the "Socialists have lost their heads" and warned that if
the SPS "is prepared to fight to the end, then the SRS will reciprocate."
Meanwhile, the SPS dominated government and representatives of
various political parties and associations agreed on 5-November
that Serbia's media must not favor any political party during
the election campaign and that all parties should be given equal
time; an agreement is expected to be signed this week. Key opposition
parties, dissatisfied after the government refused their proposals
concerning media coverage and the broadcasting of programs from
the independent Studio B and Politika TV stations on the second
channel of state-controlled Serbian TV, walked out of the negotiations.
Broadcasts from the independent stations reach only about 25%
of the electorate. -Milan Andrejevich

ECONOMIC DILEMMAS FOR POLISH GOVERNMENT. On 6 November the finance
ministry approved hikes of 10-12% in gasoline prices to secure
budget revenues and bolster profits in the state petroleum industry.
The 1993 budget scheduled energy price hikes for August and November,
but the outgoing government put off the first round to avoid
antagonizing voters and to saddle the election victors with the
unpopular decision. Gazeta Wyborcza reported on 6-7 November
that the government's next dilemma will be whether to lift duties
on meat imports. If duties are not removed, pork prices are expected
to rise 15% by year's end. The removal of duties would please
consumers but antagonize peasant farmers; the issue may thus
spell conflict within the ruling coalition. In other economic
news, Poland's debt negotiator, Krzysztof Krowacki, said the
change of government will not affect Poland's stance in debt-reduction
talks with the London Club of commercial creditors. Finally,
Prime Minister Waldemar Pawlak presents his government program
to the Sejm on 8-November, with the confidence vote to confirm
the government expected on 9 November. Also on the agenda is
Pawlak's urgent request that the Sejm postpone the deadline for
the submission of the 1994 budget until 29 December. -Louisa
Vinton

CHANGES IN THE SLOVAK GOVERNMENT PROPOSED. On 5 November Slovak
Premier Vladimir Meciar submitted to President Michal Kovac a
proposal for reshuffling the Slovak government, which was worked
out by the country's new party coalition. A coalition agreement
between the Movement for a Democratic Slovakia and the Slovak
National Party was signed on 23 October. Although the names of
the new ministers have not been officially announced, international
and Slovak media report that Jan Ducky, current chairman of the
Slovak Union of Industries, will be the new minister of economy,
replacing Jaroslav Kubecka. If approved by the president, the
coalition government will have four new deputy prime ministers.
Current Finance Minister Julius Toth will oversee economic affairs;
Sergej Kozlik, now an official at the office of the government,
will preside over the process of economic transformation; SNS
Honorary Chairman Jozef Prokes will be responsible for Slovakia's
integration into European structures; and Marian Andel of the
SNS will oversee education, science, youth, and sports. Roman
Kovac will remain the first deputy premier responsible for social
policies. It is not clear whether Health Care Minister Viliam
Sobona, who has been repeatedly criticized, will be replaced
and whether the vacant post of privatization minister will go
to Ivan Lexa, currently state secretary at the ministry. Earlier
this year, President Kovac refused to accept Premier Meciar's
nomination of Lexa to the post of director of the Slovak Information
Service. -Jiri Pehe

CZECH MINISTER BACK FROM TRIP TO FAR EAST. Minister of Industry
and Trade Vladimir Dlouhy returned from a week-long trip to China,
Vietnam and Hong Kong on 7-November. In an interview with CTK,
Dlouhy said he signed a trade agreement with China and discussed
the possibility of supplying China with parts for a new power
plant. He also said Vietnam is interested in buying some 40 engines
from the Czech Republic. In Hong Kong, Dlouhy officially opened
an exposition of Czech industrial products. -Jiri Pehe

KLAUS IN ROMANIA. Czech Prime Minister Vaclav Klaus arrived in
Romania on 7 November for a two-day official visit. CTK reports
that Klaus will meet with Prime Minister Nicolae Vacaroiu and
President Ion Iliescu on 8 November. He is expected to sign several
agreements on bilateral economic cooperation. In an interview
with CTK on 7 November, Klaus said he resolutely disagrees with
dividing former communist countries between good and bad, "as
is often done in the West." -Jiri Pehe

HUNGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTER TO ROMANIA. On 6 and 7 November Geza
Jeszenszky, accompanied by his wife and six senior foreign ministry
officials, paid an unofficial visit to several localities in
the Transylvanian counties of Harghita and Covasna, where ethnic
Hungarians are in the majority, Radio Bucharest and Radio Budapest
reported. After attending a ceremony marking the 180th anniversary
of the birth of Mozes Turoczi, a hero of Hungary's 1848-49 war
of independence against Austria, Jeszenszky visited several towns,
including the village of Ilieni, where an ethnic Hungarian Christian
youth association is based. He was accompanied by Romanian Foreign
Ministry State Secretary Marcel Dinu, the Hungarian ambassador
to Bucharest, local officials, and by Hungarian Democratic Federation
of Romania Chairman Bela Marko. Jeszenszky, who had paid an official
visit to Romania from 15-19 September, said that as a result
of common work, "signs of a thaw" are beginning to appear in
bilateral relations, yet he stressed the need for a rapprochement
and a reconciliation.--Dan Ionescu and Alfred Reisch

HUNGARIAN PRIME MINISTER RETURNS TO BUDAPEST. On 6 November Jozsef
Antall flew back to Hungary after undergoing four weeks of medical
treatment in Germany, Radio Budapest reports. Antall, who since
late 1991 has suffered from non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a form of cancer,
underwent a blood cell transplant in a Cologne clinic. His doctors
described his current condition as good but said he must reduce
his work schedule because of the side effects of radiation and
chemotherapy treatments. The ruling Hungarian Democratic Forum
party chaired by Antall faces crucial general elections to be
held sometime between May and July l994.--Alfred Reisch

NEW HUNGARIAN PARTY FOUNDED. Lajos Horvath and populist-nationalist
writer Istvan Csurka were elected executive chairman and co-chairman,
respectively, of the new "Hungarian Truth and Life Party, MTI
reports on 6 November. Horvath described the HTLP, which today
has some 4,000 members, as being a "moderately rightist, socially
inclined and Christian bourgeois party." Csurka, who will be
in charge of the party's strategy and political thinking, said
the party was founded so as not no leave the Hungarian people
without representation in their own country, as the present government
has made a deal with the former communist elite and split the
country into two camps, namely, the new elite and burden-bearing
masses.--Alfred Reisch

ROMANIAN DELEGATION TO WASHINGTON FOR IMF TALKS. An official
delegation including Minister of State Mircea Cosea, head of
the government's Council for Economic Coordination, Strategy
and Reform, Finance Minister Florin Georgescu, and National Bank
Governor Mugur Isarescu arrived in Washington on 7-November for
a new round of talks with the International Monetary Fund. In
interviews with Radio Bucharest on 4 and 6 November, Cosea admitted
that the Romanian cabinet and the IMF disagreed on how to make
the Romanian currency exchangeable on world markets. He said
this was the main point delaying negotiations for a new standby
credit for Romania and added that uncertainty about financial
assistance from the IMF was discouraging foreign investors in
Romania. Cosea said the IMF wants Romania to reach full currency
convertibility immediately, while the Romanian government was
favoring a more gradual approach, aiming to reach full convertibility
by April 1994. -Dan Ionescu

BULGARIA FIGHTS DRUG TRAFFICKING. After tightening border controls,
Bulgarian customs authorities have so far in 1993 seized a total
of 537 kilograms of narcotics, officials said on 5 November.
Western and Bulgarian agencies quoted Margarita Evtimova, head
of the National Custom's Service, as saying that 64 traffickers
have been arrested in 51 hauls involving 503.8-kilograms of heroin,
33.3 kilograms of hashish, and smaller amounts of opium and cocaine.
Evtimova pointed out that drug smuggling has in the past few
years tended to become more international. Although Turkish nationals
still top the list, citizens of other Balkan or East European
states have begun to figure more prominently. While admitting
that it is unclear how much narcotics are "slipping through the
net," Evtimova said German statistics show that Bulgarian authorities
are currently catching more smugglers than any other European
state. Bulgaria has in fact long been regarded as the main conduit
for drug trafficking to Western Europe. However, international
top drug intelligence officers told the Washington Post of 6
November that the combination of less strict border controls
in Eastern Europe and Balkan instability caused by the war in
ex-Yugoslavia have spawned an "epidemic of drug smuggling" to
the West through several new routes. -Kjell Engelbrekt

DISARMAMENT IN BELARUS. Following an official visit to Washington,
Belarusian Defense Minister Paval Kazlouski said Belarus is entitled
to half of a $400-million fund provided by the US to help the
former Soviet republics disarm, Reuters reported on 5 November.
Kazlouski justified claiming such a large share of the fund because
Belarus was the first republic to give up its share of the former
Soviet nuclear arsenal. So far Belarus has received $59 million
from the US to help cover the costs of removing 72 SS-25 missiles
from its territory. That same day Reuters reported that Japan
signed an agreement with Belarus to help the country dispose
of its nuclear weapons. Last April Japan pledged $100 million
to help the former Soviet republics dispose of their nuclear
arsenals. The first meeting of a joint Japanese-Belarusian committee
is due to be held in Minsk on 8-9 November to discuss this issue.
-Ustina Markus

MACEDONIA STOPS DEPORTING ALBANIANS TO RUMP YUGOSLAVIA. The Macedonian
authorities have responded to public protests by "temporarily"
stopping deporting ethnic Albanians returning from Sweden, Switzerland
and other West European countries to rump Yugoslavia, Borba reports
on 5 November. To date about 300 Albanians have been brought
from Skopje airport to the Serbian border in special busses and
handed over to the Serbian authorities. The deportations became
a public issue when the ethnic Albanian Party of Democratic Prosperity,
a member of the ruling coalition in the Macedonian government,
protested against the "inhuman" procedure. Most of those refugees
sent back were allegedly deserters from the Yugoslav army. Borba
also reports on Macedonian attempts to mediate between Belgrade
and "interested European countries" to facilitate the direct
return of refugees to rump Yugoslavia. -Fabian Schmidt

ALBANIAN DIPLOMAT POSTED TO MACEDONIA. Signaling Albania's willingness
to discuss differences, on 5 November Tirana appointed Shaban
Murati charge d'affaires, the highest position in its diplomatic
mission to the Republic of Macedonia, MILS and Rilindja report.
Murati is a former editor of foreign affairs for Zeri i Popullit
and a former spokesman for the Foreign Ministry. Both countries
are eager to establish regular diplomatic relations. -Duncan
Perry

RUSSIA SEES MOLDOVA AS OBJECT OF GREAT GAME. In its 30 October
issue, the pro-Yeltsin Izvestiya quotes a Russian Foreign Ministry
official who requested anonymity as questioning the Moldovan
leaders' unwillingness to join Romania and suggesting that those
leaders are controlled by unspecified outside forces. "Quite
serious forces are involved in the game around Moldova," the
Russian diplomat went on. "There are many more foreign agents
per square kilometer in Moldova than there are in any other area
of the former USSR." The newspaper also quoted unnamed Russian
military specialists as implying that their planning for the
area was premised on a possible Moldovan-Romanian joint attack
on the "Dniester republic." Whether genuinely held or offered
for public consumption, such views can only hinder the political
settlement of the Dniester conflict and presage continuing pressures
on Moldova. -Vladimir Socor

LATVIAN SAEIMA REJECTS BILLS ON FORMER CP MEMBERS. On 4 November
Latvian parliamentarians narrowly defeated two bills that would
have placed restrictions on former members of the Communist party,
especially on those who held leading offices. The bills were
supported by the Latvia's National Independence Movement and
For the Fatherland and Freedom factions. Justice Minister Egils
Levits said though he believes such laws are essential, he abstained
from voting since the bills under consideration need to be refined,
and the relevant issues need to be discussed thoroughly by the
public, Diena reported on 7-November. -Dzintra Bungs

WORLD BANK DEVELOPS FIVE CREDIT PROGRAMS FOR LATVIA. BNS reported
on 6-November that Basil Kowalski, director of WB Eastern Europe
and Central Asia department, told the press on 5 November in
Riga that five credit programs were developed for Latvia, focusing
on agriculture, energy, industry, and environment. World Bank
officials are also reported to have noted that the economic rehabilitation
process in Latvia is gaining momentum and recommended that Latvia
seek to raise the volume of investments in both the state and
private sector. In a related development, the Latvian parliament
ratified on 4-November a treaty with Taiwan on the mutual security
of investments. -Dzintra Bungs

[As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Ann Sheehy and Sharon Fisher





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