|A man seldom thinks with more earnestness of anything than he does of his dinner. - Samuel Johnson|
No. 247, 28 December 1993
RUSSIA SCIENTIST TO STAND TRIAL. The Baltimore Sun reported on 28 December that Russian scientist Vil Mirzayanov will stand trial beginning on 6 January on charges of divulging state secrets. Mirzayanov was charged in October 1992 after he told Moscow News and The Baltimore Sun of evidence of continuing Russian chemical weapons research and production. Mirzayanov's arrest was protested by Western human rights and scientists' groups but Russian authorities were apparently not swayed by their appeals. One of the witnesses to be called in the trial is Baltimore Sun reporter Will Englund, who featured Mirzayanov's revelations, and later tribulations, in a series of articles. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. GOLUSHKO CRITICIZES MINISTRY OF SECURITY'S DISSOLUTION. The head of the dissolved Ministry of Security, Nikolai Golushko said that he and his people are concerned about the abolishment of the Ministry of Security, Russian Television reported on 27 December. Speaking at a press-conference in Moscow, Golushko said that such a move was "abrupt" in light of the October events. Golushko added, however, that he is not criticizing Boris Yeltsin's decision and will obey it. He revealed that at least 30% of the Security Ministry's officers will lose their jobs when the Ministry is transformed into the Federal Counterintelligence Service. Many officers have already begun to retire. Golushko expressed his opinion that the dissolution of his agency might have negative consequences for Russian security. "If you want less efficient work, start reorganizing," he said. Golushko also expressed hope that the Border Troops will stay within the new counterintelligence service and denied any connection between the Ministry of Security and the leader of ultra-chauvinist Liberal Democratic party, Vladimir Zhirinovsky. Victor Yasmann, RFE/RL, Inc. ZHIRINOVSKY COMMENTS ON BULGARIA CONDEMNED. A Russian Foreign Ministry official said on 27 December that LDP leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky's recent comments on the leadership of Bulgaria were "malapropos" and "border on interference into Bulgaria's domestic affairs," Interfax reported. While on a visit to Bulgaria on 25 December, Zhirinovsky said that his economic advisor, Svetoslav Stoilov, should become president of Bulgaria. According to BTA on 26 December, Stoilov was born in Bulgaria and currently lives in Vienna. Zhirinovsky also said that "Bulgaria and Russia are closely linked," adding, "Bulgaria and Russia together can help settle the crisis in the Balkans." Suzanne Crow, RFE/RL, Inc. RADIOACTIVE WASTE DUMPING NECESSARY? THE RUSSIAN MINISTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT, VIKTOR DANILOV-DANILYAN WARNED ON 27 DECEMBER THAT URGENT AID WOULD BE NEEDED IF RUSSIA IS TO AVOID DUMPING RADIOACTIVE WASTE IN THE SEA OF JAPAN. According to ITAR-TASS and AFP, he suggested that if the Japanese government wanted to prevent the dumping it would have to build a reprocessing plant in Russia for the waste, at a cost estimated at some 8 million dollars. On the same day, Interfax reported that a Russian defense ministry expert warned that the two tankers now holding the waste are in poor condition, and that the Japanese offer to provide an additional tanker would only delay the need for dumping. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. YEAR-END BUDGET REVISED. The Russian government has issued a resolution approving adjustments to expenditures and revenues of the 1993 federal budget, according to Interfax and ITAR-TASS reports of 27 December. The resolution follows a presidential decree on the 1993 budget raising the fourth quarter federal government spending target to 22.25 trillion rubles, a jump of about 1.3 trillion rubles from Finance Ministry projections announced at the end of October. The new higher expenditures are to be offset by, in part, with gold sales and increased consumption taxes so that the resulting deficit would remain at the previously planned level. Erik Whitlock, RFE/RL, Inc. ARMS PLANTS SHOULD HAVE EXPORT RIGHTS. A special government committee, headed by Viktor Glukikh, will recommend to the government that arms plants be given the right to directly export arms as a means of reinvigorating arms sales. Under the terms of the recommended government resolution only approved plants and enterprises would be given export rights. A licensing and control system would also be established to prevent the export of certain highly sensitive weapons and technologies. Glukikh claimed that such a scheme would not necessarily conflict with other recent moves taken to centralize the control of arms exports, but did note that there may be opposition to plans to decentralize the process. The committee's recommendations were reported by ITAR-TASS on 27 December. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. NEW DECREES ON BANKRUPTCY, GRAIN MARKET. President Yeltsin signed a decree on 22 December ordering the Federal Administration for Insolvency Affairs to initiate the process of identifying, registering and privatizing bankrupt firms, various Russian and Western news agencies reported. This appears to be the first practical effort on the part of the government to actively seek out insolvent firms for bankruptcy proceedings. On 25 December Yeltsin signed a decree invalidating regional authorities' attempts to restrict trade in grain and providing for punitive actions that may be undertaken by the federal government in response to such attempts. The decree also calls for the privatization of enterprises which buy, process, or store grain by April of 1994 while allowing the state to retain a controlling share for a three year period. Erik Whitlock, RFE/RL, Inc. YELTSIN SIGNS DECREE ON REHABILITATION OF KALMYKS. On 25 December Yeltsin signed a decree "On measures for the rehabilitation of the Kalmyk people and state support of its revival and development," ITAR-TASS reported on 27 December. The decree stipulates that a federal program of social and economic development of the Kalmyk republic and of the national-cultural rebirth of the Kalmyk people must be drawn up and the sources of its financing determined by 1 June 1994. The president of Kalmykia, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, has decreed that 28 December, the fiftieth anniversary of the wholesale deportation of the Kalmyks to Siberia, be a non-working day, ITAR-TASS reported on 26 December. Of the 120,000 deported, only 65,000 returned. A two-day conference devoted to the repressed peoples and attended by about 150 scholars and public figures was held in Elista, the Kalmyk capital, on 26-27 December. The issue of the deported peoples remains a live one, with the peoples concerned still insisting that not enough had been done to compensate them for their losses. Ann Sheehy TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA RUSSIAN-GEORGIAN PROTOCOL SIGNED. Georgian Foreign Minister Aleksandre Chikvaidze and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Anatolii Adamishin signed a protocol in Tbilisi on 27 December on increased cooperation between the two ministries, which Russian Ambassador Vladimir Zemsky described as "a very important document which provides a legal foundation for cooperation between our two countries", Interfax reported. Adamishin then held a private meeting with Georgian parliament chairman Eduard Shevardnadze. Topics of discussion during Adamishin's visit included the Abkhaz and South Ossetian conflicts and the possibility of a visit to Georgia by Russian President Boris Yeltsin for the signing of a major Russian-Georgian treaty. Liz Fuller, RFE/RL, Inc. NEW PRIME MINISTER IN TAJIKISTAN. Tajikistan's Supreme Soviet confirmed the appointment of economist Abduzhalil Samadov to the post of prime minister on 27 December, Russian news agencies reported. Samadov's predecessor Abdumalik Abdullodzhanov was fired on 18 December, apparently because he had been unable to reverse the decline of Tajikistan's economy, and was appointed ambassador to Russia. Samadov, like his relative Abdullodzhanov, is a native of Leninabad Oblast which has traditionally provided most of Tajikistan's leadership. Some observers saw the appointment as countering growing tensions between natives of Kulyab Oblast, who now dominate the leadership, and those from Leninabad who feel they are being squeezed out of power. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc. NIYAZOV ON CIS SUMMIT. Turkmenistan's President Saparmurad Niyazov, host of the recent summit of CIS heads of state, told his Cabinet of Ministers on 27 December that from Turkmenistan's point of view the bilateral economic agreements signed at the summit were a great success, ITAR-TASS reported. He cited specifically agreements with Russia, Georgia, and Ukraine on the delivery of, and payment for, Turkmenistan's gas. Negotiations are still underway with Armenia. Turkmenistan has had numerous disputes with CIS neighbors over payment for its gas, and on several occasions Turkmenistan has shut off the gas supply to back up its demands. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc. AGREEMENT ON RUSSIAN TROOPS IN TURKMENISTAN. While in Turkmenistan for the CIS summit, President Boris Yeltsin signed an agreement with the Turkmen government formalizing the status of Russian troops in that state. Turkmenistan "nationalized" units of the old Soviet military in 1991, but some of the forces have been under joint Turkmen-Russian control and while conscripts have been drawn from Turkmenistan, most of the officer corps is of Russian origin. According to an Interfax report of 27 December, the 2,000 Russian officers stationed there will assist Turkmenistan in building its own military starting on 1 January 1994, and Turkmenistan will also provide full funding for the Russian officers starting on the same date. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. CIS RUSSIA-KAZAKHSTAN AGREEMENT ON BAIKONUR. Krasnaya zvezda and Interfax on 27 December reported details of the memorandum of understanding signed by Viktor Chernomyrdin and Kazakhstani Prime Minister Sergei Tereschchenko on 25 December. Apparently the agreement covers not only the Baikonur launch facility but also other military test ranges, presumably including the Semipalatinsk nuclear testing range and the Sary Shagan air defense missile test site. These facilities will be leased by Russia, apparently for a period of up to 99 years. The status of the Russian forces based at these sites is to be determined by a separate agreement. The talks also touched on the issue of implementation of the START-1 and nuclear non-proliferation treaties, with Russia offering an (unspecified) security guarantee and calling for bilateral negotiations on the withdrawal of, and compensation for, nuclear warheads from Kazakhstan. The memorandum of understanding clearly represents a significant step forward in resolving these issues, but it also seems that a number of important details, such as payment and status of forces, must be resolved before a comprehensive agreement is reached. In the past, such details have often significantly delayed or prevented similar intra-CIS agreements. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. SEMIPALATINSK CHIEF DISMISSED. AFP reported on 27 December , citing ITAR-TASS, that the head of the nuclear weapons testing range at Semipalatinsk has been dismissed because of allegations that he had sold equipment from some of the laboratories and plants at the site. Kazakhstani authorities are reportedly conducting an investigation into the allegations. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE SLOVAKIA STOPPING RFE MEDIUM-WAVE BROADCASTS. The Slovak Ministry of Transportation and Communications has informed Radio Free Europe that RFE's rights to broadcast on medium-wave transmitters leased from the state will end as of 31 January 1994. RFE and Czech and Slovak authorities signed contracts in 1990 allowing broadcasts on a medium-wave frequency shared with the Czech Republic until 1996. In explaining the decision, ministry officials argued that RFE broadcasts over Slovak transmitters are no longer needed because "Slovakia now enjoys a pluralistic, democratic system and free public and private media." Before 1990 RFE broadcasts to Slovakia were via short wave. Reacting to the Slovak government's decision, Peter Weiss, chairman of the main opposition Democratic Left Party, told the media on 27 December that "the decision will neither contribute toward pluralism of media in Slovakia nor help improve relations between the US and Slovakia." Reactions by other opposition parties were equally harsh. The Christian Democratic Movement said in an official statement that the move is another evidence of "the current government's fear of freedom of expression." The Alliance of Free Democrats said that the decision will "further damage the reputation of Slovakia abroad." Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. DIPLOMATIC RECOGNITION FOR MACEDONIA. According to AFP, France officially established diplomatic relations with Macedonia on 27 December by dispatching an envoy to Skopje, the capital city. Reuters reports that France is the fifth country to open an embassy in Macedonia, following the lead of Slovenia, Turkey, Bulgaria and Britain, the last of which was the first member of the European Union to set up a mission in Skopje. All other EU countries, save for Greece, say they will soon establish formal diplomatic relations. Meanwhile in Thessaloniki, the Makedonia Press agency reported that Greek lorry drivers have begun barring petrol-tankers from Macedonia from entering Greece to load fuel at state owned refineries. Stan Markotich and Kjell Engelbrekt, RFE/RL, Inc. NO END TO BOSNIAN CONFLICT. There is seemingly no end in sight to the hostilities raging in Bosnia. According to Reuters, Serb artillery battered the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo on 27 December. Meanwhile, Croatian and Serbian radio reports provided details of fighting throughout Bosnia-Hercegovina well into the early morning hours of 28 December. The UN has announced plans to evacuate 1,000 people from Sarajevo to the Croatian port of Split on 28 December. On 27 December Reuters reported that British Foreign Secretary Douglas Hurd, in a conversation with the BBC, expressed his concern over the situation in Bosnia. Hurd noted that the warring factions in Bosnia could not count on the indefinite presence of 2,000 British peacekeeping forces which, he said, would remain as long as they could protect civilians and escort aid convoys. Government officials throughout the former Yugoslavia have observed that tensions and hostilities in the region are not likely to die down. Most recently in a statement published in Borba on 28 December, Macedonia's Defense Minister, Vlado Popovski, warned that regional tensions could escalate, and, should the situation in the Serbian province of Kosovo boil over, Macedonia could be drawn into a conflict. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. TUDJMAN'S BOSNIA POLICY QUESTIONED. On 28 December Reuters reported that opposition to Croatian President Franjo Tudjman's Bosnia policy is mounting, also in the country's media. At present, Zagreb supports the strategy of arming Croat fighters in Bosnia who are competing with Muslim-led forces for control over territory. Tudjman officially supports the idea of partitioning Bosnia into three independent republics--one controlled by the Bosnian Croats, one by the Serbs, and one by Bosnian Muslims. Yet this policy is regarded by Tudjman's critics as a stepping stone to the eventual incorporation of theoretically independent Bosnian Croatian lands into a Greater Croatia and as a precedent which may result in the eventual partition of Croatia itself. Rebel Serbs control about one-third of Croatia in the Krajina region, and there are fears they might join with rump Yugoslavia in a Greater Serbia if the partition principle is endorsed. Reuters, citing Vjesnik, observes that some of Tudjman's opponents have asked "Was there anything else we could have done (with respect to Bosnia)?" Reuters observes that current opposition is not great enough to either force a change in the government's Bosnia policy or to threaten Tudjman's hold on power. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. POLISH GOVERNMENT ADOPTS PRIVATIZATION GUIDELINES . . . Meeting on 27 December, the cabinet approved general privatization guidelines to accompany the draft budget for 1994. The government expects revenues of 12.3 trillion zloty ($590 million) from privatization in the coming year, PAP reports. Privatization is to proceed at least as rapidly as it has done up to this point. Projects begun by past governments, including mass privatization, restructuring through debt relief, and the pact on state firms, are to continue. National investment funds will be established in the first quarter of 1994, with the distribution of shares to the public scheduled for the fall. The government also plans to oversee the passage of "reprivatization" legislation; this will emphasize compensation in the form of coupons valid for the purchase of state assets rather than cash payments or the restoration of confiscated property. Further firms are to be sold through "capital" privatization, with the number of companies with shares quoted on the stock market rising to forty by year's end. The government also indicated that it intends to place greater emphasis than in the past on the participation of work forces in privatization, in part by easing the terms for leasing firms. In a related development, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) pledged to provide $850 million to fund Polish privatization and restructuring in 1994. This announcement was made by former Prime Minister Jan Krzysztof Bielecki, Poland's EBRD representative, on 27 December. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. . . . TAKES HARD LINE ON MINERS' STRIKE. Warning that the government intends only to "help those that help themselves," Polish Industry Minister Marek Pol on 27 December dispelled the impression that the new government will rush to provide subsidies to troubled state industries. Pol's statement was directed at miners at Boguszow, Poland's only barite mine, who on 8 December restarted an occupation strike suspended in October. Sixty-two miners went underground on 24 December, after industry ministry representatives failed to meet the strikers' demands for wages equal to the national average and a "clear vision of the future." The strikers have now threatened to begin a hunger strike. Pol told a press conference on 27 December that the Boguszow mine has debts of 110 billion zloty ($5.2 million) but a market value of only 6 billion zloty ($286,000). Unable to compete with cheaper imported barite, the mine initiated bankruptcy proceedings in August 1992 to fend off its creditors, and the government began seeking a buyer. Pol cautioned that "the chronic strike atmosphere...is scaring off potential investors" and warned the miners that their choice is "cooperation or liquidation," Polish TV reports. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. CZECH INTERIOR MINISTER CONSIDERS OPENING SECRET POLICE FILES. Czech Interior Minister Jan Ruml is contemplating opening the secret files of the former State Security Police, the Czech daily Mlada Fronta dnes reports on 27 December. Ruml said in an interview with the paper that draft legislation on access to the files had been ready since 1992. The issue of the files has been highly controversial; some politicians, including President Vaclav Havel, were opposed to their publication, arguing that such a move would create human tragedies. Others demanded the publication, claiming that this was a precondition for a truthful assessment of the country's communist past. Already in 1990, a small publishing house published a list of 140,000 alleged State Security collaborators. The Interior Ministry refused to confirm the accuracy of the list or comment on the legality of its distribution, however. Jan Obrman, RFE/RL, Inc. KLAUS JEERED IN OSTRAVA. Czech Prime Minister Vaclav Klaus was jeered and whistled off stage during a sporting event in the north Moravian town of Ostrava, CTK reports on 27 December. Klaus was to open the Junior Ice Hockey World Championship when loud whistling, booing and shouts of "get out" from over 8,000 spectators greeted him as he took the microphone; he was thus prevented from speaking to the crowd. Unlike most parts of the Czech Republic, northern Moravia has been hit by relatively high unemployment. Moreover, many Moravians and Silesians see Klaus as a main foe of administrative reform that would grant the region more autonomy. Jan Obrman, RFE/RL, Inc. US FIRM BUYS PART OF HUNGARIAN RADIO. Hungarian radio reported on 27 December that Metro Media International purchased 25% of Juventus Radio for over 40 million forint, or $400,000. Juventus Radio received its license before the 1990 frequency moratorium. The majority Hungarian owner said that the new funds will be spent to enhance the technical capabilities of the radio. Karoly Okolicsanyi, RFE/RL, Inc. HUNGARIAN UNEMPLOYMENT DOWN. The number of registered unemployed fell to 635,000 in November, 70,000 less than the peak figure in February 1993, MTI reports. November's unemployment rate of 12.2% was 0.4% lower than in October. Only 330,000 people received unemployment benefits, however. The rest were either ineligible for compensation or their period of entitlement had expired. 130,000 people received financial support from local government authorities. Karoly Okolicsanyi, RFE/RL, Inc. ILIESCU OPENS TALKS WITH PARTY LEADERS. Romanian president Ion Iliescu began consultations on 27 December with the parties represented in parliament on possibilities of setting up a coalition government, Radio Bucharest reports. He received leaders of the ruling Party of Social Democracy in Romania, of the Democratic Party-National Salvation Front, and of the Democratic Agrarian Party. Consultations will other political formations will be held later in the week. Corneliu Coposu, leader of the National Peasant Party Christian Democratic said at a press conference carried by Radio Bucharest that his party will not enter negotiations without the Democratic Convention of Romania, the main opposition alliance. Michael Shafir, RFE/RL, Inc. ROMANIAN CULTURAL PERSONALITIES LOBBY FOR EX-KING. More than 100 Romanian cultural personalities launched a campaign to persuade the authorities to restore citizenship to former king Michael, Reuters reports from Bucharest. In a letter issued on 27 December, they urged opposition leader Corneliu Coposu to press the government to cancel the 1948 decree under which the former monarch's citizenship and nationality were withdrawn, pointing out that under Romania's constitution, no one born Romanian can lose his or her citizenship. Michael Shafir, RFE/RL, Inc. MORE BULGARIAN REACTIONS TO ZHIRINOVSKY STATEMENTS. Bulgarian media and politicians on 27 December continued to comment on the critical remarks made voiced by Russian nationalist leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky about President Zhelyu Zhelev. The Bulgarian Foreign Ministry said that "such statements about the policy and political system of the Republic of Bulgaria are impermissible...and hark back to the practices of the [Soviet] past." Zhelev himself said it was now too late to turn Bulgarian into the sixteenth Soviet republic, a reference to allegations that the country's communist leader Todor Zhivkov had been prepared to surrender national sovereignty to Moscow. The Bulgarian media were equally critical of Zhirinovsky's proposal to end confrontation in former Yugoslavia by rebuilding a loose Balkan federation and demilitarizing the region, and giving Bulgaria control over the Republic of Macedonia. The Union of Democratic Forces issued a statement saying his plan was "either an attempt at cheap propaganda, or a deliberate attempt to increase tension in the region and broaden the conflict." A BTA reporter in the city of Sandanski, where Zhirinovsky is staying, said she had been told the Russian visitor would no longer receive Bulgarian journalists because of the bad press they had given him. Kjell Engelbrekt, RFE/RL, Inc. BULGARIA, ROMANIA SIGN ENVIRONMENTAL AGREEMENT. On 27 December the Bulgarian and Romanian ministers of environment, Valentin Bosevski and Aurel Ilie, signed a joint memorandum declaring their countries' intention to expand cooperation in the field of ecology. The document, which was addressed to the Commission of the European Union, envisages improving the quality of the water in the Danube river, boosting nuclear safety--primarily in Bulgaria's Kozloduy power plant--and reducing air pollution in the border area. The two governments are seeking financial assistance from the EU to realize the plans. Kjell Engelbrekt, RFE/RL, Inc. ESTONIA ACCEPTS RUSSIAN WITHDRAWAL DEADLINE. On 27 December Estonian Foreign Minister Trivimi Velliste said that Estonia would accept the Russian proposal to withdraw its troops by 31 August 1994 if most of the remaining 2,400 servicemen, especially 1,000 assault troops, were withdrawn early next year, AP reports. Velliste said that Russia would have to present specific pullout timetables for its various military units. While demanding that the naval base at Paldiski be turned over to Estonia, he admitted that it would be "technically impossible" to dismantle the two nuclear reactors at the base by this deadline. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc. LATVIAN RESPONSE TO RUSSIAN CHARGES. Aleksandrs Kirsteins, the chairman of the Saeima Commission for Foreign Affairs, expressed fears that recent statements by the Russian Foreign Ministry are aimed at preparing world opinion for delays in Russian troop withdrawal from the Baltic States, Baltfax reported on 27 December. Kirsteins deplored Russia's proposal to withdraw the troops by 31 August 1994 only on condition that Latvia accepts Russian maintenance of its radar station at Skrunda for six more years. Kirsteins also dismissed Russian charges that the draft law on local elections discriminates against non-Latvians insofar as it requires them to know the Latvian language, and noted that the law is Latvia's internal affair. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc. RUSSIA WATCHES TRIAL IN LITHUANIA. Grigory Karasin, director of the Russian Foreign Ministry's Information and Press Department, declared that the ministry would closely monitor the Vilnius trial of Russian citizens, accused of participating in the bloody attack on the Vilnius television tower in January 1991, in order to ascertain that their rights are respected, BNS reported on 27 December. A representative of Russia's Prosecutor General has visited Lithuania at the request of the defendants to get acquainted with the documentation in the case. Representatives of the Russian embassy in Vilnius are attending the trial. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc. MINSK CATHEDRAL RESTORED TO BELIEVERS. PAP reported from Minsk on 27 December that the city's cathedral has been restored to Belarus' Roman Catholic community by a decision of the Belarusian government, after a long tug-of-war with local sports officials who have been using the building since it was rebuilt after partial destruction during World War II. In 1991 one of the rooms was made available to the RC church, but Minsk city authorities later closed the building saying it was unsafe. Since then, the Catholics have congregated for Sunday Mass in the open air on one of the city's central squares. Parliamentary Chairman Stanislau Shushkevich publicly supported the RC church in its struggle to recover the cathedral to which it has ownership rights. It has been speculated that the decision to move the Catholics off the streets may have been connected with US President Bill Clinton's forthcoming visit in Minsk. Anna Sabbat-Swidlicka, RFE/RL, Inc. MOLDOVAN SPEAKER SAYS DNIESTER LEADERS NOT INTERESTED IN REGULATING CONFLICT. In an interview with ITAR-TASS on 27 December, the speaker of the Moldovan parliament, Petru Lucinschi, accused the leaders of the self-styled Dniester republic of not being interested in solving the Dniester problem. As evidence he cited the fact that the Dniester delegation at the recent talks mediated by Yeltsin's special representative, Nikolai Medvedev, was headed by Vasilii Yakovlev and Anna Volkova who, on the admission of the Tiraspol leaders themselves, had caused the collapse of earlier talks by their intransigence. Lucinschi said he hoped Russia, Ukraine, and other countries would help Moldova solve the problem on the basis of the recommendations of the CSCE mission In Moldova which would allow the left bank areas to decide their own fate should Moldova unite with Romania. Talking to Moldovan entrepreneurs, Moldovan President Mircea Snegur, said it was impossible to carry out reforms as long as the Dniester problem was not solved since 37 percent of Moldova's industrial potential is on the left bank, ITAR-TASS reported on 27 December. Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc. CORRECTION: IN THE DAILY REPORT FOR 27 DECEMBER (NUMBER 246), IN THE ITEM "FORMER RUSSIAN FINANCE MINISTER ELECTED CHUVASH PRESIDENT" NIKOLAI FEDOROV WAS MISTAKENLY IDENTIFIED AS THE FORMER RUSSIAN FINANCE MINISTER., whereas he is the former Russian Minister of Justice. [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Anna Swidlicka & John Lepingwell 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. : 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.ORGcopyright 1993, RFE/RL, Inc. All rights reserved. RFE/RL Daily Report
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