|If a man be gracious and courteous to strangers, it shows he is a citizen of the world, and that his heart is no island cut off from other lands, but a continent that joins to them. - Francis Bacon|
No. 17, 26 January 1994
RUSSIA FEDOROV RESIGNS. President Boris Yeltsin has accepted the resignation of reformist Finance Minister Boris Fedorov, Ostankino TV reported on 26 January. Fedorov's conditions for remaining in the cabinet were rejected by Yeltsin. Fedorov had asked to keep the status of deputy prime minister and demanded the resignation of Central Bank chief Viktor Gerashchenko and the conservative Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Zaveryukha. The Financial Times reported on 26 January that Fedorov also expressed the wish to replace Gerashchenko as head of the Central Bank--a step for which he would have needed the approval of the State Duma. The future of Fedorov is not clear now. ITAR-TASS on 25 January quoted Kremlin insider sources as saying that Yeltsin may offer Fedorov a job as his main economic advisor. Alexander Rahr, RFE/RL, Inc. ZORKIN REINSTATED TO CONSTITUTIONAL COURT. The judges of the Constitutional Court voted by seven to three in a secret ballot to reinstate their former chairman, Valerii Zorkin, as a court justice, Interfax and ITAR-TASS reported on 25 January. Zorkin had been forced to resign as court chairman after the violent dissolution of the Russian parliament in early October, which he had strongly opposed. In December, he was suspended as a court justice together with another member of the court, Viktor Luchin, for "political activities" incompatible with their status. Luchin was reinstated on 14 January after a brief hunger strike. Zorkin praised the decision to reinstate him, but denied that he wanted to regain the post of court chairman now held by Nikolai Vitruk. Wendy Slater, RFE/RL, Inc. PRAVDA SUSPENDS PUBLICATION. The communist newspaper Pravda suspended publication on 25 January because of a dispute with its Greek business partner. Chief editor Viktor Linnik was quoted by AP as saying the newspaper will not be published for about a week and would, meanwhile, seek new partners in Russia. Linnik told the news agency that Greek businessman Yannis Yannikos who started to financially support Pravda in 1992, was demanding full control over personnel matters and editorial policy of the newspaper. This was unacceptable to the newspaper's editorial board, Linnik said. Vera Tolz, RFE/RL, Inc. MARSHAL OGARKOV IS DEAD. Nikolai Ogarkov, one of the most influential military figures in the Soviet Union during the last two decades of its existence, died on 23 January after a long illness, Krasnaya zvezda reported. He was 76 years old. Ogarkov, perhaps best known in the West for his defense of the shooting down of a South Korean airliner by the USSR in 1983, served as USSR First Deputy Defense Minister and Chief of the General Staff from 1977 to 1984. A controversial figure throughout his career, he was influential in the formation of Soviet strategic arms control policy during the Brezhnev years and, more generally, for challenging much conventional thinking within the Soviet military community on the relationship between technology and military power. Described by many in the West as one of the Soviet Union's finest military intellectuals, he is believed to be the first technical services officer (rather than line officer) to rise to a leadership role in the General Staff. In his last years he emerged as an opponent to many of the liberalizing trends of the Gorbachev and Yeltsin periods. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. YELTSIN, KOHL TO MARK FINAL DEPARTURE OF RUSSIAN TROOPS. The Commander-in-Chief of Russian forces in Germany, General Matvei Burlakov, told reporters on 25 January that German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and Russian President Yeltsin would attend a ceremonial farewell in August to mark the final departure of Russian troops from Germany, Reuters reported. He provided no details of the planned ceremony. Burlakov also said that the withdrawal of Russian forces continues on schedule, but criticized the slow pace of housing construction--financed by Germany--for officers returning to Russia. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. JAPANESE-RUSSIAN RELATIONS AN UPDATE. The Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Navy, Admiral Feliks Gromov, told Interfax on 21 January that the dumping of liquid radioactive wastes by Russia into the Sea of Japan--operations that are strongly opposed by Tokyo--would be halted for at least a month or two. Gromov, who was visiting Vladivostok, also said that Russia should keep the disputed Kuril Islands. Meanwhile, on 22 January the Russian Foreign Ministry issued an official protest against what it called the "mass violation" of its territorial waters by Japanese fishing boats. According to Reuters, quoting ITAR-TASS, Moscow claimed that more than fifty Japanese boats had entered Russian waters near the Kuril Islands on 21 January. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. RUSSIA DENIES DEBT FOR ARMS DEAL. In remarks made to ITAR-TASS, Russian Foreign Ministry department chief Nikolai Solovev on 22 January denied South Korean reports alleging that Russia had offered to pay its debts to South Korea by providing it with arms or launching joint ventures for the production of modern weapons. However, Solovev confirmed that then Russian Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Shokhin had presented a package of proposals on military and technical cooperation to South Korean authorities during a visit to Seoul in August of 1993. South Korea, which buys most of its military hardware from the US, has reportedly not yet replied officially to the Russian proposal. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. BUDGET PROJECTION FOR FIRST QUARTER. Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin told a gathering of regional leaders in Orel on 25 January that budget expenditures during the first quarter of 1994 would be kept at the level of the last quarter of 1993, Interfax reported. He announced the allocation of 4 trillion rubles "to pay off the state debt" to "the most important sectors," including 2.7 trillion rubles to the agro-industrial complex. The 4-trillion-ruble figure apparently relates to the budget deficit--variously reported as 6 trillion and 7.5 trillion rubles--carried over from 1993 in order to make a show of meeting IMF guidelines. Meanwhile, according to Interfax of 25 January, the deputy prime minister in charge of agriculture, Aleksandr Zaveryukha, continues to demand the allocation of no less than 40 trillion rubles in 1994 to bail out his troubled sector. Keith Bush, RFE/RL, Inc. RCB OFFICIALS ON 1993 DEFICIT, EXCHANGE RATE. In a speech in Orel on 25 January chairman of the Russian Central Bank Viktor Gerashchenko said that the year-end (presumably federal) deficit was 17 trillion rubles, or 10.5% of GDP, according to Interfax and Ekho Moskvy. In what may have been a reference to the several trillion rubles reportedly sequestered by the Ministry of Finance over 1993, Gerashchenko claimed that the lower inflation rates witnessed at the end of the year were achieved "by the underfinancing of the economy." Deputy Chairman of the RCB Dmitri Tulin last week said that in the first three weeks of January the bank had spent $1 billion of its reserves to support the ruble. This compares to the $4 billion use for such purposes over all of last year, according to Russian economist and Duma member Vasilii Selyunin quoted by Ekho Moskvy on 25 January. Having jumped to over 1600 rubles to the dollar on 19 January on the Moscow Interbank Currency Exchange, the exchange rate has settle down to 1540-1550 rubles to the dollar in the first half of this week. Erik Whitlock, RFE/RL, Inc. PAY RAISE FOR GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS. A presidential decree has raised the salaries of government officials by 90% retroactively from 1 January, ITAR-TASS reported on 25 January. No estimate of the total cost of the increase was provided. The last pay raise for government officials was decreed on 6 December: this nearly doubled the minimum monthly salary from 7,740 to 14,620 rubles. Keith Bush, RFE/RL, Inc. YELTSIN MEETS TATARSTAN AND MARII-EL PRESIDENTS. Yeltsin met separately with the presidents of Tatarstan and Marii-El on 21 January, ITAR-TASS and Interfax reported. The chief topic of his talks with Tatarstan president Mintimer Shaimiev was the need to speed up work on the crucial treaty delimiting powers between Russia and Tatarstan, on which work is to be resumed shortly. Tatarstan Prime Minister Mukhammat Sabirov said in Kazan on 22 January that there was a good chance that Russia and Tatarstan would sign an agreement soon on relations between their budgets and banking and external economic activity, ITAR-TASS reported. He added that in two years of negotiations seven intergovernmental agreements had been signed; five more were in preparation. Yeltsin's talks with Marii-El President Vladislav Zotin centered on the political situation in the republic after the adoption of the new constitution and the development of "vertical" executive power. Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc. SAKHA PRESIDENT CRITICIZES RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT. Sakha (Yakutia) President Mikhail Nikolaev has called the Russian government's lack of "a precise concept" one of the major negative factors in its activity. In an interview with Interfax on 21 January, Nikolaev said that the tough approach to fighting inflation practiced by Gaidar and former Finance Minister Boris Fedorov had been completely misguided. He then went on to complain that there was virtually no mechanism for implementing decrees on the regions, citing in particular Yeltsin's year-old decree on implementing the Federal Treaty with respect to Yakutia. He said that the Council of Ministers had neglected the regions because of its preoccupation with other matters. Ruslan Abdulatipov, chairman of the Council of Nationalities of the former Supreme Soviet, said in an interview with Interfax the same day that the monetarist policy pursued by Gaidar and Fedorov had threatened Russia's integrity. Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc. TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA NAZARBAEV ON ECONOMY. Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbaev told a meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers on 25 January that 1994 should be the last year of economic decline in Kazakhstan, ITAR-TASS reported. Despite Nazarbaev's radical economic reform program to introduce a market economy as rapidly as possible, Kazakhstan has experienced continuous decline in output in all sectors since independence. Nazarbaev argued, however, that firms that have been privatized are improving their production figures, using this as an argument for speedier privatization. The report noted that freeing of prices, in the absence of strict budget and credit policies, has merely led to inflation. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc. CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE UPDATE ON BOSNIA, CROATIA. On 25 January Bosnian Croat troops claimed to have captured the Muslim village of Here, in central Bosnia. HINA reports that all civilians were allowed to evacuate the village, while Muslim sources contend that some 25 civilians had been massacred. Although no independent confirmation of the alleged massacre has yet been made Ejup Ganic, Bosnian Vice President, sent a protest to Croatian President Franjo Tudjman concerning the alleged killings. In Strasbourg, French Foreign Minister, Alain Juppe, called for international diplomatic action to develop a new initiative to end the crisis in Bosnia-Herzegovina through negotiation and noted that the US and Russia must aid Europe in pressing for a settlement. Vitalii Churkin, Russia's foreign minister, also called for action to force the sides to negotiate in earnest. Meantime, Thorvald Stoltenberg, UN mediator at the Bosnian peace talks, told the Council of Europe that more peacekeeping troops must be committed to Bosnia if a settlement is sought. Elsewhere, Reuters and AFP report that in Krajina, Milan Martic, a supporter of Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic, was declared the winner with 51% of the vote in a runoff election against Milan Babic who garnered 49%, for president of this Serb held region of Croatia. Duncan Perry, RFE/RL, Inc. POLISH STOCK BOOM CONTINUES. The newly-privatized Bank of Silesia made a record debut on the Warsaw stock market on 25 January, with share prices soaring to 6,750,000 zloty from the initial purchase price of 500,000 zloty in the first day of trading. Demand was overwhelming when shares went on sale in December; 800,000 people submitted orders for a total of 16 million shares, but most buyers received only three because of the limited number of shares available to small investors. The record jump in value and the profits allegedly made by bank managers and employees who obtained shares on preferential terms prompted the Sejm's privatization commission to demand an official inquiry. On 24 January, shares in the Rafako boiler company sold out in a single day of public offerings, despite the government's last-minute decision to raise the share price from 700,000 zloty to 1,200,000. In some cases, would-be buyers waiting in "social lines" formed as early as November 1993 were elbowed out of the way by hired thugs, leading officials to pledge to find a fairer means of selling shares. Finance Minister Marek Borowski indicated on 24 January that the government intends to impose a "transaction fee" of less than 1% on stock market transactions. Meanwhile, the International Finance Corporation (the World Bank's private sector affiliate) reported on 25 January that the Warsaw exchange was "far and away the best performing" stock market in the world in 1993, with average gains in dollar values of 787%. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. SLOVAK PRESIDENT IN WARSAW. Opening a three-day official visit to Warsaw on 25 January, Slovak President Michal Kovac said that good relations with Poland are one of the basic principles of Slovak foreign policy. He also endorsed regional cooperation. "The Visegrad group is the best instrument to achieve NATO membership for Poland and Slovakia," Kovac said. Kovac thanked President Lech Walesa for his determined stance on the Partnership for Peace plan; Walesa awarded Kovac a Polish medal of honor. Bilateral accords on cross-border cooperation and environmental protection were not signed as scheduled, however, because of "technical problems" apparently arising on the Slovak side. Kovac also met with Prime Minister Waldemar Pawlak and Cardinal Jozef Glemp. The Slovak president is scheduled to meet on 26 January with parliamentary, business, and banking officials, PAP reports. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. MYSTERIOUS "PANIC LETTER" TO MECIAR CAUSES STIR. On 25 January both former Yugoslav Premier Milan Panic and Slovak Premier Vladimir Meciar described as fake a letter that was purportedly sent by Panic to Meciar. TASR reports that the letter, which was first sent to the office of Slovak President Michal Kovac, contains Panic's response to an alleged Slovak offer to sell arms in violation of the UN embargo on weapon supplies to states of the former Yugoslavia. The purported "Panic letter" thanks Meciar for an alleged offer to sell arms and ammunition to the rump Yugoslavia but says Russia has made a better one. On 25 January the Slovak government discussed the letter, which is said to have been mailed from the Czech city of Plzen, while government ministries met Slovak media representatives to deny the authenticity of the document. The government also instructed Foreign Minister Jozef Moravcik to meet Western ambassadors in Bratislava to brief them on the "embarrassing provocation." In a phone interview with RFE/RL from California, a spokesman for Panic said the letter is a forgery and an attempt to discredit Panic's peace efforts. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. SLOVAKIA'S ETHNIC HUNGARIANS WRITE THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE. Speaking at a press conference in Bratislava on 25 January, Pal Csaky, chairman of the caucus of the Hungarian Christian Democratic Movement in the Slovak parliament, said that his party and the largest ethnic Hungarian party--Coexistence--have sent a letter to the Council of Europe in which they complain about what they see as Slovakia's failure to fulfill commitments which the country accepted when it became a CE member. As examples, Csaky cited alleged imperfections in a Slovak law allowing the use of foreign names, obstacles to the use of Hungarian names for traditionally Hungarian towns, and what he termed "a discriminatory language law." Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. SLOVAK EDITOR CHARGED WITH DEFAMATION OF STATE. In an interview with CTK on 25 January, Andrej Hrico, the editor-in-chief of Domino, a weekly published in Kosice, said that a city prosecutor has charged him with "defaming the republic and its representatives." The charges leveled against Hrico stem from the fact that last summer his magazine published a letter by a reader, saying that "as long as various opinion polls in Slovakia are topped by people, such as [Prime Minister Vladimir] Meciar, [Democratic Left Party Chairman Peter] Weiss, [Culture Minister Dusan] Slobodnik, [Parliament Chairman Ivan] Gasparovic, [Slovak Ambassador to Prague Ivan] Mjartan, [Constitutional Court Chairman Milan] Cic and the [two] Kovaces (presumably the Slovak President Michal Kovac and Deputy Prime Minister Roman Kovac), we cannot live well in Slovakia." The reader argued that "these people are political wimps, scoundrels without characters, who harm Slovakia." Hrico told CTK that last year he had been interrogated twice in connection with the letter, but that prosecutors originally intended to charge the author of the letter. However, they found out that the author did not sign the letter with his own name. An official at Kosice's Prosecutor Office told CTK that she would not comment on the case but said that the request to start the investigation was "probably made by the office of the president." Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. HUNGARY, POLAND TO SET UP EU ASSOCIATION COUNCILS. The Hungarian daily Magyar Hirlap reported on 21 January that both Hungary and Poland are planning to set up so-called European Association Councils to supervise the implementation of the two countries' association agreements with the European Union, signed in December 1991. The report says that Greece, which currently holds the EU presidency, has proposed that the founding sessions of the councils are scheduled for 7 and 8 March. In each country, the councils would operate at cabinet-level. Judith Pataki, RFE/RL, Inc. CZECH-ROMANIAN AGREEMENT ON ILLEGAL MIGRANTS. Czech Interior Minister Jan Ruml and his Romanian counterpart George Danescu have signed a so-called readmission treaty which provides for illegal immigrants to one country to be returned to the respective other, Czech TV reported on 25 January. According to Ruml, as many as 4,000 Romanian citizens attempted to cross the Czech border illegally in 1993. This nevertheless represents a significant decrease over the figures of 1992, when more than 16,000 Romanians crossed the Czech border without proper documents. The two interior ministers also agreed to cooperate in the struggle against organized crime. Jan Obrman, RFE/RL, Inc. ROMANIA TO BECOME FIRST "PARTNERSHIP" MEMBER. Romania is scheduled to become on 26 January the first country formally to sign onto NATO's "Partnership for Peace" program. A spokesman for the Foreign Ministry told an RFE/RL correspondent in Bucharest on 25 January that Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu will sign the necessary documents in Brussels the next day. The government had endorsed the plan on 14 January, saying it considers it the first step toward eventual admission as a full member in NATO. Michael Shafir, RFE/RL, Inc. FORMER COMMUNISTS SEEK TO JOIN ROMANIAN COALITION. The Romanian Socialist Labor Party--the former Communist Party--has announced that it wants to join a coalition with the ruling minority Party of Social Democracy in Romania and the Party of Romanian National Unity, Reuters reported on 25 January. SLP vice chairman Tudor Mohora said his party proposed joining the coalition to President Ion Iliescu, who has been sympathetic to the proposal. Mohora said the new coalition could set up a government as early as 1 March. Michael Shafir, RFE/RL, Inc. BEROV URGES PARLIAMENT RAPIDLY TO PASS BUDGET. In an address on national radio on 25 January, Bulgarian Prime Minister Lyuben Berov called on members of the National Assembly to contribute to the country's economic stability by adopting the 1994 budget until mid-February. Berov warned that in case the deadline is not kept, Bulgaria could be facing serious economic problems in the form of steeply rising inflation and less support from foreign financial institutions such as the G-24 group of economically highly developed states and the International Monetary Fund. While acknowledging that the draft budget prepared by the government includes several unpopular measures, he argued that increased spending on pensions, health care, education and other items would only exacerbate Bulgaria's financial difficulties. Berov also said that the apparent alternative to a speedy adoption of the budget is to call a new general election. In a first comment, the leader of the opposition Union of Democratic Forces, Filip Dimitrov, told BTA that he long had considered early elections the only reasonable option to what he described as raging "economic chaos" and the cabinet's "incapability to maintain public order and security for the citizens." Kjell Engelbrekt, RFE/RL, Inc. UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT DELAYS DEBATE ON NUCLEAR ARMS. On 25 January, the Ukrainian parliament put off debating the trilateral nuclear deal signed by President Kravchuk in Moscow on 14 January and left parliamentary commissions struggling to reach a consensus on this matter as well as on the formal proposal by the Ukrainian president that Ukraine join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. President Kravchuk appears to have won the backing from the influential speaker of the Ukrainian parliament, Ivan Plyushch, who in effect told deputies that Ukraine had been left with no choice but to join the NPT. On 26 January, parliament began the day by resuming the debate on the main principles of the government and administration of Ukraine, an issue which is to be put to a referendum as the prelude to the adoption of a new constitution. The session is being broadcast live by Ukrainian Radio. Bohdan Nahaylo, RFE/RL, Inc. BELARUSIAN KGB CHIEF DISMISSED. On 25 January the Belarusian parliament voted in a closed session to accept the interior minister Uladzimir Yahorau's resignation and to dismiss the KGB minister, Eduard Shyrkouski, various agencies reported. Deputies voted 195 against Yahorau and 31 in his favor; on Shyrkouski the vote stood at 187 against and 41 in his support. 174 votes are needed to force a dismissal. A vote was also held to dismiss the Prosecutor General, Vasil Shaladonau, but it did not pass with 138 deputies voting against him while 98 voted for. The dismissals were connected with the "Lithuanian case" which has been the main subject of parliament's discussions since last week, and has also brought on calls for confidence votes in the Chairman of the Supreme Soviet, Stanislau Shushkevich, and the Prime Minister, Vyacheslau Kebich. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc. LARGER GOVERNMENT RESHUFFLE FOR BELARUS? Following the calls for the security chiefs dismissals, Belapan reported that the chairman of the Belarusian Social Democratic Assembly, Aleh Trusau, said the proceedings were a "usurpation of power," and stated that the Belarusian Popular Front opposition would not participate in the voting. In this way Trusau said he hoped the parliament would be two or three votes short of the number needed for the dismissals. According to Interfax, the chairman of the legislation commission, Dmitry Bulakhau, said that the dismissals are "a prelude to a more serious political showdown which will involve the republic's top figures." Shyrkouski and Yahorau were considered to be among Shushkevich's few allies in the conservative government and liberal deputies say the allegations were a ploy to isolate the chairman. Shushkevich himself expressed disgust over the proceedings which he said were a tactic to delay discussing more important matters, including setting a date for and drafting the legislation for March elections, Belinform-TASS reported. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc. MOLDOVAN POLITICAL LEADER FOR DEMILITARIZATION. In an interview aired on RFE on 25 January, Zosim Bodiu, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Agrarian Democratic Party--currently Moldova's largest--said that his party would work toward turning Moldova into a "demilitarized zone." The idea, contemplated until now only privately in the leadership of the Agrarian and some other political parties, entails disbanding Moldova's still nascent army and pledging the country's neutrality. In exchange for such radical measures, Moldova would demand the withdrawal of Russian troops from its territory and the disbandment of the "Dniester" Russian forces as part of an overall political settlement of the Dniester conflict. Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc. BALTIC OFFICIALS DISCUSS CHURCH-STATE RELATIONS. On 24 January the Latvian Justice Minister, Egils Levits, and the head of the Department on Religion, Antons Seiksts, welcomed in Riga a delegation from Estonia led by Interior Minister Heiki Arike and a Lithuanian delegation headed by the government's Counselor for Religious Affairs Petras Plumpa, BNS and Diena reported on 25 January. Their discussions revealed that Lithuania and Estonia lead Latvia regarding the introduction of religious classes in schools, while Latvia is ahead with its legislation and mechanism of property return to religious organizations, the Justice Ministry's press service reported. Latvia's law on religious organizations was adopted in 1990, Estonia's in 1993 and Lithuania's has not yet been adopted. The officials agreed that the activities of some non-traditional religious groups in the region have became a source of concern in recent years. Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL, Inc. NO CONFIDENCE VOTE ON LITHUANIAN GOVERNMENT? On 25 January Lithuanian Social Democratic Party (LSDP) Chairman Aloyzas Sakalas told a press conference that the party's board had charged its parliament faction to begin efforts to hold a no-confidence vote against Prime Minister Adolfas Slezevicius, Radio Lithuania reports. Since the LSDP has only six deputies, it will have to find 22 other deputies to support holding the vote. The charges against the government include allowing illegally acquired money to be converted to the national currency, the litas, and non-fulfillment of government pledges to prepare programs designed to promote investments and the reconstruction of state industry. Construction and Urban Planning Minister Algirdas Vapsys has applied for retirement as from 3 February and Economics Minister Julius Veselka has also expressed a desire to resign. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc. COST OF LIVING IN ESTONIA. The Estonian Statistics Department has announced that the consumer goods and services on average cost 89.8% more in 1993 than in 1992, BNS reported on 25 January. Individual spending on consumer goods increased 79% as compared to the previous year (food by 70.1% and other goods by 91.8%), while prices on services rose 135.7%. The cost of living in the fourth quarter of 1993 rose 9.1% with the greatest increases in spending on health care (16.8%), housing (12.4%), and clothing (11.7%). Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc. [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Roman Solchanyk and Kjell Engelbrekt 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 by subscribing to RFERL-L at LISTSERV@UBVM.CC.BUFFALO.EDU, on the Sovset' computer bulletin board, by fax, and by postal mail. Requests for permission to reprint or retransmit this material should be addressed to PD@RFERL.ORG. Such requests will generally be granted on the condition that the material is clearly attributed to the RFE/RL Daily Report. 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