|Human life is but a series of footnotes to a vast obscure unfinished masterpiece. - Vladimir Nabokov|
No. 25, 7 February 1994
RUSSIA KOHL, RIFKIND SAY RUSSIA SHOULD RESPECT NEIGHBORS. German Chancellor Helmut Kohl told participants at an international security conference in Munich on 5 February that Russia should respect the sovereignty of the republics along its borders and should work at building trust among them rather than attempting to create spheres of influence. Reuters reported that Kohl said that NATO had refrained from accepting Eastern European states as members for the time being out of respect for Russia's security concerns, and that NATO hoped to develop a cooperative relationship with Russia. He was quoted as saying: "In return, however, we expect Russia to continue a foreign policy marked by constructive participation in solving international problems." Kohl said that Boris Yeltsin had only recently confirmed in a letter that the Russian leadership would "not listen to those who call for Russia to adopt a nationalistic or even imperialist policy," AFP reported. British Defense Minister Malcolm Rifkind, meanwhile, said that the most immediate threat to security in the near term was not the extension of NATO eastward, as some in Moscow have maintained, but renewed Russian attempts to assert control over neighboring states. According to AFP, Rifkind warned that even Russian moderates like Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev sometimes spoke in such terms. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. FRANCO-RUSSIAN MILITARY ACCORDS; GRACHEV REMARKS ON PEACEKEEPING, BOSNIA. The Russian and French Defense Ministers, Pavel Grachev and Francois Leotard, respectively, on 4 February signed two defense agreements in Moscow, one aimed at promoting officer exchanges and joint exercises, the other at increasing cooperation in the arms industry, Reuters reported. Grachev termed the defense industrial agreement "the first of its type" with a Western European country. In other remarks made to Leotard, Grachev again appealed for the UN to grant Russia a mandate for the conduct of peacekeeping operations on the territory of the former USSR; he said that Russia currently had 16,000 troops carrying out such operations, and suggested that Moscow hoped to concentrate its efforts on the former USSR rather than send peacekeepers to troublespots in other parts of the world. Finally, Grachev said that he was opposed to bombing Serbian positions in Bosnia, arguing that such a decision should be made only by the UN Security Council. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. SOSKOVETS: ENERGY PRICES SURPASS WORLD LEVELS. First Deputy Prime Minister Oleg Soskovets told Rossiiskie vesti on 4 February that domestic prices of energy products have jumped above world levels and are "choking the entire economy," ITAR-TASS and Russian TV reported. He claimed that with the ruble not depreciating in line with domestic cost inflation, the prime cost of producing a ton of oil had reached $192 as compared with the selling price on the world market of $88. The prices of many energy carriers were freed from central control in 1993, but remained under the influence of regional authorities, resulting in price setting that Soskovets described as "essentially chaotic." He said that the government was considering reintroducing increased regulation of prices in the form of "cartel agreements;" the details of these were not provided, however. Erik Whitlock, RFE/RL, Inc. PROBLEM OF NONPAYMENTS HIGHLIGHTED. Addressing the parliament on 4 February, acting Finance Minister Sergei Dubinin put the total value of nonpayments in the economy at 14-15 trillion rubles, ITAR-TASS and Interfax reported. Intriguingly, he went on to reassure the legislators that mutual indebtedness in 1993 represented a smaller share of GDP than in 1992, which showed a positive trend. Other authoritative spokesmen have given higher estimates and have warned of dire consequences. Dubinin offered three proposed solutions: first, a massive extension of credits, which would fuel inflation; second, the introduction of promissory notes--if these were not honored, then bankruptcy proceedings against the debtors could be initiated; third, part of the revenues of defaulting enterprises could be sequestered and transferred to tax collectors, suppliers, and the enterprises' workers. Keith Bush, RFE/RL, Inc. SLOW INTRODUCTION OF BANKRUPTCY PROCEEDINGS. The problem with Dubinin's second proposal is that although bankruptcy proceedings have been authorized for nearly one year, they have rarely been applied. According to the State Statistics Committee, there are now over 8,000 enterprises that might officially be recognized as being insolvent (Interfax, 4 February). But, according to Economic News Agency of 27 January, only 8 enterprises had been ruled as bankrupt by the end of 1993. The principal reasons for the slow implementation of bankruptcy legislation appear to be the political unacceptability of massive, open unemployment, the lack of an effective social safety net, and the fact that many unprofitable enterprises provide kindergartens, clinics, etc., that would disappear with the plants' closure. Keith Bush, RFE/RL, Inc. SHAKHRAI PREDICTS CRISIS IN MAY. Sergei Shakhrai, minister for nationalities and regional policy, said at a 5 February meeting of the Party of Russian Unity and Concord which he leads, that he expects a new political crisis to emerge in Russia in May, ITAR-TASS reported. He said that possible industrial action, the fall of the ruble, and the rise of nationalism and separatism posed a serious danger, and he called upon government, parliament and major political parties to conduct "a political and social cease fire" for at least two years. Ekho Moskvy on 4 February quoted him as saying that, as Communists fight with democrats and nationalists for power in the center, a new wave of economic separatism is building on the local level. Shakhrai predicted that if the ruble were to fall, the federation would collapse. Alexander Rahr, RFE/RL, Inc. ZHIRINOVSKY ON RUSSIAN PRESIDENCY AND SERBIA. The leader of the extreme right Liberal Democratic Party, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, addressing a rally in Moscow on 5 February, predicted that presidential elections in Russia would be held before their scheduled date of June 1996, and claimed that the LDP could complete its hold on power this year, Interfax and Western agencies reported. The rally of between 500 and 1,000 people heard Zhirinovsky accuse the Russian government of conniving with the West, which "is testing mechanisms for destroying Russia" in Serbia. The LDP leader, who recently returned from a tour of the former Yugoslavia, described the fighting there as "the third world war being waged against the Slavs and the Orthodox Church by the USA, West Germany and the Vatican." Wendy Slater, RFE/RL, Inc. IRKUTSK REFUSES TO PAY TAXES. Following the recent announcement by the governor of Khabarovsk Krai that his region cannot afford to pay its federal taxes, the governor of Siberia's Irkutsk Oblast has announced that his region also plans to withhold money it owes to the federal budget. The governor, Yurii Nozhikov, was quoted by Izvestiya on 1 February as saying his region faces a cash-flow crisis and must use what cash it has to pay the salaries of municipal workers: busdrivers, schoolteachers, medical staff and so on. Elizabeth Teague, RFE/RL, Inc. CAPITAL FLIGHT PROBE SHELVED. The investigation by the US corporate private investigators, Kroll Associates, into capital flight from the former Soviet Union has been shelved, The Financial Times reported on 7 February. One investigator was quoted as saying that the file compiled from talking with Western banks and companies raised "suspicions about certain players and institutions [in the former Soviet Union]. Our problem is that when we sent it to Moscow, it was never followed up." The Institute of International Finance has estimated the current scale of capital flight from Russia to be at least $1 billion a month, although this includes foreign currency legally deposited by Russian companies into Russian banks which place it overseas. Keith Bush, RFE/RL, Inc. OLD LEADERS AT HEAD OF COUNTERINTELLIGENCE. President Yeltsin has appointed Andrei Bykov, Aleksandr Strelkov and Valerii Timofeev as deputy directors of the newly created Federal Agency of Counterintelligence, Radio Rossii "Novosti" reported on 4 February. All three were deputy ministers in the former Ministry of Security. Bykov is a former government official responsible for technological transfer. Strelkov until 1992 headed one of the major departments responsible for labor camps in the Soviet Union. Timofeev was formerly the regional KGB chief in Gorky, the city to which academician Andrei Sakharov was exiled in 1979. Alexander Rahr, RFE/RL, Inc. DAGESTAN HAS RUSSIA'S HIGHEST JOBLESS RATE. Dagestan, where 4% of the working population are registered as unemployed, has the highest unemployment rate in the Russian Federation, Russian TV reported on 4 February. This is four times higher than the official rate for Russia as a whole, which is about 1%. (In its latest report on unemployment in Russia, the International Labor Office rejected the official figures as much too low; the ILO said that the scarcity of employment bureaux in Russia, coupled with the low rate of unemployment benefit, deters many jobless people from registering.) Russian TV said 23,000 workers are on enforced vacation in Dagestan and that there are 30 applicants for every vacancy; it did not explain why Dagestan should be worse off than anywhere else in Russia, but the northern Caucasus had high numbers of jobless people even during the Soviet period when unemployment was officially supposed not to exist. Elizabeth Teague, RFE/RL, Inc. YELTSIN ANNULS DECREE ON PARLIAMENT BUILDING. President Yeltsin signed a decree on 4 February revoking the government's decision to spend an estimated $500 million on a new parliament building, Interfax and ITAR-TASS reported. The plan had met opposition within the government, having been cited by former Fist Deputy Prime Minister Egor Gaidar as one of the reasons for his resignation in mid-January. The State Duma had also passed a resolution condemning the plan. Yeltsin's decree called for the decision to be reviewed in two years' time. Wendy Slater, RFE/RL, Inc. CIS MEETING OF CIS PRIME MINISTERS POSTPONED. A meeting of heads of government of the CIS states, originally set for mid-March, has been postponed, ITAR TASS reported on 4 February. The postponement was announced after a meeting between Russian Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin and CIS Executive Secretary Ivan Korotchenya, at which the two agreed that more preparatory work was needed between CIS members on various economic questions. Elizabeth Teague, RFE/RL, Inc. NO DATE SET FOR CHERNOMYRDIN'S MINSK VISIT. On 4 February an RFE/RL correspondent reported that no date has been set for the postponed visit of Prime Minister Chernomyrdin to Belarus. Officials in the Russian government press office said that the visit has been delayed because Chernomyrdin and President Yeltsin have not yet resolved all of the issues surrounding the proposed monetary union between Russia and Belarus. The questions which remain to be decided concern the correlation of the Belarusian and Russian currencies, the right of the Belarusian national bank to its own currency emission, and the coordination of energy prices in both countries. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc. TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA AFGHANISTAN ACCUSES UZBEKISTAN OF INTERFERENCE. Afghanistan's Foreign Ministry has accused Uzbekistan of interfering in Afghan internal affairs and has demanded that the interference stop, Western and Russian news agencies reported on 4 and 5 February. The charge was broadcast on Radio Kabul on 4 February. Earlier in the week, a spokesman for Afghanistan's President Burhanuddin Rabbani said that Uzbekistan has been helping Afghan Uzbek General Abdulrashid Dostum, who has been fighting Afghan government forces. On 5 February Uzbekistan's embassy in Moscow denied allegations that the Uzbek government has either given weapons or technical help to Dostum or interfered in Afghanistan's internal affairs. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc. CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE SHELLING OF SARAJEVO CALLED "THE DEADLIEST ATTACK." On 6 February a Reuters report, describing the carnage in Sarajevo after a 5 February mortar attack on civilians in a public market claiming the lives of at least 68 people and wounding an estimated 200, referred to the incident as "the deadliest attack in 22 months of war in the Bosnian capital." The mortar attack came while representatives of Bosnia's three warring sides were holding talks at Sarajevo airport in preparation for the next round of Geneva talks; international media report that Bosnian Prime Minister Haris Silajdzic left the table upon hearing of the attack. The public market massacre came just one day after several shells fell into a crowd of people waiting for aid, killing at least eight and wounding about 20. According to the Bosnian Muslim government, the Bosnian Serb side is responsible for all the shelling, but UN officials suggest it will be difficult if not impossible to prove who is culpable. The British commander of UN forces in Bosnia, Gen. Michael Rose, has stated that it will probably not be possible to provide definitive proof for the contention that the Serbian side is to blame, but he also called the Bosnian Serb claim that the shelling was the fault of the Bosnian Muslim side unlikely. "Meanwhile, Bosnian Muslim officials have expressed despair at what they regard as the international community's muted response to the incident." Bosnia's President Alija Izetbegovic, in a 6 February press conference, told reporters that he felt the UN is deliberately avoiding blaming Bosnian Serbs in order to avoid a direct confrontation with them. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE TO SARAJEVO SHELLING. Nonetheless, the international press reports that the world community's response to the shelling of the Sarajevo marketplace was swift and condemning of the violence. UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali has requested NATO in the future to support airstrikes against positions from which Sarajevo civilians are being attacked. Moreover, international media report that the ambassadors of the NATO countries will meet on 7 February to discuss the situation in Bosnia and the possible use of airstrikes. European Union foreign ministers are scheduled to meet in Brussels on the same day to discuss, in part, the escalating violence in Bosnia. France has emerged as a strong advocate of air power; on 7 February AFP reports that the French government is prepared to back an ultimatum asking all sides involved in the Sarajevo fighting to give up their heavy artillery or run the risk of serious consequences, including aerial bombing. Germany, Belgium and Italy have also called for more decisive action. Condemnation of the Sarajevo shelling has come from all quarters. According to ITAR-TASS, Russia's foreign ministry has called for those responsible for the attack to be "severely punished." Even foreign ministry officials in the rump Yugoslavia, reports Tanjug, described the event as "a heavy blow to the peace process," but called on the international community to investigate the incident in an "unbiased" manner. In the US, Bill Clinton cautioned that airstrikes could only be considered if it is established which force was responsible for the mortar attack, while British Foreign Minister Douglas Hurd warned that a direct military response by the West might jeopardize the peace process. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. POSSIBLE SANCTIONS AGAINST CROATIA. According to Reuters, European Union foreign ministers, scheduled to meet on 7 February, are expected to discuss the implementation of sanctions against Croatia for its alleged sending of troops into Bosnia to support the Bosnian Croat side. On 3 February, the UN Security Council stated that it will allow Croatia two weeks to remove its troops from Bosnia before it may opt to consider sanctions. Responding to suggestions that Croatia may be slapped with an economic embargo, Croatia's UN ambassador, Mario Nobilio, threatened, according to Reuters on 4 February, that sanctions could lead Croatia to wage attacks against Croatia's Serbian minority in Krajina. Peace in Krajina is currently kept by about 15,000 UN troops, whose mandate runs out in March and who may be asked to leave by Zagreb in retaliation for sanctions. Nobilio also repeated the official Zagreb line, stressing there were no Croat troops in Bosnia. Other Croatian officials have also hinted that sanctions could force Zagreb to expel some 300,000 Muslim refugees to those countries supporting the sanctions, since under economic duress Croatian officials have said that their country would not be able to support them. Germany, which in the past has been reluctant to criticize Croatian policies, appears increasingly irritated with Zagreb. On 4 February German Chancellor Helmut Kohl told German TV that Croatia broke its word when it became involved militarily in Bosnia and called this "a scandal that must be condemned." Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. TEN ALBANIANS INDICTED IN MACEDONIA. On 3 February ten ethnic Albanians were indicted for anti-state activities according to a report filed by MIC. Among those indicated are Mithat Emini, former General Secretary of the largest Albanian political party, the Party for Democratic Prosperity, and Husein Haskaj, a deputy Defense Minister. They are charged in connection with a secret organization allegedly founded to undermine the state, the "All Albanian Army," exposed by the government in November 1993. The trial is likely to be held behind closed doors and, if convicted, each faces a 5-15 year sentence. Duncan Perry, RFE/RL, Inc. POLAND'S FINANCE MINISTER RESIGNS. Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Marek Borowski resigned in protest on 4 February, plunging Poland's two-party ruling coalition into crisis. Borowski told reporters that cooperation with Prime Minister Waldemar Pawlak had become impossible. Borowski represents the Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) and initially embodied that party's control over economic policy; Pawlak heads the Polish Peasant Party (PSL). The conflict within the coalition emerged into the open with Pawlak's decision to fire Deputy Finance Minister Stefan Kawalec on 28 January, over Borowski's objections. Speaking to reporters, Borowski explained that his resignation was prompted by more general problems within the coalition, including the prime minister's criticism of policies emanating from the finance ministry and his failure to consult on important decisions. This amounted to a "vote of no confidence," Borowski said. The announcement followed lengthy talks among Borowski, Pawlak, and SLD leader Aleksander Kwasniewski. PAP reports that Borowski presented Pawlak with five conditions, including making a clear division of responsibilities within the cabinet, setting a procedure for the selection of deputy ministers and voivodship chiefs, the subordination of the customs office to the finance ministry, and the mandatory review of all economic decisions by the government's economic commission (which Borowski heads) before their promulgation. Pawlak rejected these conditions. The prime minister's press office was characteristically taciturn, saying only that Pawlak is "analyzing" the situation. Borowski's resignation has not yet been formally accepted. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. POLISH COALITION IN CRISIS. The coalition parties are expected to meet on 7 February to hash out the issue, although the SLD seemed far more anxious for a meeting than the PSL. The conflict comes at a bad time for the government, as it is attempting to push the tight budget it has proposed for 1994 through the parliament. SLD and PSL leaders were in agreement that there is no majority alternative to the current two-party coalition. (The SLD controls 171 seats in the Sejm while the PSL has 132 of a total 460.) But SLD leader Aleksander Kwasniewski indicated that while his party may grudgingly accept Borowski's departure, it will still demand that the PSL accept the conditions he presented. Should Borowski leave the cabinet, Poland's standing in the West would suffer, as the deputy prime minister had successfully reassured the international community that Poland would remain on its "liberal" economic course. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. VISEGRAD COUNTRIES TO SPEED UP FREE TRADE TIMETABLE. Meeting in Prague on 4 February, economic ministers of Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, and the Czech Republic agreed to speed up by three years the implementation of their Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA). The declaration signed by the ministers calls for liberalizing trade among the four Visegrad countries within the next five years. CEFTA had previously called for the liberalization of trade within 8 years. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. SLOVAK PARLIAMENT PLANS FOR RECESS. In order to solve the deadlock resulting from the departure of Movement for a Democratic Slovakia and Slovak National Party deputies during the 3 February parliamentary session, parliamentary leaders called for a recess until 16 February, TASR reports. On the morning of 4 February chairmen of all parliamentary parties met to try to resolve the deadlock, but Premier and MDS Chairman Vladimir Meciar refused to negotiate in the presence of Alliance of Democrats Chairman Milan Knazko, claiming that Knazko was not "a legitimate parliamentary deputy." (Meciar is trying to pass a bill which would require parliamentary deputies, like Knazko, who left their parties, to be replaced.) Because the other chairmen refused to accept Meciar's demand, Meciar declared the 4 February parliamentary session "illegitimate and unconstitutional." Parliament Chairman and MDS member Ivan Gasparovic said the MDS and SNP would not take part in the 4 February session and commissioned Party of the Democratic Left Chairman Peter Weiss to chair the session. Because there were only 75 deputies present, however, it was agreed that parliament would be postponed until 16 February. Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL, Inc. HUNGARIAN GENERAL ELECTION DATE SET. On 4 February Hungarian President Arpad Goncz announced that 8 May will be the date of the first round of the next general election, MTI reported. That 8 May is a Sunday is a disappointment to the Hungarian Socialist Party, which wanted the election to be scheduled on a normal week day, apparently hoping that last-minute campaigning at the work place by its ally, the MSZOSZ trade union, would make a difference. The HSP and the MSZOSZ signed an election support agreement in 1993. The run-off election date will be announced later by the National Election Board. Karoly Okolicsanyi, RFE/RL, Inc. ILIESCU SPOKESMAN CRITICIZES HUNGARIAN PARTY. At a press conference on 4 February, presidential spokesman Traian Chebeleu criticized the Hungarian Democratic Federation of Romania. In a reference to Iliescu's latest round of talks with HDFR leaders on 1 February, Chebeleu spoke of a package of "so-called demands" presented by the ethnic party to the president. He quoted Iliescu as saying that he could not accept unconstitutional claims, and mentioned requests for "community autonomy" and "collective rights" in this context. Radio Bucharest reported that Chebeleu further attacked the HDFR for having recently addressed a memorandum to the Council of Europe saying that Romania has done nothing to follow the Council's recommendations with regard to the treatment of minorities. Iliescu's spokesman described the HDFR complaints as "untimely and tendentious," adding that that party had "no right to judge the way" Romania responds to suggestions from the Council of Europe. Leaders of Romania's Magyar minority say they suffer from discrimination and demand greater autonomy in areas where they form the majority. Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL, Inc. STRIKES IN ROMANIA. Hundreds of thousands of Romanian workers held an eight-hour warning strike on 4 February, Radio Bucharest reports. Romulus Nita, spokesman for the Alfa Cartel, one of Romania's largest labor confederations, said that 80% of Alfa's estimated 1.2 million members took part in the strike but that they were also joined by non-members. Nita said the strike affected the steel, mining, electronics, transport, food and military industries. He nevertheless expressed disappointment that another major labor confederation, the National Labor Bloc, had not joined the strike, thus reducing its impact. The Alfa Cartel, which is demanding a new government, faster economic reforms and greater social protection, announced that it will go ahead with plans to launch a regular national strike on 16 January unless the government meets its demands. Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL, Inc. BELARUS TO STOP IMPORTING KAZAKH GRAIN. Anatoli Hrytsai, head of the Belarusian government's grain department, told Reuters on 4 February that Belarus intends to buy grain from Western Europe instead of Kazakhstan because Kazakh grain has become too expensive. Belarus was under contract to buy one million tons of Kazakh grain but had not received any before a price increase to $115 per ton was announced. Although Belarus has a shortage of convertible currency for western purchases, the country has already bought 35,000 ton of grain from Britain and Finland using a $4 million loan from the World Bank. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc. GAZPROM CUTS GAS TO UKRAINE. The Russian gas company, Gazprom, reduced gas supplies to Ukraine on 3 February because of Kiev's failure to pay its debt, Interfax reported on 4 February. Ukraine's debt is reported to be over 1 trillion rubles and Gazprom officials told Interfax that Ukraine did not pay "even a single ruble for last month's supply of gas, let alone service its last year's debt." Kiev's default dominated the agenda of a 3 February meeting of senior Gazprom officials who called for the debt issue to be taken up with an arbitration court and for contracts signed with gas consumers to be used as a legal mechanism to recover the debt. In total, Russia is owed 3.6 trillion rubles for its gas by Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc. CSCE COMMISSIONER ON LATVIA'S DRAFT LAW ON CITIZENSHIP. An RFE/RL correspondent in Vienna reported on 4 February that Max Van Der Stoel, CSCE High Commissioner for Minorities, has submitted his recommendations related to a law on citizenship and naturalization that is being considered by the Latvian parliament. The commissioner recommends that all non-Latvians, except those who constitute a clear threat to the vital interests of Latvia, have the right to become Latvian citizens, if they express the desire to do so and accept three conditions: basic knowledge of the Latvian language, knowledge of the basic principles of the Constitution, and an oath of loyalty to the Republic of Latvia. While expressing reservations about quotas on granting citizenship (stipulated in the draft law) and about the notion of granting citizenship on a very restrictive basis (as advocated by some Latvian politicians), the commissioner did not, however, endorse the unconditional granting of citizenship to those who want it. These recommendations, submitted to the Latvian Foreign Ministry, resulted after a visit to Latvia in December 1993 when Van Der Stoel once again looked into the situation of minority rights in Latvia and complaints by Russians that the draft citizenship law discriminates against them. Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL, Inc. LITHUANIAN-RUSSIAN RELATIONS. Lithuanian Prime Minister Adolfas Slezevicius said that he was not satisfied with his country's relations with Russia, Interfax reported on 4 February. Slezevicius noted that although he had signed a most-favored-nation trade treaty with his Russian counterpart Viktor Chernomyrdin on 18 November, it had not yet gone into effect. Moreover, his repeated attempts to contact Chernomyrdin had been unsuccessful. Slezevicius said he suspects that Russia wants to link trade problems with other areas of relationships between the two countries, such as ties between Lithuania and the Kaliningrad Region. After border talks between the Lithuanian Deputy Foreign Minister, Vladislovas Domarkas, and the deputy head of the Kaliningrad Oblast administration, Garri Chmykov, on 27-28 January, Domarkas said that it appeared that Russia was stalling negotiations in order to improve its bargaining position. Economic interests are believed to play the major role in determining the sea border, as both sides are claiming the area of an oil field near the Kursiai peninsula. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc. [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Wendy Slater 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. 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: RI-DC@RFERL.ORG 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 Copyright 1994, RFE/RL, Inc. All rights reserved.
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