Absence makes the heart grow fonder. -
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 51, 15 March 1994

RUSSIA

YELTSIN TO SOCHI FOR VACATION. President Boris Yeltsin has left Moscow for 
the Black Sea resort of Sochi for a two-week vacation, ITAR-TASS reported 
on 14 March. Speaking to journalists at the airport before his departure, 
Yeltsin said that he expects "no explosions" in the country and could 
therefore depart "without any concern." In Sochi, Yeltsin will work on the 
memorandum of civic peace and concord. Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin 
and other government leaders are scheduled to visit him there. Centrists 
and moderate nationalists have indicated that they will sign such an 
accord. The co-leader of Democratic Russia, Lev Ponomarev, stated that he 
does not believe in such a peace accord because Yeltsin's opponents will 
use it to try to return to socialism. Alexander Rahr, RFE/RL, Inc.

GRACHEV CANCELS LENINGRAD VISIT. Russian Defense Minister Pavel Grachev 
has canceled a planned inspection trip to the Leningrad military district. 
According to a 14 March ITAR-TASS report, Grachev decided to remain in 
Moscow while Yeltsin is on vacation and Chief of the General Staff 
Kolesnikov is out of the country, so that he can ensure reliable control 
of Russian strategic nuclear forces. The report suggests either that the 
Russian command and control system is not as sophisticated as previously 
believed, or that Grachev does not trust his subordinates to maintain 
effective control while he is out of town. Alternatively, Grachev may be 
preparing to meet US Secretary of Defense William Perry, who is scheduled 
to arrive in Moscow on 17 March. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc.

KOZYREV, CHRISTOPHER MEET IN VLADIVOSTOK. On their way to or from other 
places, Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev and US Secretary of State 
Warren Christopher held talks at the airport in Vladivostok on 14 March to 
discuss the situation in the Middle East and US-Russian relations. The 
location represented an attempt by each side to rebuff the other: Kozyrev 
refused to travel to Washington to meet Christopher and Christopher 
refused to hold talks outside of the tentative setting of the airport. 
Despite the tension that was evident prior to the visit, Kozyrev and 
Christopher emerged from the talks with assurances that, despite 
occasional disagreements, the United States and Russia were still 
partners. Kozyrev said, "how and in which issues should there be a close 
partnership, and in which should the partnership be a loose one" are 
questions that still arise. He concluded though that the two states' frank 
discussion was a sign that their partnership could stand tough tests, 
Russian and Western media reported. Suzanne Crow, RFE/RL, Inc.

KOZYREV CALLS FOR EXPANDED NAVAL PRESENCE. During his visit to Vladivostok 
Kozyrev told sailors from the Pacific Fleet that the Russian navy should 
expand its presence around the world and that the Russian naval ensign 
should be visible in the Persian Gulf and in other trouble spots. As 
reported by Interfax on 14 March, Kozyrev said that Russian diplomats and 
seamen together "must show the world at large that Russia is not a weak 
power." He also spoke of maintaining the unity of the Black Sea Fleet, 
ownership of which has been contested with Ukraine Kozyrev's words 
notwithstanding, the combat capabilities of Russia's fleets in general, 
and the Pacific Fleet in particular, appear to have fallen precipitously; 
Russia's reduced naval presence throughout the world is likely as much a 
product of that development as of policy decisions taken by political or 
naval leaders. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

KOZYREV ON PEACEKEEPING. Prior to his departure for Vladivostok on 13 
March, Kozyrev told reporters gathered at the airport that he saw no 
opportunity for the use of peacekeeping forces from Western countries for 
operations in Georgia. Kozyrev was referring to statements made during a 
press conference with Eduard Shevardnadze on 7 March when US President 
Bill Clinton said: "The United States would be inclined to support a UN 
peacekeeping operation in Georgia, an operation that would not involve US 
military units." Kozyrev said that the subject might be on the agenda 
during his meeting with Christopher in Vladivostok, ITAR-TASS reported on 
14 March. Press reports following the meeting did not mention this subject 
however, suggesting either that it was not discussed or perhaps that 
serious disagreements exist. Suzanne Crow, RFE/RL, Inc.

IMPORT DUTIES RAISED. A government decree of 10 March raised duties on a 
range of imports effective 15 March, Interfax reported on 11 March. The 
average increase in duties was said to amount to 5%. Most of the higher 
duties will apply to imported foodstuffs, with rates of 15% on meat and 
dairy products and up to 20% on white sugar. The duty on imported 
cigarettes was raised from 15 to 30%. Duties on imported spare parts, 
accessories, and machinery were reduced by an average of 5%. With domestic 
retail prices approaching and sometimes exceeding world levels, domestic 
producers have been complaining about foreign competition and falling 
sales. There has been considerable debate within the government on the 
subject of import duties. First Deputy Prime Minister Oleg Soskovets has 
led the movement towards greater protectionism, and even Gaidar, while 
still in office, came out for "sensible protectionism." Foreign Economic 
Relations Minister Oleg Davydov, however, condemned higher import duties 
as late as 5 February. Keith Bush, RFE/RL, Inc.

YELTSIN FACES ATTACK FROM HARD-LINERS. President Yeltsin is facing new 
attacks from hard-liners in parliament. The head of the State Duma's 
Committee on Constitutional and Legal Reform, Vladimir Isakov, has 
proposed that nation-wide presidential elections be replaced by the 
election of the president at a joint meeting of the two chambers of the 
Federal Assembly, Interfax reported on 12 March. Another hard-liner, 
deputy Yurii Vlasov, denounced as "a betrayal" the State Duma's 
participation in drafting the memorandum of civic accord suggested by 
Yeltsin. Vlasov stated that Yeltsin has exhausted himself and should be 
replaced by "a more flexible leader" such as Grigorii Yavlinsky or Sergei 
Shakhrai. Finally, the head of the State Duma's Security Committee, 
communist Viktor Ilyukhin, stated that Yeltsin's decision to transform the 
Federal Counterintelligence Service from a government body into a 
presidential agency was illegal. Ilyukhin criticized Yeltsin's decree 
depriving the former KGB of the right to conduct legal inquiries saying 
that this "makes the service helpless." Alexander Rahr, RFE/RL, Inc.

SOROS OFFERS MORE FUNDING FOR SCIENTISTS. Following up on a $50 million 
program that has provided small-scale grants to a large number of Russian 
scientists, the financier George Soros has extended the program, offering 
$12.5 million for longer-term research. Soros met with Chernomyrdin on 14 
March, according to an Interfax report of the same date, to discuss the 
provision of matching funds by the US and Russian governments. Reuters 
reported that Soros also confirmed that negotiations for his foundation to 
provide funding for the RFE/RL Research Institute were still taking place. 
John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. 

RUSSIA MAY CHALLENGE NEW SHIPPING RULES. Russia may take formal action to 
try to prevent enforcement of new Turkish rules governing the passage of 
military ships through the Bosporus, Yakov Ostrovsky told RFE/RL's Moscow 
correspondent on 10 March. Ostrovsky, who is deputy director of the legal 
department at the Russian Foreign Ministry, said the new rules are being 
studied by the Russian Defense Ministry and will also be discussed at a 
meeting of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea when that 
UN-sponsored body meets in London in May. Russia believes the new rules, 
which it complains were adopted by Turkey without consultation with other 
nations, complicate passage through the Black Sea straits for military 
vessels, especially those carrying nuclear weapons. Turkey says they are 
necessary to prevent accidents in the heavily-populated region bordering 
the straits. Elizabeth Teague, RFE/RL, Inc.

NATIONALISTS PROTEST FEDERAL ELECTIONS IN TATARSTAN. An alliance of 
nationalist groups in Tatarstan sent a letter to the Central Election 
Commission in Moscow on 14 March protesting against the 13 March federal 
elections in Tatarstan, Interfax reported. The letter described the vote 
as unconstitutional, and claimed it had brought the republic "to the brink 
of civil war," The letter also challenged the result on the grounds of 
intimidation on the part of the government and said that the authors were 
appealing for a international inquiry into the legitimacy of the 
elections. Tatarstan President Mintimer Shaimiev and the speaker of the 
Tatarstan parliament Farid Mukhametshin (and not the prime minister 
Muhammat Sabirov as ITAR-TASS reported initially) were elected to the 
Federation Council in a vote that marked a defeat for the nationalists. 
Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc. 

TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA

CENTRAL ASIAN, RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTERS CONFER ON TAJIKISTAN. The foreign 
ministers of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Russia 
arrived in Dushanbe on 14 March for a conference on Tajikistan's internal 
political situation and the situation on the Tajik-Afghan border where 
troops from all five states are sharing guard duty, Russian news agencies 
reported. Tajik Foreign Minister Rashid Alimov was quoted as saying that 
talks between the Tajik government and the Tajik opposition in exile will 
go ahead despite the assassination of the head of the government 
delegation. ITAR-TASS reported that Tajikistan has again asked the UN 
Security Council to recognize the CIS troops on its soil as a UN 
peacekeeping force. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc. 

KAZAKHSTAN RATIFIES "COMMON ECONOMIC SPACE." Using special powers granted 
him by Kazakhstan's former legislature, President Nursultan Nazarbaev has 
ratified by decree an agreement with Uzbekistan to create a "common 
economic zone," ITAR-TASS reported on 14 March. The association of the two 
countries was agreed upon in January and promptly joined by Kyrgyzstan; 
the agreement went into effect at the beginning of February with the 
removal of customs posts on the borders of the participating states. 
According to the report, the volume of trade between Kazakhstan and 
Uzbekistan has already risen and direct ties between firms in the two 
countries are starting to develop. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc.

CIS

BLACK SEA FLEET DISPUTE RETURNS. With the resolution, at least 
temporarily, of the nuclear weapons issue, Russian and Ukrainian 
politicians and officers have revived the Black Sea Fleet dispute. 
Ukrainian Defense Minister Vitalii Radetsky told Interfax on 14 March that 
a commission set up to inventory the fleet's assets was starting work, as 
the first step towards splitting the fleet. On the same day, while 
visiting the Pacific Fleet, Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev 
reaffirmed his support for the Massandra protocol, and stated that Russia 
would not share the fleet with anyone. While the fleet has been quiet over 
the last few months, a renewal of the dispute under the new political 
conditions in Crimea could contribute to destabilizing the area. John 
Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc.

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

MORAVCIK DESIGNATED NEW SLOVAK PRIME MINISTER. After the Movement for a 
Democratic Slovakia refused to nominate a candidate for the post of 
premier following the dismissal of Vladimir Meciar and his government, 
President Michal Kovac authorized former Foreign Minister Jozef Moravcik 
to form a new government, TASR reported on 14 March. The somewhat 
surprising decision to name Moravcik was based on a compromise reached 
among opposition parties after a series of talks on 14 March. Moravcik, 
49, the last Czechoslovak foreign minister, replaced Milan Knazko as 
Slovak foreign minister in March 1993. Formerly one of Meciar's allies, 
Moravcik created a faction within the MDS in February following months of 
disputes with the prime minister over the course of the MDS and over 
foreign policy. He was eventually dismissed from the MDS and forced to 
resign as foreign minister on 24 February. Moravcik said that the new 
cabinet will focus on economic revitalization. Jan Obrman, RFE/RL, Inc.

NEW SLOVAK CABINET EXPECTED THIS WEEK. On 14 March Moravcik told Reuters 
that he expects to introduce his new cabinet by 16 or 17 March at the 
latest. The precise composition remains unclear at this time, but 
according to a spokesman for the Party of the Democratic Left, the 
portfolios will be distributed among the parties of the new coalition 
according to their respective political strength. The PDL and the 
so-called Center Bloc (a group consisting of two factions which split from 
the MDS, as well as the National Democratic Party, which split from the 
Slovak National Party) will have seven government members each, while five 
ministries should go to the Christian Democrats. The two ethnic Hungarian 
parties represented in the parliament will apparently not participate in 
the new government, although they are expected to support it. Jan Obrman, 
RFE/RL, Inc. 

PRO-MECIAR DEMONSTRATORS MISHANDLE JOURNALISTS. Four reporters, three of 
them representing RFE/RL in Slovakia, were mishandled by a crowd of 
pro-Meciar demonstrators in Bratislava, CTK and other sources reported on 
14 March. Some of the about 600 Meciar sympathizers who were gathered 
outside the presidential residence calling for Kovac's resignation, turned 
on RFE/RL correspondent Stefan Hrib; after throwing him to the ground, 
they kicked and beat him and stole his jacket, money and documents. 
Officers refused to take him to the police station, and Hrib later went to 
a hospital for examination. Milan Zitny, another RFE/RL reporter, was 
punched and beaten, and his camera was destroyed. A policeman eventually 
helped him to escape the crowd. Members of the same group of demonstrators 
tried to pull a recording device from the hands of RFE/RL correspondent 
Luba Lesna and punched Slovak Radio reporter Anna Samelova in the face 
several times. Samelova said a policeman watched but refused to help her. 
Jan Obrman, RFE/RL, Inc.

UN DEMANDS SERBS LIFT MAGLAJ SIEGE. International media reported on 14 and 
15 March that the UN Security Council insists that Bosnian Serbs end their 
nine-month siege of this north-central Bosnian town just south of Doboj. 
The Council did not explicitly Date:	Tue, 15 Mar 1994 13:19:08 +0100
Reply-To: rferl-daily-report-request@AdminA.RFERL.ORG Sender: RFE/RL 
Research Institute Daily Report  Comments:	Warning -- 
original Sender: tag was KOOSF@ADMINA.RFERL.ORG
From: rferl-daily-report-request@admina.rferl.org Subject:	RFE/RL Daily 
Report 15 MAR, 1994
X-To:	rferl-daily-report@AdminA.RFERL.ORG
To: Multiple recipients of list RFERL-L  

proclaim Maglaj a "safe area" and does not have the manpower to enforce 
its self-declared "safe area" status elsewhere. It appears nonetheless 
that the UN is trying to apply something like the formula it used to end 
the shelling of Sarajevo in order to break the hold on Maglaj, where 
starvation has been reported. Politika on 15 March runs an article 
discussing the town's strategic importance for the nearby Ozren mountain 
area. Patrick Moore, RFE/RL, Inc.

UNCERTAINTY CONTINUES OVER BOSNIAN SERBS' POLITICAL FUTURE. The Los 
Angeles Times notes that it is still not clear whether the Croat-Muslim 
federation for Bosnia can and will work without Serb participation. Some 
US officials told the paper that the plan was designed on the assumption 
that the Serbs will stay out, but US and Russian officials are trying 
nonetheless to bring them on board. US Ambassador to Croatia Peter 
Galbraith has said that the Serbs will become "the black hole of Europe" 
if they stand aside. The BBC quoted the Bosnian Serb vice-president as 
saying that a formal peace and the lifting of sanctions against rump 
Yugoslavia would be preconditions for the Serb side joining in talks about 
the new state, while other Serb spokesmen said they would also have to 
have special links to rump Yugoslavia. Croatian President Franjo Tudjman 
and other officials have explicitly ruled out staying in any arrangement 
that would link Zagreb to Belgrade, however indirectly. Patrick Moore, 
RFE/RL, Inc. 

SERBIA UPDATE. On 14 March Belgrade media reported on Russian special 
envoy Vitaly Churkin's visit to Belgrade, where he met with Serb leaders 
to discuss the implications of the recent deal supported by Bosnian Croats 
and Muslims which would see those two sides linked in a federation. 
Churkin reportedly stopped short of asking the Serb side to endorse the 
deal, but encouraged Serbs to study its implications before making any 
binding decision. Also on 14 March, Churkin travelled to Zagreb for talks 
with Croatian President Franjo Tudjman. In other news, both Borba and 
Politika of 15 March report that on 15 March Serbia's parliament is to 
reconvene, with the main order of business being Premier Mirko 
Marjanovic's announcement of a new cabinet and presentation to the 
assembly of an overview of the new administration's policy priorities. 
Finally, on 15 March AFP reports that the UN Security Council has 
condemned rump Yugoslavia for its role in the 6 March seizure of a fuel 
shipment traveling along the Danube, originating at the Bulgarian port of 
Somovit. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. 

WALESA "SURPRISED" BY PAWLAK'S MOSCOW VISIT. On 14 March, just hours 
before Premier Waldemar Pawlak left for Moscow at the head of a large 
delegation of government officials and businessmen, President Lech Walesa 
told PAP of his "surprise" at the visit and criticized the prime minister 
for having failed to consult with him. Summoned to the president's office, 
Pawlak reassured Walesa that the aim of his visit was to "fill with 
substance" the trade treaty signed by Walesa and President Boris Yeltsin 
on August 1993; he explained that the visit, originally planned for the 
end of the month, had been brought forward at the suggestion of the 
Russian side. Quoting unofficial sources, Gazeta Wyborcza said the 
unexpected change of date had made it impossible for the Poles to tie up 
all the loose ends on which finalization of several agreements depended 
and expressed concern that the visit might not achieve any significant 
results. Walesa's remarks are one more episode in the power struggle 
between president and government. Anna Sabbat-Swidlicka, RFE/RL, Inc.

UPDATE ON CONCORDAT. At a press conference in Warsaw on 14 March, the 
chief of the Council of Ministers' Office, Michal Strak, said that a team 
of legal experts, including representatives of the government and the 
Catholic Church, had found there were no legal barriers to ratification of 
the concordat signed in July 1992 between the Polish government and the 
Holy See, PAP reports. Strak said that the experts had drawn up proposed 
amendments that would bring existing legislation in line with the 
provisions of the concordat and answer some of the concerns raised by 
opponents of ratification. The government intends to submit the draft 
amendments to the Sejm in order to ensure that they can take force 
simultaneously with the concordat. Anna Sabbat-Swidlicka, RFE/RL, Inc.

JOINT CZECH-DUTCH MILITARY EXERCISES. A military unit of the Dutch Army 
arrived in the Czech Republic on 14 March for joint exercises with a Czech 
Army unit, CTK reports. The exercises will last until 25 March. Dutch 
Queen Beatrix, who will visit the Czech Republic on 22-24 March at the 
invitation of Czech President Vaclav Havel, will observe the final phase 
of the exercises. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc.

UDF, BSP CONCERNED ABOUT BULGARIANS IN SERBIA. Following meetings with a 
delegation of the Democratic Union of Bulgarians in Serbia on 14 March, at 
separate press conferences in Sofia the leaders of the UDF and the BSP 
both expressed grievances regarding the current situation of that ethnic 
minority. Commenting on the allegations forwarded by the DUBS that 
minority rights are today being systematically violated, UDF Chairman 
Filip Dimitrov said he was particularly concerned about reports that 
Serbian authorities are preparing to ban the ethnic Bulgarian 
organization. BSP Chairman Jean Videnov remarked that the information 
provided by the DUBS first needs to be corroborated by independent 
sources, but that, if proven correct, his party would "react sharply." 
While the UDF keeps a distance to all Serbian parties, the BSP entertains 
good relations with the ruling Socialist Party of Serbia. Kjell 
Engelbrekt, RFE/RL, Inc.

WEU INTENDS TO STRENGTHEN TIES WITH BULGARIA. At a press conference in 
Sofia on 14 March, Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Jacques Poos of 
Luxembourg revealed that the West European Union plans to upgrade its ties 
with Bulgaria at a regular session of the organization in May. BTA quoted 
Poos as saying that Luxembourg, which presently holds the WEU 
chairmanship, will propose that Bulgaria is offered the same status as the 
Visegrad Four, allowing for closer cooperation on political and national 
security affairs. Poos, who left Bulgaria on the same day, met with 
President Zhelyu Zhelev, Foreign Minister Stanislav Daskalov and other 
leading officials during his visit. Kjell Engelbrekt, RFE/RL, Inc.

MILITARY ADVISOR TO ILIESCU REPLACED. Romanian Premier Nicolae Vacaroiu 
confirmed at a press conference on 14 March that the chief military 
advisor to President Ion Iliescu, Lt. General Marin Pancea, has been 
suspended from duty. Reuters said that Vacaroiu declined to comment on 
reports in the popular daily Evenimentul zilei claiming that Pancea's 
removal was linked to the activities of a French spy ring. The same daily 
had published information suggesting Pancea's involvement in corruption 
cases. In a separate development, Western correspondents reported from 
Bucharest that Romania's Deputy Military Prosecutor Ioan Dan had been 
replaced on the same day with Samuila Joarza. Dan was quoted as saying 
that there was no connection between his removal and other recent military 
changes. Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL, Inc. 

MOLDOVAN ELECTION RESULTS. Moldova's Central Electoral Commission (CEC) 
released on 14 March the final returns of the legislative election held on 
27 February. Of the 13 slates, entered by 26 political parties singly or 
in blocs, only four slates exceeded the 4% threshold for gaining 
parliamentary representation. The final allocation of the 104 
parliamentary seats was determined by redistributing the votes of the 
unsuccessful slates proportionately among those which had exceeded the 
threshold. The pro-independence Agrarian Democratic Party gained 43.2% of 
the votes and 56 seats; the pro-Moscow Socialist/Unity Bloc--22% and 28 
seats; the pro-Romanian Bloc of Peasants and Intellectuals and the Popular 
Front Alliance--9.2% and 11 seats and 7.5% and 9 seats, respectively. The 
National Christian Party, the only group to openly campaign on a 
pro-Romanian platform, received 0.3%. The announcement was delayed for two 
weeks, as the losing parties, which formed the CEC's majority, recounted 
votes without finding any fraud. Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc.

MOLDOVAN TELEVISION, RADIO REORGANIZED. Under President Mircea Snegur's 
decree published on 11 March, Moldova's National Radiotelevision is being 
reorganized as Teleradio Moldova. The decree says that the change aims "to 
ensure the objectivity of information by eliminating the monopolization of 
Radio and TV by political parties"--a reference to the fact that 
supporters of the pro-Romanian Popular Front and Congress of the 
Intelligentsia dominate the institution's staff and promote their 
political agenda in programming. The heavy defeat of those parties in the 
legislative election of 27 February cleared the way for the change at 
Radio and TV. The word "national" is being dropped owing to its ethnic 
connotation. Teleradio Moldova will be headed by a chairman and a board 
appointed by Moldova's president and requiring confirmation by the 
parliament. Staff will be hired on the basis of contracts. Pending 
adoption of a law on audiovisual media, the board will license other radio 
and TV stations in the country. Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc.

KRAVCHUK ON UPCOMING NIXON VISIT. Ukrainian President Leonid Kravchuk said 
he does not object to meetings between the former US President Richard 
Nixon and opposition leaders during his upcoming visit to Kiev. Nixon is 
expected to go to Ukraine on 16 March. In regards to his own scheduled 
meeting with Nixon, Kravchuk said that the main objective is to attract 
private American capital to the republic, Interfax reported on 15 March. 
Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

CRIMEAN DEVELOPMENTS. On 11 March the Crimean parliament appointed the 
Russian economist Evgenii Saburov first deputy prime minister of the 
Crimean Autonomous Republic, conditional on his obtaining Ukrainian 
citizenship, Ukrainian media reported. Ukrainian TV confirmed on 14 March 
that Saburov has since formally applied for Ukrainian citizenship. 
Meanwhile, on 12 March, the Ukrainian parliamentary daily Holos Ukrainy 
published an article entitled "Crimea: another step toward confrontation," 
in which it accused Crimean president Yurii Meshkov of violating Ukrainian 
law and the Crimean Constitution by issuing a decree on 10 March 
scheduling a referendum for 27 March on Crimea's relations with Ukraine, 
dual citizenship for Crimeans and broadening the powers of the Crimean 
president. Bohdan Nahaylo, RFE/RL, Inc. 

BELARUS RECEIVES REDUCED GAS SUPPLIES. ITAR-TASS reported on 14 March that 
the Russian gas enterprise, Gazprom, has reduced supplies of gas to 
Belarus by 10 million cubic meters a day to some 50 million cubic meters 
daily. According to a Gazprom official, Vladimir Podmarkov, Belarus's debt 
stands at almost 400 billion rubles (approximately $230 million), and the 
country is not in a hurry to pay back the debt despite promises to do so. 
Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

BELARUSIAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES. Interfax reported on 15 March that the 
largest Belarusian parliamentary faction, the conservative "Belarus," will 
support the candidacy of Aleksander Sanchukausky, leader of the Belarusian 
Scientific Production Congress Party, for president if Premier Vyacheslau 
Kebich announces that he will not run for the post. Sanchukausky has 
described himself as a centrist who favors economic integration with 
Russia, advocates both private and state ownership of property, and has 
disagreements with both the BPF opposition and hard-line communists. The 
head of the interim parliamentary anti-corruption commission, Aleksander 
Lukashenka (who charged former chairman of the Supreme Soviet, Stanislau 
Shushkevich, with corruption, leading to a non-confidence vote against 
him), has also declared his intention to run for the presidency. Should 
Lukashenka win, Interfax reports that the post of prime minister would go 
to Viktor Hanchar, who lost the post of chairman of the Supreme Soviet to 
Mechyslau Hryb in January. Like Sanchukausky, Lukashenka reportedly 
rejects the views of political "extremists" such as communists and the 
BPF, and favors a "socially-oriented market economy" for Belarus. Ustina 
Markus, RFE/RL, Inc. 

ESTONIAN PRESIDENT IN ISRAEL. On 13 March Lennart Meri, accompanied by his 
wife, Helle, Foreign Minister Juri Luik, Secretary of State Ulo Kaevats, 
chairman of the parliamentary National Defense Commission, Rein Helme, and 
several businessmen, flew to Israel, BNS reported on 14 March. An official 
reception in Jerusalem, hosted by Israeli President Ezer Weizman, was 
attended by Premier Yitzhak Rabin, Knesset (parliament) Speaker Shevah 
Weiss, and Foreign Minister Shimon Peres. Meri also had later meetings 
with Rabin, Peres, and Benjamin Netanyahu, chairman of the opposition 
Likud Party. On 14 March Meri held talks with Weiss, who accepted his 
invitation to visit Estonia, and attended the Knesset session. Luik and 
Peres signed an agreement on mutual promotion and protection of 
investments. On his way back to Estonia on 17 March, Meri is expected to 
make a one-day stop in Ukraine. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc.

POLL ON LATVIAN FAMILY BUDGETS. A poll of 1,298 families, conducted by the 
State Statistics Committee, showed that 52.2% of them found it difficult 
to make ends meet at the end of the month, BNS reported on 14 March. 
Almost two-thirds of the respondents said that they could not make 
valuable purchases now and doubted that they would be able to do so in the 
next twelve months, while 68% said that they were unable to save any 
money. Only 7.5% of the respondents said that the economic situation in 
Latvia improved in 1993, while 61% said that it declined. Saulius Girnius, 
RFE/RL, Inc.

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

[English] [Russian TRANS | KOI8 | ALT | WIN | MAC | ISO5]

F&P Home ° Comments ° Guestbook


1996 Friends and Partners
Natasha Bulashova, Greg Cole
Please visit the Russian and American mirror sites of Friends and Partners.
Updated: 1998-11-

Please write to us with your comments and suggestions.

F&P Quick Search
Main Sections
Home
Bulletin Board
Chat Room
F&P Listserver

RFE/RL
1999
1998
1997
1996
1995
1994
1993
1992
1991
Search

News
News From Russia/NIS
News About Russia/NIS
Newspapers & Magazines
Global News
Weather

©1996 Friends and Partners
Please write to us with any comments, questions or suggestions -- Natasha Bulashova, Greg Cole