Increase The Peace. - John Singleton
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 109, 10 June 1994

                     RUSSIAN FEDERATION

RUMORS OF CHERNOMYRDINS DEPARTURE DENIED. Vyacheslav Kostikov, the
Russian presidents press secretary denied reports that Prime
Minister is about to resign. According to an Interfax report of 10
June, Kostikov denounced the story as an invention and lie, and
went on to suggest that such articles are of a provocative and
anti-state nature. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc.

NATO LEADERS: NO NEW DIVIDING LINE IN EUROPE. Still trying to
finesse the problem of how to draw Russia into the NATO
Partnership for Peace Program without acceding to Moscows desire
for a formally enhanced relationship with the Western alliance,
NATO leaders meeting in Istanbul on 9 June agreed to recognize
Russias special status as a major nuclear and military power, but
they rejected Moscows demand for voice in NATO decision-making.
According to The New York Times, a NATO communique assured
representatives of Central and Eastern States that NATOs
cooperation with Moscow would not signal a modern version of the
1945 Yalta accord. We will not draw new diving lines across Europe
nor engage in a NATO-Russian condominium, NATO Deputy
Secretary-General Sergio Balanzino was quoted as saying. Stephen
Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

SHUMEIKO ON FURTHER CIS INTEGRATION. Federation Council Speaker
and head of the executive council of the CIS Interparliamentary
Assembly Vladimir Shumeiko believes that the processes of
integration in the former Soviet Union will mean the creation of a
confederative, if not federative, state on one sixth of the earths
surface, Interfax reported on 9 June. The agency paraphrased
Shumeiko as saying that almost all of the former Soviet republics,
with the exception of the Baltic states, favor integration. He
said that the Soviet Union would not be revived because it rested
on one pillar--the Soviet Communist Party. Suzanne Crow, RFE/RL,
Inc.

MIXED SIGNALS ON THE NORTH KOREA CRISIS. Russian Foreign Ministry
officials on 9 June emphasized their preference for the use of
political methods by the international community rather than
sanctions as the best means for convincing North Korea to ensure
the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) access to its
nuclear facilities. Foreign Ministry spokesman Grigorii Karasin
was quoted by ITAR-TASS as urging the convening of an
international conference for a comprehensive examination of the
problems on the Korean peninsula. If these diplomatic efforts are
not successful, the sanctions proposal will have to be examined.
The remarks were the latest in what have been mixed signals coming
out of Moscow on the issue. As the Boston Globe reported on 8
June, Boris Yeltsin is believed to have told South Korean
President Kim Young Sam during his recent visit to Moscow that
Russia would endorse the sanctions. Russia has long been urging
the convening of an international conference. Meanwhile, on 10
June Reuters reported that Yeltsin was expected to visit Seoul
later this year, possibly in November; [an exact date has
apparently not yet been fixed.] Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

MIXED SIGNALS ON THE NORTH KOREA CRISIS. Russian Foreign Ministry
officials on 9 June emphasized their preference for the use of
political methods by the international community rather than
sanctions as the best means for convincing North Korea to ensure
access to its nuclear facilities for the IAEA (International
Atomic Energy Agency). Foreign Ministry spokesman Grigorii Karasin
was quoted by ITAR-TASS as urging the convening of an
international conference for a comprehensive examination of the
problems on the Korean peninsula. If these diplomatic efforts are
not successful, the sanctions proposal will have to be examined.
The remarks were the latest in what have been mixed signals coming
out of Moscow on the issue. As the Boston Globe reported on 8
June, Boris Yeltsin is believed to have told South Korean
President Kim Young Sam during his recent visit to Moscow that
Russia would endorse the sanctions. Russia has long been urging
the convening of an international meeting. Meanwhile, on 10 June
Reuters reported that Yeltsin was expected to visit Seoul later
this year, possibly in November, but an exact date has not yet
been fixed. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

RUSSIAN INDUSTRY IN DECLINE. The Russian government reported on 9
June that industrial production dropped 26% in the first five
months of 1994 in comparison to the same period in 1993. The
decline was greatest in the heavy machinery sector, where
production fell 45%. Production was down 12% in the energy sector;
22% in food processing; and 35% in the chemical and petrochemical
sector. In May, 5,500 large or medium-sized industrial plants (or
one-fourth of the total) were forced to halt production for longer
or shorter periods, according to a report from the state
statistical committee. In January, the figure was 3,784. Deputy
Prime Minister Oleg Soskovets called the situation in the heavy
machinery sector critical and warned officials that they would be
held responsible for the industrys collapse. But President Boris
Yeltsins chief of staff, Sergei Filatov, told reporters that the
dramatic figures on heavy industry distort the overall economic
picture and fail to reflect positive trends in trade and banking.
Western and Russian agencies carried the report. Louisa Vinton,
RFE/RL, Inc.

                  TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA

GRACHEV IN ARMENIA. During his second day of talks in Erevan on 9
June, Russian Defense Minister Pavel Grachev reached agreement
with Armenian President Levon Ter-Petrossyan on the establishment
of what ITAR-TASS termed one powerful military base split between
two locations, Erevan and Gyumri, which will include land,
anti-aircraft and backup troops. Russia will pay no rent for the
bases over the 25 year lease period; Armenia will contribute
towards their upkeep. Grachev also discussed unifying the Russian
and Armenian air defense systems on the basis of the CIS
Collective Security Treaty. Armenian Defense Minister Serzh
Sarkisyan told Interfax that the Armenian parliament would ratify
the existing intergovernmental agreement on the status of Russian
troops in Armenia (signed in 1992 and ratified by the Russian
parliament in February 1993) some time this summer; the treaty on
creation of the Russian bases would be signed by 1 September. Liz
Fuller, RFE/RL, Inc.

YELTSIN SIGNS DECREE ON ABKHAZ PEACEKEEPING FORCE. On 9 June
Russian President Boris Yeltsin signed a decree ordering the
Russian government to create a peacekeeeping force for deployment
in Abkhazia, Interfax and ITAR-TASS reported. The force will be
composed of three battalions from the Group of Russian Forces in
the Transcaucasus. While the decree came into force on the date of
signing, the date for the beginning of the peacekeeping operation
must be decided by the Federation Council, which is next scheduled
to meet on 21 June. Liz Fuller, RFE/RL, Inc.

NAZARBAEV TO PARLIAMENT ON REFORMS. Kazakhstans President
Nursultan Nazarbaev appealed for parliamentary support for his
reform program in a speech to the Supreme Soviet on 9 June, and
told the deputies who had passed a no confidence vote in the
anti-crisis program of Prime Minister Sergei Tereshchenko that he
was giving the government carte blanche for 15 months to carry out
the program, Russian news agencies reported. Nazarbaev said that
reform of the banking and credit system has top priority in order
to stop inflation and strengthen the national currency, the tenge.
He also called for stopping direct and indirect grants of state
funds to enterprises and more price liberalization. On
non-economic issues, Nazarbaev announced a government program to
cut emigration motivated by ethnic factors and called for a
revised law on languages, but again rejected dual citizenship on
the grounds that it would further complicate Kazakhstans already
complex interethnic relations. In response to questions from the
deputies, the president promised that in future local heads of
administration will be elected rather than appointed. Bess Brown,
RFE/RL, Inc.

NAZARBAEV CALLS FOR MOVE OF CAPITAL. In his speech to the
Kazakhstani Supreme Soviet on 9 June, President Nazarbaev asked
the parliament to adopt his earlier proposal that the countrys
capital be moved from Almaty in the extreme southeast to the city
of Akmola (formerly Tselinograd) in the north-central part of
Kazakhstan. Among the reasons that have been advanced to justify
the move is Akmolas more central location in a more
ethnically-mixed region and Almatys proximity to China. Kazakh
intellectuals, who tend to favor the move, see it as a statement
of Kazakhstans determination to hold on to the northern oblasts
with their large Russian populations. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc.

RUSSIANS SHELL AFGHAN TERRITORY. Russian troops along the
Tajik-Afghan border shelled suspected Tajik rebel bases in
northern Afghanistan on 9 June, after coming under sustained
rocket attacks by the rebels, Reuters reports. The rebel attack
left one Tajik government soldier dead; no casualty figures are
available from the Afghan village shelled by the Russian border
guards. The commander of Russias border guards in Tajikistan,
Anatolii Chechulin, and a Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman both
reiterated that Russia will take all necessary measures to protect
its servicemen along the border and within Tajikistan; Chechulin
sees the current attacks as a prelude to a larger summer offensive
by the rebels. An unconfirmed Interfax report asserts that 25
insurgents were repelled on 7 June, including 10 Arabs. Meanwhile,
leaflets were circulated in Dushanbe, asking for help in solving
the recent murders of Russian soldiers there; Reuters quoted one
leaflet as reading, The Russian army is standing against the dark
forces and does everything to serve its holy duty to the brotherly
Tajik people. Keith Martin, RFE/RL, Inc.

CSCE TO MEET IN UZBEKISTAN. A spokesman for the Council on
Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) has told RFE/RL that the
CSCE will hold a special seminar in Tashkent from 28-30 September
1994. The meeting will focus on conflict management and security
in Central Asia, and all five Central Asian states are expected to
send government delegates and representatives of non-governmental
organizations. International organizations, including the UN High
Commission for Refugees, have also been invited to send
representatives, and the Stockholm-based Institute for Peace
Research has reportedly agreed to send experts to the seminar. All
the former Soviet republics in Central Asia are members of the
CSCE, and several have also joined NATOs Partnership for Peace
program. Keith Martin, RFE/RL, Inc.

                               CIS

BLACK SEA FLEET TALKS END WITHOUT RESOLUTION. On 9 June Interfax
reported that negotiations over the Black Sea Fleet have come to
an end without any agreement on the issue of basing. The next
round of negotiations is to take place in Moscow in approximately
two weeks. Both sides have reportedly agreed not to give out any
details of the negotiations until after Presidents Yeltsin and
Kravchuk have had the opportunity to examine the proposals put
forward by the negotiators. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

MOLDOVAN-RUSSIAN TROOP TALKS: NEW TWISTS. At the ninth round of
negotiations on the future of Russian troops in Moldova, held in
Moscow on 7 and 8 June, the two sides discussed and initialed
several documents that would regulate the status of the Russian
troops temporarily stationed in Moldova, Russian and Moldovan
agencies reported. The documents cover, inter alia, Russian
military overflight rights, interaction of the two sides in
verifying their compliance with conventional arms control and
security-building measures mandated by CSCE, legal assistance to
Russian servicemen stationed in Moldova, and Moldovan
contributions to social benefits of Russian servicemen and their
families. The Russian side has sought all along to focus the
negotiations on regularizing the presence of its troops in
Moldova, rather than on the procedures for their withdrawal as the
Moldovan side wants. Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc.

                    CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

BOSNIA UPDATE. On 10 June, as a month-long cease-fire is scheduled
to go into effect in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Western media report
that tension and fighting continues to mark conditions throughout
the country. On 9 June Reuters reported that UN observers have
concluded that Serbs continue to wage ethnic cleansing campaigns
against non-Serbs throughout the region of Banja Luka. According
to a spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, ethnic
Serbs in the area are terrorizing people with impunity, while
local Serb authorities appear unwilling to stop the practice.
Meanwhile, also on 9 June AFP reported that the Bosnian army
continues to make gains against Serb forces in northern and
western Bosnia. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc.

CROATIAN POLITICAL STALEMATE. On 10 June Croatias major dailies
continue to report on the countrys political crisis which has
paralyzed the normal working of parliament. The opposition and the
ruling Croatian Democratic Community (HDZ), which appears to be
beset by its own internal schisms, have been unable to forge a
compromise which would permit all parties to agree on a formula
enabling parliament to go about daily business. Vecernji list
carries coverage of the political stalemate under the headline
Nothing New in the Sabor while Vjesnik offers the headline
Blockade of Parliament Benefits No One. In its coverage and
analysis of the situation, Globus offers up the conclusion that
the parliamentary crisis, it seems, is not going to be resolved in
the coming few days. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc.

SERBS STEP UP VIOLENCE IN KOSOVO. According to the International
Helsinki Federation for Human Rights (IHF), Serbian authorities in
the province of Kosovo, where ethnic Albanians make up roughly 90%
of the population, have intensified harassment of ethnic Albanians
in what the IHF fears may be a part of a deliberate Serbian policy
of ethnic cleansing. The human rights group notes that Serbian
harassment has been perhaps most prevalent against Albanian
schools and universities in the province. In just one of at least
hundreds of documented incidents, on 30 May 1994 Serbian police
allegedly stormed the University of Pristina, arresting seven
administrators and instructors. The victims were detained for days
before being released. The IHF concludes that Serbian tactics are
intimidating students and teachers and having the effect of
denying hundreds of thousands of young Albanians normal
intellectual development. In a separate AFP story, on 9 May
Albanias President Sali Berisha and Kosovar leader Ibrahim Rugova,
on a visit to Tirana, called for dialog with Belgrade, under
international mediation, to discuss the status and future of the
province of Kosovo. In the past, Belgrade has rejected all such
calls, maintaining that the question of Kosovos status is a
strictly domestic rump Yugoslav concern. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL,
Inc.

MACEDONIAN DEVELOPMENTS. US Special envoy, Matthew Nimetz, met
with President Kiro Gligorov, and foreign minister, Stevo
Crnvekovski , on 8 June according to MILS. Greek-Macedonian
differences along with the Greek trade blockade imposed upon
Macedonia were discussed. That same day, television station A1
noted that Greece may soon propose that Macedonia be renamed The
Central Balkan Republic of Macedonia. On 10 June, according to
Vecer, Albanian and Macedonian agriculture officials concluded
discussions in Ohrid without signing an agreement concerning
cooperation because of a dispute over Macedonias official name.
Duncan Perry, RFE/RL, Inc.

HAVEL ON RUSSIA, CENTRAL EUROPE. In an interview published in the
Moscow weekly Moskovskie Novosti on 9 June, Czech President Vaclav
Havel said that Central Europe is disturbed by Russian politicians
who seek a veto over which multilateral organizations Central
European countries join. According to Havel, these politicians
seem to suggest that Central Europe is within Russias sphere of
influence. It is up to Central Europeans to decide where they
stand, said Havel. The Czech president is also quoted as saying
that he did not think that the success of leftist parties in
Central Europe signals a return to Communism. In his opinion, it
is simply a part of a democratic development. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL,
Inc.

DISCORD AMONG SLOVAKIAS ETHNIC HUNGARIAN PARTIES. Despite calls
for a three-party preelection coalition among Slovakias ethnic
Hungarian parties--Coexistence, the Hungarian Christian Democratic
Movement and the Hungarian Civic Party--the success of such a
coalition seems unlikely. Although Coexistence, which is the
largest and the most popular ethnic Hungarian party, has agreed to
discuss this possibility, analysts say the party will probably
continue to favor its present two-party coalition with the HCDM.
In a press conference of the HCP on 9 June, Chairman Laszlo Nagy
said his party regards the possible candidacy of its members as
independents on the election list of the two-party coalition of
the Coexistence-HCDM as unacceptable, saying this solution would
betray the desires of the Hungarian inhabitants of Slovakia. Nagy
said it was premature to say that the possibility of discussions
among the three Hungarian parties has been exhausted, TASR
reports. There has also been tension between Coexistence and the
HCDM, following statements of Coexistence Chairman Miklos Duray
critical of the present government and the failure of three
Coexistence deputies to support the road sign bill, which failed
by one vote on 3 June. Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL, Inc.

HUNGARIAN DEMOCRATIC FORUM PARLIAMENTARY LEADER ELECTED. The
parliamentary fraction of the HDF elected on 9 June Finance
Minister Ivan Szabo as its new leader, MTI reports. Szabo pledged
that the parliamentary group, which shrunk from 164 at the time of
the 1990 elections to 37, would play the role of a constructive
opposition and promote a dialogue between parliamentary parties.
He also announced that the HDF would seek to strengthen its
profile as a national Christian party. Referring to his partys
defeat in the May elections, Szabo said that voters put their own
interests ahead of the values that his party stood for, and vowed
that in the future the HDF would convey to voters more effectively
that it also represented their interests. Edith Oltay, RFE/RL,
Inc.

POLISH OPPOSITION BOYCOTTS STRATEGY SPEECH. All four opposition
parties in the Sejm walked out in protest on 9 June when the
ruling coalition used its controlling majority to vote to hear the
governments economic Strategy for Poland and then block any
discussion of it. Deputy Prime Minister Grzegorz Kolodko thus
presented his strategy to a half-empty Sejm. The Freedom Union
charged the coalition with arrogance and accused it of attempting
to silence the opposition. Other opposition leaders charged the
coalition with using its economic strategy--which, among other
things, promises an 11% increase in real wages in the next four
years--to win votes in the local elections scheduled for 19 June.
The Sejm leadership announced on 10 June that debate on the
strategy will take place in two weeks time, or after the
elections. A vote to liberalize abortion provisions (permitting
abortion in cases of financial or emotional hardship) has been
scheduled for 10 June, however, prompting new opposition charges
that the coalition is arranging the Sejm agenda to facilitate its
own victory in the local government elections. Louisa Vinton,
RFE/RL, Inc.

WALESA BALANCES BETWEEN COALITION AND OPPOSITION. Although Walesa
attended Kolodkos presentation on 9 June, he moved from his usual
seat to a chair in the back row of the presidential box when the
opposition walked out, PAP reports. The president hailed the
strategy as the best document of the past 4-5 years, but
criticized the coalition for manipulative timing. In a surprise
announcement, Walesa told a press conference on 9 June that he is
considering appointing Henryk Goryszewski to replace Jerzy
Milewski as head of his advisory National Security Bureau (BBN).
Goryszewski was a vocal but relatively unimportant deputy prime
minister in the Suchocka government, where he represented the
Christian National Union. Since that partys defeat in the 1993
elections, he has withdrawn from politics. Milewski has been the
source of friction with the coalition, as he holds both the post
of deputy defense minister and the presidential post. Asked by
reporters whether he would accept the BBN post, Goryszewski said,
one does not refuse the president. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc.

WALESA SHIFTS ON WAGE CONTROLS. The Sejm voted on 9 June to reject
the Senates amendments to draft legislation on wage controls in
state firms, PAP reports. These amendments would have limited the
validity of wage controls to the current year. The vote clears the
way for President Lech Walesa to sign the wage controls into law.
Although Walesa vetoed an earlier version of the bill and said
repeatedly that he would not sign a new version, he told a press
conference on 9 June that the current wave of strikes and the
threat of new inflation will likely force his hand. Poland has
been without wage controls since 1 April. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL,
Inc.

POLISH STEEL WORKERS ON STRIKE. In a protest co-sponsored by
Solidarity and the former official OPZZ union federation, workers
at the Lucchini steel mill (formerly Huta Warszawa) went out on
strike on 9 June, PAP reports. The strikers are demanding a 30%
pay increase and the rapid modernization of the plant, which has
been delayed by disputes over ownership of assets taken over by
the Polish-Italian joint venture. In a referendum on 7-8 June, 80%
of the work force supported the strike. The management declared
the strike illegal but said it would negotiate. Meanwhile, an
occupation strike shut down the Huta Katowice steel mill for the
ninth day running. Workers at Fiat Auto Poland are also
threatening to strike if their pay demands are not met, PAP
reports. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc.

BULGARIA AMENDS PRIVATIZATION LAW. On 9 June the National Assembly
adopted the final texts of the amendments in the law on
privatization from 1992. Most importantly, the amendments are
designed to pave way for mass privatization, not envisaged in the
original legislation. BTA reports that all Bulgarian citizens aged
above 18 will now be able to acquire investment bonds nominally
worth 25,000 leva by paying 500 leva. The bonds cannot be resold
but only used to buy shares directly in enterprises, or in
investment funds acting as trusts or holding companies. Parliament
also voted to establish a new organizational entity to supervise
the procedure, a Center for Mass Privatization whose Executive
Director will be appointed by the government. Foreign and
Bulgarian observers participating in a privatization seminar held
on 6 June criticized the mass privatization scheme for failing to
provide people with effective ownership rights, and for being
incomplete and based on outdated information about the companies
slated to be privatized. Speaking on Bulgarian National Radio on 9
June, Deputy Premier and Trade Minister Valentin Karabashev--whose
resignation has not yet been accepted by the cabinet--said that
the government did not need change legislation in order to
privatize. Karabashev pointed out that his ministry has sold 50
companies over the past 15 months and is negotiating on another
130 deals. Kjell Engelbrekt, RFE/RL, Inc.

ROMANIA ALLUDES TO TERRITORIAL ASPIRATIONS. At a news briefing on
8 June, the Romanian Foreign Ministrys chief spokesman, Mircea
Geoana, said that we do not hide the fact that talks with Russia
on a state treaty encounter difficulties over Romanias insistence
that the document address the matter of overcoming the
consequences of the Ribbentrop-Molotov pact, Radio Bucharest
reports. In Romanian political parlance, that formula connotes the
perceived right to reincorporate Bessarabia and northern Bukovina,
which are currently in Moldova and Ukraine. The notion is common
in Romanian political circles that the Russian Federation as a
legal successor of the USSR bears a responsibility in this regard.
Romanias negotiations on state treaties with its two eastern
neighbors are also deadlocked over Bucharests reluctance to
recognize Ukraines current borders and insistence to introduce
language on future unification with Moldova. Vladimir Socor,
RFE/RL, Inc.

LATVIAS CITIZENSHIP LAW PASSES SECOND READING. On 9 June the
Saeima passed the second reading of the citizenship law proposed
by the ruling coalition by a vote of 50 to 14 with 13 abstentions,
Reuters reports. The law stipulates preferential naturalization of
persons of whom at least one parent is an ethnic Latvian, persons
who came to Latvia and lived there before 17 June 1940, Lithuanian
and Estonian ethnic minorities, and spouses of Latvian citizens
who have been married for at least ten years. All these groups
should know the Latvian language. The law also gave preference to
persons who completed the full high course in Latvian. Citizenship
will not be given to persons whom a court has recognized as having
propagated the ideas of chauvinism, nationalism, and fascism as
well as working against Latvian independence as well as Soviet
military retirees if they are not ethnic Latvians or spouses of
Latvian citizens. Other people will be able to apply for
naturalization from 1 January 1996 with preference given to those
born in Latvia. From the year 2000 persons in other categories
will be naturalized with a naturalization quota of 0.1% of Latvias
citizens per year. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc.

LOW MAY INFLATION IN LATVIA AND ESTONIA. The Latvian State
Statistics Committee announced that consumer price index in May
grew by only 0.2%, BNS reported on 9 June. The monthly inflation
rate in the first four months of 1994 had been 3.8%, 3.4%, 1.7%,
and 2.7%, respectively. In May the price of food decreased by
1.2%, while that of clothing increased by 1.5%, public utilities
by 0.7%, health care by 2%, and culture and education by 2.9%. The
Estonian consumer price index increased by 1.1% in May. The
monthly inflation rate in the first four months of 1994 had been
5.5%, 5.2%, 8.9%, and 3.1% . Food prices in May dropped by 1.3%
while manufactured goods rose by 1.2% , and services by 3.5%.
Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc.

UKRAINE TO SCRAP AIR CRAFT CARRIER. On 9 June Interfax reported
that Ukraine had decided to scrap the aircraft carrier Varyag now
under construction in the Mykolaiv shipyards. The carrier is
around 65% complete, but Ukraine itself does not have any use for
it and has been unable to find a buyer. There were rumors in 1992
that China was interested in purchasing the carrier, but no deal
ever materialized. Deputy Prime Minister Valerii Shmarov said that
Ukraine had proposed that Russia buy the carrier, but when Russia
refused it was decided to scrap the vessel. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL,
Inc.

UKRAINES GAZPROM DEBT. Following a meeting between a Gazprom
delegation and Ukrainian officials in Kiev on 3-4 June, it was
agreed that Ukraine is to pay Gazprom $130 million this month for
gas, Interfax reported on 9 June. In addition, Ukraine is to pay
$500 million by the end of August and deliver facilities and
services worth 500 billion rubles to pay off its over $1 billion
debt. Part of the agreement calls for Ukraine to built 308,700
square meters of housing in Russia for Russian gas industry
workers. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

MORE ON BELARUSIAN PRESIDENTIAL RACE. The leader of the Party of
Popular Accord, Henadz Karpenka, has agreed to support the
candidacy of the leader of the Belarusian Popular Front, Zyanon
Paznyak, Belarusian radio reported on 9 June. Karpenka had been
disqualified from the presidential race after the electoral
commission invalidated a number of the signatures in his support
leaving him short of the necessary 100,000, and several deputies
retracted their support for him leaving him short of the 70
deputies signatures necessary to be placed on the ballot. In other
news, Belarusian television reported that the leader of the Party
of Communists of Belarus, Vasil Novikau, also a presidential
candidate, has said that he does not believe any single candidate
will receive enough votes in the first round of balloting to be
elected president. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

[As of 1200 CET]

Compiled by Bess Brown and Jan de Weydenthal
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