We are all apt to believe what the world believes about us. - George Eliot
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 111, 14 June 1994

                              RUSSIA

GRACHEV: ARMED FORCES TO BE CUT. Following parliament's rejection
of his call for a significant increase in the proposed military
budget and subsequent criticism by President Boris Yeltsin of the
army's reform efforts, Defense Minister Pavel Grachev announced on
13 June that the authorized strength of the Russian armed forces
would be reduced to 1.9 million by 1 October 1994. Current
authorized strength of the army is 2.2 million, although the
actual number of men and women in uniform is believed to be less
than 1.5 million. Interfax reports Grachev said that the
reductions would effect officers as well as soldiers, and that 270
generals would be dismissed by the end of the year. In his 10 June
remarks, Yeltsin had suggested that the military leadership should
cut its forces more rapidly (although he referred in a puzzling
fashion to Russia's inability to maintain an army of three
million).  Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

THE LATEST IN A SERIES OF TARGETS. The figure of 1.9 million is
only the latest in a series of manpower targets that have been
announced by military leaders since the establishment of a Russian
army in the spring of 1992. The original target was 1.5 million,
although there was some disagreement over when this level would be
reached. Following the October 1993 routing of the Russian
parliament, military leaders urged that the nation maintain an
army of at least 2.1 million. More recently, there were
intimations that the army would aim for a figure of 1.9 million by
1 January 1995. The formal numbers are to some extent academic;
draft deferments, draft resistance, the low prestige of the
military as a career, and the voluntary withdrawal from the army
of thousands of young officers have all conspired to keep actual
manpower levels well below the authorized levels.  Stephen Foye,
RFE/RL, Inc.

DEATHS IN THE RUSSIAN ARMY. Interfax on 12 June quoted the head of
a Russian association that defends the rights of Russian
servicemen as saying that 25-30 Russian soldiers and officers died
daily and that the number of such deaths was twice what the
Defense Ministry admitted. Anatolii Alexeyev also claimed that the
Military Prosecutor's office was failing to investigate the
culpability of commanding officers for the deaths of Russian
soldiers. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

KOZYREV ON BOSNIA SANCTIONS. Russian Foreign Minister Andrei
Kozyrev warned that unilateral lifting sanctions against Bosnia
while maintaining them against Serbia, would "create a new
political situation" according to a Reuters report of 14 June.
Kozyrev reportedly went on to warn that it could bring back "the
worst years of the Cold War" according to the dispatch. Kozyrev
spoke to reporters after meeting with Bosnian Serb leader Radovan
Karadzic, who is in Moscow to receive a prize for his poetry from
the Russian Writers' Union. Details of the meeting have not been
disclosed. The tough, and even threatening, language is a
departure from Kozyrev's usually more cautious approach, and is a
clear reaction to calls from the US Congress to remove the embargo
on weapons to Bosnia.  John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc.

FOREIGN POLICY CLUBS. Nezavisimaya gazeta reported on 2 June about
the fifth conference of the "Suzdal Club," one of several foreign
policy lobbies in Russia. The Suzdal Club was formed two years ago
to bring together scholars and experts for the study of foreign
policy issues and, more importantly, to introduce new ideas into
policy-making by linking these people with policy-makers. Such
organizations are gaining popularity in Russia. The Council for
Foreign and Defense policy maintains an influential membership of
both experts and policy-makers, and it has had a palpable impact
on Russian foreign policy. (See RFE/RL Daily Report, 6 June 1994).
Suzanne Crow, RFE/RL, Inc.

CLUB '93. Another such organization, "Club '93," maintains a
membership of experts both inside and outside of the government.
It was formed in the spring of 1993 with the expressed aim of
redirecting Russia's domestic and foreign policies. According to
the New Times (no. 6, 1994), this group played a major part in the
"ideological shift" that took place in Russian foreign policy. The
thesis driving the club's members is the belief that Russia's
problems cannot be solved by programs but by "the adoption of new
ideologems." Club '93, which boasts about 50 members, is chaired
by State Duma deputy Vyacheslav Nikonov, and its members include
Presidential Councilors Andranik Migranyan, Georgii Satarov,
Sergei Karaganov, as well as Gorbachev Foundation staffers Aleksei
Salmin and Viktor Kuvaldin. Suzanne Crow, RFE/RL, Inc.

GAIDAR ELECTED CHAIRMAN OF NEW PARTY. Former acting prime minister
Egor Gaidar has been elected chairman of the newly founded party,
Russia's Democratic Choice, an RFE/RL correspondent in Moscow
reported on 13 June; 498 delegates to the founding congress of the
party voted in favor of Gaidar and 14 voted against. The party's
main core is the State Duma faction, Russia's Choice. The new
party intends to represent the interests of businessmen, bankers
and those regional leaders who have benefited from and support
market-oriented reforms.  Vera Tolz, RFE/RL, Inc.

BURYAT ELECTIONS. Three elections blocs have formed for the
election of the first president of Buryatia and the new Buryat
parliament, the Popular Khural, on 16 June, ITAR-TASS reported on
13 June. Three of the four presidential candidates lead these
blocs. The Minister of Education Sergei Namsaraev heads the
"Education and the Future" movement, which was set up by those
working in education. The Chairman of the Supreme Soviet Leonid
Potapov heads the "Social Justice" bloc which includes women's,
veterans', and youth organizations, the republican sections of the
communist and agrarian parties of Russia, and the trades union
council. The chairman of the State Committee for the Economy
Aleksandr Ivanov heads the "For a Worthy Life" bloc, which has the
support of the executive structures and commerce. The fourth
candidate is a private entrepreneur. Earlier attempts had been
made to exclude Potapov from the running by setting an upper
age-limit of 55 years.  Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc.

ARMED CLASH IN GROZNYI. At least eight people were killed as a
result of armed clashes between government troops and members of
opposition groups in the Chechen capital, Groznyi on 12 and 13
June, Interfax and ITAR-TASS reported. The reports are somewhat
confused, but it appears that following a government decision on
10 June that illegal armed bands should be disarmed without delay,
the leaders of two of the largest of such bands, Ruslan Labazanov
and Khoza Suleimanov, brought their men into the center of Groznyi
and tried to negotiate with the government. When this failed, they
held a demonstration demanding inter alia the resignation of
President Dzhokhar Dudaev. As a result of the government action,
Suleimanov was seriously wounded and taken into custody. The
whereabouts of Labazanov, who was described by Komsomolskaya
pravda on 4 May as enjoying popularity in certain circles
comparable with that of Dudaev, is not known.  Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL,
Inc.

PRESIDENT OF TUVA ON EVE OF YELTSIN'S VISIT. The President of Tuva
Sherig-ool Oorzhak told ITAR-TASS on 11 June that he regards
Yeltsin's planned visit to Tuva on 15-16 June as a step on the
part of the center to meet the interests of the regions. Referring
to Moscow's objections to certain aspects of the Tuvin
constitution, Oorzhak said that local circumstances accounted for
the Tuvin constitution's rejection of private ownership of land
and the irreplaceability of judges. As for the other
contraventions of the Russian constitution, including the right of
secession, Oorzhak hoped that Moscow "will understand us
correctly," and that Yeltsin's visit will finally dispel "the myth
of the existence of so-called Tuvin separatism." Oorzhak said Tuva
urgently needed assistance in reforming its economy; this had been
self-sufficient when Tuva was independent (i.e. until 1944), but
under Soviet rule it had become "hopelessly subsidized." Ann
Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc.

                               CIS

RUSSIAN-MOLDOVAN TROOP TALKS UPDATE. Following last week's
unproductive ninth round of bilateral negotiations, which seemed
to inch toward regularizing the status of Russian troops in
Moldova, the new Moldovan Foreign Minister, Mihai Popov,
reaffirmed Chisinau's demand for the withdrawal of Russia's 14th
Army "without any linkage to other issues." He will take up the
matter with Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev this week in
Moscow, Popov told Interfax on 13 June. Meanwhile, Maj.-Gen.
Stepan Kitsak and Maj.-Gen. Vladimir Atamanenko, former officers
of the 14th Army now commanding "Dniester" forces, warned on
Tiraspol TV that Russia and Moldova were about to agree on a
division of the 14th Army's assets between them in the event of a
future withdrawal. In that case, the commanders said, the
"Dniester republic" will claim all of the Army's equipment,
Basapress reported from Tiraspol on 13 June. The Supreme Soviet in
Tiraspol has already passed an edict to that effect.  Vladimir
Socor, RFE/RL, Inc.

                  TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA

KAZAKHS CRITICIZE CHINESE TEST. Kazakhstan's Foreign Ministry has
issued a statement criticizing China's underground nuclear test of
10 June. Almaty Radio on 11 June quoted the ministry as saying,
"It worries us that this test was carried out in a neighboring
state and might cause serious problems in ecology and health."
China's test site, Lop Nor, is located 1,000 kilometers east of
the Chinese-Kazakh border, and Kazakhstan's President, Nursultan
Nazarbaev, has repeatedly warned of the environmental risks for
his republic from continued testing at Lop Nor, citing
contamination at the former Soviet nuclear test site of
Semipalatinsk (in northern Kazakhstan) as evidence. Chinese
Premier Li Peng, while in Almaty in April 1994, assured Nazarbaev
that the tests pose no threat to Kazakhstan; while he confirmed
that China is seeking a complete nuclear test ban by 1996, he
refused to rule out continued testing in the meantime.  Keith
Martin, RFE/RL, Inc.

AKAEV ON RUSSIAN EXODUS. Kyrgyzstan President Askar Akaev has
expressed grave concern about the continuing emigration of ethnic
Russians from the republic, calling it a "catastrophe" for both
Kyrgyzstan and Russia, Interfax reports. Akaev blamed the
Russians' departure on general problems, such as the collapse in
living standards, but also on specific issues related to local
difficulties with economic reform, the declaration of Kyrgyz as
the official language and preferential treatment for ethnic
Kyrygz. According to the president, 170,000 of the 918,000
Russians living in the republic in 1990 have left; Russians now
account for 17 percent of the population, as opposed to 21.2
percent in 1990. Many of the emigres are reportedly having trouble
finding housing and employment in Russia. Akaev's remarks were
made at the opening of a roundtable forum in Bishkek, entitled
"Russians in Kyrgyzstan," on 11 June; the roundtable is to discuss
ways of improving conditions for Russians in Kyrygzstan.  Keith
Martin, RFE/RL, Inc.

NEW UZBEK PARTY FORMED. Radio Liberty's Uzbek Service has learned
that a new political party, Istiqlal Yoli (Independence Path), was
founded in Tashkent on 12 June. The formation of the party is
largely the work of Shadi Karimov, who had formerly belonged to
the main opposition movement, Birlik, and the only opposition
party to be legally recognized (but since banned), Erk. Karimov,
whose opposition credentials are questioned, especially after he
issued a scathing criticism of Erk and its leader, Muhammed Saleh,
says that his new party wants to work with Uzbekistan's president,
Islam Karimov, but would like to see changes is some unspecified
policy areas.  Keith Martin, RFE/RL, Inc.

                    CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

RUSSIAN HELICOPTER DEFECTS FROM BOSNIAN SERBS TO MUSLIMS. AFP
reports on 14 June that a Russian MI-17 "HIP" helicopter with two
pilots bolted from Bosnian Serb forces on 8 June and went over to
the Muslim side. AFP says it obtained confirmation of the story
but the defectors' motives remain unclear. They reportedly brought
other "presents to prove their good intentions" when they left
Serb lines near Mt. Vlasic for the Bosnian Third Corps to the east
at Zenica. It was the first such defection of Russians in the
conflict, but the Muslims said they do not need more men and it is
unlikely the Russians will stay there. The helicopter, however, is
another matter for the equipment-starved Muslims, and they have
already begun putting the machine through tests.  Patrick Moore,
RFE/RL, Inc.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS FROM THE BATTLEFIELDS. Belgrade dailies on 14
June quote UN representative Yasushi Akashi as calling the Muslim
and Croat shelling of Brcko "reprehensible." Brcko is a mainly
Muslim town in northeast Bosnia taken by the Serbs in 1992 and
subsequently "ethnically cleansed." It is a vital point along the
northern corridor linking Serbia with its conquests in Bosnia and
Croatia. Meanwhile, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung says that
the Serbs have promised to help beleaguered Bihac warlord Fikret
Abdic with tanks and heavy artillery in his battle with Bosnian
government forces. The paper adds that Serb forces twice shelled a
UNPROFOR armored patrol near Maglaj in north central Bosnia in a
deliberate attack, to which the UN forces responded with fire.
Finally, Borba reports that Krajina Serbs have refused admission
to their territory to the US ambassador Croatia, and Politika adds
that Krajina Serbs will not talk to the Croatian government unless
they are accepted as equals. The Krajina rebels fear that Belgrade
will make a deal with Zagreb at their expense and have seemed
increasingly nervous in recent months. Patrick Moore, RFE/RL, Inc.

ANOTHER TOP CROATIAN POLITICIAN DISTANCES HIMSELF FROM TUDJMAN.
Vecernji list on 11 June ran an interview with Franjo Greguric,
the vice-president of the ruling Croatian Democratic Community
(HDZ) and the head of the oil enterprise INA, the largest company
in Croatia. He is generally regarded as a moderate and is one of
the republic's most prominent political figures. He told the
Zagreb daily, which is close to the HDZ, that President Franjo
Tudjman has carried out his job, but that people around him have
misused their positions. He also criticized the attacks on former
members of the HDZ's left wing, who have since left to found their
own party. Greguric argues that it is impossible that these men
are as wicked as the HDZ now makes them out to be and that it is
not right that they are demonized more than Serbian President
Slobodan Milosevic is. While Greguric does not directly attack
Tudjman, the gist of his criticism is clear. Many observers have
suggested in the wake of the split in the HDZ this spring that the
president must now either align himself with the "critical mass"
at the center of his party or risk becoming a captive of the
Right. His main advantage to date is that the opposition has yet
to mount a credible challenge to him, but this could change if the
electorate comes to perceive him as the man responsible for the
disasters in Bosnia last year and for undemocratic practices at
home. Patrick Moore, RFE/RL, Inc.

ALBANIANS IN MACEDONIA CRITICIZE CENSUS. The planned census in
Macedonia has been criticized by both ethnic Albanian parties in
the Macedonian parliament--the Party of Democratic Prosperity and
the Democratic People's Party--Rilindja reported on 7 June. After
a joint meeting of political parties and other ethnic Albanian
institutions on 6 June in Skopje, they complained about the
alleged poor preparation of the census, saying that large parts of
the population have not been issued census forms and that
registration started too late. In a joint declaration the
Albanians also said that ethnic Albanians from the bureau of
statistics were not duly included in the process. The parties
concluded that "the census can not be carried out successfully if
the gaps and confusion connected with it are not eliminated."
Meanwhile in Sofia, the independent Standart daily on 9 June
quoted the leader of Macedonia's pro-Bulgarian Party for Human
Rights, Iliya Ilievski, as warning his party would not recognize
the census since the Bulgarian language is not going to be
mentioned in the questionnaire.  Fabian Schmidt, RFE/RL, Inc.

ETHNIC SERB FROM KOSOVO NAMED TIRANA AMBASSADOR. On 11 June
Albanian media reported that Zivorad Igic, an ethnic Serb from
Kosovo, was named Belgrade's new ambassador to Tirana. Igic is one
of eleven recent Serbian diplomatic appointments, and is among
those whose career is profiled by the Belgrade daily Borba on 14
June. The Albanian daily Rilindja reported that Igic was selected
for the post because he "met the wishes of the Kosovars [meaning,
Serbs in Kosovo] and the demands of the republican and federal
rump Yugoslav governments." The daily also calls the appointment,
which has yet to be accepted by Tirana, "a provocation", since it
regards Igic as a staunch supporter of Serbian President
Milosevic's anti-Albanian policies in Kosovo and has described him
as "the father of Apartheid" there. The daily also hints that the
Igic appointment may be a ploy to derail possible Albanian-Serbian
dialogue focusing on the question of Kosovo's political status and
which have been pursued by Albanian President Sali Berisha and
Albanian Kosovar leader Ibrahim Rugova.  Louis Zanga and Stan
Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc.

MASSIVE VOTER ABSTENTION IN LOCAL BULGARIAN ELECTION. Analyzing
the results of an election for mayor in the city of Veliko Tarnovo
in central Bulgaria, domestic newspapers on 14 June above all try
to explain why only 34.26% of the 81,244 registered voters
bothered to cast their ballots. As a result, the election results
on the previous day had been declared invalid. The Union of
Democratic Forces daily Demokratsiya carries a commentary implying
that a large part of its electorate is presumably disillusioned by
the fact that the former mayor, a UDF nominee, was recently
convicted for corruption. In support of this view, the article
points out that this is the first time in the post-1989 era that
the Bulgarian Socialist Party would have won a plurality of votes
in the city; the BSP candidate garnered 45.08% and the UDF
contestant merely 34.59% of the votes. In contrast, Standart
suggests that widespread voter abstention should be seen as a
protest in view of the perception that the major parties have been
trying to direct the local campaigns from their Sofia
headquarters, being concerned exclusively about political
ramifications on the national level. Otechestven vestnik says a
new round will be scheduled for either 19 or 26 June.  Kjell
Engelbrekt, RFE/RL, Inc.

HUNGARIANS IN SLOVAKIA WANT CULTURAL AUTONOMY. In an interview
with Slovak Radio on 13 June, Hungarian Christian Democratic
Movement Chairman Bela Bugar said the basic condition for the
further development of the identity of ethnic Hungarians in
Slovakia is the right to have educational and cultural autonomy.
He said, however, that Hungarian representatives do not demand
territorial autonomy; they simply want to have their rights
protected by Slovak law. Bugar said that Slovak fears of the
severing of southern Slovakia constitute historical prejudice,
which should be eliminated. Coexistence Chairman Miklos Duray said
it is necessary to find agreement between representatives of the
Hungarian minorities in other states and the future coalition
government in Hungary, creating harmony which would be useful for
all of Central Europe. Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL, Inc.

MECIAR'S PARTY LEADS ATTACK ON PRESIDENT. In a press conference of
the Movement for a Democratic Slovakia on 13 June, Tibor Cabaj,
chairman of the MDS parliamentary caucus, said that his party
would submit a petition to the Slovak Constitutional Court to
start proceedings against President Michal Kovac. The reason for
the attack is the failure of Kovac to declare a referendum on
early elections and the mandates of parliamentary deputies after a
petition presented by the MDS had gained the required 350,000
signatures in early March. Instead, on 16 March Kovac's office had
announced that only about 232,000 of the names were valid; thus
the referendum drive was canceled. Cabaj said the petition was
signed by over 370,000 citizens and that the president had failed
"to fulfill his duty." In other political news, the Democratic
Union announced on 13 June that it is prepared to begin
discussions with the National Democratic Party on possible
cooperation in the upcoming parliamentary elections.  Sharon
Fisher, RFE/RL, Inc.

ROMANIAN JEWISH COMMUNITY GETS NEW LEADER. Scientist Nicolae Cajal
has been elected president of Romania's Federation of Jewish
Communities, Radio Bucharest announced on 13 June. The 75-year old
Cajal, who is also vice-president of the Romanian Academy, will
take over some of the responsibilities formerly held by Chief
Rabbi Moses Rosen, who died last month. He succeeds Rosen only in
lay functions, whereas the responsibilities of the Jewish
community's religious leadership will be taken over by a rabbi.
Rosen had held both posts since 1948.  Michael Shafir, RFE/RL,
Inc.

ROMANIA'S PARLIAMENT SPEAKER IN PRAGUE. Speaking to CTK during his
four-day visit, Romanian parliament speaker Adrian Nastase urged
closer political and economic cooperation between Romania and the
Czech Republic. Nastase argued that since the collapse of
communism five years ago, East European countries have focused
mainly on their internal problems and that the time has come to be
more active in international relations, not only with the West but
"between ourselves, in Central Europe." Czech President Vaclav
Havel is to visit Romania at the end of June.  Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL,
Inc.

SHAKE-UP IN POLISH PRESIDENT'S OFFICE. Polish President Lech
Walesa appointed former Deputy Prime Minister Henryk Goryszewski
to serve as head of his National Security Bureau (BBN) and
secretary of the National Defense Committee (KOK) on 13 June,
Polish TV reports. Goryszewski was one of Poland's most prominent
Catholic politicians until his party's defeat in the 1993
elections. He replaces Jerzy Milewski, who had served as the
highest-ranking presidential security official since January 1991.
After the new government was formed in November, Milewski had also
served as first deputy defense minister, a linkage of posts that
many political figures criticized as inappropriate. The president
apparently suggested that Milewski resign during a KOK meeting on
7 June, on the grounds that Milewski was overburdened. Walesa's
motives in the shake-up are unclear. Goryszewski's appointment may
be an early attempt to court the Catholic vote; or it may be
connected with Walesa's ongoing battle with the government for
direct presidential control over the military command. Louisa
Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc.

POLISH DEFENSE SPOKESMAN FIRED. In a further development
suggestive of the confusion that reigns in Polish civil-military
relations, Defense Minister Piotr Kolodziejczyk on 13 June fired
the defense ministry's press spokesman for publishing a
controversial article on military issues without official
approval, PAP reports. In the 9 June issue of Gazeta Wyborcza,
Col. Wieslaw Rozbicki had questioned the wisdom of Poland's
accession to the CFE treaty, on the grounds that it required
excessive disarmament by an already strapped army. He also
defended the recent transfer of military intelligence (WSI) from
the minister of defense to the General Staff, arguing that "it is
better for national security if a civilian minister does not have
full information provided by WSI." These remarks drew indignant
protests from the Sejm's National Defense Committee on 11 June.
The committee condemned Rozbicki for questioning government policy
and "failing to understand the basic principle of full state
control over the armed forces." In a letter to the committee
expressing regret, Kolodziejczyk castigated Rozbicki for holding
"completely wrongheaded" views.  Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc.

MORE PROBLEMS AT CHORNOBYL. The head of Ukraine's state accident
control center, Serhii Nazarenko, announced that there has been an
increase in the amount of contaminated water leaking from the
cooling pond where spent fuel rods are kept in Chornobyl,
Ukrainian television reported on 10 June. At that time Nazarenko
said the problem did not pose any immediate dangers. On 13 June
UNIAN reported that the leak had still not been pinpointed and
that two tons of radioactive water had been leaking daily since 7
June. The radiation level is around 1.0 microcuries per liter. The
leakage is taking place in the second reactor which was shut down
in 1991 because of a fire. The level of radioactivity is still
reportedly acceptable and efforts are being made to locate the
leak which include draining the pond. Ukraine is said to be
considering reopening the second reactor because of its energy
crisis. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

ZLENKO ON UKRAINE AND THE EU. Ukrainian delegates are to meet with
EU representatives in Luxembourg on 13-14 June to sign an
agreement on partnership which was reached on 8 February,
Ukrainian television reported on 12 June. The agreement would be
the first between the EU and a former Soviet republic. Ukrainian
Foreign Minister Anatolii Zlenko says the agreement is important
in several respects. Politically it gives Ukraine a degree of
national security, while economically it sets forth the terms for
trade between Ukraine and the EU and is Ukraine's opening for
establishing normal economic relations with western Europe. One of
the main issues receiving special attention in the deal is nuclear
safety in Ukraine and aid in helping close down the Chornobyl
nuclear power station. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

BALTIC PRIME MINISTERS MEET IN TALLINN. On 13 June Adolfas
Slezevicius (Lithuania), Valdis Birkavs (Latvia), and Mart Laar
(Estonia) met in Tallinn and formed a Baltic Council of Ministers,
Reuters reports. They signed an agreement on parliamentary and
government cooperation which was represented as "a historic step
towards the integration of the Baltic States into the European
Union." They issued a joint statement demanding that all Russian
troops leave Latvia and Estonia by 31 August unconditionally. Laar
noted that an agreement on cooperation in customs and border
control would be signed at their next meeting. Saulius Girnius,
RFE/RL, Inc.

SIX NEW MINISTERS IN LITHUANIA. On 10 June Prime Minister Adolfas
Slezevicius nominated six new ministers whom President Algirdas
Brazauskas approved, Radio Lithuania reports. Deputy Foreign
Minister Vladislavas Domarkas (55) was named Education and Science
Minister; former Culture and Education Minister Dainius Trinkunas
(63) Culture Minister; head of the Dambrava Forestry Research
Institute Albertas Vasiliauskas (59) Forestry Minister; and
presidential advisor on economic and social policy Aleksandras
Vasiliauskas (54) Economics Minister, effective immediately.
Former deputy head of the Environment Protection Department
Bronius Bradauskas (50) will become Environment Protection
Minister from 15 June. Social Security Minister Laurynas Mindaugas
Stankevicius (59) will become Government Reforms and Local Rule
Minister from 1 July. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc.

NEW LEADERSHIP FOR LATVIA'S TWO LARGEST CITIES. Following the
local elections throughout Latvia, the elected representatives
have been busy forming new governments. Baltic media reported on
13 June that Aleksjs Vidavskis, who ran on the left-of-center
Concord Party ticket, will be the new mayor of Latvia's second
largest city Daugavpils. Maris Purgailis of Latvia's National
Independence Movement (LNIM) will be the new mayor of Riga. The
60-member city council of Riga consists of representatives of 16
political organizations. The majority of representatives can be
described as right-of-center and are members of either LNIM and
the Green Party, which ran in the elections on a joint ticket.
Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL, Inc.

MOLDOVAN POPULAR FRONT THREATENS STREET ACTIONS. For the first
time since the Popular Front's heavy defeat in the February
legislative elections, 5,000 of its supporters rallied on 12 June,
without authorization, in Chisinau's central square. As reported
by Radio Bucharest and Basapres on 12 and 13 June, the Front's
leaders accused Moldova's leadership and parliament of inflicting
social hardships on the populace and of national treason for
joining the CIS; and they reaffirmed their commitment to
unification with Romania. They called on their supporters to use
extraparliamentary methods of struggle against the government,
including unauthorized demonstrations in central Chisinau in the
weeks ahead.  Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc.

[As of 1200 CET]
  Compiled by Dzintra Bungs and Patrick Moore
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1996 Friends and Partners
Natasha Bulashova, Greg Cole
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Updated: 1998-11-

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