|The burnt child shuns the fire until the next day. - Mark Twain|
No. 121, 28 June 1994
RUSSIA DEFENSE COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN ON ARMS SALES, NATO. Sergei Yushenkov, the chairman of the Russian Duma's defense committee, was quoted by ITAR-TASS on 27 June as saying that "Russia should carry on arms trade based upon the same principles" as those used by the West. Yushenkov complained that from 1987 to 1993 the share of the world's arms trade controlled by the US had risen from 30% to almost 60%, while Russia's had fallen to 5%. He said that Thailand was currently talking to Russia about a possible arms deal and that Moscow was hoping to peddle military hardware in Latin America. Yushenkov also praised Russia's signing of the NATO Partnership for Peace agreement, suggesting--in a not entirely convincing fashion--that it could lead Europe to open its markets to products from Russia's military industrial sector and that it might also help reestablish Russia as a supplier of spare parts to Poland, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. NATO COMMANDER IN MOSCOW. NATO's Supreme Allied Commander Europe, US General George Joulwan, arrived in Moscow on 26 June to begin several days of talks with Russian political and military leaders. His visit comes in the wake of Moscow's decision to sign the NATO Partnership for Peace agreement. On 27 June Joulwan met with Oleg Soskovets, Russian First Deputy Foreign Minister. According to ITAR-TASS, Soskovets told Joulwan that Moscow remains responsible for Tajikistan's outer borders, with the prevention of conflicts in the Caucasus, and with maintaining stability in Moldova; he suggested that these actions and Russia's peacekeeping activities in Yugoslavia were an indication of Russia's "considerable efforts in the promotion of peace." According to Interfax, Joulwan also discussed peacekeeping operations on 27 June with Russian General Staff Chief Mikhail Kolesnikov. He schedule includes a meeting with Russian Defense Minister Pavel Grachev. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. KOZYREV DEFENDS PARTICIPATION IN NATO PROGRAM. Speaking to reporters prior to a meeting with General George Joulwan, Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev said that Russian deputies who opposed their country's participation in NATO's Partnership for Peace program were "red-brown political curs who want to return Russia to isolation." Those who accuse Russia's leaders of betraying Russia's interest through this program are themselves traitors who are eternally search for an enemy, Kozyrev said. He commented in particular on the leader of the communist bloc in parliament, Gennadii Zugyanov, saying that he was "tempted by the laurels of his predecessors," AFP and Interfax reported. Suzanne Crow, RFE/RL, Inc. CHERNOMYRDIN ENTICES WESTERN INVESTORS . . . Meeting with a blue-ribbon group of Western business leaders in Moscow on 27 June, Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin announced plans to introduce a new package of incentives to encourage foreign investment in Russia. The government plans to offer foreign firms a five-year tax holiday; to allow duty-free imports of equipment and materials; to guarantee the stability of taxation legislation; to permit firms to retain all hard-currency profits from exports; to remove other restrictions on the flow of capital; and to enable fully foreign-owned firms to purchase the land on which they are located. Chernomyrdin said that, having stabilized the economy and successfully pushed the 1994 budget through the parliament, the government will now concentrate on improving "the investment climate." The political atmosphere in Russia is now more favorable for economic reform than it has been since early 1992, the prime minister said. Chernomyrdin acknowledged, however, that the introduction of the new incentives could take time. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. . . . BUT INVESTMENT ON THE DECLINE. Chernomyrdin made his pitch as other government officials debated the recent decline in Western business interest in Russia. Deputy Economics Minister Yakov Urinson told a meeting of the government's consultative council on foreign investment on 27 June that less foreign money has been invested in Russia this year than in Estonia. Urinson added that countries such as Hungary and Poland have also outdistanced Russia. Total foreign investment at the end of 1993 amounted to $2.7 billion, an increase of $1.4 billion for the year. But only $1 billion in new investment is expected in 1994. Still, firms with foreign capital have created about 300,000 new jobs in Russia, according to ITAR-TASS. Deputy Prime Minister Oleg Soskovets noted that Russia has attracted only about 0.1% of the world's total foreign investment. Acting Finance Minister Sergei Dubinin told the council that the government plans to reduce some taxes and conduct a thorough review of taxation policy in 1995, in part with an eye to attracting more foreign investment. He pledged that the government will continue to adhere to a strict fiscal policy in 1995, despite the defeat of hyperinflation. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. NEW DEPARTMENT HEAD IN PRESIDENTIAL ADMINISTRATION. Nikolai Medvedev has been dismissed from the post of head of the Department for the Work with Territories (that is, constituent regions of the Russian Federation) in the presidential administration, ITAR-TASS reported on 27 June. The head of the presidential administration, Sergei Filatov, blamed Medvedev for the department's failure to prepare legislation on local self-government on time. Leaders of Russian regions have been promised by the federal government that the draft legislation will soon be given to the State Duma for consideration, but in fact the work on it is only starting. Filatov said Medvedev also failed to establish good contacts with presidential envoys in the regions. (The institute of presidential envoys has been criticized by many politicians in Moscow as well by heads of regional administrations. The new Russian Constitution stipulates the existence of this institute, however.) Filatov also blamed on Medvedev the mishandling of the dismissal of the head of the administration of the Bryansk oblast. The ouster of popularly elected Yurii Lodkin provoked protest demonstrations in Bryansk. Medvedev has been replaced by Aleksandr Kazakov. Until now, Kazakov has worked in Goskomimushchestvo, headed by the Privatization Minister Anatolii Chubais. Vera Tolz, RFE/RL, Inc. ZHIRINOVSKY IN NIZHNII NOVGOROD. Protests were held in the city of Nizhnii Novgorod on 27 June against the visit by the ultra-nationalist leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky, ITAR-TASS reported. Zhirinovsky accused Nizhnii Novgorod regional governor Boris Nemtsov and his team of organizing the demonstrations. In fact, during Zhirinovsky's stay in Nizhnii Novgorod Nemtsov was out of town. Interfax reported on 27 June that Zhirinovsky seized Nemtsov's office for two hours and attempted to use the governor's direct telephone to President Yeltsin's office to complain about his treatment. After being forced out of the office, Zhirinovsky called for the resignation and imprisonment of Nemtsov. Vera Tolz, RFE/RL, Inc. YET ANOTHER AGREEMENT ON RESETTLEMENT OF INGUSH REFUGEES. The presidents of North Ossetia and Ingushetia, Akhsarbek Galazov and Ruslan Aushev, together with the head of the Provisional Administration in these republics, Vladimir Lozovoi, signed an agreement at Vladikavkaz airport late in the evening of 26 June on the procedure for the return of Ingush refugees to four villages in the Prigorodnyi raion of North Ossetia, ITAR-TASS reported. Ramazxan Abdulatipov, deputy chairman of the Federation Council, was also present. In an interview with ITAR-TASS Lozovoi described the agreement as an important step forward, and similar sentiments were expressed by the other signatories, but it remains to be seen if this agreement is any more effective than the ones that have gone before. Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc. CIS KUCHMA, KRAVCHUK DIFFER ON NPT. The two leading presidential candidates differ on the urgency of Ukraine's acceding to the non-proliferation treaty (NPT). ITAR-TASS on 26 June said President Kravchuk told journalists that he would call upon parliament to immediately accede to the NPT "with certain provisos" if elected. According to Interfax and Reuters reports of the same day, Leonid Kuchma stated that NPT accession is a low priority and that he would not press parliament for action until $1 billion in aid for denuclearization was received from the US. The latter figure is far larger than the approximately $350 million now allocated to Ukraine under the Nunn-Lugar act. Kuchma, the former chief of a missile plant, has a mixed record on the nuclear weapons issue. While prime minister he was instrumental in negotiating the Massandra protocols which paved the way for the Trilateral Accord which requires Ukraine to transfer all its nuclear weapons to Russia. Even so, Kuchma supported the accord only half-heartedly. In June 1993 Kuchma reportedly told parliament during a closed debate that Ukraine should become a nuclear state, but he is only on the public record as suggesting that Ukraine join the NPT with a "special status" specifying that Ukraine possesses nuclear weapons temporarily. John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. REFERENDUM ON BLACK SEA FLEET. In a non-binding referendum conducted simultaneously with the presidential election, voters in Sevastopol were able to express their opinion on whether the Black Sea Fleet should remain based there, according to Interfax and UNIAN reports of 27 June. Not surprisingly, 83% of those voting (turnout was approximately 64%) voted in favor of keeping the fleet. Preliminary vote counts showed Leonid Kuchma winning 82.6% of the vote in Crimea as a whole, with President Kravchuk placing a distant second with 7.2% of the vote. Interfax claimed that Kuchma won 89% of the vote from fleet personnel based in Izmail and Mykolaiv. (Many fleet personnel are Russian citizens and therefore ineligible to vote.) John Lepingwell, RFE/RL, Inc. TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA TAJIK TALKS END WITHOUT CEASEFIRE. Talks in Tehran between representatives of the Tajik government and of the Tajik opposition ended on 27 June without agreement on a hoped-for ceasefire but with both sides eager for another round of negotiations in their quest to end the fighting and normalize the political situation in Tajikistan, Western and Russian news agencies reported. UN mediator Ramiro Piriz-Ballon told AFP that a third round of negotiations is scheduled for the end of July in Islamabad. AFP reported that opposition representatives had proposed a conditional ceasefire to go into effect on 1 August if the government began freeing political prisoners. Government representatives asked for a timetable of at least four months to prepare the release of prisoners and an amnesty for opposition leaders. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc. CURRENCY EXCHANGE BEGINS IN UZBEKISTAN. An exchange of temporary coupons for Uzbekistan's own currency, the sum, begins on 28 June, Russian sources report. The coupons were issued in November 1993 when Uzbekistan withdrew from the ruble zone rather than meeting what Uzbek officials considered Russia's excessive demands for hard currency payments as a condition for membership. According to a presidential decree quoted by Interfax on 27 June, the sum will be the only legal tender in Uzbekistan as of 1 July, though sum-coupons may be used in trade or be deposited in the Uzbek Savings Bank until 1 August. Uzbek President Islam Karimov was quoted by Interfax on 27 June as telling government officials that the sum should be a convertible currency in order to guarantee its position on the world market. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc. CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE UKRAINE VOTE UNDERLINES EAST-WEST SPLIT. In Ukraine's presidential elections on 26 June, President Leonid Kravchuk received about 45% of the vote, with former Prime Minister Leonid Kuchma finishing second with roughly 35%, according to still partial and unofficial results. Kravchuk and Kuchma will thus compete in the second round of the elections scheduled for 10 July. Preliminary election results underline the political gap that divides the eastern and western portions of the country; this division has prompted new press speculation on the viability of Ukraine as a single, unified state. Unofficial data show that Kravchuk, running on a platform of national independence, was strong in independence-conscious western Ukraine, winning 90% of the vote in Lviv, 70% in Rovno, and 82% in Ternopil. In some towns on the Polish border, Kravchuk won as much as 99% of the vote, according to PAP. In contrast, Kuchma, who campaigned for closer ties with Russia, appears to have won majorities in the Donbass and other regions of industrialized eastern Ukraine. In Crimea, Kuchma took 82.5% of the vote. Conservative Oleksandr Moroz and free-market reformer Volodymyr Lanovy appeared to be running a distant third and fourth, Western agencies report. Rukh leaders indicated they will support Kravchuk in the runoff, as a "lesser evil" candidate committed to Ukrainian independence. Full official results are to be made public on 28 June. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. KEBICH, LUKASHENKA COMMENT ON ELECTIONS. Speaking to reporters in Minsk on 27 June, Belarus Prime Minister Vyachaslau Kebich, who came in second in the first round of the country's presidential election on 23 June, said he will dismiss some of his cabinet members. "I take the first-round elections to mean there need to be decisive changes in the government," Kebich said. He vowed to fight to the end, saying he was "counting on votes from level-headed people." Kebich received 17% of the vote in the first round of the elections, far behind the 45% received by Alyaksandr Lukashenka, former head of the parliament's anti-corruption committee. Lukashenka told reporters on 27 June that "the prime minister is the biggest stain on the government and that stain should be washed out immediately." Lukashenka also said that a wave of provocations was being prepared against him. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. POLAND'S KOLODKO PLANS PERSONNEL OVERHAUL. Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Grzegorz Kolodko announced plans on 27 June to "regroup forces" in Poland's economic ministries, in order better to implement his long-term program, the "Strategy for Poland." As expected, two veteran deputy ministers--Henryk Chmielak and Wojciech Misiag--were dismissed on 27 June. They were replaced by Elzbieta Chojna-Duch, a Warsaw University professor of financial law who has served as an adviser to the finance ministry, and Krzysztof Kalicki, who has headed the finance ministry's foreign department since the beginning of 1993. Chmielak was appointed to head the Warta insurance company on 27 June, while Misiag told Polish TV that he plans to use up some of the 140 vacation days he accumulated over the past five years before looking for new employment. Prime Minister Waldemar Pawlak told reporters that he had approved the ministry changes at Kolodko's request. Pawlak said that staffing choices are each minister's prerogative, although his own unilateral decision to fire a deputy finance minister provoked Kolodko's predecessor to resign in February. Kolodko indicated that personnel changes at other economic ministries are in the offing. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. POLAND'S UNION OF LABOR IN OPPOSITION. Speculation quickly focused on the Polish industry ministry, which is headed by Marek Pol, a member of the social-democratic Union of Labor (UP). The UP resolved on 26 June to shift from its past position of skeptical support for the two-party ruling coalition to outright opposition, on the grounds that Kolodko's "strategy" represents a shift to the right in government economic policy. In a statement reported by PAP, the UP said that the government's eight months in power represented "a lost opportunity for a leftist turning-point." Although Pol has never officially represented the UP in the cabinet, he acknowledged on 27 June that he may be forced to choose between remaining a minister or remaining a member of his party. Democratic Left Alliance activist Leszek Miller argued that the UP's decision was a reaction to its poor showing in the local government elections on 19 June. The UP's move to the opposition has no practical consequences, as the ruling coalition does not need the party's votes to command a parliamentary majority. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. ROMANIAN OPPOSITION MOVES NO-CONFIDENCE MOTION. The Romanian parliamentary opposition moved a no-confidence motion in the government of premier Nicolae Vacaroiu at a joint session of both houses of parliament. Radio Bucharest broadcast the session live on 27 June. The motion charges the government with corruption, non-implementation of its own program, and failed economic reforms. According to procedure, the no-confidence motion must be voted upon no later than 2 July. Michael Shafir, RFE/RL, Inc. ALBANIAN PREMIER IN PRAGUE. Aleksander Meksi arrived in Prague on 26 June for a three-day visit. Czech media report that it is the first visit by an Albanian premier in more than 40 years. On 27 June Meksi met with Czech Premier Vaclav Klaus who said after the meeting that the Czech Republic will probably offer Albania a $11 million loan. Meksi and Czech officials later signed agreements on trade and technical cooperation and on investment protection. Meksi also met with Czech Foreign Minister Josef Zieleniec. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. HAVEL WRITES TO COALITION PARTIES. Czech President Vaclav Havel sent a letter on 27 June to the chairmen of the four Czech government coalition parties, expressing alarm over the fact that the coalition parties have not been able to find a consensus on the reform of the state administration and subdividing the Czech Republic into regions, despite the fact that the Czech Constitution foresees such a subdivision and that the government had promised to address the issue in its program two years ago. The Civic Democratic Party (CDP) of Premier Vaclav Klaus has repeatedly postponed efforts to adopt a plan for regional reform, prompting its coalition partners to become increasingly critical of what they see as the CDP's stonewalling. Havel wrote that he is afraid that "disagreements within the ruling coalition over the issue could threaten the stability of the country." He urged the coalition leaders to find a compromise solution quickly. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. CZECH ARMY TO RELY ON MiG-23, MiG-21 FIGHTER PLANES. Czech Defense Ministry officials told CTK on 27 June that the Czech Army will use MiG-23 ML planes until 1999. Owing to a lack of funds, the army will phase out MiG-23 MF and MiG-23 BN fighter planes. MiG-29 fighter planes will also be grounded due to financial problems; instead, the army will modernize thirty-six MiG-21 fighter planes. Some military experts have criticized this decision, arguing that MiG-21 planes are obsolete and that the army should keep the modern MiG-29 planes. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. CZECH FOREIGN MINISTER ON EU, AUSTRIA. In an interview with the Austrian press agency APA on 27 June, two days before his visit to Austria, Czech Foreign Minister Josef Zieleniec said that the results of Austria's recent referendum on joining the European Union "are encouraging for the Czech Republic." Zieleniec said that he "could not imagine Czech membership in the EU without Austrian membership." According to the foreign minister, relations between Prague and Vienna are historically "so deep that the structure of Central Europe would suffer immensely if Austria were not to be part of the EU." Zieleniec dismissed speculation that with Austria's becoming a EU member, "a Germanic bloc" within the EU could try to connect the Czech Republic's membership to satisfying the demands of Sudeten Germans. Both Austria and Germany have successfully dealt with their Nazi past, Zieleniec said, and in a democratic Europe "any connection between the Sudeten German issue and the Czech Republic's admission to the EU is out of question." However, if such a connection were to be made, "then God help us!" the Czech foreign minister said. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. SLOVAK PRESIDENT RETURNS FROM US VISIT. On 27 June Michal Kovac returned from a visit to the US, where he and his Hungarian counterpart Arpad Goncz were awarded a joint prize from the Institute for East-West Studies. During his week-long visit, Kovac met with US State Department officials, representatives of foreign policy institutes, businessmen, and Slovak Americans. In a press conference in Bratislava, Kovac said that no prejudice towards Slovakia exists, although there is a lack of information about the country. Since the cabinet of Premier Jozef Moravcik took office in March, he said, a positive change in the attitudes of US President Bill Clinton and the EU can be perceived. Kovac said that many US representatives expressed concern that former Premier Vladimir Meciar will return to power after the parliamentary elections this fall. Noting that another meeting with Goncz is being prepared for August, Kovac stated that the Gabcikovo dam controversy needs to be depoliticized. He added that Slovakia and Hungary might consider solving the case in bilateral talks rather than in an international court, if a historical reconciliation is achieved between the two countries. Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL, Inc. OPIC SEES INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES IN SLOVAKIA. At a press conference on 27 June, Christopher Finn, Executive Vice President of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, evaluated the recent OPIC mission to Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Finn said that the group of US businessmen accompanying the mission were "pleasantly surprised" by their first contact with Slovakia, as most investors were more familiar with the Czech Republic. He noted the high skill level of Slovak workers, low wages, high quality of manufactured goods, and the government's investment incentives as positive aspects. The group expressed special interest in environmental and energy projects, particularly in the upgrading of the Vojany power plant located east of Kosice. Another project of interest was the development of the transportation network in Kosice, which could become a major intersection between Western and Eastern Europe. Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL, Inc. SLOVAK PARTIES PREPARE FOR ELECTIONS. Following its session on 25 June, the Republican Council of the Democratic Union of Slovakia announced that its candidate list, which will include candidates from the National Democratic Party, will be completed by 23 July. Also on 25 June three members of the extraparliamentary Social Democratic Party of Slovakia left to form the Party of Social Democracy, after complaining that the SDPS's preelection coalition with the Party of the Democratic Left threatened the SDPS's identity. The majority of the SDPS reportedly continues to support Chairman Jaroslav Volf. In a press conference on 25 June, the Movement for a Democratic Slovakia announced that it has signed a coalition agreement with the Peasants' Party of Slovakia. Meanwhile, the Slovak National Party, which has decided to run independently, has been on the defensive following remarks by Premier Jozef Moravcik to the Austrian Press Agency on 21 June. Moravcik said, referring to the MDS and the SNP, "it is regrettable that up to 30% of Slovak citizens still favor parties with extremist views." On 24 June SNP Honorary Chairman Marian Andel denied that his party is extremist and announced that he will complain to the International Court of Justice. Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL, Inc. SKOPJE COURT CONVICTS ALBANIANS OF TREASON. On 27 June Macedonian state radio and Reuters reported that a Skopje court has found ten ethnic Albanians guilty of treason and conspiracy against the government. The ten, who include a former defense ministry official, were arrested in November 1993 after it was alleged they were smuggling weapons into the country. According to Macedonian officials, the Albanians had intended to form a paramilitary group dedicated to breaking off predominantly ethnic Albanian sections of Macedonia from the rest of the country for an eventual union with Albania. The convicted have been sentenced to prison terms of up to eight years. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. BATTLES RAGE IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA. On 27 and 28 June international media report that clashes between the Bosnian Muslim and Croat allies and the Bosnian Serb side continue, with some of the heaviest fighting around the Serb-held town of Doboj. Meanwhile, Reuters reports that representatives of the international "contact group" are to meet in Paris on 28 June to discuss a peace plan, which would confer 51% of Bosnia-Herzegovina on the Bosnian Muslim-Croat federation with the remainder going to the Bosnian Serb side. Foreign ministers from France, Germany, Great Britain, Russia, and the US are likely to back the peace proposal at a meeting scheduled for 1 July in Geneva. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. ETHNIC SERBS MARK VIDOVDAN. 28 June marks perhaps the most important day in Serbian history, Vidovdan. Its significance, for ethnic Serbs in and outside of rump Yugoslavia, stretches back to 28 June 1389, when Serb defenders were defeated by Ottoman invaders at the Battle of Kosovo, an event that has spawned rich folklore traditions. On 24 June Tanjug reported that Bosnia's Serbs would leave their imprint on this Vidovdan by declaring 28 June 1994 Bosnian Serb "statehood" day. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. CLINTON ADDRESSES THE BALTICS. In anticipation of his visit to Riga on 6 July, President Bill Clinton said that Americans look forward to "rejoicing" with the Baltic States when the last Russian troops leave the region this year. Clinton noted that it will be his great honor to be the first US president to visit the now-independent Baltic States. He expects to discuss with Estonian, Latvian, and Lithuanian leaders "how America can work with the Baltic countries to help bolster your security and prosperity into the next century," Western and Baltic agencies reported on 27 July. Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL, Inc. ESTONIAN PRESIDENT APPROVES TWO MINISTERIAL CANDIDATES. BNS reported on 27 June that President Lennart Meri had approved two of Prime Minister Mar Laar's nominees for ministerial posts: Andres Lipstok as minister of finance and Peeter Olesk as minister of culture and education. Meri did not announce his view on the nomination of Enn Tupp for the post of minister of defense. The ministerial changes were brought about largely by discord within the ruling coalition and the decision of the Liberal Democratic Party to leave the coalition. Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL, Inc. LITHUANIAN NATIONAL UNION GIVES UP REFERENDUM. On 24 June the National Union of Lithuania asked its initiative group to stop collecting signatures for a referendum on early parliament elections, BNS reported on 27 June. The group began collecting signatures on 10 May and had already gathered more than 220,000 of the required 300.000 signatures. The party issued a statement stating that it had decided to halt the referendum in order not to bring discord among the opposition, whose major parties did not support gathering the signatures. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc. LITHUANIAN LEFTIST NEWSPAPER CHANGES NAME. The board of the closed joint-stock company Tiesa [Truth] decided to change its name to Diena [Day} as of 1 July, Radio Lithuania reported on 27 June. Tiesa, founded in 1917 as the newspaper of the Communist Party, was the official state newspaper during the Soviet era. It was reorganized in 1990 into a joint-stock company and had served as the official newspaper of the Lithuanian Democratic Labor Party. With a circulation of about 30,000, Tiesa is the fourth largest newspaper in the republic. Chief editor Donatas Sniukas said that the paper will be expanded to 24 pages and will try to become livelier, with more non-political and non-economic stories. The choice of the name may result in some confusion since Diena, a paper with no connections to the Latvian communist party, is also published in Riga. Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL, Inc. [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Suzanne Crow and Louisa Vinton The RFE/RL DAILY REPORT, 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, is available through electronic mail by subscribing to RFERL-L at LISTSERV@UBVM.CC.BUFFALO.EDU. This report is also available by postal mail, as are the other publications of the Institute, and by fax. RFE/RL NEWS BRIEFS, an edited compendium of items first published in the Daily Report, is distributed along with the RFE/RL RESEARCH REPORT, a weekly journal providing topical analyses of political, economic and security developments throughout the Institute's area of interest. 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