|A friend is a gift you give yourself. - Robert Louis Stevenson|
No. 127, 8 July 1994
RUSSIA YELTSIN TO NAPLES FOR G-7 SUMMIT; RUSSIA RESURGENT? Russian government spokesmen and media organs sympathetic to the president are describing President Boris Yeltsins participation at the G-7 Summit in Naples, the first in which Russia will enjoy a formal status, as the latest in a series of diplomatic breakthroughs for Moscow. Yeltsins formal status extends only to the political discussions being conducted in Naples and, as quoted by the Christian Science Monitor, spokesmen such as Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Shokhin admit that summit participants will not soon raise the question about the economic widening of the G-7. Yet Russias elevation in the G-7, coming on the heels of its entry into the NATO Partnership for Peace Program and the signing of a cooperation agreement with the EU, is being presented as the culmination of a long effort by Russian diplomats to integrate Russia into the international community on an equal footing with the worlds leading powers. The Christian Science Monitor of 7 July reported that, rather than seeking aid, Yeltsin intended to request the repeal of discriminatory tariffs on Russian goods and the granting to Russia of wider access to Western markets and to IMF resources. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. DUMA POSTPONES PRIVATIZATION DEBATE. In an acrimonious exchange, the State Duma on 7 July spurned a request from Privatization Minister Anatolii Chubais to vote immediately on the governments post-voucher privatization program, and instead postponed debate until 13 July. Demanding a review of the results of voucher privatization, hostile deputies accused Chubais of attempting to dismantle the economy. Chubais retorted that no parliamentary body can reverse the progress made in Russias economic transformation, and no political party can wrest private property from 40 million new shareholders. Chubais noted that over 84,000 small businesses (74% of the total) had already been sold to private owners, and 21,000 larger firms (70% of the total) had been transformed into joint-stock companies. He argued that the post-voucher program will limit the rights of works councils in firms, in part to make firms more attractive to investors. This measure will not be popular, he admitted, but it is more rational in economic terms. Duma Speaker Ivan Rybkin reminded the deputies that their consent is not essential to implement privatization; the government can bypass the parliament if it wishes, he said. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. GORBACHEV TESTIFIES AT VARENNIKOVS TRIAL. Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev denied that he collaborated with the organizers of the August 1991 attempted coup, Russian and Western media reported on 7 July. Gorbachev was testifying at a trial of General Valentin Varennikov, the only coup organizer who refused to accept the amnesty granted in February by the State Duma. Varennikov and other participants in the coup maintain that Gorbachev initially supported their plans and that, contrary to the claims of the former Soviet President, he had never been isolated at his dacha in Foros. At Varennikovs trial Gorbachev also denied the coup organizers claim that they acted to preserve the Soviet Union. He said they just wanted to seize power. Gorbachev said he regretted the disintegration of the USSR and expressed hope that some new form of a union would emerge on the territory of the former USSR. Near the court building about 50 people demonstrated against Gorbachev. They carried slogans, accusing the former president of having sold out the now defunct Soviet Union, Interfax reported. Vera Tolz, RFE/RL, Inc. GORBACHEV CALLS FOR JOINT DEMOCRATIC OPPOSITION TO YELTSIN. Nezavisimaya gazeta on 6 and 7 July published a long interview with Gorbachev in which he called for the creation of a joint democratic opposition to the Yeltsin administration. Gorbachev rejected the often heard assertion that the only alternatives to Yeltsin are such dangerous extremists as Vladimir Zhirinovsky; he argued that such assertions are voiced merely as a pretext to deny the Russian people the right to vote. He also cited various examples aimed at suggesting that Russia under the present regime has become less free and less a democratic country then it was in the Gorbachev era. Apart from censorship in the state-controlled broadcasting media, these examples included recent suggestions from some of Yeltsins close associates not to call parliamentary and presidential elections in 1996. Although Gorbachev is unpopular and has virtually no chance to win elective office in the foreseeable future, many democratic politicians--including former political prisoners of the Brezhnev era and human-rights activists from the respected Memorial society--have publicly declared themselves to be Gorbachevites and opponents of Yeltsin. Julia Wishnevsky, RFE/RL, Inc. MOSCOW GOVERNMENT RE-CREATES PEOPLES DETACHMENTS. The decision by Moscow mayor Yurii Luzhkov to re-create so called Peoples Detachments (narodnyi druzhiny) in Support of the MVD is a violation of Russian law, according to Rossiiskaya gazeta of 6 June. (Under the Communist regime, the voluntary Peoples Detachments were an element of the Soviet law-enforcement system; in view of the recent campaign against organized crime, Luzhkov decided to re-activate these units and granted them the same prerogatives as the MVD). In accordance with Luzhkovs directive, the Peoples Detachments will be subordinated directly to him and will have the right to search any public or government premises. Rossiiskaya gazeta argued, however, against allowing such actions to be carried out by volunteers and asserted that re-activation of Peoples Detachments constitutes a continuation of Communist practices of law enforcement. Victor Yasmann, RFE/RL, Inc. NEW AMENDMENTS TO CRIMINAL CODE. Rossiiskaya gazeta on 7 July published amendments to the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation adopted by the Russian parliament and approved by President Yeltsin. The revised Criminal Code drops the old provisions based on so-called socialist law and guarantees instead equal protection for all forms of property. Other new provisions include articles dealing with political terrorism and assassination, the maximum punishment for which is the death sentence. The adoption of the new Criminal Code is part of the recent campaign against organized crime and banditism. The Russian parliament also has adopted a law on the protection of law enforcement officers, according to ITAR-TASS on 7 July, which is aimed at ensuring physical and social security for officers of the MVD, the Federal Counterintelligence Service, Tax Police, judges , prosecutors and members of their families. The law permits the possession of personal weapon for all of these categories of officials. Victor Yasmann, RFE/RL, Inc. MOSCOW-BASHKORTOSTAN TREATY NEARLY READY? Bashkortostans President Murtaza Rakhimov told Interfax on 7 July that work on the power-sharing treaty between Moscow and Bashkortostan was nearing completion. He said that only the title of the treaty and clemency and amnesty issues remained to be finalized. According to Rakhimov, Moscow is insisting that it be called a power-sharing treaty, whereas under the provisions of the Bashkortostan constitution it should be designated an interstate treaty. It can safely be forecast that Moscow will not give way on this issue as even its treaty with Tatarstan is described as a power-sharing treaty. Ann Sheehy, RFE/RL, Inc. RUBLE FALLS TO OVER 2,000 TO DOLLAR. The US dollar exchange rate on the Moscow interbank currency exchange climbed above 2,000 rubles for the first time on 6 July, Interfax reported. Acting Finance Minister Sergei Dubinin said the ruble is expected to fall to 3,000-3,500 by years end. The ruble is still overvalued, he indicated, and continued devaluation is needed to bolster exports. The dollar was quoted at 2011 rubles on 7 July. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. KOZYREV MEETS IRAQI DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER. RFE/RLs Moscow correspondent reported on 7 July that the Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq, Tariq Aziz, was in Moscow on an unofficial visit and that he was conducting talks with Russian officials concerning the lifting of international sanctions against Baghdad. Quoting Russian diplomatic sources, the correspondent reported that Aziz had suggested a formula whereby Iraq would offer to recognize Kuwait as a sovereign state in exchange for Moscows support in the UN Security Council for the lifting, or easing, of the sanctions. The correspondent, and other Western sources, report that Aziz then traveled to St. Petersburg where he met on the evening of 7 July with Foreign Minister Kozyrev, who was returning from Belgrade. ITAR-TASS quoted Kozyrev as saying only that his visit to the city was associated with an assignment by President Boris Yeltsin. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc. TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA ALIEV MEETS WITH TURKISH CHIEF OF STAFF. Dogan Gures, Chief of Staff of the Turkish armed forces, flew to Baku on 7 July at the personal invitation of Azerbaijani President Heidar Aliev, together with a group of senior Turkish army officers, ITAR-TASS and Interfax reported. Gures was quoted by Interfax as affirming on his arrival in Baku that Turkey was prepared to send as many troops as Azerbaijan requested to participate in an eventual peacekeeping operation in Nagorno-Karabakh under the auspices of the CSCE or the UN, provided that the peacekeeping force was multi-national; he denied reports in the Armenian press that Turkey is supplying Azerbaijan with arms. No details were released of the strictly confidential talks between Gures and Aliev. Liz Fuller, RFE/RL, Inc. RUSSIA TO GIVE ARMENIA 110 BILLION RUBLES CREDIT. Under the terms of an inter-governmental agreement signed on 4 July, Russia is to grant Armenia 110 billion rubles credit, of which 60 billion is earmarked for preparatory work for reactivating the nuclear power station at Medzamor and 40 billion for reconstruction in the area devastated by the 1988 earthquake, Interfax reported. Liz Fuller, RFE/RL, Inc. KYRGYZSTAN GETS LOAN FOR SOCIAL ASSISTANCE. RFE/RL learned on 7 July that the International Development Association, an affiliate of the World Bank which assists countries designated as very poor, has approved a loan of $17 million to Kyrgyzstan to be used in developing a social safety net. An Association statement said that a third of the population of Kyrgyzstan is below the poverty line. Kyrgyzstan has been one of the Newly Independent States most severely affected by the collapse of Soviet-era economic relations; earlier in 1994 the countrys industry was reported to be virtually at a standstill. Kyrgyzstans President Askar Akaev has said on many occasions that development of a social safety net is one of the top priorities of the government. Bess Brown, RFE/RL, Inc. US TO HELP TAJIK REFUGEE RETURN. The US government has pledged $2.85 million to speed up the repatriation process for Tajik refugees wanting to return home from Afghanistan, ITAR-TASS reported, citing sources in the Tajik foreign ministry and at the US embassy in Dushanbe. The money is to be given directly to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees special mission to Tajikistan. There are still over 20,000 officially registered refugees in northern Afghanistan, though opposition representatives believe the true number of refugees to be close to 60,000. In recent weeks, a growing number of Tajiks have been returning to Tajikistan; Interfax reported that 710 refugees returned on 7 July alone. 1500 others are waiting at the Sakhi border camp for immediate repatriation. Government and opposition officials have repeatedly pleaded for international aid, as the situation of refugees in Afghanistan and the Tajik province of Gorno-Badakhshon remains extremely difficult. Keith Martin, RFE/RL, Inc. CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE CLINTON ON NATO: NOT IF BUT WHEN. In an address to the Polish parliament on 7 July, US President Bill Clinton said that NATO expansion is no longer a question of whether, but when and how. Clinton indicated that Poland would likely be one of the first new members admitted to the alliance. He also stressed the importance of Polish security to the US. No democracy in this region should ever be consigned to a gray area, or buffer zone, he said, echoing a phrase that Polish politicians have used to express their security concerns. In a mild reprimand to Russia, Clinton added that no country should have the right to veto, compromise or threaten democratic Polands--or any other democracys--integration into Western institutions, including those that ensure security. Urging civil courage in pursuing democratic and market reforms throughout the region, Clinton said that we will not let the Iron Curtain be replaced with a veil of indifference. He also warned against would-be dictators and fiery demagogues. Clinton offered Poland a new $210 million package, including $25 million for adaptation to the Partnership for Peace. Clinton pledged $100 million in such aid for NATOs 21 new partners. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. POLANDS RESPONSE: TIMETABLE ESSENTIAL. Polish President Lech Walesa said he was not disappointed with Clintons speech, and Foreign Minister Andrzej Olechowski said the visit had bolstered Polish security. But muted disappointment was the more prevalent response. Former Prime Minister Hanna Suchocka told Polish TV the major shortcoming of the Clinton speech was the lack of a firm timetable for NATO expansion. Polish membership had been a more realistic prospect when she first visited NATO headquarters in 1992 than it seems now, Suchocka said. All political forces echoed this statement. Even Democratic Left Alliance leader Aleksander Kwasniewski told reporters he was very disappointed that there was no timetable set. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. EASTERN FOREIGN MINISTERS CONVENE IN WARSAW. Opening a meeting of nine foreign ministers in Warsaw on 7 July, US Secretary of State Warren Christopher said that there cannot--and will not--be a gray sphere of instability in Central and Eastern Europe. The ministers--from Albania, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia--endorsed a continued US military and economic presence in Europe. Christopher pledged continued US assistance, particularly in reducing the social costs of reform. Hungary sent both current and future foreign ministers to the meeting, a gesture that Polish Foreign Minister Olechowski praised as a sign that parties come and go; consensus remains. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc. BALTIC LEADERS PLEASED WITH CLINTONS VISIT. Latvias President Guntis Ulmanis told the press that Clintons visit to Riga was a highly significant event for the Baltic States. After meeting with Clinton, Ulmanis felt that Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania would eventually gain NATO membership through the Partnership for Peace program. Lithuanias President Algirdas Brazauskas expressed satisfaction over the understanding shown for Lithuanias energy problems and the transit of goods and military supplies through Lithuania. Estonian Prime Minister Mart Laar said that Clintons visit gave Estonia and Latvia confidence that Russia would carry out a timely withdrawal of its troops from the two countries, Baltic media reported on 7 July. Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL, Inc. YELTSIN PROTESTS LATVIAN CITIZENSHIP LAW? On 7 July Russian ambassador to Latvia Aleksandr Rannikh delivered a letter from Yeltsin to Latvias President Ulmanis in which Yeltsin outlined his countrys views on the law on naturalization and citizenship recently adopted by the Latvian parliament but not yet endorsed by Ulmanis. Specific details were not revealed. The Russian Duma recently charged that implementation of the law would foment aggressive nationalism in Latvia, Reuters and BNS reported on 7 July. Jeri Laber of Helsinki Watch expressed objections to the law, especially its quotas on naturalization. The law was also criticized in a press conference in Riga on 5 July by spokesmen for Latvias Committee on Human Rights and the League of Stateless Persons, which distributed materials with the heading Welcome to the Country of Apartheid, ITAR-TASS reports. Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL, Inc. BOSNIAN MUSLIMS ACCEPT PARTITION PLAN . . . The Washington Post on 8 July reports that Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic and Prime Minister Haris Silajdzic have said that the proposal contains more good than bad and that they will endorse it. Silajdzic added that the return of peace would benefit the Bosnian government side, noting that the people who [destroyed] Bosnia prosper only in conflict. . . . A war can be won or lost, but the peace we will win for sure. Izetbegovic noted that the Serbs would be required to give up a third of their conquests, and that the constitutional unity of Bosnia would be preserved. The New York Times adds that returning Brcko, which lies astride the Serbs northern supply corridor, to the Muslims would enable the UN to monitor the resupply of the Serbian military. The Post, however, also writes that the Muslims may simply be employing a new negotiating tactic designed to put pressure on the Serbs. Patrick Moore, RFE/RL, Inc. . . . WHILE THE SERBS BALK. The provisions regarding Brcko have not been lost on the Serbs, and the New York Times quotes their parliaments speaker, Momcilo Krajisnik, as saying that this proposal for Brcko does not suit us at all. Serb nationalists also fear that provisions to return parts of eastern Bosnia to the Bosnian government would help solidify Allahs Road, which is what they call the transversal running from Kosovo through the Sandzak and into Bosnia-Herzegovina. The population there is mainly of Islamic heritage, although their outlook today is quite secular. Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic was quoted by Reuters on 7 July as saying that the take-it-or-leave-it plan could provide the basis for further talks, but we dont have a constitutional vision yet. He also charged that Izetbegovic was trying to put the Serbs at a tactical disadvantage by accepting the proposal. Elsewhere, the New York Times says that Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev told Serbian President Milosevic that there is no alternative to a positive response to the plan. Patrick Moore, RFE/RL, Inc. SESELJ CONDEMNS BOSNIA PEACE PROPOSAL. Ultranationalist leader of the Serbian Radical Party Vojislav Seselj is among the first in the rump Yugoslavia to criticize vehemently the current peace proposal for Bosnia and Herzegovina. In remarks reported in the 8 July issue of Borba, Seselj, while ironically describing himself as a proponent of peace, maintains that only a plan recognizing the Bosnian Serbs conquest of roughly 70% of Bosnia and Herzegovina will satisfy sincere Serb nationalists. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc. LONDON TIMES: UN COVERING UP FOR SERBS. The 7 July edition of the respected British daily reports that recent incidents have highlighted what amounts to a UN policy partly to shield the Serbs from further international condemnation. Taken as a whole, the incidents show a pro-Serb bias in statements by the UN and raise questions about its credibility. The issue arose earlier in the year when UN officials were charged with all but ignoring Serb violations of the Sarajevo cease-fire, and when UN staff in Gorazde accused the UN commander of deliberately down-playing the threat posed by the Serb offensive against the Muslim enclave. Meanwhile in the Bihac, where Bosnian government troops are fighting soldiers loyal to local kingpin Fikret Abdic, government forces sealed off the town and confined foreign aid workers to their quarters. Reuters quoted a source in the area as calling the developments bizarre but significant, adding that it was unclear whether high politics were involved or simply control of the local black market. Finally, the New York Times reports that Russia is blocking efforts to start up the UNs tribunal for prosecuting war crimes. Patrick Moore, RFE/RL, Inc. POLL SHOWS KRAVCHUK EDGING OUT KUCHMA. The last of five polls conducted by the Kiev International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) between 2 and 4 July 1994 shows Leonid Kravchuk receiving 51% to Leonid Kuchmas 44%. The poll of over 1,000 respondents also indicated that participation in the 10 July presidential election is expected to range between 61% and 67 %. Jaroslav Martyniuk, RFE/RL, Inc. BELARUSIAN CANDIDATES HOLD TELEVISED DEBATE. On 8 July Reuters reported that the two Belarusian presidential candidates, Prime Minister Vyacheslau Kebich and the anti-corruption crusader Alyaksandr Lukashenka, held a televised debate in which they tried to outdo each other in displaying their pro-Russian credentials. Lukashenka charged that Kebich contributed to the break-up of the USSR. Kebich replied that his goal is to restore those ties. Lukashenka then accused Kebich of being too slow in implementing monetary union with Russia. Lukashenka said his program was to stop inflation, fight corruption, crush crime, and restore ties with the republics of the former Soviet Union, but avoided specifics, saying only that he had agreed with the Russians that they will buy Belarusian products. For his part Kebich told voters that the government had decided to lower prices on staple goods and increase social benefits. As for Lukashenkas earlier threats to throw the top-ranking fifty government officials into jail for corruption, he appeared to soften his line saying he had no intention of dismissing anyone in government who moved under his banner. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc. MORE AGREEMENTS SIGNED ON MONETARY UNION. On 6 July Belarusian television reported that Russian Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Shokhin stated that the presidential election results will have no effect on the implementation the Russian-Belarusian monetary union. The terms agreed so far stipulate that only 200,000 Belarusian rubles in cash and 1 million in bank accounts per person can be exchanged for Russian rubles at a 1:1 rate. The Belarusian ruble now stands at about 25,000 to the dollar meaning that Belarusians will be allowed to exchange fewer than $10 in cash and $50 of their savings for rubles. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc. PARLIAMENT REJECTS ILIESCU IMPEACHMENT. Romanias parliament on 7 July rejected by a 242 to 166 vote an opposition motion to impeach President Ion Iliescu for meddling in property disputes, Radio Bucharest reports. The motion, initiated by the National Peasant Party-Christian Democratic, demanded Iliescus removal for having urged local authorities not to implement recent court rulings that restored property rights on homes nationalized by the Communists. Iliescu maintains that he was only trying to protect tenants from illegal evictions. Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL, Inc. WORKERS PROTEST IN BUCHAREST. Tens of thousands of workers joined a rally and march in Bucharest to protest a government proposal to freeze state-sector wages, as well as plans to restructure state-owned industries. Reuters, which described the meeting as the biggest street protest this year, said that the protesters were carrying banners reading freeze prices, not wages and shouting thieves, thieves. A union delegation was received by the cabinets Secretary General Viorel Hrenbenciuc, to whom they handed a memorandum warning of possible strikes if workers demands are not met, Radio Bucharest reported. Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL, Inc. ETHNIC HUNGARIANS PROTEST IN CLUJ. On 7 July some 3,000 ethnic Magyars from Transylvania staged a rally at a monument to Hungarys mediaeval King Matthias Corvinus in Cluj, Radio Bucharest and Budapest report. The protest was directed at plans approved by Gheorghe Funar, the towns ultra-nationalist mayor, for archeological digs at the site of the statue. There were scuffles as the crowd tried to break through police lines ringing an area around the monument. The situation in Cluj remains tense, with members of the large Hungarian minority fearing that the excavations might offer an excuse to the authorities to remove the statue. Funar, who had ordered a Romanian inscription placed on the statue, has been accused of favoring its move to another location. According to MTI, the outgoing Hungarian government expressed its grave concern that Funars actions could deepen ethnic tensions and jeopardize democratic progress in Romania. Dan Ionescu and Judith Pataki, RFE/RL, Inc. HUNGARIAN PRESIDENT FIRES MEDIA BOSSES. Effective 8 July, President Arpad Goncz dismissed the heads of state-owned Hungarian Radio and Television, Laszlo Csucs and Gabor Nahlik. The two figures were controversial and had been accused of catering to the Hungarian government. After the defeat of the ruling Hungarian Democratic Forum in the May elections, Prime Minister Peter Boross agreed to dismiss the two as a gesture to the new government. The signature of the president is needed to make the dismissals valid, but Goncz, for reasons unknown, did not immediately sign the dismissals. Only at the special request of Hungarian Socialist Party (HSP) leader Gyula Horn and Alliance of Free Democrats Chairman Ivan Peto did Goncz finally sign the dismissals. Since the coalition partners have still not yet decided on replacements, the economic directors will be put into charge of the media, with limited authority, as of 9 July. Judith Pataki, RFE/RL, Inc. STOLEN JEWISH ART RECOVERED IN BUCHAREST. Hungarian National Police Headquarters told MTI on 6 July that most of the art treasures stolen from the museum of Budapests main synagogue on 12 December 1993 has been recovered. In cooperation with Romanian, Austrian, and German police, the art treasures were recovered near Bucharest. Suspects with German and Romanian citizenship were arrested. The value of the treasures was estimated at $60-80 million. Hungarian police praised the cooperation with the police forces of the other countries involved. Judith Pataki, RFE/RL, Inc. CZECH PARLIAMENT PASSES LAW ON INTELLIGENCE SERVICES. Under a new law passed by the Czech parliament on 7 July, the Czech Republic will have three intelligence services: the Bureau of Intelligence and Security (BIS); the Office for International Contacts, which will be part of the Ministry of Internal Affairs; and Military Intelligence, which will be subordinated to the Ministry of Defense. All three services will be accountable to both the government and the parliament. The original draft law would have made the services accountable only to the government. Each intelligence service will have to submit an annual report on its activities to the government and the president. Under the law, the BIS can use the services of citizens over 18 years; these services can be provided only on a voluntary basis and the BIS must protect the identity of such people. It is also entitled to keep secret files on individuals and organizations. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. ZIELENIEC DEFENDS IRAQI MINISTERS PRAGUE TRIP. Speaking to journalists in Warsaw on 7 July, Czech Foreign Minister defended the Czech government and himself against criticism in the Polish media and from President Vaclav Havel for having held talks in Prague with Iraqi Foreign Minister Muhammad Said Kazim Al-Sahhaf. Zieleniec argued that there was no hidden agenda behind Sahhafs visit and that it was the duty and the right of the Czech Republic, which is currently a member of the United Nations Security Council, to know Iraqi views. Meanwhile, speaking at a press conference before his departure from Prague on 7 July, Sahhaf said that Iraqs negotiations with Kuwait on the question of their common border are finished. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. SLOVAK PREMIER IN INDIA. On 7 July, Slovak Prime Minister Jozef Moravcik arrived in New Delhi for a two-day visit aimed at strengthening political and trade ties with India. Moravcik and Indian Prime Minister P. V. Narasimha Rao held official talks and signed several bilateral agreements on 7 July. Moravcik and the members of his delegation are scheduled to meet representatives of the Confederation of Indian Industry for talks on possible trade links between the two countries. The Slovak premier is to travel to Vietnam and Indonesia after his Indian visit. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc. ROMANIA RELUCTANT TO ACKNOWLEDGE BORDER WITH MOLDOVA. The Bucharest correspondent of Basapress on 6 July cited Romanian officials as telling the press that Romania has been unable to sign a draft treaty with Moldova on border-crossing rules and related arrangements on their common border. The reason for the failure is Moldovas insistence that the word border should figure in the treaty, whereas the Romanian side wishes to avoid that word. The row reflects second thoughts in Bucharest about the wisdom of full recognition of Moldovas independent statehood in the absence of progress toward unification. Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc. [As of 1200 CET] Compiled by Stephen Foye 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. Longer analyses are available in a monograph series, RFE/RL STUDIES, and brief analytic summaries appear monthly in the RESEARCH BULLETIN. 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