Part of the sercret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside. - Mark Twain
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 129, 11 July 1994


pressure from the West and reneging on a commitment made earlier
by Moscow, Russian President Boris Yeltsin on 10 July told G-7
leaders gathered in Italy that Russia would not withdraw the last
of its military forces from Estonia by the 31 August deadline.
Yeltsin attributed the decision to what he purported were very
crude violations of human rights in Estonia and to that nations
unwillingness to grant citizenship to and to provide housing for
Russian military retirees still living in Estonia. Apparently at
the behest of Washington, Yeltsin did agree to meet with Estonian
President Lennart Meri in the hope of resolving the issue. The New
York Times suggested that Yeltsins hard line on the withdrawal
represents a negotiating tactic; it was also undoubtedly aimed at
Russias domestic political arena, where aggressive assertions of
Russias national interests have increasingly become the rule.
Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

by Ostankino TV on 10 July Yeltsin expressed his satisfaction with
the Naples Summit and continued to cast it as a breakthrough event
that formalized Russias reemergence as a respected world power.
Yeltsin emphasized that in Naples, unlike during previous G-7
summits, Russia participated on equal terms with other major
states. He also suggested that his hand was strengthened in Naples
by world-wide recognition of growing political stability in
Russia. Yeltsin, who participated formally only in the G-7
political discussions, admitted that Russias economic performance
continued to lag and that full membership in the G-7 was not
likely in the immediate future. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

MOVEMENT ON TRADE. In policy terms, Yeltsin said that he had
focused on removing certain instances of discrimination against
Russia in matters of trade, particularly vis-a-vis the US and
Japan. In the former case, he claimed to have made some progress
in relaxing COCOM restrictions on Russian trade (although The New
York Times quoted US officials who claimed that Washington
remained reluctant to allow Russia access to sensitive
technologies while Moscow continued to supply North Korea, Libya,
and Iraq with military goods). Yeltsin claimed that the repeal of
discriminatory trade practices would bring Russia an additional $3
billion per year. In moves likely to please Western leaders, The
New York Times also reported that Russia had for the first time
joined in condemning Iran for its sponsorship of terrorism and had
joined in an explicit call for an end to the Arab economic boycott
of Israel. Yeltsin and US President Bill Clinton are to meet again
in Washington on 27-28 September. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

July that the 7 July meeting in St. Petersburg between Russian
Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev and Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister
Tariq Aziz remains shrouded in a thick veil of secrecy. Interfax
on 8 July carried an interview with Russian Deputy Foreign
Minister Boris Kolokolov, who confirmed that the subject of talks
during the meeting had been the softening of UN sanctions against
Iraq. Kolokolov argued that Iraq had met many of the requirements
set by the UN and suggested that Russia, along with France and
China, favored lifting the sanctions against Iraq. He was quoted
as saying that Moscow favored combining firmness in the
implementation of the UN resolutions with a policy that would
encourage the already existing positive changes in the position of
Iraq. Kolokolov referred specifically to the possibility of
raising the embargo on the export of Iraqi oil, and said that
after the raising of sanctions Russia was ready to resume
cooperation with Iraq. Stephen Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.

CORRUPTION IN MASS MEDIA. Corruption has not only penetrated
Russian political circles, but also its mass media, Izvestiya
wrote on 6 July. While the Party apparatus had a monopoly on the
mass media in communist days, todays monopoly belongs to the new
political establishment, which is buying entire television
channels, newspapers and individual journalists. Izvestiya cited
examples of politicians and businessmen openly admitting that they
were paying national and regional journalists to promote their
image and advance their political agenda. One example quoted was
the director of a private security service, A. Kiselev, who said
that he pays more than 200 journalists to publish his ideas. A
regional newspaper in Kuban has begun supporting the
ultra-nationalist leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky following his visit
to the area and its circulation has increased from 16,000 to
500,000 copies. Izvestiya noted that as the pro-Zhirinovskys
newspaper is free of charge, it is obvious where the newspaper
gets its funding. Victor Yasmann, RFE/RL, Inc.

NEW RUSSIAN AMBASSADOR TO UN. On 7 July the Russian presidents
office announced the appointment of Sergei Lavrov to the post of
Russian ambassador to the UN. Lavrov, born in 1950 and since 1992
a Russian Deputy Foreign Minister, will replace Yulii Vorontsov,
who is expected to be named Russian ambassador to the US. Stephen
Foye, RFE/RL, Inc.


CENTRAL ASIANS FORM UNION. The leaders of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan
and Uzbekistan agreed at their summit in Almaty on 8 July to form
a comprehensive defense and economic union, various agencies
report. Under the terms of the agreement, a new inter-state
committee of the presidents and prime ministers of the countries
will be formed to oversee the standardization of laws;
additionally, there will be inter-state committees for foreign
affairs and for defense, a Central Asian Bank for Cooperation and
Development, as well as a prime ministers committee responsible
for coordinating finance and economic planning. All committees
will be chaired by Kazakhstan for the coming year, and then by
Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, also for a year each. Kazakhstans
president, Nursultan Nazarbaev, said that the economic and defense
union is only the first step, and stressed that the union is open
to other CIS states; Nazarbaev may be hoping that the Central
Asian union will be a small-scale model of his planned Eurasian
union, which would replace or enhance the current CIS. Keith
Martin, RFE/RL, Inc.

TAJIK ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT. The Tursunzade aluminum smelting
plant, Tajikistans largest single enterprise and the worlds
third-largest aluminum smelter, has been placed under CIS military
control after the plants director narrowly escaped a bizarre
assassination attempt. ITAR-TASS and Reuters reported on 9 July
that the mayor of Tursunzade shot at the director, Mikhail Sinani,
immediately after Sinani refused to authorize a large aluminum
consignment which the mayor requested without proper documentation
for an unnamed foreign firm ; the mayors shots apparently missed
Sinani altogether. ITAR-TASS reported that the mayor had been
sacked immediately after the 7 July incident, but that no criminal
charges had been laid against him yet. The plant has the capacity
to produce 500,000 tons of aluminum annually, but is only
operating at half-capacity as a result of the Tajik civil war and
the breakup of the Soviet economy. Keith Martin, RFE/RL, Inc.

KYRGYZ DISMISSED FOR CORRUPTION. Interfax reported on 8 July that
Kyrgyz President Askar Akaev had signed a special decree firing
the countrys deputy defense minister, Tabald Moldobaev, for
financial corruption, and for beating a subordinate. Moldobaev
apparently redirected funds destined for military projects to
commercial ventures. Akaev also severely reprimanded the nations
defense minister, Murzykazan Subanov. Keith Martin, RFE/RL, Inc.

ABKHAZ ROUNDUP. A further round of four-party talks in Sochi on a
settlement of the Abkhaz conflict ended on 8 July without
substantive progress, Interfax reported; UN special envoy Eduard
Brunner and Russian Foreign Ministry envoy Gennadii Fedosov were
both quoted by ITAR-TASS as stating that at this stage it is
probably pointless to attempt a political settlement of the
conflict. Following protests by Abkhaz leaders that the Russian
peacekeeping forces deployed along the frontier between Abkhazia
and the rest of Georgia are indiscriminately permitting Georgian
refugees to return to their homes in Abkhazia, the Russian officer
in charge of the peacekeeping operation, Major-General Vasilii
Yakushev, told Interfax on 8 July that measures were being taken
to prevent the uncontrolled return of refugees. Abkhaz parliament
chairman Vladislav Ardzinba denied charges that Abkhazia was
violating the UN-sponsored agreement on repatriation by insisting
that would-be Georgian repatriates be screened to exclude the
return to Abkhazia of persons who participated in last year s
hostilities. Liz Fuller, RFE/RL, Inc.

offer made by Turkish Chief of Staff General Dogan Gures to send
as many peacekeeping troops as Azerbaijan requests to monitor a
Karabakh peace settlement, Russian Minister of Defense Pavel
Grachev remarked that Gures was entitled to his opinion, but that
Russia would oppose any unilateral move by Turkey, and has
possibly even greater regional interests in the Transcaucasus than
does Turkey, according to ITAR-TASS of 8 July. Interfax on 8 July
quoted an unnamed Russian Foreign Ministry official as stating
that the deployment of Turkish peacekeeping forces against the
wishes of Armenia would only exacerbate tensions in the region;
Armenian President Ter-Petrossyan argued that only Russian
peacekeeping troops could guarantee stability in Karabakh. Turkeys
Ambassador to Baku, Altan Karamanoglu, told ITAR-TASS that it was
for Azerbaijan to decide which country to invite to send
peacekeepers. Liz Fuller, RFE/RL, Inc.

ANTI-GOVERNMENT DEMO IN TBILISI. Georgian police forcibly
dispersed some 200,000 people who converged on central Tbilisi on
10 July to participate in an unsanctioned anti-government
demonstration, Interfax reported. Many people were injured and at
least ten detained, including Giorgi Khoshtaria, foreign minister
under Zviad Gamsakhurdia. A second Gamsakhurdia associate, Loti
Kobalia, the commander of the late presidents armed forces, was
arrested in Kiev on 6 July and has been extradited to Tbilisi
where he faces charges of state treason, hostage-taking, torture
and other crimes, according to Interfax. Meanwhile Georgian
parliament chairman Eduard Shevardnadze told a meeting of
representatives of the law enforcement organs in Tbilisi on 8 July
that the situation in Georgia was stabilizing, and that the
interest of Russian businessmen in investing in Georgia could be
beneficial for both parties; Shevardnadze explicitly denied that
there were any political prisoners in Georgia. Liz Fuller, RFE/RL,


on 8 July that, pursuant to an intergovernmental decision, Russias
state concern Gazprom is acquiring shares in Moldovas state
authority Moldgas, in exchange for liquidating portions of
Moldovas arrears for past deliveries of Russian gas. Nearly half
of the total debt of 168 billion rubles is owed by industrial
consumers in Transdniester, where authorities seek, with Chisinaus
assent in some cases, to settle the debts by ceding local
industrial assets to Russian state companies. In other cases,
local enterprises establish joint companies with Russian state
firms to obtain preferential terms on Russias market. A
redistribution of ownership in the region is in full swing,
Izvestiya concludes. Russian politicians promoting the restoration
of Russian control over the newly independent states and special
ties with regions in those states have repeatedly mentioned the
acquisition of ownership rights as a means to that political end.
Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc.

                    CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

LUKASHENKA WINS ELECTION. On 11 July various agencies reported the
preliminary results of the 10 July Belarusian presidential
elections. The elections are considered valid since 69.9% of the
electorate voted. The lowest voter turnout was in Minsk where
preliminary results showed that only some 41% of the eligible
electorate voted. According to Alyaksandr Abramovich, head of the
Central Electoral Commission, Alyaksandr Lukashenka has been
elected as Belaruss first president with 80.1% of the vote in his
favor while only 14.1% of the votes were cast for the prime
minister, Vyacheslau Kebich. Kebichs candidacy had been favored by
the parliament which may now impede Lukashenkas authority since it
has the right to approve the presidents nominees for prime
minister and 6 other key ministries. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

appeared regarding the 10 July Ukrainian presidential elections.
According to Ukrinform on 11 July, preliminary reports said that
President Leonid Kravchuk has been reelected president, while
Reuters reported that Leonid Kuchma had edged Kravchuk out. Some
70% of the electorate turned out to vote in the run-off elections,
more than had voted in the first round. Voter turnout was
particularly high in Crimea and the western regions, while Odessa
and Kiev reportedly had the lowest turnout. The head of the
Central Electoral Commission, Ivan Yemets, was quoted as saying
that the commission would only be able to announce a clear winner
late on 11 July. Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

G7 OFFERS AID PACKAGE TO UKRAINE. The group of 7 leading
industrial nations meeting in Naples has offered Ukraine a $4.2
billion aid package conditional on Ukraine implementing economic
reforms, various agencies reported on 11 July. While the bulk of
the aid is to go towards Ukraines economic reforms $200 million
has been allocated to help close down the Chornobyl nuclear power
station. The EU has already pledged $120 million for this purpose.
Ustina Markus, RFE/RL, Inc.

G-7 SUMMIT BACKS BOSNIAN PEACE PLAN. International media reported
on 10 July that the heads of the leading Western industrial
countries plus Russia have urged all sides to accept the partition
plan unveiled by the contact group last week. The Muslims and
Croats have already indicated they will agree to the offer, but
speculation centers on the Serbs attitudes. The 8 July issue of
the Belgrade weekly NIN alludes to policy differences within the
Bosnian Serb leadership. The 11 July New York Times quotes
historian Milorad Ekmecic, who is viewed by some as the spiritual
father of the Bosnian Serb nationalists, as saying that Serbian
President Slobodan Milosevic wants Bosnian Serb leader Radovan
Karadzic out. Milosevic may be seeking to force the Bosnian Serbs
to accept the partition plan, or just be trying to find a more
pliable leader, as he did among the Krajina Serb rebels in
Croatia. Patrick Moore, RFE/RL, Inc.

SERBS HELP LOCAL WARLORD IN BIHAC. One of the more fascinating
side-shows in the Bosnian conflict is that underway in the Bihac
pocket of northwestern Bosnia, where local kingpin Fikret Abdic is
fighting the Bosnian government with Serb and Croat backing. The
region had a distinctive history of ethnic relations even during
World War II; and Abdic brought prosperity to the impoverished
area in the 1970s by building a commercial empire known as
Agrokomerc, which was funded by $500 million in what were really
worthless promissory notes. Abdic was tried and convicted in the
late 1980s when his house of cards collapsed, but he remained a
folk hero in the eyes of local people who nicknamed him daddy. He
became a member of the Bosnian Presidency but broke with President
Alija Izetbegovic in 1993 and launched a separatist movement.
Reuters reported on 10 July that the Bosnian armys Fifth Corps in
the area staged a fake mutiny last week to smoke out Abdics
fighters, but the VOA said that Serb forces were staging attacks
coordinated with daddys troops, to whom they have frequently
provided artillery protection in the past. Meanwhile in Sarajevo,
there was gunfire of another kind as local Serb fighters shot into
the air to celebrate Bulgarias soccer triumph over Germany.
Patrick Moore, RFE/RL, Inc.

Politika of 11 July, New Democracy (ND) leader Dusan Mihajlovic on
10 July endorsed the latest peace proposal for Bosnia and
Herzegovina, stressing that the plan had to be accepted since it
represents the last chance for peace in Bosnia. ND, formerly
affiliated with the opposition Democratic Opposition of Serbia,
has supported the ruling Socialist Party of Serbia in the
republics parliament. In other news, on 8 July Reuters and Tanjug
reported that Armenia has officially established diplomatic ties
with the rump Yugoslavia. Armenia is the first nation to do so
since international sanctions were applied against the rump
Yugoslavia. Stan Markotich, RFE/RL, Inc.

voted on 7 July to reject all four legislative drafts designed to
screen high-ranking officials for past collaboration with the
communist secret police, PAP reports. The votes of the ruling
postcommunist coalition determined that only the draft submitted
by the Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) has a chance of passage. SLD
deputies stressed that their version has nothing in common with
lustration; it provides only for a voluntary check of tax and
other records for some 2,000 bureaucrats (not elected officials)
who have access to state secrets. Past collaboration with the
secret police would not disqualify candidates for employment. The
debate deepened the divide between the former democratic
opposition and the former ruling parties that was reopened by the
recent vote that blocked ratification of Polands concordat. The
opposition Freedom Union argued that collaboration warrants
condemnation, whereas SLD deputies contended that we cannot treat
as criminals people who collaborated with the legal organs of
power. Most parties had regarded some form of lustration as
inevitable after the ill-fated agents disclosures made by the
Olszewski government in June 1992. The last parliament had nearly
completed work on six lustration drafts when it was dissolved in
1993. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc.

Commander George A. Joulwan concluded a three-day visit to Poland
on 9 July, PAP reports. This was the first such visit for a former
communist country. Joulwan observed military exercises and
complimented the Poles on their military prowess. He predicted
that the first PFP exercises, planned for Zagan in September, will
be a success. Joulwans visit was one of many recent signs of
Polands intensified contacts with NATO. On 5 July Poland became
the first PFP partner to finalize an Individual Partnership
Program. The IPP restates Polands desire for full NATO membership
and expresses Polands willingness to integrate its forces fully
with NATO military structures. During the ceremony in Brussels on
5 July, Deputy Defense Minister Jerzy Milewski said Poland expects
to achieve membership by the end of the century. On 4 July, Poland
appointed a retired German general, Henning von Ondarza, to advise
its defense ministry on NATO questions. The appointment is yet
another sign of Polands reconciliation with Germany, although one
Sejm deputy did quip that it was like appointing a wolf to advise
the sheep. An opinion poll reported on 6 July showed that 75% of
Poles want NATO membership. Louisa Vinton, RFE/RL, Inc.

parliament recalled the nine-member Board for Radio and Television
Broadcasting, an independent body that awards licenses and
allocates frequencies to radio and television stations in the
Czech Republic. CTK reports that the parliament delivered the vote
of no-confidence after rejecting for a second time the boards
annual report. In the past, the board was repeatedly criticized by
some political parties for licensing private broadcasting
companies that were viewed as controversial. The board members
sacked on 9 July were elected in 1992 to six-year terms. Also on 9
July, the parliament elected eight new board members; one more is
still to be chosen. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc.

CZECH ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENTS. A government report released on 8
July says that as of 31 March the Czech Republic had a budget
surplus of 4.9 billion koruny. The surplus would be only 2.7
billion koruny if the Czech trade deficit of 2.2 billion koruny in
the clearing accounts with Slovakia were included. Also on 8 July,
the Czech parliament passed an amendment to the law on banks,
increasing regulatory powers of the central bank in supervising
other banks and introducing a system of individual deposits
insurance. The action followed a recent collapse of three major
Czech banks. Finally, on 9 July the parliament voted to release
6.1 billion koruny generated through privatization to finance
ecological projects aimed at improving the quality of air. Jiri
Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc.

Premier Jozef Moravcik ended a two-day visit to India. Speaking to
journalists in New Delhi before departing for Vietnam, Moravcik
said Slovakia will increase exports of military technology in
order to overcome its current problems with unemployment. Slovak
Defense Minister Pavol Kanis, who is accompanying Moravcik, said
that India had already expressed interest in Slovak weapons.
Moravcik also said that Slovakia is opposed to any solution of the
Bosnian conflict along ethnic lines. The principle of ethnically
clean territories is dangerous and incorrect, said the Slovak
Prime minister. He argued that the latest peace plan for Bosnia
hardly represents the solution we can be satisfied with. After
visiting Vietnam, Moravcik travels to Indonesia. Jiri Pehe,
RFE/RL, Inc.

parliament passed the long-delayed road signs law, which allows
towns where an ethnic minority constitutes at least 20% of the
inhabitants to use bilingual road signs. The law, the adoption of
which had been demanded by the Council of Europe, had been
previously rejected by the Slovak parliament. The opposition
Movement for a Democratic Slovakia and the Slovak National Party
said on 8 July that the law hurts the majority nation. On 9 July,
Slovensky Denik termed the oppositions statements as efforts to
provoke a confrontation. The daily argued that that part of the
public which prefers the principles of democracy and tolerance is
satisfied with the law. Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL, Inc.

communique released on 8 July and broadcast by Radio Bucharest,
the Romanian government announced that it has decided to suspend
the controversial archeological digging in the Cluj square where
the statue of King Matthias Corvinus is placed. One day earlier
the intention to begin with the dig had triggered protests by the
Hungarian minority, and police had been forced to intervene. The
Hungarian government had protested against the intention and the
Hungarian Democratic Federation of Romania had appealed to UNESCO
and other international forums. The Government said a commission
of experts from the Ministry of Culture would determine whether
the activity was opportune and that meanwhile excavation equipment
would be removed. The controversial extreme-nationalist mayor of
Cluj, Gheorghe Funar said the governments decision had no
validity, since the digging had not yet began. He called on the
executive to set up a commission to investigate what he called the
anti-Romanian activities of the HDFR. Presidential spokesman
Traian Chebeleu said the HDFR appeal to international
organizations was regrettable and unwarranted. Michael Shafir,
RFE/RL, Inc.

LI PENG IN ROMANIA. In Bucharest on 11 July Chinas premier Li Peng
will sign a joint political declaration with his hosts, as well as
a set of economic and cultural agreements, Radio Bucharest and
Western agencies report. He will also hold talks with his Romanian
counterpart, Nicolae Vacaroiu, as well as with President Ion
Iliescu, whom he knows from the 1950s, when they were both
students in Moscow. Li arrived in Romania for a four-day visit on
9 July, following visits to Austria and Germany, where he had
faced demonstrations over Chinas human-rights record. Michael
Shafir, RFE/RL, Inc.

Minister Teodor Melescanu said in an interview with the Bulgarian
daily Duma on 8 July that his country had no territorial claims on
the region of southern Dobrudja, nor on any other Bulgarian areas.
Southern Dobrudja was part of Romania between 1913 and 1940.
Melescanu said respect for the existing borders in Europe is a
basic principle that ensures stability in our region and in the
world. Some politicians, he added, may display other ideas, but
these do not have any impact on [Romanian-Bulgarian] bilateral
relations. Some Bulgarian publications have in recent years
interpreted some Romanian remarks to imply territorial claims.
Romanian officials denied they had any such claims. Michael
Shafir, RFE/RL, Inc.

enthusiastic Bulgarians took to the streets on the evening of 10
July to celebrate the quarter-final victory of their national
soccer team over reigning World Cup champion Germany, domestic and
Western media report. In an interview broadcast nationwide,
President Zhelyu Zhelev praised the victory, saying democracy had
made it possible by allowing Bulgarian athletes to travel freely
and gain experience abroad--a reference to the fact that most
national team members normally play in highly competitive West
European soccer leagues. Zhelev added that he plans to travel to
the United States, where the 1994 World Cup soccer games are being
held, to attend the semi-final against Italy. Kjell Engelbrekt,
RFE/RL, Inc.

development closely watched by several interested states, the
Moldovan parliament on 8 July voted overwhelmingly to adopt the
countrys draft constitution in the first reading, but deferred the
debate on the most controversial issues until 20 July. Moldovan
media report that the draft, finalized by an Agrarian-dominated
commission, declares Moldovas permanent neutrality. It codifies
human rights and political pluralism as overriding values, rules
out any kind of state ideology, and defines Moldova as a common
home of all its citizens, guaranteeing them the preservation,
development, and expression of their ethnic and linguistic
identity. The pro-Romanian minority calls for defining Moldova in
effect as a national Romanian state and opposes the drafts
provisions on establishing special-status regions in Transdniester
and for the Gagauz Turks. Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL, Inc.

Europe, Australian Foreign Minister Gareth Evans visited Estonia.
In Tallinn he met with Estonian President Lennart Meri, Prime
Minister Mart Laar, Foreign Minister Juri Luik and other Estonian
leaders. Evans is reported as saying that he does not support the
idea of giving Russia any specific peacekeeping mandate on the
territory of the former USSR and that the Russian troops should
leave Estonia by 31 August. On 8 July Evans and Luik signed a
trade and economic cooperation agreement, which provides the
institutional framework for broader contacts between their
countries, BNS reported on 8 and 9 July. Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL,

of pesticides, brought from Germany to Albania in 1991 and
concealed as humanitarian aid, are in danger of exploding, Koha
Jone reported on 2 July. The risk has been rising recently because
of the continuing hot weather. The pesticides, placed in railway
carriages and battered containers, heated up under temperatures
between 34 and 36 centigrade and could drain out into nearby Lake
Shkoder. Greenpeace warned of an environmental disaster already in
February, repackaged several tons of pesticides, and brought one
truck of them back to Germany. German Environmental Minister Klaus
Toepfer estimated last November that it would cost about DM 1.4
million to neutralize the materials, but there has been no
follow-up visit of German experts since then. Fabian Schmidt,
RFE/RL, Inc.

[As of 1200 CET]

Compiled by Ustina Markus and Stan Markotich
The RFE/RL DAILY REPORT, produced by the RFE/RL Research
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