Upon the education of the people of this country the fate of this country depends. - Benjamin Disraeli 1804-1881
RFE/RL Daily Report

No. 181, 22 September 1994

                             RUSSIA

OPPOSITION, ADMINISTRATION MARK ANNIVERSARY OF YELTSIN'S DECREE.
Both sides involved in the bloody confrontations last year
commemorated the anniversary of Decree No 1400, issued by Boris
Yeltsin on 21 September 1993. In it, the president dissolved the
Russian parliament and suspended the Constitutional Court,
although the constitution then in force explicitly forbade him to
take either of these steps. While Yeltsin's administration marked
the day with the presentation of a collection of heretofore
unpublished documents, the opposition held rallies in Moscow and
St. Petersburg. A few thousand people took part in a torch-lit
procession from the square in front of Moscow's Bolshoi Theater
to Pushkin Square, where speakers called for an end to the
Yeltsin regime. The rally in St. Petersburg, according to an
RFE/RL correspondent's report, was larger and far better
organized, embracing Yeltsin opponents of every stripe, from
anarchists to monarchists. Also on 21 September, for the first
time since the amnesty declared in February for the leaders of
the parliamentary resistance to the decree, Rutskoi appeared on
state-controlled Russian Television, on the live show
"Podrobnosti," to air his views. -- Julia Wishnevsky, RFE/RL Inc.

TWO MAJOR DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENTS FORM POLITICAL ALLIANCE. The
co-chairpersons of the Democratic Russia Movement--Galina
Starovoitova, Gleb Yakunin, and Lev Ponomarev--signed an
agreement on the formation of a political alliance with the
leader of the Russian Democratic Reform Movement, former Moscow
Mayor Gavriil Popov. As they told a news conference on 21
September, both sides agreed to hold regular consultations aimed
at coordinating the positions of Russia's two major democratic
movements on matters of political importance, including backing
the same candidates in the forthcoming parliamentary, municipal,
and, most important, presidential elections. The lack of such
coordination, Ponomarev noted, had resulted in a poor showing by
the democrats in the December 1993 elections for seats in the
Russian parliament. -- Julia Wishnevsky, RFE/RL Inc.

NO PLACE FOR GORBACHEV IN SOCIAL-DEMOCRATIC PARTY. The organizing
committee of the new Russian Social Democratic Party (see Daily
Report of 20 September) held its first news conference on 21
September, Russian TV news and an RFE/RL correspondent in Moscow
reported. At the briefing, the party's leader, Aleksandr Yakovlev
(Number 2 in former President Mikhail Gorbachev's leadership and
now the chairman of Ostankino Radio and Television) depicted the
future party's orientation as centrist, adding that the socialist
experience of the Soviet era only illustrated how the country
should not be run. Yakovlev's deputy, former USSR Defense
Minister Evgenii Shaposhnikov, named two men who will have no
place in the new party--former Russian Vice President Rutskoi and
former USSR President and Nobel Peace prize-winner Gorbachev. --
Julia Wishnevsky, RFE/RL Inc.

UNIONS THREATEN TO DISRUPT STATE TV BROADCASTING. In a statement
broadcast by Ostankino TV news on 21 September, the leader of the
Union of Communications Servicemen, Anatolii Nazeikin, announced
his union's intention to stop broadcasting both state TV
companies' programs, with the exception of two hours of evening
newscasts a day. Financed from the state budget, the
companies--Ostankino and Russian Television--have to pay for the
stations that transmit their signals across the country; in the
case of Ostankino, transmission costs account for 80% of its
budget. This year the budget covered only a quarter of the
companies' financial requirements; moreover, only a third of that
sum was actually paid. As a result, the companies owe the
communications network as much as 410.5 billion rubles, which
means in turn that payment of the wages of its employees has been
delayed for two to three months. The newscast also said Ostankino
Chairman Aleksandr Yakovlev had informed the Russian finance
minister by letter that he could not take responsibility for the
continuation of broadcasting in such circumstances. -- Julia
Wishnevsky, RFE/RL Inc.

PRESS COMMITTEE URGES COURT TO BAN ZAVTRA. The Russian State
Committee on the Press has appealed to the Moscow courts to ban
the hard-core opposition weekly Zavtra, Russian TV newscasts
reported on 20 September. The committee stated that the weekly
had been warned on several occasions for provoking discord among
nationalities and inciting rebellion. Edited by the militant
Russian nationalist writer Aleksandr Prokhanov, Zavtra is the
successor to the weekly Den, which was banned by a decree issued
by Yeltsin after the clashes between presidential and
pro-parliamentary forces in October 1993; the two periodicals do
not seem to differ in anything but name. -- Julia Wishnevsky,
RFE/RL Inc.

STRIKES BY VORKUTA COAL MINERS. According to a Russian TV
newscast on 20 September, a warning strike at a number of mines
in the Vorkuta coal basin ended on 20 September; workers at
another pit continued to strike. The miners were demanding
payment of their wages, which they have not received for several
months. They were also cited as threatening to stage another
strike on 1 October if the government continued to ignore their
problems. -- Julia Wishnevsky, RFE/RL Inc.

POWER OFFICIAL PULLS PLUG ON STRATEGIC MISSILES. The head of
Moscow's power directorate turned off the electric power at the
command center of the strategic rocket forces on 21 September,
because of unpaid bills. According to ITAR-TASS, this action
"created a threat to Russia's national security" that was only
averted when the men on duty managed to switch the system over to
its own power source. The Moscow official, Pavel Sinyuk, was
accused of violating a 1994 government decision forbidding such
action. The president of Mosenergo--the Moscow power
company--told Ostankino Television that the electricity was cut
off because the Moscow Military District owed over 50 billion
rubles. -- Doug Clarke, RFE/RL Inc.

SU-27 SALE TO CHINA HITS SNAG. A Hong Kong newspaper, Lien Ho
Pao, reported on 21 September that a planned Russian sale of 24
Su-27 jet fighters to China had been shelved because the two
sides could not agree on the price. The paper said that the
Russians were offering the planes for $30 million each, in cash,
while the Chinese were prepared to pay only $15 million in
bartered goods. China was reported to have purchased 26 Su-27s
from Russia last year. -- Doug Clarke, RFE/RL Inc.

RUSSIAN OIL INDUSTRY TO BE RESTRUCTURED. Plagued by continually
falling output, Russia's oil industry is to be fully restructured
by 1997 under a scheme drafted by the Ministry of Fuel and
Energy, the Union of Oil Industrialists, and Russia's largest oil
companies and endorsed by the Russian government's commission on
current management, Interfax reported on 20 September. The
scheme, which is being submitted to the government for approval,
envisages the creation in 1994 of 10 to 15 integrated firms to
extract and refine petroleum and provide related services. Small
and medium companies are to exploit small oil fields. A State Oil
Company is to be set up in 1996-1997 to represent Russia in
signing large contracts with foreign investors and coordinate the
activities of companies operating on a national scale. The
Transneft company is to continue operating oil pipelines. -- Bess
Brown, RFE/RL Inc.

RUSSIA SEEKS WORLD BANK OIL CREDITS. The Russian government
approved documents concerning a second loan, worth $500 million,
that it is seeking from the World Bank to rehabilitate and
modernize West Siberian oil fields, Interfax reported on 20
September. It said that Russia had obtained a first oil
rehabilitation loan, worth $610 million, from the World Bank in
1993. The latest request comes in the wake of Russian objections
to a massive Western investment project in Azerbaijan's offshore
oil fields and claims to a Russian right to "joint use" with
Caspian states of their offshore resources. -- Vladimir Socor,
RFE/RL Inc.

                 TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA

AGREEMENT ON DIVISION OF POWERS IN KAZAKHSTAN. Before setting out
for official visits to Italy and Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan's
President Nursultan Nazarbaev met with Supreme Soviet deputies
and forged an agreement on the division of responsibilities
between the legislative and executive branches, ITAR-TASS
reported on 20 September. A document on the agreement alludes to
the conflict earlier in the year between the Supreme Soviet and
the government and asserts that such disputes are unacceptable in
the face of Kazakhstan's worsening economic conditions and the
falling standard of living. A commission of representatives of
the legislature, government, and President's Office is to be
formed to work out the details of the agreement. -- Bess Brown,
RFE/RL Inc.

                               CIS

KOZYREV WANTS US ACCEPTANCE OF RUSSIAN ROLE IN CIS. In
preparation for the impending US-Russian summit, Andrei Kozyrev
urged the United States to expand bilateral economic relations
with Russia in order to contribute to the "stability and
prosperity of the CIS" as a region, ITAR-TASS cited the Russian
foreign minister as saying on 21 September. Those (unnamed) US
advisers who oppose Russia's role in CIS economic integration and
conflict resolution "are giving very bad, incorrect, and
irresponsible advice," Kozyrev said. "The US president should
dismiss such consultants without delay." Kozyrev said that Russia
aspires to turn the CIS into a European Union-like organization,
"certainly not a centralized state or a new USSR." He "pointed to
the lack of any imperial ambitions in Moscow," ITAR-TASS said. --
Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL Inc.

EURASIAN UNION PROPOSALS ENDORSED AT CONFERENCE. At a conference
in Almaty on 20 and 21 September, delegates from eight former
Soviet republics endorsed steps proposed by Kazakhstan's
President Nazarbaev toward creating a Eurasian Union, Interfax,
ITAR-TASS, and Ostankino TV reported. In his address to the
conference, Nazarbaev said the proposals were intended to
accelerate economic and political integration among CIS member
states. He and prominent Russian speakers, including the Duma's
CIS affairs committee chairman Konstantin Zatulin and Russian
Federation Communist Party head Gennadii Zyuganov, disclaimed any
intent to reconstitute the USSR or a Russian empire or to use
force in the process. Endorsing Nazarbaev's "and other
integration projects," the conference resolved to establish an
institute and a nongovernmental foundation to promote such plans.
-- Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL Inc.

MILITARY SPACE PROGRAM TO BE MOVED TO RUSSIA. ITAR-TASS announced
on 21 September that Russia intended to move its military space
program from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan to the
Plesetsk cosmodrome in northwestern Russia. It said that Colonel
General Vladimir Ivanov, head of the military Space Forces, was
leading a group of experts visiting Plesetsk to discuss the
transfer. Although Russia and Kazakhstan are about to sign an
agreement allowing the Russians to remain at the Baikonur
facility, the article said that the Defense Ministry did not want
to be dependent on any foreign state. As it is much farther north
than Baikonur, payloads launched from Plesetsk cannot be as heavy
as the ones sent aloft from Kazakhstan. In the longer run, the
Space Forces are counting on a new cosmodrome to be built in the
Amur region in the Far East. -- Doug Clarke, RFE/RL Inc.

                   CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

UN OBSERVERS SAY SERBIAN HELICOPTERS AID BOSNIAN SERBS. The New
York Times of 22 September quoted UN military observers as saying
that they had noted "several hundred flights by Serbian
helicopters over northeastern Bosnia in the past week, and many
[appeared] to have originated in Serbia." They added that they
had "not seen anything on this scale before and [doubted] that
the Bosnian Serbs could organize this number of helicopter
flights without the active involvement of the Yugoslav Army."
NATO spokesmen challenged the report, saying that they had
"nothing in any way to match this"; but the Frankfurter
Allgemeine Zeitung of 16 September had already reported on a
massive increase in cross-border helicopter activity. Meanwhile,
in Sarajevo, UN Commander General Sir Michael Rose was quoted by
Reuters of 21 September as saying that the Serbs appeared to be
meeting the midnight deadline for withdrawing their heavy weapons
from the city's exclusion zone. -- Patrick Moore, RFE/RL Inc.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS IN THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA. AFP of 21 September
quoted Serbian sources as saying that Bosnian government forces
were preparing an offensive from the Zvornik region to push
through Serbian lines and retake the left bank of the Drina. From
Banja Luka, Borba reported on 22 September that Bosnian Serbs and
the self-styled Croatian Republic of Herceg-Bosna had reached an
agreement to exchange populations that wished to move of their
own accord. The Athens-based Balkan News noted in its 8-14
September issue that local elements among the Muslim and Croatian
forces, particularly among the Herzegovinian Croatian
hard-liners, were blocking the implementation of the Croat-Muslim
federation program backed by their respective top leaderships.
Bosnian Croat leader Kresimir Zubak, who is not part of the
Herzegovinian group, had earlier protested to Muslim leaders
about anti-Croatian propaganda in the Muslim media. -- Patrick
Moore, RFE/RL Inc.

KOSOVAR POLITICAL LEADER TAKES BACK RESIGNATION . . . The deputy
leader of the Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK), Fehmi Agani, has
withdrawn his earlier resignation of his top posts. Agani had
expressed discontent with the elections to the central committee
at the second party congress on 14 July. According to Borba of 20
September, Agani charged that those elected were not long-term
participants in the struggle for Kosovo's independence but mainly
inexperienced people. He added that he was not content with the
work of the party as a whole. Before the congress, party leader
Ibrahim Rugova had argued for a change in the leadership to bring
younger and "skilled rather than enthusiastic" people into the
central committee and stressed that the LDK was "not an
ideological party." -- Fabian Schmidt, RFE/RL Inc.

. . . AND CALLS FOR TALKS WITH SERBS. After his return to office,
Agani said in an interview with RFE/RL's South Slavic Language
Service, together with the prominent Serbian ideologist Mihajlo
Markovic, that talks with Serbia should start soon under
international mediation. Markovic, however, stated that
international mediation "would hardly be acceptable" for the
Serbs, who regard Kosovo as a purely internal affair. Borba
carried the whole story in several articles between 17 and 20
September. A possible compromise in the two sides' positions
could be to hold talks in a foreign embassy in Belgrade. --
Fabian Schmidt, RFE/RL Inc.

POLAND'S NATIONAL ASSEMBLY BEGINS CONSTITUTIONAL DEBATE. The Sejm
and Senate, sitting jointly as the National Assembly, on 21
September began debating the seven draft constitutions submitted
for consideration by various political parties, the president,
the Senate, and the Solidarity union, PAP reports. President Lech
Walesa also attended. The first session was dominated by
procedural discussions. An ad hoc committee was set up to draft
rules of order for the assembly. These provide for a first
reading of all seven drafts, questions and answers, and a general
debate, followed by the preparation in commission of a single
compromise draft that will be submitted for a second reading to
the National Assembly. After the passage of the single draft, the
president will be able either to approve the draft or to suggest
amendments. In the latter case, there would be a third reading
before the president ordered a national referendum. Party
political infighting over the past five years has so far
prevented the completion of work on a new Polish Constitution. --
Anna Sabbat-Swidlicka, RFE/RL Inc.

POLISH PRIME MINISTER IN KAZAKHSTAN. Waldemar Pawlak arrived in
Alma Ata on 21 September at the head of a high-level delegation
that included several economic ministers and representatives of
state and private businesses, PAP reports. Pawlak and his Kazakh
counterpart Sergei Tereschenko signed several agreements
including one on Polish credits worth $30 million for Kazakh
purchases of Polish goods. Pawlak also met with representatives
of the large Polish ethnic group--the descendants of tens of
thousands of Poles resettled from Ukraine in the 1930s--many of
whom would like to repatriate to Poland. Pawlak said that
repatriation could only be considered if all else failed in
extreme circumstances. Instead, he stressed the need for the
Kazakh Poles to play a role in bilateral economic relations.
Pawlak suggested that the Polish community in the West should
help to develop such relations. A representative of the Polish
American Congress accompanied Pawlak. -- Anna Sabbat-Swidlicka,
RFE/RL Inc.

CZECH DEFENSE MINISTER RECALLED. At the request of Czech Prime
Minister Vaclav Klaus, on 21 September President Vaclav Havel
dismissed Defense Minister Antonin Baudys and appointed Foreign
Ministry official Vilem Holan to replace him. Holan is to be
sworn in on 22 September. The president and the prime minister
acted at the request of Baudys's Christian and Democratic
Union/People's Party. The leadership of the party claimed that
Baudys had become a political liability after a series of
political blunders, but both Baudys and Klaus have indicated that
the minister's replacement was a result of an internal party
struggle between two wings within the CDU/PP. Holan is also a
member of that party. -- Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL Inc.

SLOVAK FOREIGN MINISTRY ON HORN'S STATEMENTS. A spokesman for the
Slovak Ministry of Foreign Affairs told journalists in Bratislava
on 21 September that members of ethic minorities were
sufficiently represented in the system of state administration.
The statement was made in response to Hungarian Prime Minister
Guyla Horn's recent remarks on Duna Television that he considered
unacceptable the fact that in those regions of Slovakia where
members of an ethnic minority constituted a majority "they do not
enjoy corresponding representation in the system of state
administration." The Slovak Foreign Ministry spokesman said that
Horn was "again putting himself in the position of Slovakia's
mentor." -- Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL Inc.

HUNGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTER ON GOVERNMENT'S FOREIGN POLICY.
According to Laszlo Kovacs, the Gyula Horn-led government has
begun normalizing relations with Hungary's neighbors, MTI
reported on 21 September. Good-neighborly relations were
necessary for all concerned to integrate Europe and ensure
political stability in the region, Kovacs said. Hungary would
strive to sign bilateral treaties that guarantee both the
inviolability of borders and the rights of national minorities,
and experts' talks to that effect would take place in late
September with Slovakia and "in the near future" with Romania. By
signing such treaties, Hungary would not renounce the possibility
of peaceful changes of borders due to changed circumstances and
the agreement of both parties, as stated in the Vienna
Convention, Kovacs added. -- Alfred Reisch, RFE/RL Inc.

ROMANIANS PROTEST OVER COMMUNIST LEADERS' RELEASE. Reuters
reported on 21 September that Romanian civic groups had protested
against the release of the last two former communist bosses
jailed in connection with the killings in the December 1989
revolt. The two, Ion Dinca and Ludovic Fazekas, had been freed on
20 December. A leader of the "21 December" association called the
release "a new offense" to the more than 1,100 people reportedly
killed in the 1989 events. All eighty-seven senior communist
officials initially sentenced in connection with the massacres
have already been freed on grounds of age or health. Six of them
applied on 21 September for pardons to prevent the possibility of
being sent back to prison. In a separate development, an
"initiative group" announced on the same day that it planned to
revive the Romanian Communist Party and prepare its fifteenth
congress. The RCP's last congress was in November 1989, a month
before the uprising that toppled the late communist dictator
Nicolae Ceausescu. -- Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL Inc.

BULGARIAN COURT ORDERS PARLIAMENT TO STOP REPLACING TOP JURISTS.
The spokesman of the constitutional court told Bulgarian National
Radio on 21 September that parliament would have to rescind its
decision aimed at replacing several members of the Supreme
Judicial Council (SJC), adopted on 16 September. Vladislav Slavov
said the assembly's vote was a "drastic and striking violation"
of the court's 15 September ruling, which interpreted the 1991
constitution as unambiguously stating that all members of the SJC
are appointed for five years, a provision that he said neither
parliament nor the recently adopted law on the judiciary could
ignore or modify. Slavov also stressed that the existing Law on
the Constitutional Court gave the top legal body the authority to
order any state institution, including the National Assembly, to
revoke decisions that it regarded as inconsistent with the
constitution. -- Kjell Engelbrekt, RFE/RL Inc.

ALBANIA TO COMMEMORATE LIBERATION ANNIVERSARY. On the
recommendation of President Sali Berisha, a government commission
has been set up to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of
Albania's liberation from Axis occupation, according to Rilindja
Demokratike of 10 September. Last year Albania changed the
national day from 29 November (the date celebrated for
forty-eight years and chosen by Enver Hoxha to coincide with the
liberation day of former Yugoslavia) to 28 November, the day that
also marks the independence from 500 years of Ottoman rule in
1912. The Socialists (the former Communists) saw the change as
part of Berisha's Democrats' wider agenda aimed at destroying the
legacy of Albania's Partisans who had fought for liberation. But
now, faced with the mounting pressure of what Tirana calls the
"Serb-Greek threat" to the Albanian people, Berisha's decision to
pay special tribute to the fiftieth anniversary of liberation can
be seen as a rallying nationalist call to all Albanians,
including the Socialists. Berisha also personally marked the
fiftieth anniversary of the liberation of the city of Gjirokaster
(bordering on Greece and the birthplace of the late dictator
Hoxha), reported Rilindja on 20 September. The president said in
his lengthy and nationalistic speech that all Albanians had to
confront "bad Serb-Greek nationalism with good Albanian
nationalism." -- Louis Zanga, RFE/RL Inc.

UKRAINIAN NATIONALISTS ON CHENCHENYA. On 21 September UNIAN
reported that a delegation of the radical nationalist
organization the Ukrainian National Assembly (UNA), led by Yurii
Tyma, had met with Chechen President Dzhokar Dudayev in Grozny.
Tyma said that Dudayev supported UNA's initiative to hold an
international congress of "freedom-loving forces" in Grozny in
October. Tyma also accused Russia of using the cholera epidemic
in Deghestan to block approaches to Grozny and of fabricating the
myth of an Islamic threat in the Caucauses. UNA's paramilitary
arm, the Ukrainian National Self-Defense Organization (UNSO), has
been active in fighting against Russian forces in Abkhazia and
also on the side of the Russian Transdniester forces in Moldova
in protection of Slavic rights. The former Ukrainian president,
Leonid Kravchuk, had banned UNSO as a result of its activities.
-- Ustina Markus, RFE/RL Inc.

UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT ACTS ON CRIMEA. International media report
that the Ukrainian parliament passed several amendments affecting
Crimea on 21 September. One amendment allows the Ukrainian
parliament to dismiss deputies in the Crimean parliament before
their term of office is up. A second amendment says that the
Ukrainian legislature can cancel legal acts adopted by Crimea if
they do not conform to the Ukrainian Constitution. Yet another
amendment changes the name of the Crimean Autonomous Soviet
Socialist Republic to the "Autonomous Republic of Crimea." --
Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL Inc.

FIRST HUNGARIAN INSTITUTE OF HIGHER EDUCATION OPENS IN UKRAINE.
The teachers' college opened on 17 September in Beregszasz
(Berehovo), Transcarpathian Oblast, according to Nepszabadsag of
20 September. On the recommendation of the joint
Ukrainian-Hungarian commission and with the support of the
teachers' college of Nyiregyhaza in Hungary, the new college will
train twenty-five ethnic Magyar nursery school and regular
teachers and seventeen teachers of English, history, and
geography this academic year. It also plans to teach members of
the Hungarian minority in Transcarpathia agriculture and health
at a higher level. -- Alfred Reisch, RFE/RL Inc.

BELARUSIAN PRESIDENT ON THE ECONOMY AND RUSSIA. Belarusian Radio
and Belinform-TASS reported on separate interviews with
Alyaksandr Lukashenka on 21 and 20 September, respectively.
According to Belinform-TASS, Lukashenka blames Russia for the
unpopular economic measures the Belarusian government must take,
because Russia began charging world prices for its energy
rapidly, rather than adopting a gradual approach. Lukashenka also
said that some $200 million had been deposited in Belarusian
overseas bank accounts and that this money was not working for
the benefit of the Belarusian economy. He added that a decree
would soon be passed regarding these accounts. Belarusian Radio
reported that Lukashenka had said Belarus would not accept
Russian ultimatums on country's energy debt. When asked if it was
possible that a situation could arise in Belarus similar to what
happened in Russia during the confrontation between the president
and the parliament in September 1993, Lukashenka replied that it
could not. -- Ustina Markus, RFE/RL Inc.

ESTONIAN-GERMAN DEFENSE ACCORD SIGNED. A defense cooperation
agreement was signed in Bonn on 21 September by the defense
ministers of Estonia and Germany, Enn Tupp and Volker Ruehe, BNS
reported. Ruehe said the agreement marked the beginning of a new
era in Estonian-German cooperation, while Tupp noted that the
accord was a further sign of the importance that Germany and the
present German government attach to the security of all three
Baltic States (similar accords were recently signed also with
Latvia and Lithuania). In their discussions, the two defense
ministers dealt with various issues, including the training of
Estonian officers in Germany, aid and technical assistance for
the Baltic peacekeeping battalion and the Estonian armed forces,
and security policy in the Baltic region following the withdrawal
of Russian troops. -- Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL Inc.

LITHUANIAN CABINET DISCUSSES MILITARY TRANSIT RULES. On 21
September the Lithuanian government discussed the draft
regulations for transporting foreign military cargoes through
Lithuania, BNS and Interfax reported. The document sets forth
conditions and rules for the transit of servicemen and military
cargo and specifies control mechanisms and compensation for
possible damage. The regulations prohibit the transportation of
nuclear arms and armed formations through Lithuania and the
carrying of missiles, bombs, and weapons by foreign aircraft
flying over Lithuania. According to Virglijus Bulovas, the head
of the Lithuanian working group for talks with the CIS states,
this document will serve as the basis for the Russian-Lithuanian
agreement on military transit to Russia's Kaliningrad region via
Lithuanian territory. Until now, Moscow has linked the signing of
the agreement on transit to Kaliningrad with implementing the
November 1993 agreement on granting Lithuania most-favored-nation
trading status. -- Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL Inc.

RIGA CITY COUNCIL BANS ANTISTATE MEDIA. After a heated debate,
the city council in Riga, Latvia, on 20 September adopted new
rules on the dissemination of foreign media, Diena and BNS
reported on 21 September. Publications and other media that
propagate violence or breaches of the law, campaign against
Latvia's independence, or advocate chauvinism are banned. Failure
to comply with the regulations may entail a fine of 50 lati.
Council member Juris Dobelis commented on the move, claiming that
newspapers such as Russkii Sobor, Rech, Al-Kods, and Nashe
Otcetestvo, which are regularly sold in downtown Riga, "undermine
Latvia's stability and threaten its independence." -- Dzintra
Bungs, RFE/RL Inc.
           [As of 1200 CET] (Compiled by Penny Morvant
                       and Maggie Evling)
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