|If you wish to make an apple pie truly from scratch, you must first invent the universe. - Carl Sagan|
No. 193, 11 October 1994
RUSSIA DIPLOMATS: RUSSIA MAY DROP RADICAL CSCE PLAN. On 10 October Reuters, reporting on the opening session of the Budapest CSCE review conference, said that Russia might drop its radical plan to reorganize the CSCE into a mini-UN for Europe. Chief Russian delegate Yurii Ushakov, however, accused opponents of the plan of harboring a "cold war" mentality, an RFE/RL correspondent reported. In June the Russians had proposed that NATO, the would-be collective security organization of the CIS, and other European security organizations should be "coordinated by" the CSCE. The CSCE would have its own, UN-style security council, with Russia as a member. Not only NATO but also some former Warsaw Pact states oppose the plan. The US delegate to the Budapest meeting was quoted as saying that the plan was not acceptable to the United States, and several other delegates spoke out against any radical reform of the CSCE. Since unanimity is required on any decision, the Russian plan has no hope of acceptance. -- Doug Clarke and Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL Inc. CHECHEN LEADERSHIP READY FOR TALKS WITH RUSSIA. On 10 October Interfax quoted Chechen Interior Minister Shamseddin Yusef as affirming that the Chechen leadership was ready to embark on talks with the Russian leadership, provided that Moscow did not interfere in Chechnya's internal affairs; he also said that the Chechen leadership had rejected offers of support from various Muslim states, including Afghanistan, which had offered to send one million mudjahedin to Chechnya. On the same day, a group of Chechen parliamentarians arrived in Moscow for talks with State Duma chairman Ivan Rybkin. Meanwhile, ITAR-TASS reported that Chechen Deputy Prime Minister Husein Ferzauli had met in Ankara with the chairman of Turkey's opposition Motherland Party, Mesut Yilmaz, who expressed concern over Russia's Caucasus policy. -- Liz Fuller, RFE/RL Inc. RUBLE PLUNGES AGAINST DOLLAR. On 10 October the ruble fell by 6.4% against the dollar, its steepest one-day dive since January. On the Moscow Interbank Currency Exchange the ruble closed at 3,081 to the dollar, down from 2,896 on Friday, 7 October, Western agencies reported. Since 22 September, when the Russian Central Bank stopped intervening to prop up the ruble, it has fallen by more than 27%. In an attempt to calm markets, acting Finance Minister Sergei Dubinin said the fall was not caused by economic conditions and did not presage a sharp rise in inflation. Bankers and economists warned, however, that the drop in the ruble would result in an increase in inflation and the budget deficit. -- Penny Morvant, RFE/RL Inc. TAX MAN THREATENS OFFICER RETRAINING. Colonel General Yurii Rodionov, deputy chairman of the parliament's Defense Committee, told Interfax on 10 October that the Russian tax services were threatening the social programs for military officers withdrawn from Germany. Rodionov said there were ten training centers in Russia completely financed and equipped by the German government. In the summer, he added, the tax authorities had started demanding that these centers pay taxes and had even seized the accounts of training centers and the organizations building houses for the returnees. He explained that the State Duma had passed a law freeing these institutions from taxation, but the Federation Council had not. Rodionov hoped that the Duma version would soon be approved by a conference committee. -- Doug Clarke, RFE/RL Inc. BRAZIL TO BUY RUSSIAN TANKS. Brazilian defense officials signed on 10 October a letter of intent to buy 300 T-72 tanks from the Omsk Transport Machine-building Factory in Western Siberia. The tanks will be sold for $1.2 million each, but Interfax reported that the two sides still had to agree on the means of payment before a contract could be signed. The Brazilians have proposed a barter deal, while the Russians want hard currency. -- Doug Clarke, RFE/RL Inc. SPACE FORCES USE UKRAINIAN-BUILT BOOSTER AND SATELLITE. Interfax on 10 October reported that the Space Forces intended to launch an Okean-01 weather satellite the next day from the Plesetsk cosmodrome using a Tsiklon-3 booster. A workhorse for the Soviet space program, the Tsiklon-3 failed in its last launch attempt on 25 May 1994. The Tsiklon-3 is a civilian version of the R-36 (SS-9) intercontinental ballistic missile. Both it and the Okean satellite were designed and built at Ukraine's Southern Machine-building Plant (Pivdenmash) in Dnipropetrovsk. -- Doug Clarke, RFE/RL Inc. CHANGE OF LEADERSHIP AT POPULAR NEWSPAPER. Vladislav Fronin resigned on 6 October as chief editor of the leading proreform daily Komsomolskaya pravda, a post he had held since 1988, and as chairman of the Komsomolskaya Pravda joint-stock company, according to a report published in Komsomolskaya pravda on the following day. Valerii Simonov, hitherto Fronin's deputy, was elected chief editor, while Vladimir Sungorkin replaced Fronin as company chairman. Fronin is working on the establishment of a Komsomolskaya Pravda publishing house. -- Julia Wishnevsky, RFE/RL Inc. YELTSIN AGREES TO TAKE OVER FORMER GOVERNMENT DAILY. On 5 October Rossiiskaya gazeta published the text of a presidential directive transferring Rossiiskie vesti from the government--a change requested by the newspaper's editorial staff--to staff and the President's Administration. Rossiiskie vesti was founded in 1990 by the Russian Supreme Soviet, then chaired by Yeltsin. Soon after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the appointment of the reformist government of Egor Gaidar in December 1991, it was reregistered as a government newspaper. (Rossiiskaya gazeta continued as the organ of the parliament until the latter was dissolved by Yeltsin's decree of 21 September 1993.) When Viktor Chernomyrdin took over the leadership of the government in March 1993, the staff of Rossiiskie vesti remained loyal to the Gaidar team, finding it difficult to support the policies of the new prime minister. -- Julia Wishnevsky, RFE/RL Inc. TRANSCAUCASIA AND CENTRAL ASIA BREAD SHORTAGE IN DUSHANBE RESULTS IN DISTURBANCES. Russian and Western news agencies reported on 10 October that bread shortages in Tajikistan's capital had become so severe that fights at bread shops had become common. On 9 October a Dushanbe woman was shot dead and another was wounded when an officer of the Ministry of National Security fired on people waiting to buy bread, the only food product that most inhabitants of Dushanbe can afford. The previous day a militia officer had killed a man selling bread from a truck. ITAR-TASS noted that a recent decree of the presidium of Tajikistan's Supreme Soviet making speculation in bread a criminal offense had merely driven illegal traders underground and forced prices up. Government officials traced the shortage to a lack of fuel for transport, but others point to a lack of flour. On 9 October Uzbekistan shipped some flour to Tajikistan, but the amount was reported to be sufficient for only two weeks. -- Bess Brown, RFE/RL Inc. FURTHER ECONOMIC WOES OF TAJIKISTAN. Tajikistan's industrial production is paralyzed because of a lack of materials and Russian rubles, Russian TV reported on 9 October; the following day, Tajik head of state Imomali Rakhmonov complained to journalists that his country's economic situation was being hurt by the obstacles put up to prevent its joining the ruble zone, Interfax reported. Some Russian financial officials have been wary of taking on responsibility for the collapsed economy of Tajikistan. In Rakhmonov's opinion, 15 trillion rubles will be needed to restore the economy of the Central Asian state. According to the Russian TV report, the Tajik government has been able to pay wages only three times in 1994. -- Bess Brown, RFE/RL Inc. GEORGIAN WARLORD CREATES OWN POLITICAL PARTY. Looking ahead to the parliamentary elections due in 1995, Georgian warlord Dzhaba Ioseliani has announced the creation of a political party named "Elections" that "opposes all existing political groupings in Georgia," according to ITAR-TASS of 8 October and AFP of 10 October. Ioseliani was quoted by ITAR-TASS as stating that "Elections" is seeking as potential candidates talented and honest individuals who at present remain outside domestic politics. In his regular Monday radio interview on 10 October, Georgian parliament chairman Eduard Shevardnadze argued that the institution of president, abolished in 1992 after the ouster of the incumbent (with Ioseliani's help), should be restored, Interfax reported. -- Liz Fuller, RFE/RL Inc. CIS RUSSIA WANTS STRINGS ATTACHED TO WESTERN CREDITS TO CIS STATES. Returning from the Madrid meeting of the IMF, World Bank, and EBRD, where Russia was granted major debt relief, Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Shokhin declared that Western credits to CIS member states should be linked to the repayment of these states' debts to Moscow. Russia "welcomes Western credits to CIS countries as long as these pay their debts to Russia with these funds," Interfax quoted Shokhin on 6 and 7 October as telling a news conference. He also implied that the issue could affect Russia's ability to repay its Western creditors in the future. -- Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL Inc. RUSSIAN GEOPOLITICAL AGENDA AT CSCE. Preliminary discussions at the Budapest CSCE meeting (see above) highlighted further differences between Russia and most other members over security issues related to the ex-Soviet area and Eastern Europe. Russia seeks political recognition and financial support for its peacekeeping operations in the CIS area, but many other countries insist on close monitoring of and specific time limits for the operation, its rigorous impartiality, and accompanying political negotiations under CSCE auspices, none of which Moscow accepts. Russia is being criticized at the CSCE for undermining the latter's efforts to bring peace to Karabakh. Controversy is also expected over Russia's renewed demands to revise to its advantage the flank sublimits for the Caucasus and the northwestern theater in the treaty on Conventional Forces in Europe. Moscow's last-minute proposal to lift the suspension of the rump Yugoslavia from the CSCE is likely to spell further controversy. -- Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL Inc. RUSSIA AND BELARUS TO COORDINATE BORDER DEFENSE? The commanders of Russian and Belarus Border Troops, Colonel General Andrei Nikolaev and Colonel Vasilii Morkovkin, signed on 7 October in Minsk a protocol on expanding bilateral cooperation on border defense, Interfax reported. They agreed to "coordinate actions" of the border troops on Russia's and Belarus' borders with Ukraine and to hold joint exercises on the defense of "joint sections" of their borders with Poland, Latvia, and Lithuania. Moreover, they agreed to create working groups at the chief of staff level to work out by 30 October a concept for "a single regime for the defense of Russia's and Belarus' borders" with Poland, Latvia, and Lithuania (i.e., non-CIS states). -- Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL Inc. RUSSIAN CREDITS FOR ARMENIA. Speaking in Erevan on 10 October at the beginning of an official visit to Armenia, the chairman of the Russian Federation Council, Vladimir Shumeiko, announced that Russia would grant Armenia 110 billion rubles credit as the first installment of an aid package; of this, 60 billion rubles are earmarked for reconstruction of Armenia's mothballed nuclear power station. (Russia had previously offered technical assistance with this project provided that Armenia footed the bill.) At a meeting with Armenian parliamentarians, Shumeiko characterized relations between the two countries as developing "quite successfully and fruitfully," Interfax reported. Shumeiko and Armenian Prime Minister Hrant Bagratyan agreed on the need to widen economic cooperation between the two countries, particularly in the field of advanced technology. -- Liz Fuller, RFE/RL Inc. CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE BOSNIAN UPDATE. UN commander General Sir Michael Rose has written to both the Serb and Bosnian government sides to demand an end to their renewed sniper activity, which he called "a serious threat to the civilian population," AFP reported on 10 October. The BBC added that Serb forces continue to block most relief convoys. The Times on 11 October reports on the successful efforts of Turkish peace-keepers to win the confidence of the Croats of Podbrezje, near Zenica, in central Bosnia. The Turks helped the Croats repair and restore the Catholic church that had been desecrated by Islamic volunteer fighters from the Middle East, who number in the hundreds in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The guerrillas challenged the Turks, but a Turkish officer recalled "there were [then] some very strict measures undertaken by our commanding officer. Let us say they involved a very heavy armored patrol. The mujahadin do not bother us any more." -- Patrick Moore, RFE/RL Inc. SERBIAN CROWN PRINCE CRITICIZES BORDERS AND BLOCKADES BETWEEN SERBS. Borba on 11 October reports on the speech by Crown Prince Aleksandar Karadjordjevic marking the 60th anniversary of the assassination of King Aleksandar I Karadjordjevic, who was gunned down in Marseilles by a Macedonian terrorist working with Croatian extremists. The prince praised the late monarch and recalled his historic role in the wake of World War I as the unifier "of all Serbs and other Yugoslavs." Alluding to present-day affairs and the ongoing feud between Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic and Bosnian Serb leaders, the prince said "it is completely natural that we [Serbs] again seek to be united and that there be no borders among us, to say nothing of a blockade by one Serb state against another." Monarchy has deep roots in Serbian culture, and many observers both inside Serbia and abroad have suggested that the British-born Aleksandar could offer a dignified alternative to the current Serbian political scene, which is saturated with ex-Communists and shadowy elements. -- Patrick Moore, RFE/RL Inc. RUMP YUGOSLAV PRESIDENT IN ATHENS. Zoran Lilic, speaking to the Greek news agency ANA on 10 October, said Belgrade's relations with Albania had hit a nadir, largely owing to what he described as Tirana's poor record on human rights issues. He suggested that relations with Macedonia were strained and that Macedonia had mistreated its ethnic Serbian minority. Lilic also expressed satisfaction at the international community's easing of sanctions against the rump Yugoslavia. -- Stan Markotich, RFE/RL Inc. SERBIAN, RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCHES ISSUE STATEMENT ON PEACE. International media reported on 10 October that the Serbian and Russian Orthodox Churches have issued a joint statement calling for talks to resume on establishing peace throughout the former Yugoslavia. The document, issued in Moscow at the end of a visit there by Serbian Orthodox Church officials, states that "a just peace must offer the Serbs, the Croats, and the Muslims a fair chance to set up their own states and societies." -- Stan Markotich, RFE/RL Inc. TRIAL OF MUSLIMS IN SANDZAK. In the Montenegrin town of Bijelo Polje, the trial continues of the leader of the ethnic Muslim Party for Democratic Action (SDA), Harun Hadzic, and other party members, including Hakija Muratovic. Borba on 11 October quotes Muratovic as calling the trial "skillfully rigged" and "aimed at destroying the SDA." He added that the "entire Muslim nation" in rump Yugoslavia is on trial. Borba reported on 7 October that Hadzic has denied charges of plotting an armed uprising and claims a Muslim military does not exist. He also argues that no one in the party has signed a Sandzak constitution and that the 1993 memorandum for an independent Sandzak was simply the basis for negotiations with the Montenegrin and Serbian authorities. The document called for setting up a joint parliament for the Serbian and Montenegrin halves of Sandzak, which combined have a narrow Muslim majority, and for establishing various other institutions that would lay the foundations for a state. Hadzic added that weapons found in police raids were bought by the SDA out of fear for members' safety after anonymous threats. Earlier this year the Humanitarian Law Fund published a report saying police forced ethnic Muslims to buy guns and then ordered them to hand the weapons over as sham "evidence." -- Fabian Schmidt, RFE/RL Inc. POLISH MILITARY CONFLICT SHARPENS. In a dispute over control of the military, President Lech Walesa has asked Defense Minister Piotr Kolodziejczyk to resign. But the minister has refused to do so, at least for the time being. Gazeta Wyborcza reported on 11 October that Prime Minister Waldemar Pawlak told Kolodziejczyk to "maintain his cool." Parliamentary leaders of the leading political parties told Rzeczpospolita the same day that their groups would support Kolodziejczyk in the dispute with the president. They also demanded that high-ranking officers who had followed Walesa's lead in criticizing the minister be disciplined. The internal conflict within the military has already become a major political problem, threatening to undermine the authority of the president and severely affecting the military as a whole. -- Jan de Weydenthal, RFE/RL Inc. ANOTHER GERMAN TOURIST SHOT BY CZECH POLICE. A Czech policeman on 9 October shot and seriously wounded a German tourist near the town of Pribram, Czech and German agencies report. Some witnesses say the tourist attacked the policeman while being questioned about a traffic violation; others have testified that the attack by the policeman and the subsequent accidental shot was unprovoked. The policeman has been suspended and is under investigation. Czech police in September shot and killed a German tourist who reportedly failed to stop his car when signaled to do so by a police patrol. The German Embassy in Prague expressed "alarm" over the two incidents and appealed to the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs to clarify the latest shooting. Czech Internal Affairs Minister Jan Ruml on 10 October expressed regret over the incident. -- Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL Inc. "BOHEMIAE 1994" IN PRAGUE. President Vaclav Havel opened in Prague on 9 October the major three-day conference "Bohemiae 1994." Prominent Western and Czech economists and public figures are attending the conference, which is modeled on the Davos Forum. Addressing the conference, Czech Industry and Trade Minister Vladimir Dlouhy said on 10 October that the annual inflation rate in the Czech Republic is not expected to exceed 10% in 1994. He challenged Ronald Freeman, the vice president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, who had argued that the Czech Republic should export more to the East rather than rely on exports to the West. Freeman's recommendation was also rejected by the Harvard economist Jeffrey Sachs, CTK reported. -- Jiri Pehe, RFE/RL Inc. SLOVAKIA'S REFERENDUM CAMPAIGN GETS UNDER WAY. The radio and television campaign for Slovakia's first referendum kicked off on 10 October, but no political party has shown an interest in participating, TASR reports. The referendum, to be held on 22 October, asks the question "Do you agree that a law proving the sources of money used in privatization should be passed?" The Democratic Union, Christian Democratic Movement, and Hungarian coalition have all questioned the need for such a referendum, particularly because it could be used retroactively. Meanwhile, if such a referendum is passed, it will not require that a parliamentary law be approved, since the constitution stipulates that deputies should vote according to their conscience. -- Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL Inc. PARTY OF THE DEMOCRATIC LEFT ON SPLIT, NEW CABINET. PDL Deputy Chairman Milan Ftacnik assured journalists on 10 October that his party will not split, saying such a move would make no sense with local elections approaching, TASR reports. The party's disappointing showing in Slovakia's recent parliamentary elections has triggered growing speculation that a split is imminent, particularly in light of the Republican Council session scheduled for 15 October, at which possible leadership changes are to be discussed. PDL Deputy Chairman Alzbeta Borzova denied a recent CTK report saying that Chairman Peter Weiss and other party leaders have offered to resign. Weiss said his party's closest ally is the Association of Slovak Workers, which was established within the framework of the PDL. He has also said that it is "highly improbable" that a coalition with the Hungarian parties can be created since it would require ASW support and important changes to the Hungarian coalition's current program, Sme reported on 8 October. -- Sharon Fisher, RFE/RL Inc. HUNGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTER ADDRESSES CSCE CONFERENCE. Addressing the CSCE conference in Budapest on 10 October, Laszlo Kovacs warned there is a "security hiatus" in Europe and that numerous countries, especially in Central and Eastern Europe, feel insecure, MTI reports. He argued this poses new dangers and upgrades the role of the CSCE as the only pan-European organization. Kovacs went on to say that since the CSCE lacked the means to act as the sole guarantor of European security, a comprehensive defense structure must be established that provides a forum for all countries unable to join Western security institutions in the foreseeable future. -- Edith Oltay, RFE/RL Inc. CANADA TO ABOLISH VISA REQUIREMENT FOR HUNGARIANS. MTI and Western news agencies reported on 10 October that Canada will abolish visa requirements for Hungarians beginning 1 November. Canadian Minister for Citizenship and Immigration Sergio Marchi said Hungary will be the first East European country whose citizens will not need visas. Marchi told reporters in Budapest: "For my government, the necessity that Hungarians obtain visas is a hangover from your country's pre-democratic days." Canadians have been able to travel to Hungary without a visa since 1990. -- Edith Oltay, RFE/RL Inc. NAVAL EXERCISE IN ROMANIA. A three-day naval exercise ended in Romania on 10 October, Radio Bucharest and Western agencies reported. The exercise, known as "Pontica '94," took place off the Romanian Black Sea coast. Observers from 11 Western and Balkan countries, plus NATO, watched the maneuvers, which ended with a mock battle at Cap Midia in which Romanian troops repelled an imaginary attempt by enemy forces to land on the Romanian shore. Later in October, Romania will join other Black Sea countries in a multinational naval exercise in line with NATO's Partnership for Peace program. -- Dan Ionescu, RFE/RL Inc. FIVE KILLED IN SOUTHEASTERN BULGARIA. Five people were killed and nine others injured in a blast at a thermal power plant on 10 October, RFE/RL's Bulgarian Service reported the same day. The incident took place in the village of Galabavo, some 250 kilometers from Sofia. The cause of the explosion is unknown. -- Stan Markotich, RFE/RL Inc. BERISHA REJECTS APPEAL TO "TRADE IN OUR CITIZENS." News agencies reported from Tirana on 10 October that Albanian President Sali Berisha has rejected Greek appeals to release five ethnic Greeks convicted of espionage and illegal possession of weapons. He also refused to deport the five to Greece, saying Tirana will not use "the methods of Brezhnev" in dealing with such cases. Athens suggested that the five be freed and sent to Greece, but Berisha said this would cast doubt on the "sovereignty of Albanian institutions." -- Patrick Moore, RFE/RL Inc. MOLDOVAN PROTESTS IN BENDERY. Following several ultimatums, some 100 parents of Moldovan schoolchildren from the right-bank city of Bendery, controlled by the left-bank "Dniester republic," blocked the railroad just outside the city on 10 October to protest the "Dniester" ban on the Roman alphabet. Blockading the Bendery junction, which handles almost all rail transport between Moldova and the CIS states, can inflict heavy economic losses on Moldova--as was the case in 1991 when Russian communist women obstructed rail traffic at the same junction. Senior Moldovan officials and the police managed to persuade the Moldovan parents to stop their protest after several hours, but the parents threatened to resume the blockade in a few days unless Tiraspol lifts the alphabet ban. -- Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL Inc. CORRESPONDENT BEATEN IN TIRASPOL. Anatolii Holodiuk, an RFE/RL and Basapress correspondent in Tiraspol, was beaten up outside the city's House of Soviets by a major from the Security Ministry of the "Dniester republic," Basapress reported on 10 October. The correspondent had been threatened most recently on 8 October by uniformed security agents for his reporting, particularly on the school protests. The victim telephoned the Security Ministry to complain about the attack but was rebuffed by the minister. -- Vladimir Socor, RFE/RL Inc. CALL FOR CLOSER LITHUANIAN-UKRAINIAN RELATIONS. Lithuanian Seimas Deputy Chairman Juozas Bernatonis and Defense Minister Linas Linkevicius participated in the ceremonies in Kiev commemorating the 50th anniversary of Ukraine's liberation from Nazi occupation, Radio Lithuania reported on 10 October. In talks with Ukrainian Parliament Chairman Oleksandr Moroz on 7 October, Bernatonis noted that Lithuania was interested in restoring close relations between the two countries. These ties decreased after Lithuania and Ukraine regained independence. Bernatonis said the process of restoring close relations should be aided by the planned visit to Ukraine in late October by Seimas Chairman Ceslovas Jursenas. The two leaders expressed the view that their countries should also cooperate in creating a legal basis for market reforms. -- Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL Inc. LITHUANIAN FRIGATE IN NATO MANEUVERS. The "Zemaitis" returned to Klaipeda on 10 October after participating in the 10-day NATO exercise "Cooperative Venture 94" in the North Sea off the coast of Norway, Lithuania Radio reports. This was the first time that Lithuania took part in naval Partnership for Peace maneuvers. Lithuanian armed forces commander in chief General Jonas Andriskevicius, who observed the training operations, noted that the ship successfully completed all its tasks and its performance differed little from that of other vessels. -- Saulius Girnius, RFE/RL Inc. NATIONAL BANK PRESIDENT NOMINATED FOR ESTONIAN PREMIERSHIP. Estonian President Lennart Meri has nominated Siim Kallas, president of the Bank of Estonia, as prime minister and asked him to form a new government, BNS reported on 10 October. The prime minister-designate must submit his program to the parliament within 14 days. If the program is approved, he has 7 days to present the new government to the president, who then appoints a new cabinet within three days. Kallas was born in Tallinn in 1948 and graduated with honors from Tartu University in 1972, where he majored in economics. He co-authored the program for Estonian economic autonomy and the 1992 monetary reform. Also in 1992, he was appointed president of the Bank of Estonia's president. -- Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL Inc. UPDATE ON PALDISKI AND SKRUNDA BASES. Russian specialists have removed the fuel rod from the second nuclear reactor at the former Soviet submarine base in Paldiski, Estonia, BNS reported on 10 October. Estonian officials reported that the procedure went smoothly. Russian experts opened up the newest, 90-megawatt reactor in August and the older, 70-megawatt reactor in September. The nuclear fuel rods from both reactors will be taken to Krasnoyarsk, Russia, later this month. Under the Estonian-Russian agreement on decommissioning the Paldiski naval base, the two reactors have to be completely dismantled by the end of September 1995. Meanwhile, specialists from the US Defense Department and the US Controlled Demolition Inc. are due to arrive in Latvia this week to prepare for the dismantling of the unfinished block at the Skrunda early-warning radar station. Latvia took over the unfinished part of the radar facilities after it signed accords on the withdrawal of Russian troops on 30 April. The United States has committed up to $7 million to assist with the dismantling process. According to the Latvian-Russian accords, Russia will continue to operate the station for another four years or so. -- Dzintra Bungs, RFE/RL Inc. [As of 1200 CET] (Compiled by Penny Morvant and Jan Cleave) 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 Inquiries about specific news items should be directed as follows (please include your full postal address when inquiring about subscriptions): Mr. Brian Reed RFE/RL, Inc. 1201 Connecticut Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20036 Telephone: (202) 457-6912 Fax: (202) 457-6992 Internet: REEDB@RFERL.ORG Copyright 1994, RFE/RL, Inc. All rights reserved.
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