Life, within doors, has few pleasanter prospects than a neatly arranged and well-provisioned breakfast-table. - Nathaniel Hawthorne
OMRI DAILY DIGEST

No. 121, Part II, 22 June 1995

This is Part II of the Open Media Research Institute's Daily Digest.
Part II is a compilation of news concerning East-Central and
Southeastern Europe. Part I, covering Russia, Transcaucasia and Central
Asia, and the CIS, is distributed simultaneously as a second document.
Back issues of the Daily Digest, and other information about OMRI, are
available through OMRI's WWW pages: http://www.omri.cz/OMRI.html

EAST-CENTRAL EUROPE

UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT DISMISSES PROSECUTOR-GENERAL. Ukrainian lawmakers
voted in a closed session on 21 June to sack Prosecutor-General
Vladislav Datsyuk after accusing him of failing to deal with serious
crime, Reuters and Interfax-Ukraine reported the same day. Leonid
Borodych, chairman of the legislature's Law and Order Commission, said
nearly half of the more than 250,000 serious crimes reported last year
remain unsolved. Datsuk denied the allegations, saying the move was part
of a campaign by parliamentary leaders to halt ongoing investigations
into high-level corruption. He warned deputies against stopping
inquiries into corruption among officials. In other news, President
Leonid Kuchma issued a decree on setting up a presidential committee for
legislative initiatives, Interfax-Ukraine reported on 21 June.
Presidential legal adviser Fedir Burchak was appointed to head the
committee, which will advise Kuchma about decrees on economic reforms if
legislation is lacking. -- Chrystyna Lapychak, OMRI, Inc.

BELARUS MOVES TO IMPROVE RELATIONS WITH TURKEY . . . Belarusian Foreign
Minister Uladzimir Syanko has told the Turkish envoy in Minsk that
improving relations with Turkey is of great importance to Belarus,
Reuters reported on 21 June. Belarus in December 1994 expelled two
Turkish diplomats for alleged spying. Ankara, denying that the two were
spies, retaliated by freezing a $100 million loan and pulling out of
talks on transport, security, and aviation projects. Syanko said Minsk
regretted the incident. Akbel welcomed the statement and agreed that
relations should develop between the two countries. -- Ustina Markus,
OMRI, Inc.

. . . AND WILL SIGN MILITARY AGREEMENT WITH CHINA. Chinese Prime
Minister Li Peng arrived in Belarus on 21 June to sign a pact on
technical cooperation in the military sphere and visit a defense factory
and an air force base, Reuters reported that President Alyaksandr
Lukashenka told Li that the two countries have similar ideologies so it
is easy to conduct talks with China. -- Doug Clarke, OMRI, Inc.

U.S., ESTONIA DEVELOP DEFENSE COOPERATION. U.S. Defense Department
Undersecretary Walter Slacombe, on a visit to Estonia from 20-21 June,
held talks with President Lennart Meri, Defense Minister Andrus Oovel,
and armed forces commander Maj. Gen. Aleksander Einseln, BNS reported.
Slacombe and Oovel signed a memorandum on defense and military
cooperation. The memorandum provides for meetings of a bilateral defense
cooperation working group and of middle-level defense officials. The
U.S. reaffirmed its pledge to help Estonia as a member of NATO's
Partnership for Peace program. Slacombe flew to Riga on 21 June and will
visit Vilnius on 23 June. -- Saulius Girnius, OMRI, Inc.

LATVIA'S BANKA BALTIJA DECLARED INSOLVENT. The Bank of Latvia on 21 June
began an insolvency action against Banka Baltija, BNS reported. Uldis
Osis, an adviser to Prime Minister Maris Gailis, who was appointed head
of a working group assessing the banking crisis, said the bank's
shareholders failed to propose a suitable program to rehabilitate the
bank. Osis noted that court could review its decision and declare the
bank solvent again if it managed to resume operations. The Latvian
Finance Ministry sent a letter to the European Union on 19 June asking
if it could apply 45 million ECU ($60 million) of unused G-24 credit
money to pay out deposits in Banka Baltija. -- Saulius Girnius, OMRI,
Inc.

DISAGREEMENT BETWEEN LITHUANIA'S PRESIDENT AND MAYORS. Algirdas
Brazauskas, in his weekly radio interview on 19 June, accused the right-
of-center opposition that won the local elections on 25 March, of
illegitimately replacing most of the lower echelon of local governments,
RFE/RL reported on 21 June. The leaders of the local councils several
days earlier asked Brazauskas not to sign amendments to the law on land
that was passed by the Seimas and would transfer the right of land
ownership from the city and raion councils to regional administrators.
Local authorities from Lithuania are meeting on 22 June to establish an
Association of Municipalities that will help represent their interests.
-- Saulius Girnius, OMRI, Inc.

POLISH PRESIDENT MEETS WITH OPPOSITION PARTIES. Lech Walesa on 21 June
met with the caucuses of the Confederation for an Independent Poland,
Solidarity, and the Non-Party Bloc for Supporting Reforms. He said he
will declare his candidacy in the upcoming presidential elections only
if a broad post-Solidarity coalition is created. Walesa, who recently
vetoed the bill on Polish Radio and TV, encouraged the opposition
parties to uphold his veto in the parliament. He announced the
parliament's dissolution if the ruling left-wing coalition breaks the
law, Polish media reported on 22 June. -- Jakub Karpinski, OMRI, Inc.

JARUZELSKI ATTACKER RECEIVES SUSPENDED PRISON SENTENCE. Stanislaw
Helski, a farmer who in October 1994 injured General Wojciech Jaruzelski
with a stone, has received a two-year suspended prison sentence and been
ordered to pay about $80 to a children's hospital. Helski attacked
General Jaruzelski in a book shop where he was signing copies of a book
explaining why he introduced martial law in 1981, Polish and
international media reported. -- Jakub Karpinski, OMRI, Inc.

CZECH PARLIAMENT ABOLISHES CLEARING SYSTEM WITH SLOVAKIA. The Czech
parliament on 21 June voted to abolish the clearing system that has
regulated trade payments with Slovakia since February 1993. The
government hopes that the abolition will go into effect on 1 October.
The Czechs have run up a large deficit under the system, which provides
for bilateral trade to be conducted in local currencies. In the future,
all payments will be made in hard currency. Finance Minister Ivan
Kocarnik told the parliament that abolishing the system should not
adversely affect Czech-Slovak trade in the future, Hospodarske noviny
reported. But Slovak Premier Vladimir Meciar told journalists that the
Czech's unilateral step was a mistake. He said that although the Slovak
cabinet invited the Czechs to discuss the issue, there was no will on
their part to hold serious talks. The Slovak cabinet is expected to
prepare a response to the Czech move in the coming week, and Meciar said
Slovakia might decide to abolish the customs union. -- Steve Kettle and
Sharon Fisher, OMRI, Inc.

HAVEL RECEIVES TAIWAN'S PREMIER. Czech President Vaclav Havel on 21 June
met with Taiwanese Prime Minister Lien Chan, despite an official Chinese
protest against Lien's private visit to Prague (see OMRI Daily Digest,
21 June 1995). Havel's spokesmen said the talks in Prague Castle
centered on economic relations between the Czech Republic and Taiwan,
Czech media reported. The two countries do not have diplomatic
relations. -- Steve Kettle, OMRI, Inc.

SLOVAK PARLIAMENT APPROVES FRAMEWORK AGREEMENT. The Slovak parliament on
21 June overwhelmingly approved the Council of Europe's Framework
Agreement on the protection of ethnic minorities. Foreign Minister Juraj
Schenk noted that 27 countries have already signed the accord and that
Slovakia is the third to ratify it. Deputies representing the Hungarian
minority abstained from the vote. Hungarian Christian Democratic
Movement Chairman Bela Bugar told Pravda that the abstentions were "not
directed against the Framework agreement but against government
policies." According to Bugar, some members of the government coalition
have tried to interpret certain points differently from how they appear
in the agreement. -- Sharon Fisher, OMRI, Inc.

HUNGARIANS SUPPORT EU AND NATO INTEGRATION. Hungarians overwhelmingly
support integration into the EU and NATO, Reuters reported on 20 June.
An opinion poll conducted by Telemedia revealed that 77% "support" or
"very much support" EU membership, while 57% favor Hungary's entry into
NATO. Opposition to integration was 16% for both organizations, while
the remaining respondents declined to express an opinion. -- Sharon
Fisher, OMRI, Inc.

SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

AKASHI REASSURES KARADZIC OF UN'S GOOD INTENTIONS. The UN's special
envoy to the former Yugoslavia, Yasushi Akashi, has written Bosnian Serb
leader Radovan Karadzic, the International Herald Tribune reported on 22
June. Akashi reassured Karadzic that he feels that "all sides" have
caused problems for UNPROFOR. He did not mention the recent hostage
crisis. Above all, the envoy said that the projected Rapid Reaction
Force will not take sides, will not act differently from UNPROFOR, and
will not engage in peacemaking such as blasting open corridors to enable
relief convoys to get through. A UN spokesman said that "the Serbs were
worried and Mr. Akashi felt it appropriate to calm their fears." --
Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

UN REFUSES TO AUTHORIZE AIR STRIKES AGAINST SERBS. General Bernard
Janvier, commander of UN forces in the Balkans, refused a request by
U.S. Admiral Leighton Smith to authorize NATO air strikes on the Banja
Luka airport. AFP said on 21 June that the plea was in response to the
violation of the UN's own "no fly zone" over Bosnia by two Serbian
aircraft the previous day. A BBC report on 22 June said, however, that
UNPROFOR is under growing pressure to respond in a "more robust" fashion
to Serbian provocations. The International Herald Tribune suggested that
Janvier may not have wanted to use sufficient force to deal with the
anti-aircraft missile batteries surrounding the airport, like those that
downed a US F-16 on 3 June. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

SERBS ALLOWED TO ESCORT SARAJEVO CONVOY. In another example of UN
deference to Bosnian Serb sensitivities, UNPROFOR troops were replaced
by Serbian police as a UN convoy passed through Serb-held territory on
the way to Sarajevo. The trucks with 600 tons of food arrived in the
capital on 21 June, the first such shipment the Serbs have let through
in some time. Serbs, meanwhile, killed six with a shell on a Sarajevo
suburb. The 22 June Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung quoted Bosnian Croat
military sources as saying that the Bosnian government's current
offensive has been briefly halted after taking heavy casualties. The
Muslim-Croatian alliance seeks to reopen roads to Visoko, Mostar, and
Kiseljak. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

CROATIA HOLDS FIRM WITH SERBS. The Zagreb government has rejected
Krajina Serb preconditions for resuming talks. Reuters said on 21 June
that the Serbs insisted that Croatian forces withdraw from western
Slavonia, which they retook at the start of May, or at least from the
Dinara heights overlooking Knin and its road communications with Banja
Luka. In Australia, Croatian President Franjo Tudjman said that the army
will return Krajina to Zagreb's control if talks fail to do so within a
year. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

BELGRADE CONTINUES ROUNDUP FOR MILITARY SERVICE. Nasa Borba on 22 June
reported that Serbia's police force is continuing its roundup of ethnic
Serbs for military service in Serb-conquered territories outside the
rump Yugoslavia. The roundup began on 11 June among ethnic Serbian
refugees from Krajina residing in the northern Vojvodina region and is
now reportedly widening, with police officials press-ganging ethnic
Serbs born in Belgrade and Sumadija who have "at one time worked in
Bosnia or Croatia." The daily also reported that Bosnian Serb
authorities have issued a statement calling on all Bosnian Serb refugees
in the rump Yugoslavia to return and report to their units by 5 July.
Meanwhile, General Vlado Trifunovic, who, together with four colleagues,
faces charges of undermining the Yugoslav military and compromising
national defense, has appeared for a fourth time before a military
tribunal. -- Stan Markotich, OMRI, Inc.

RED CROSS VISITS IMPRISONED POLICEMEN IN KOSOVO. The International
Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has visited former Kosovo policemen
jailed on charges of separatism, AFP reported on 21 June. A total of 32
former policemen have already been sentenced to prison terms of between
one and six years, and 116 have been on trial since the beginning of
June. The policemen were dismissed after the abolition of the province's
autonomy by Belgrade in 1989. Authorities in Belgrade allowed the ICRC
to visit the policemen in the presence of prison officials to examine
under what conditions they are being detained. Elsewhere, U.S. Secretary
of State Warren Christopher on 21 June assured Kosovar shadow-state
president Ibrahim Rugova, who was in Washington, that "Kosovo is not
being ignored or forgotten." -- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.

MACEDONIAN PRESIDENT CALLS FOR SETTLEMENT WITH GREECE. Kiro Gligorov,
during an official visit to Paris, called for a quick settlement of the
Greek-Macedonian dispute, Reuters reported on 21 June. After meeting
with French President Jacques Chirac that day, Gligorov said it is in
both Greece's and Macedonia's interest to settle their differences "so
that we can act together on the European scene." He said it is
paradoxical that while Macedonia prevented the war in the former
Yugoslavia from spreading southward, it is the only European country
that is not a member of the OSCE and has yet to sign an accord with the
European Union. -- Stefan Krause, OMRI, Inc.

ROMANIA COMPLETES STRATEGY FOR JOINING EU. A special commission in
charge of drafting Romania's long-term strategy for joining the European
Union completed its work on 21 June, Radio Bucharest reported. The final
meeting of the commission was attended by President Ion Iliescu, Premier
Nicolae Vacaroiu, the chairmen of the parliament's two chambers, and the
leaders of all parties represented in the parliament. Iliescu read out a
declaration saying Romania's efforts to join the EU were a top priority
and a "crucial point of solidarity" for all political and social forces
in the country. Romania is an associate member of the EU and plans to
apply soon for full membership. -- Dan Ionescu, OMRI, Inc.

ROMANIA, U.S. SIGN CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT. Romanian Defense Minister
Gheorghe Tinca and U.S. Defense Secretary William Perry on 21 June
signed a confidentiality agreement facilitating the transfer of
sensitive military technology from the U.S. to the former communist
country. Radio Bucharest reported that the two ministers also discussed
the situation in the former Yugoslavia and Hungarian-Romanian relations.
Tinca handed over a letter signed by him and his Hungarian counterpart,
Gyorgy Keleti, outlining Romanian-Hungarian military cooperation and
asking the U.S. to help establish a hot-line between Budapest and
Bucharest. Tinca is on a four-day visit to the U.S. -- Dan Ionescu,
OMRI, Inc.

MOLDOVAN PRESIDENT RECEIVES KOBETS. Mircea Snegur on 21 June received
Russian Deputy Defense Minister Gen. Konstantin Kobets, who is heading a
team sent to inspect the 14th Army headquartered in Tiraspol, ITAR-TASS
reported. Kobets introduced Snegur to the new commander of the 14th
Army, Maj. Gen. Valery Yevnevich. He also discussed with Yevnevich the
situation in the Dniester region, which figures high on the agenda of
the Russian-Moldovan summit scheduled to take place in Moscow on 28
June. Meanwhile, former 14th Army Commander Lt. Gen. Alexander Lebed has
appealed to the Russian State Duma to protect Russian citizens in the
Dniester enclave. In Tiraspol, a Lebed supporter, Maj. Gen. Yury Popov,
called off a hunger strike to protest the commander's sacking. -- Dan
Ionescu, OMRI, Inc.

ILO CRITICIZES BULGARIAN GOVERNMENT. The International Labor
Organization has strongly criticized the Bulgarian government for its
decision on who to send to the ILO's 82nd session, Standart reported on
22 June. Social Minister Mincho Koralski included representatives of the
Association of Free Trade Union Organizations (OSSOB) in the official
delegation but failed to invite the two biggest unions, Podkrepa and the
Confederation of Free Trade Unions in Bulgaria (KNSB). The ILO's
Accreditation Committee issued a declaration stating that the OSSOB is
not representative of Bulgarian trade unions and is unable to give
reliable figures on its membership. The official Bulgarian delegation
will attend the meeting, but the ILO statement said there are "serious
reasons" to exclude Bulgaria, since it has violated the organization's
statutes. Meanwhile, Podkrepa and the KNSB will attend the session as
delegates of the international trade union organizations. -- Stefan
Krause, OMRI, Inc.

BULGARIAN PREMIER ENDS VISIT TO ATHENS. Zhan Videnov ended his first
official visit to Greece on 20 June, international agencies reported the
same day. Videnov and his Greek counterpart, Andreas Papandreou, signed
a joint statement stressing that relations between the two countries are
good. The statement said Athens and Sofia "will work together to
consolidate peace, stability, and security in the Balkans [and] to
secure the social and economic development of the region." It also calls
for international sanctions against rump Yugoslavia to be lifted. Greece
and Bulgaria agreed to increase defense cooperation, improve trade
routes through their countries, and improve business and other contacts.
Greece has been one of the largest investors in Bulgaria since the
demise of communism. -- Stefan Krause, OMRI, Inc.

POLICE ARREST ALBANIAN VILLAGERS WHO TOOK HOSTAGES. Albanian police have
arrested 13 villagers who took the mayor of their village and an
Agriculture Ministry official hostage over a land feud, international
agencies reported on 20 June. About 30 peasants began a hunger strike in
Laknas, 13 kilometers northwest of Tirana, three weeks ago to protest
the privatization of a former state farm where they have worked for
years. The hostages were set free after police surrounded the house on
19 June, but police returned later to detain the group's leaders and to
disperse the other hunger strikers. The Interior Ministry described them
as "terrorists." The peasants claim that they have been cheated out of
their property. -- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.

[As of 12:00 CET]

Compiled by Jan Cleave

The OMRI Daily Digest offers the latest news from the former Soviet
Union and East-Central and Southeastern Europe. It is published Monday
through Friday by the Open Media Research Institute. The OMRI Daily
Digest is distributed electronically via the OMRI-L list. To subscribe,
send "SUBSCRIBE OMRI-L YourFirstName YourLastName" (without the
quotation marks and inserting your name where shown) to
LISTSERV@UBVM.CC.BUFFALO.EDU
No subject line or other text should be included.
To receive the OMRI Daily Digest by mail or fax, please direct inquiries
to OMRI Publications, Na Strzi 63, 140 62 Prague 4, Czech Republic; or
electronically to OMRIPUB@OMRI.CZ
Tel.: (42-2) 6114 2114; fax: (42-2) 426 396

OMRI also publishes the biweekly journal Transition, which contains
expanded analysis of many of the topics in the Daily Digest. For
Transition subscription information send an e-mail to TRANSITION@OMRI.CZ

Copyright (C) 1995 Open Media Research Institute, Inc. All rights
reserved.


[English] [Russian TRANS | KOI8 | ALT | WIN | MAC | ISO5]

F&P Home ° Comments ° Guestbook


1996 Friends and Partners
Natasha Bulashova, Greg Cole
Please visit the Russian and American mirror sites of Friends and Partners.
Updated: 1998-11-

Please write to us with your comments and suggestions.

F&P Quick Search
Main Sections
Home
Bulletin Board
Chat Room
F&P Listserver

RFE/RL
1999
1998
1997
1996
1995
1994
1993
1992
1991
Search

News
News From Russia/NIS
News About Russia/NIS
Newspapers & Magazines
Global News
Weather

©1996 Friends and Partners
Please write to us with any comments, questions or suggestions -- Natasha Bulashova, Greg Cole