It is easier to love humanity than to love one's neighbor. - Eric Hoffer
OMRI DAILY DIGEST

No. 128, Part II, 3 July 1995

NOTICE TO READERS: The OMRI Daily Digest will not appear Tuesday, 4 July
 1995, an American holdiay.

This is Part II of the Open Media Research Institute's Daily Digest.
Part II is a compilation of neSoutheastern 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

BALTICS SIGN AGREEMENT ON ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS. The prime ministers of
Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia signed a treaty in Vilnius on 30 June on
the readmission of illegal immigrants, BNS reported on 1 July. Under the
agreement, each of the three countries will take back immigrants who
illegally crossed from its territory to another Baltic state. Illegal
immigrants from Russia entering Nordic countries such as Norway and
Sweden have become an increasing problem. The prime ministers of Sweden,
Finland, Iceland, and Norway on 1 July joined the other Baltic premiers
in Vilnius at a meeting of Nordic leaders. Sweden and Finland promised
to help the three former Soviet states in their attempts to join the EU.
The issue of illegal immigration from Russia was also raised, and it was
agreed that controls at borders with Russia will have to be improved. --
Ustina Markus, OMRI, Inc.

CENSORSHIP ON UKRAINIAN TV. Nezavisimost on 30 June reported that the
management of state-run Ukrainian TV has censored an interview with
Crimean Tatar leader Refat Chubarov recorded for a popular program on 28
June. The authorities reportedly cut the entire broadcast after Chubarov
said the recent violent clashes between Crimean Tatar merchants and
alleged criminal gangs on the peninsula were welcomed by high-level
officials, including the Ukrainian Security Service, and "forces abroad,
mainly in Russia . . . , who do not want a civilized settlement to many
problems in Crimea connected with property division." Ukrainian TV
management said its decision was aimed at preventing tensions in the
region from developing into an interethnic conflict. In the interview,
published in full by Nezavisimost, Chubarov said the fate of his people
now repatriated from other CIS countries was closely tied to Ukraine's
remaining independent. -- Chrystyna Lapychak, OMRI, Inc.

PENSION PROBLEMS IN BELARUS. Belarusian Minister for Social Protection
Volha Dalher, in an interview on 29 July, said pensioners have sometimes
had to wait weeks to receive their pensions. She said there have been a
number of protests by retirees and that many continue to work. Dlaher
said pensions have actually increased more than wages. Since December
1994, the average pension has risen 4.9 times, while the average wage
has increased 2.6 times and prices 2.7 times. Commenting on a new law,
soon to go into force, that will ban pensioners from collecting both
wages and pensions if they continue working, Dalher said it will not
apply to those working for agricultural enterprises. -- Ustina Markus,
OMRI, Inc.

POLISH SENATE APPROVES AMENDMENTS TO PENAL CODE. The Polish Senate on 30
June voted by 47 to two with 29 abstentions (mostly from the ruling
Democratic Left Alliance) to approve amendments to the penal code. The
new legislation provides for state functionaries who committed crimes
during 1944-1989 to be prosecuted. The Senate also voted against
imposing a five-year moratorium on the death penalty, Polish media
reported on 1 July. -- Jakub Karpinski, OMRI, Inc.

SEJM PASSES PRIVATIZATION LAW. The Sejm on 30 June approved by a vote of
246 to 116 with seven abstentions a law on the commercialization and
privatization of state enterprises. Commercialization entails turning
state-owned firms into joint-stock companies that will be governed by
commercial law but still retained by the State Treasury. Privatization
of the most important branches of industry (defense, banks, coal mines,
oil and gas, telecommunications, and energy) will be subject to
parliamentary control. The law, according to former Finance Minister
Leszek Balcerowicz, will delay changes crucial for the country's
economic development, Polish and international media reported. -- Jakub
Karpinski, OMRI, Inc.

GERMAN CHANCELLOR ON POLAND'S ENTRY INTO EU, NATO. Helmut Kohl told
Polish television on 2 July that he considers Poland has a good chance
of realizing its goals of admission into NATO and the European Union "in
coming years." He added that "we should find an agreement whereby
Poland's particular security concerns, those that prompted its desire to
join NATO, are linked to the justified security interests of Russia."
Polish Foreign Minister Wladyslaw Bartoszewski said on 2 July on German
radio that "what is significant is that we see in Germany a strategic
partner in all areas." Kohl is scheduled to arrive in Poland on 6 July
for a three-day official visit, Polish and international media reported.
-- Jakub Karpinski, OMRI, Inc.

CZECH PENSION AGE RAISED. The Czech parliament on 30 June, following a
late-night, heated debate, passed a law that will raise the pension age
gradually over the next 12 years. Deputies of one of the government
parties, the Christian Democratic Union-People's Party, and most of the
opposition voted against the bill. But a centrist opposition party
joined the three other government coalition members to ensure a
majority. The pension age for men will be raised from 60 to 62 by the
year 2007 while women--who can retire at between 53 and 57, depending on
how many children they have--will be pensioned off at between 57 and 61.
-- Steve Kettle, OMRI, Inc.

ANOTHER RAIL ACCIDENT IN CZECH REPUBLIC. A Prague-Budapest express was
derailed and then hit by another train in Moravia on 30 June, Czech
media reported. Some 30 passengers were injured, eight seriously; and
the line--one of the busiest in the Czech Republic--was closed for more
than 30 hours. The express apparently came off the rails, because hot
weather had buckled them, rail officials said. The rear coach was struck
by a local train that failed to stop in time. It was the second serious
accident involving passenger trains in less than a week. On 24 June, 18
passengers were killed when runaway goods wagons ran head-on into a
local train. -- Steve Kettle, OMRI, Inc.

POPE IN SLOVAKIA. John Paul II arrived in Slovakia on 30 June for a
four-day visit, international and Slovak media reported. Addressing a
crowd in Bratislava, he urged reconciliation within Slovakia, asking all
Slovaks to help build democracy and protect the rights of citizens. He
also praised the recently signed Slovak-Hungarian treaty, which
guarantees minority rights. President Michal Kovac expressed the hope
that the Pope's visit will calm down the political atmosphere in
Slovakia. In Kosice, the pope canonized three martyrs--Marek Krizan,
Melichar Grozdiecki, and Stefan Pongrac. Some 300,000 people attended
the canonization ceremony, despite high temperatures. -- Jiri Pehe,
OMRI, Inc.

SLOVAK FINANCE MINISTER ON CUSTOMS UNION WITH CZECHS. Sergej Kozlik,
speaking at an economic forum in Crans Montana on 30 June, said Slovakia
will demand compensation from the Czech Republic for preserving the
Czech-Slovak customs union, international media reported. Kozlik said he
had in mind compensation similar to that given by the stronger members
of the European Union to the weaker ones. Slovak Prime Minister Vladimir
Meciar, reacting to the Czech Republic's unilateral abolition of the
payments clearing system in trade with Slovakia, recently suggested that
Slovakia might retaliate by abolishing the customs union. Czech Prime
Minister Vaclav Klaus, also speaking in Crans Montana, said he had
"never heard of the notion of compensation for a customs union." -- Jiri
Pehe, OMRI, Inc.

HUNGARIAN COMMUNISTS COMMEMORATE KADAR. Some 3,000 people on 1 July
gathered at Budapest's Kerepesi Cemetery to commemorate the sixth
anniversary of the death of Janos Kadar, a former communist leader,
international media reported. The gathering, organized by the far-left
Labor Party, was called to protest the current cabinet and urge the
election of what the Labor Party described as a genuinely left-wing
government. -- Jiri Pehe, OMRI, Inc.

SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

"A VIOLENT, BLOODY WEEKEND" IN BOSNIA. This is how the VOA on 2 July
summed up developments in Sarajevo since 30 June. The Serbs hit the UN
headquarters and U.S. embassy, which the broadcast said further made a
mockery of the UN heavy-weapons exclusion zone around the Bosnian
capital. In a rare display of firmness, French peacekeepers in the Mt.
Igman area fired back on a Serbian attack, which promptly came to a
halt. The Serbs meanwhile stepped up their pressure on the mainly Muslim
enclaves in eastern Bosnia as well as on the Bihac pocket, where the
food situation is becoming critical, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
said on 1 July. Croatian Radio on 3 July noted increased Serb shelling
in the Posavina area. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

BOSNIAN GOVERNMENT TURNS OUT AKASHI. The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
on 1 July said the Bosnian government wants nothing more to do with UN
special envoy Yasushi Akashi, since the UN is doing nothing to protect
the exclusion zone or Sarajevo's status as a "safe area." Bosnian
authorities also regard Akashi's recent written assurances to the Serbs
and the UN's secret deal to free the hostages as groveling before
Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic and his military commander, General
Ratko Mladic. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

MLADIC WARNS AGAINST DARK FORCES. The Bosnian Serb leaders on 2 July
attended special Church services in Pale with Serbian Orthodox Patriarch
Pavle to mark the Serbian holy day of Vidovdan on 28 June. News agencies
quote Mladic's response to the German Bundestag's decision on 30 June to
authorize air support for the UN in Bosnia: "I can hardly wait to meet
them." SRNA adds that Mladic accused NATO of ganging up on the Serbs.
The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on 1 July quoted the general as
saying that plots are afoot to "Americanize" and "Germanize" the
Balkans, but he gave no details. The paper also cited unnamed French
secret service officials as warning that the U.S. is taking sides in the
conflict but that "the Europeans want to remain neutral. Our American
friends must realize that the important thing now is not to disturb the
peace process." -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

CROATIA SETS CONDITIONS FOR PEACE TALKS. Croatian Radio on 3 July quotes
President Franjo Tudjman as telling UN and EU envoys that firmness is
necessary in dealing with the Serbs and that sanctions must remain in
place until Belgrade clearly renounces plans for a greater Serbia. He
added that he will negotiate with Knin and Belgrade only if UNCRO's
mandate is fully carried out and if the Serbs honor the agreement to
reopen the main oil pipeline. The EU must also help Croatia restore the
Zagreb-Knin-Split railway line. The president warned that international
community must forget any ideas about setting up some new Yugoslavia or
regional federal state. Tudjman called Krajina Serb leader Milan Martic
a "war criminal" for ordering the shelling of Zagreb in May, adding that
Croatia will not talk with him. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

RUMP YUGOSLAVIA'S FIRST MAJOR SPORTS VICTORY SINCE SANCTIONS EASED. The
rump Yugoslavia won the European basketball championship on 2 July,
beating Lithuania by six points, Nasa Borba reported the next day. The
event marks a milestone win for the first rump Yugoslav team to be
admitted to international sports competition since sanctions against
Belgrade were eased in the autumn of 1994. Finishing in third place,
Croatian team players walked off the award podium after receiving their
medals to avoid listening to the rump Yugoslav national anthem. Downtown
Belgrade streets were reportedly packed with jubilant fans, with some
waving the flag of the former socialist federal Yugoslavia. -- Stan
Markotich, OMRI, Inc.

BLACK SEA SUMMIT IN BUCHAREST. The Black Sea Economic Cooperation
organization, meeting in Bucharest on 30 June, adopted a declaration on
boosting multilateral economic cooperation aimed at "prosperity,
stability, and peace" in the region, Romanian and Western media
reported. The one-day conference was attended by the presidents of
Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Moldova, Romania, and Turkey; the
premiers of Armenia and Ukraine; and deputy prime ministers from Russia
and Albania. The so-called Bucharest Declaration stresses the need for
join efforts in developing the region's infrastructure and in the
energy, communications, transportation, and other sectors. It also urges
member states to cooperate to combat organized crime, drug trafficking,
and illegal trade in weapons and radioactive materials. Following the
summit, Azerbaijani President Gaidar Aliev met with Romanian President
Ion Iliescu, with whom he signed a joint declaration as well as
agreements on trade and culture. -- Dan Ionescu, OMRI, Inc.

ROMANIAN NATIONALISTS WANT FOREIGN PORTFOLIO. Gheorghe Funar,
controversial leader of the Party of Romanian National Unity (PUNR),
told Radio Bucharest on 1 July that his party will seek to obtain the
foreign affairs portfolio. Funar was speaking after a meeting of the
PUNR National Council on 30 June-1 July. He sharply criticized Foreign
Minister Teodor Melescanu for allegedly making concessions to Hungary
over a new bilateral treaty, whose draft he described as "an act of
treason." The PUNR has four ministers in the current cabinet. Prime
Minister Nicolae Vacaroiu attended the PUNR meeting. -- Dan Ionescu,
OMRI, Inc.

ROMANIA'S HUNGARIANS OPPOSE EDUCATION BILL. Leaders of the Hungarian
Democratic Federation of Romania (UDMR) met in Targu Mures on 30 June-1
July to elect a Permanent Delegation and to confirm the 132 members of
the party's new Council of Representatives (which has been described as
the mini-parliament of Romania's Magyar population). The Targu Mures
meeting adopted a declaration denouncing an education bill passed by
Romania's parliament last week as anti-Hungarian and anti-minorities.
The UDMR called on President Iliescu to reject the law. -- Dan Ionescu,
OMRI, Inc.

RUSSIA TO GIVE BULGARIA TANKS, OTHER ARMS. Russia will give Bulgaria 100
T-72 tanks, 100 BMP-1P armored combat vehicles, and 12 Mi-24 combat
helicopters, Deputy Defense Minister Dimiter Mitkov announced on 28
June. BTA quoted Mitkov as saying that Bulgarian experts will visit
Russia to study the possibility of obtaining equipment that Russia will
otherwise have to destroy to meet the terms of the Conventional Forces
in Europe (CFE) treaty. In a procedure called "cascading," the Russians
will instead give those weapons to the Bulgarians, who will then destroy
older equipment so that they abide by CFE limits. -- Doug Clarke, OMRI,
Inc.

BULGARIA TO HAVE MORE MILITARY DRAFTS . . . Draftees will be inducted
into the military four times a year, instead of the present two drafts,
Maj. Gen. Lyuben Pandev announced on 29 June. BTA said the new measure
is intended to "ease tensions" between successive drafts and thus
eliminate the hazing that has plagued the Bulgarian military. Recruits
will receive their three-month basic training in 30 centers. Starting in
1997, training will be centralized in eight locations. -- Doug Clarke,
OMRI, Inc.

. . . AND TO REPAIR RUSSIAN WARSHIPS. Seven Russian warships and a naval
supply ship will be repaired at the Varna shipyard over the next 11
months, BTA reported on 29 June. The repairs are said to be part of a
long-term agreement between the two countries. The ships will be
stripped of all armaments and reconnaissance equipment before they enter
the yard. -- Doug Clarke, OMRI, Inc.

CHIEF EDITOR OF ALBANIAN SATIRICAL MAGAZINE ARRESTED. Filip Cakuli,
chief editor of the Albanian satirical magazine Hosteni 2000, was
detained and questioned by the country's secret police (SHIK) for one
night, Reuters reported on 30 June. He was released only after agreeing
to change the cover of the paper's upcoming issue, which showed Albanian
President Sali Berisha between two nude women. The Albanian Helsinki
Committee criticized SHIK, stressing that "the law does not authorize
SHIK to take measures directly impairing the freedom of a citizen . . .
but only to act through appropriate bodies, the General Attorney's
office and the judiciary." SHIK reportedly also seized printing
materials without warrants. Hosteni 2000 previously published photo
montages showing Albanian politicians in women's dresses but then
withdrew the disputed cover. -- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.

GREEK SEAMEN END STRIKE. Greek sailors ended a three-day strike on 2
July, AFP reported the same day. The strike seriously disrupted the
tourist season and shipments to the Greek islands. The seamen's union,
which is demanding higher wages, tax breaks, and a more vigorous
campaign to reduce unemployment, warned that the strike may resume later
this month. Meanwhile, the Greek railway company OSE announced that six
one-hour strikes scheduled between 3-7 July have been canceled after a
court ruled they were illegal. Another court earlier ruled that an
aviation strike scheduled for 2 July was illegal. -- 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
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OMRI also publishes the biweekly journal Transition, which contains
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            Copyright (C) 1995 Open Media Research Institute, Inc.
                             All rights reserved.


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