There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in. - Graham Greene
OMRI DAILY DIGEST

No. 144, Part II, 26 July 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

EASTERN AGRICULTURE "N0 THREAT" TO EU. Reports released on 25 July by
the European Commission paint a bleak picture of agriculture in the 10
East European countries that have signed association agreements with the
EU. The reports claim that agriculture in these countries poses no
threat to the EU's Common Agricultural Policy, according to
international agencies. Eastern Europe's food industry is reportedly so
inefficient that it cannot "meet growing demands regarding quality,
variety, and general marketing of products." Moreover, problems in East
European agriculture reflect structural economic problems that will take
years to overcome. EU Agricultural Commissioner Franz Fischler said, "We
are not going to see the Community flooded by products from these
countries." The EU trade surplus in agriculture has been growing since
1992. -- Michael Mihalka, OMRI, Inc.

ACTING UKRAINIAN JUSTICE MINISTER RESIGNS OVER PATRIARCH'S FUNERAL.
International news agencies on 25 July reported that acting Ukrainian
Justice Minister Vasyl Onopenko resigned the same day for what he called
the illegal use of force by riot police at the funeral of the head of
the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kiev Patriarchate (see OMRI Daily
Digest, 19 July 1995). Onopenko said it was "the country's most tragic
(event) since the Chornobyl disaster." He also complained of a lack of
support from Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma, who has yet to name a
new justice minister to his newly appointed government. (A recent report
by UNIAR that Kuchma has appointed Volodymyr Stretovych as justice
minister was incorrect.) Onopenko said law enforcement and internal
security officials failed to inform him about what happened at the
funeral. The Ukrainian government has yet to resolve the controversy
over the patriarch's final resting place. He remains buried in a
makeshift grave in front of St. Sophia's Cathedral. -- Chrystyna
Lapychak, OMRI, Inc.

UKRAINE TO SET UP NEW ANTI-TERRORIST UNIT. The 20-26 July issue of
Obshchaya gazeta reported that the Ukrainian government has decided to
set up a new anti-terrorist unit. Lt. Col. Anatolii Lahoda, who will
head the unit, said only one-fifth of its members will be officers; the
remainder will be regular conscripts. He also said that the fight
against terrorism has not received priority, noting that the anti-
terrorist unit "Alpha" has never been used to combat such crimes. Lahoda
said he hoped terrorist crimes would decrease with the establishment of
the new unit. -- Ustina Markus, OMRI, Inc.

UKRAINE CONCERNED ABOUT IMF TARGETS. Reuters on 25 July reported that
Ukraine is concerned about the economic austerity program it must adhere
to in order to have the third tranche of a $1.57 billion IMF stand-by
loan released. The IMF has insisted that Ukraine reduce inflation to 1-
2% by December and that IMF targets for budget deficits and year-end
inflation are non-negotiable. Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma has said
year-end inflation of 4% is less likely to strangle the country's
industrial base. Ukrainian officials have not yet identified targets
they want changed, which the IMF regards as a sign that Kiev will try to
meet the targets. A two-week working visit to Ukraine by an IMF
delegation ends later this week. -- Ustina Markus, OMRI, Inc.

UKRAINE WILL NOT BLOCK TRANSIT OF 14TH ARMY WEAPONS. Ukrainian Defense
Minister Valerii Shmarov told a Kiev news conference on 25 July that
Ukraine has no objection to the transit of armaments of the Russian 14th
Army across its territory, ITAR-TASS reported. Shmarov had just met with
visiting Moldovan Defense Minister Pavel Creanga. The two leaders signed
a protocol on military cooperation. Creanga was quoted as saying that
Moldova will give preference to cooperation "with its closest neighbors-
-Ukraine and Romania." -- Doug Clarke, OMRI, Inc.

SUSPECTED RADIUM SALESMEN ARRESTED IN ESTONIA. Estonian security police
on 24 July arrested two men in Tallinn after finding 1,720 grams of
radium 226 in their car, Western agencies reported the next day. The
deputy director of the security police indicated that the radium was
smuggled into Estonia and that more people were probably involved in the
operation. According to an anonymous police source, the suspects hoped
to sell the radium abroad for $3.06 million. -- Saulius Girnius, OMRI,
Inc.

LATVIA OPENS STOCK EXCHANGE. The Riga Stock Exchange reopened on 25 July
after being closed by the Soviet authorities in 1940, Reuters reported.
Speaking at the opening ceremonies, Prime Minister Maris Gailis said:
"We connect our hopes for economic development on the establishment of a
securities market." Only four companies were listed, and the volume of
shares traded amounted to only $354, with additional sales worth $7,676
for government bonds. The exchange is modeled on the Lithuanian National
Stock Exchange, established two years ago, and will initially operate on
Tuesdays only. -- Saulius Girnius, OMRI, Inc.

YELTSIN INVITED TO LITHUANIA. Sergei Filatov, head of Russian President
Boris Yeltsin's administration, said Lithuanian parliament chairman
Ceslovas Jursenas has invited Yeltsin to visit Lithuania before the
December parliamentary elections, BNS reported. Filatov added that Prime
Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin planned to visit Lithuania in the near
future. He noted that he had discussed with Jursenas the possibility of
signing a bilateral agreement on double citizenship. -- Saulius Girnius,
OMRI, Inc.

POLISH COMMISSION RAISES 1995 WAGE CEILING. Representatives of the
Polish government, the trade unions, and employers' organizations agreed
on 25 July to raise the ceiling for wage increases this year from 23.5%
to 27%. Solidarity had demanded that the limit be raised to 30% to
compensate for higher-than-expected inflation, Rzeczpospolita reported.
The ceiling is merely "informational" under the relaxed wage control
legislation that took force this year, Deputy Labor Minister Andrzej
Baczkowski told reporters. But directors of state firms can face
sanctions if excessive wage hikes undermine company finances. -- Louisa
Vinton, OMRI, Inc.

CZECH PARLIAMENT LIFTS DEPUTY'S IMMUNITY. Recalled from its summer
recess for a special session, the Czech parliament on 25 July lifted the
immunity of extreme-rightist Republican deputy Jan Vik. Police requested
Vik be stripped of his immunity to face charges over the distribution of
leaflets claiming that the Czech and German governments have made an
agreement to rehabilitate Sudeten Germans (see OMRI Daily Digest, 17 and
18 July 1995). The vote was 73 in favor, 21 against and 35 abstentions.
The seven-hour session, broadcast live by Czech Television, was
repeatedly interrupted by Republican supporters, including party leader
Miroslav Sladek, in the public gallery. After the vote, they shouted
"Pigs, pigs" at the deputies. Vik, 26, was not immediately arrested
after the vote. -- Steve Kettle, OMRI, Inc.

SLOVAK COMMISSION TO INVESTIGATE DUBCEK'S DEATH. Social Democratic Party
(SDSS) Deputy Chairman Miroslav Spejl said all parties in the Slovak
parliament are agreed on the creation of a parliamentary commission to
investigate the death of Prague Spring leader Alexander Dubcek. Dubcek,
a former SDSS chairman, died in November 1992 following complications
from a car accident. According to Spejl, the commission should be
established in September, and all parliamentary parties will be
represented, Pravda reported on 26 July. -- Sharon Fisher, OMRI, Inc.

CONTROVERSY RAGES OVER LEADERS OF SLOVAKIA'S HUNGARIAN MINORITY. Recent
statements made by the chairmen of the three ethnic Hungarian parties
represented in the parliament (see OMRI Daily Digest, 19 July 1995)
continue to cause controversy in Slovakia. Sme on 26 July reported that
the Slovak National Party has requested that the attorney-general start
criminal proceedings against the three chairmen. The party said it aims
to pass a law on the protection of the republic at the September
parliamentary session. The Slovak Green Alternative (SZA), which is also
allied with the ruling coalition, proposed on 25 July that a new round
of talks between the Slovak and Hungarian premiers be launched to
clarify certain aspects of the bilateral state treaty. Also on 25 July,
the three Hungarian party chairmen met with US Ambassador to Slovakia
Theodore Russell, but no information about the meeting was released to
the press. Meanwhile, the Slovak Education Ministry has expressed
"concern" about a protest demonstration by ethnic Hungarians scheduled
for 27 July in Debrecin, Pravda reported. The ethnic Hungarians want to
protest a draft law on the state language and the implementation of
"alternative" (bilingual) education. -- Sharon Fisher, OMRI, Inc.

HUNGARIAN POLICE ARREST FORMER UKRAINIAN PRESIDENTIAL SECURITY CHIEF.
Victor Palivoda, head of security for former Ukrainian President Leonid
Kravchuk, has been arrested in Hungary, AFP reported. A police spokesman
said Palivoda was taken into custody on 11 July in Budapest. He is
wanted by Interpol and the Ukrainian authorities on embezzlement
charges. The Hungarian Justice Ministry will decide the date for his
extradition to Ukraine, the spokesman added. -- Jan Cleave, OMRI, Inc.

SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

KARADZIC, MLADIC, MARTIC INDICTED FOR WAR CRIMES. The International
Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia on 25 July formally indicted
24 more Serbs for crimes against humanity, bringing the total to 46.
Heading the list are Bosnian Serb civilian leader Radovan Karadzic, his
military counterpart, General Ratko Mladic, and Krajina Serb "President"
Milan Martic, AFP reported. The indictment said that the two Bosnian
Serbs "intended to destroy Bosnian Muslim and Bosnian Croat people as
national, ethnic, or religious groups and killed, seriously injured, and
deliberately inflicted upon them conditions intended to bring about
their physical destruction." Martic was singled out for the rocket
attacks on Zagreb in May. The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported on
26 July that not everyone has such a bleak view of the Serbs. Dutch
UNPROFOR commander Colonel Karremans said he admired the Serbs' military
feat in taking Srebrenica, while Dutch army commander General Couzy
denied that genocide had taken place in Srebrenica. -- Patrick Moore,
OMRI, Inc.

INHABITANTS OF ZEPA FLEE TO THE HILLS. International media reported on
25 July that Bosnian Serb forces entered the UN-declared "safe area"
town of Zepa. Most of the inhabitants, including Bosnian government
soldiers, had fled to the surrounding hills, caves, and forests, where
they prefer to fight and face mines and booby traps rather than be
massacred. Wounded and infirm civilians were evacuated to government-
held territory in buses and have begun to reach Sarajevo and Kladanj.
Some told reporters that Serbian heavy weapons, including 15 tanks, had
decided Zepa's fate. The Bosnian government wants the UN to airlift its
soldiers out of the area to make sure they are not killed, as happened
in Srebrenica. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

WHO IS NEXT? The Serbs appear to have Gorazde next on their list,
although the U.S. State Department has warned them to be cautious, the
VOA said. NATO continued on 25 July to be hamstrung in drawing up a plan
for air strikes should the Serbs attack Gorazde or the other remaining
"safe areas." The problem is that the alliance has conceded the UN's
right to a veto over strikes, and it can only hope that Secretary-
General Boutros Boutros Ghali will delegate such authority to a UNPROFOR
commander on the ground. The International Herald Tribune on 26 July
reported that the Rapid Reaction Force may not be doing much in
Sarajevo, either. In response to a question about whether British and
French forces will open the supply road on Mt. Igman, a British
spokesman said it is not an "easy military option" since it would
involve taking land and silencing Serbian guns. On 26 July, one of those
guns shelled downtown Sarajevo, seriously wounding six, Reuters
reported. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

ATTACK ON BIHAC CONTINUES. Meanwhile in the Bihac pocket, Croatian
forces have begun massing and firing on Serbian positions. Bosnian
government commander General Atif Dudakovic told Croatian Television on
25 July that 30,000 Serbs and Muslim renegades are attacking him and the
Croats. Croatian media reported Serbian shelling of Livno and of parts
of eastern Slavonia. Meanwhile, indignation is growing worldwide over
inaction against the Serbs. Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad
told Reuters of his "disgust" for Western inaction and said he is
willing to face sanctions if he send arms to the Bosnian government.
Saudi Arabian King Fahd called on the UN to lift the embargo, and
similar sentiments have come from top officials in Egypt, Vecernji list
reported. The International Herald Tribune on 25 July and the
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung the following day noted growing anger
over Bosnia in Muslim countries in general. Jewish leaders in Germany
have also spoken out. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

REACTIONS TO ROMANIAN EDUCATION LAW. The promulgation of a new education
law by Romanian President Ion Iliescu on 24 July has sparked various
reactions. The extreme nationalist Greater Romania Party--an ally of the
ruling Party of Social Democracy in Romania--was one of the first
organizations to express "satisfaction" over the new legislation. Most
political parties, including several in opposition, praised the
government's determination not to give in to what they described as
"pressure from the Hungarian Democratic Federation of Romania (UDMR)."
But Horia Rusu, chairman of the Liberal Party '93, was quoted as saying
that the UDMR's protest was justified because Romania was not abiding by
international norms on education for ethnic minorities. UDMR Chairman
Bela Marko, in a letter to European Parliament Chairman Klaus Hansch,
said his party was disappointed with Bucharest's reaction to the EP's
recent resolution on minority and human rights abuses in Romania. -- Dan
Ionescu, OMRI, Inc.

GAGAUZ TROOPS SURRENDER ARMS. Members of the "Budjak" battalion in
Moldova's autonomous Gagauz region have begun laying down arms and
ammunition, BASA-press and Infotag reported. Moldovan Premier Andrei
Sangheli, who observed the operation on 24 July, was quoted as saying
that those who voluntarily surrender arms before 27 August will not be
prosecuted. He added that troops in Ciadir-Lunga and Vulcanesti appeared
more willing to abide by the decision than those in the region's
capital, Comrat. Armed Gagauz troops were active in Moldova's southern
districts during the early 1990s. Their immunity from prosecution is
provided for by the Law on Amnesty, adopted by the Moldovan parliament
on 22 July, which grants immunity to those who committed crimes during
armed conflicts in Gagauz-Yeri, the Dniester region, and the town of
Bender (Tighina). The law was criticized by Moldova's main opposition
force, the Christian Democratic Popular Front. -- Dan Ionescu, OMRI,
Inc.

BULGARIAN OPPOSITION ARGUES OVER COOPERATION IN LOCAL ELECTIONS. The
Union of Democratic Forces (SDS) and the People's Union (NS) on 25 July
issued differing statements on cooperating in the upcoming local
elections, Bulgarian newspapers reported the following day. The NS said
the possibilities for talks at the local level have been exhausted and
insists on talks between the central leaderships. The SDS, for its part,
still wants talks at the regional level. Neither formation is willing to
withdraw its candidate for Sofia mayor, even though the opposition has
agreed to try to find a common candidate. Stefan Sofiyanski has been
nominated by the SDS, and former interim premier Reneta Indzhova is the
NS candidate. Meanwhile, Executive Director of the First Private Bank
Ventseslav Yosifov announced he will also run. Duma reports that the
ruling Bulgarian Socialist Party will support him. -- Stefan Krause,
OMRI, Inc.

RUMP YUGOSLAV HUMAN RIGHTS MINISTER ON BULGARIAN MINORITY. Margit
Savovic on 25 July met with Ginyo Ganev, chairman of the Sofia-based
Agency for Bulgarians Living Abroad, Bulgarian media reported the same
day. She said that the 27,000 Bulgarians living in eastern Serbia have
every possibility to keep up their national identity and traditions but
added that the state cannot subsidize them because of the UN sanctions.
She denied the existence of blacklists of Bulgarians who are not allowed
to travel to Bulgaria, saying the Bulgarian authorities should request
information from rump Yugoslav institutions rather than trust "other
sources." -- Stefan Krause, OMRI, Inc.

ALBANIAN GOVERNMENT DRAFTS LAND LAW. The Albanian government has drafted
a controversial law regulating the buying and selling of real estate,
BETA reported on 25 July. The parliament is expected to vote on the law
soon. Until 1991, land in Albania was either communal or state-owned.
Thereafter, it was divided up between those who worked on it. Some
opposition parties have criticized the draft law, arguing that it would
undermine the property rights of those who owned land before communism.
-- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.

ETHNIC TURKISH POLITICIAN KILLED IN GREECE. Former parliamentary deputy
Ahmet Sadik was killed on 24 July when his car crashed into a tractor in
northern Greece, Reuters reported the following day. Sadik, who was a
deputy from 1989 to 1993, was one of the most influential politicians
representing the 120,000-member Muslim community in Greece. In 1994, he
was sentenced to 16 months in prison for spreading false information
after he accused Greek officials of suppressing the Muslim minority. But
he was allowed to pay a fine instead of serving time. Despite Greek
objections, Sadik always described himself as Turkish. He failed to be
reelected in 1993 after a 3% threshold for entry to the parliament was
introduced. -- Stefan Krause, 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. ISSN 1211-1570


[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