This communicating of a man's self to his friend works two contrary effects; for it redoubleth joy, and cutteth griefs in half. - Francis Bacon
OMRI DAILY DIGEST

No. 165, Part II, 24 August 1995

This is Part II of the Open Media Research Institute's Daily Digest.
Part II is a compilation of news concerning Central, Eastern, 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

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX LEADERS AND NATIONALISTS BLAST GOVERNMENT. Leaders of
the Orthodox Church of the Kiev Patriarchate and nationalist politicians
accused the administration of President Leonid Kuchma of undermining
Ukrainian statehood during memorial gatherings honoring Patriarch
Volodymyr, Reuters and Interfax-Ukraine reported on 23 August. The
service and procession, held by Orthodox tradition 40 days after death,
took place peacefully in contrast to the violent clashes between riot
police and mourners during the patriarch's funeral on 18 July. During a
rally afterward, Volodymyr's deputy and likely successor Metropolitan
Filaret condemned government policy toward the church, which broke away
from the Moscow Patriarchate in 1992. He said Kuchma's refusal to allow
the patriarch's burial in the grounds of St. Sophia's Cathedral, now a
museum, amounted to persecution of the independent church. On the eve of
the fourth anniversary of Ukraine's independence, nationalist
politicians said the "godless" Kuchma was bowing to religious
authorities in Moscow. Kuchma has barred the reburial of Volodymyr, now
buried in a makeshift grave outside the cathedral walls, in an effort to
prevent further tensions between the rival Orthodox churches. --
Chrystyna Lapychak, OMRI, Inc.

GERMAN DEFENSE MINISTER ON BALTIC STATES. Volker Ruehe, after meeting in
Tallinn on 23 August with Estonian President Lennart Meri, said that
fears in the Baltic States of possible aggression from the East were not
justified, BNS reported. Ruehe affirmed: "The independence of the Baltic
States is one of the central factors for European countries" and good
relations with Russia would guarantee stable development and security
for Europe. Earlier that day in Riga, Ruehe advised Latvia not "to seek
security only along the central axis of Poland-Germany" but "to look for
a way back to Europe by cooperating with the Nordic countries."
Indirectly refuting a recent story in the German weeky Der Spiegel that
the Baltic States would be the last group to be admitted into NATO, he
said that the organization had not yet fixed an order for future
members. -- Saulius Girnius, OMRI, Inc.

LATVIAN PARLIAMENT EXPELS SIEGERIST. The Saeima on 23 August voted 39 to
4 with 11 abstentions to expel Joachim Siegerist, leader of the For
Latvia movement, for non-attendance of parliament sessions, BNS
reported. The Mandate and Application Committee proposed the vote since
Siegerist was not present at eight of the 13 meetings of the spring
session. Siegerist did not attend the vote, but three For Latvia
deputies said they would boycott future sessions to protest the
expulsion of their leader. -- Saulius Girnius, OMRI, Inc.

POLISH PRESIDENT DEFENDS ARMY INTERESTS. Lech Walesa, in a letter sent
to Prime Minister Jozef Oleksy on 22 August, attacked the government for
allegedly not fulfilling its constitutional duties and weakening the
army's potential. Walesa criticized the government draft of the 1996
budget as not providing enough for defense. The president supplemented
his letter with a draft law providing for bigger expenditures for the
army. A second draft law attached to the letter, which would subordinate
the chief of the General Staff to the president, was rejected by the
Sejm in June. Chief of the General Staff Gen. Tadeusz Wilecki attacked
the government in a similar way to Walesa on 15 August, Polish media
noted. -- Jakub Karpinski, OMRI, Inc.

POLISH PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES ON MAIN ISSUES. Supreme Court President
Adam Strzembosz, speaking on 23 August in Elblag near the Russian-Polish
border (Kaliningrad district), noted the anniversary of the 1939
Ribbentrop-Molotov pact that divided prewar Poland between Nazi Germany
and the Soviet Union. Strzembosz said that the Russian heavy military
presence in Kaliningrad created problems for Polish-Russian relations.
Earlier, Freedom Union candidate Jacek Kuron encouraged other candidates
to discuss the main political issues, which he listed as security and
welfare, legal equality, general availability of employment, the
suitable organization of state institutions, and Poland's security and
place in the world. Danuta Waniek, the chief of the Alliance of
Democratic Left leader Aleksander Kwasniewski's campaign, answered Kuron
by adding three other issues: Church-state relations, the role of the
trade unions, and the scope and speed of privatization. Kuron, in a
press conference on 23 August, defended his choice of issues and said
that his relatively low ranking in voting intentions derives from him
being perceived as "too good and too honest to be a president," Polish
media reported on 24 August. -- Jakub Karpinski, OMRI, Inc.

NEW CLASSES FOR ROMANI CHILDREN. Two schools in Prague will begin
programs for Romani children in the fall, the Czech daily Mlada fronta
dnes reported on 24 August. Although a photo of a young boy begging from
a tourist accompanied the article, it is more likely that the students
of such programs will come from more middle-class Romani families. The
Czech director of one of the schools said that the program would include
music and dance, to be taught by Romani instructors. The director of the
other school spoke of the problem of introducing Romani language
instruction, saying that there were no people who could teach in it, and
that moreover Romani had not been codified. While it is true that Romani
is still being standardized, last week in Beroun in a seminar sponsored
by Man, Education and New Technologies (MENT), Czech teachers of Romani
children were taught the Carpathian Romani dialect, using Czech-Romani
grammars. -- Alaina Lemon, OMRI, Inc.

SLOVAKIA WILL ASK BONN FOR COMPENSATION. Jozef Sestak, state secretary
at Slovakia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, arrived in Bonn on 23 August
for a three-day working visit. According to Slovak media, Sestak is to
submit to German officials a proposal for initiating bilateral talks on
compensating Slovak victims of the Nazi regime during World War II. He
will also discuss bilateral relations and the integration of Slovakia
into European structures with his German counterpart, Peter Hartmann. --
Jiri Pehe, OMRI, Inc.

SLOVAK PRESIDENT'S VETOS EXPLAINED. Ivan Trimaj, head of the
presidential Legislative Department, told journalists in Bratislava on
23 August that President Michal Kovac has recently vetoed three
privatization laws approved by the parliament because "they violated the
constitution," in particular the principle of equality of different
forms of ownership. "The president does not send back laws to the
parliament if they contain common mistakes; he does so only if they
violate the constitution," argued Trimaj. The ruling coalition headed by
Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar has enough votes to override the
president's vetos of the three laws, which the opposition parties have
criticized as potentially halting the privatization process in Slovakia.
-- Jiri Pehe, OMRI, Inc.

SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

SUSAK SAYS CROATIA CAN RETAKE EASTERN SLAVONIA . . . Croatian
Defense Minister Gojko Susak warned that his forces could push Serbian
troops out of eastern Slavonia, AFP reported on 23 August. He said they
would do this in less time than Operation Blitz took in western Slavonia
in May if the international community does not secure the peaceful
reintegration of the area into Croatia. Rump Yugoslavia, however, seems
bent on holding onto the prosperous region. Nasa Borba reported on 24
August that an EU representative is nonetheless in Serb-held Vukovar in
an effort to restart talks between Croatia and its rebel Serbs. --
Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

. . . WHILE HERZEGOVINIAN SERBS SEAL THE MONTENEGRIN BORDER.
AFP on 23 August also quoted Susak as saying that his government can no
longer tolerate Serbian shelling of the Dubrovnik area. For some days
observers have been expecting a push by some 10,000 Croatian troops into
the Trebinje region of eastern Herzegovina behind Dubrovnik. Montena-fax
said that the local Serbian authorities have banned all people from
Trebinje from leaving the district without special permission. Many had
been fleeing into Montenegro, including military-aged men. -- Patrick
Moore, OMRI, Inc.

KARADZIC WANTS 64% OF BOSNIA. AFP on 23 August quoted Bosnian Serb
leader Radovan Karadzic as saying that the Serbs must have 64% of the
land in any settlement because that is the amount they legally own. He
did not mention the land taken violently, and one of his statements in
particular suggested a hearty appetite: "Our territory must be integral,
it must have territorial continuity. It is of vital importance that our
borders be on the Sava and Una Rivers, that the Drina River is ours,
that we have a part of Sarajevo." His "foreign minister," Aleksa Buha,
praised the "U.S.-Russian" peace project, while Bosnian Foreign Minister
Muhamed Sacirbey said that there is "no American plan, but an
initiative." Elsewhere, U.S. President Bill Clinton named a new team of
envoys to the former Yugoslavia. Meanwhile in Jakarta, Indonesian
officials on 24 August announced that the Bosnian, Croatian, and Serbian
presidents had agreed "in principle" to meet in Indonesia, which
currently chairs the Non-Aligned Movement. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

MAZOWIECKI DESCRIBES SERB ATROCITIES IN SREBRENICA. The UN
special rapporteur for human rights in the former Yugoslavia has
presented his final report, international media said on 23 August. The
former Polish prime minister resigned in disgust last month over the
international community's inaction in the face of Serbian atrocities in
the UN-declared "safe havens" in eastern Bosnia. He said that "there is
significant direct and circumstantial evidence indicating that summary
executions took place, both of individuals and small groups of people.
On the question of mass executions of large numbers of people at one
time, the evidence so far obtained leads to the chilling conclusion that
these may have occurred." He also noted that Serbian civilians came in
to loot and burn homes and shops, and to destroy mosques. Meanwhile the
new Serbian "mayor" of Srebrenica has invited anyone interested to
visit. "The whole world can come and investigate, film in Srebrenica,"
Miroslav Deronjic told AFP, regretting that until now "nobody has made
such a request." In another "safe area," Gorazde, the Serbian
authorities have given the peacekeepers permission to leave. -- Patrick
Moore, OMRI, Inc.

CROATIAN UPDATE. Vjesnik on 24 August reported on the government's
plans to return the Croatian population to areas of the former Krajina
from which the Serbs had "ethnically cleansed" them since 1991. The
resettlement will take place in approximately three waves, depending on
the availability of accommodation in the various parts of the region.
The government also said it plans to have the vital Zagreb-Knin-Split
railway running by 28 August, which would be the first time in over four
years. Roman Catholic church sources in Zagreb quoted the bishop's
office in Banja Luka as saying that on 19 August the Serbs dynamited a
church in Sanski Most, making this the 43rd church in the bishopric to
be deliberately destroyed. -- Patrick Moore, OMRI, Inc.

MONTENEGRO UPDATE. BETA reported on 23 August that on the same day
the Montenegrin republic's legislature met in special session to discuss
the prospects for peacefully resolving the conflicts in the former
Yugoslavia. The session was called after opposition parties' lobbying
efforts, which have also recently revolved around calls for a peaceful
resolution of outstanding regional differences. On the previous day,
President Momir Bulatovic appeared on Montenegro Television and lashed
out against the Krajina Serb leadership and Orthodox Church officials.
According to Bulatovic, Croatia's reclaiming of Krajina amounted to "a
tragedy" but Krajina leaders were to blame since "they did not defend
Krajina." He also remarked that the Orthodox Church had recently become
overtly politicized by de facto defending the Krajina Serb leadership
and thereby "demonstrating its [political] amateurishness." -- Stan
Markotich, OMRI, Inc.

SITUATION IN KOSOVO IS A "SERIOUS PROBLEM." That is how EU
negotiator Carl Bildt described the situation in the mainly ethnic
Albanian province and added that he would soon visit rump Yugoslavia,
Macedonia and Albania, BETA reported on 23 August. According to the
Albanian-language service of Deutsche Welle, 3,600 Serbian refugees have
so far arrived in Kosovo. BETA, however, says that another 4,500 are
expected to arrive soon in Pristina alone. -- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.

ROMANIA WANTS END TO SANCTIONS ON RUMP YUGOSLAVIA. Following
the visit to Belgrade of Foreign Affairs Minister Teodor Melescanu (see
OMRI Daily Digest, 23 August 1995), Romania reiterated its call for UN
sanctions against rump Yugoslavia to be lifted. At a press conference
carried by Radio Bucharest on 23 August, Foreign Ministry spokesman
Mircea Geoana said the "lifting of the embargo in the context of
negotiations could work as a stimulating element for all the sides"
involved in the conflict. He said Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic
had raised the issue in the talks with Melescanu. The conflict in former
Yugoslavia will also figure prominently at the meeting due to be held
between the Greek, Bulgarian and Romanian foreign ministers over the
weekend in Greece, Geoana said. In other news, the Croat ambassador to
Bucharest, Nikola Debelic, said in an interview with the RFE/RL Romanian
service that the recent Croat offensive in Krajina has established a
"military balance" allowing for "negotiations on an equal basis." He
expressed the hope that Romania will use its influence on Belgrade to
persuade Serbia to give up its "aggressive politics and its territorial
claims on neighboring countries." -- Michael Shafir, OMRI, Inc.

RATIU TO RUN FOR ROMANIAN PRESIDENT? A letter from Ion Ratiu, the
vice-chairman of the opposition National Peasant Party Christian
Democratic (PNTCD), published in the daily Ziua on 23 August, throws
confusion over the race for the presidential elections due to be held in
fall 1996. Although Ratiu stops short of confirming he will run, the
tone of the letter seems to attest to this intent. The PNTCD is the
leading force in the Democratic Convention of Romania (CDR), which has
elected Emil Constantinescu as its chairman. According to the existing
procedure, he is also automatically the CDR's candidate in the
presidential elections. Ratiu says the PNTCD itself has not opted for a
candidate and calls on his party to back him, stating that his chances
of defeating President Ion Iliescu are higher than Constantinescu's.
Ratiu was third in the presidential contest held in 1990. -- Michael
Shafir, OMRI, Inc.

SNEGUR MEETS GAGAUZ LEADER AMID CALLS FOR ECONOMIC EMERGENCY.
President Mircea Snegur on 22 August met with the leader of the
autonomous Gagauz region, George Tabunshik, Infotag reported on the same
day. They discussed the dramatic economic situation in southern Moldova,
which induced the Gagauz Popular Assembly to call on Chisinau to declare
a state of economic emergency in the area. Snegur said after the meeting
that he had asked the government to consider the Gagauz appeal. He also
told Tabunshik that cooperation between the Gagauz authorities and
Moscow in establishing joint ventures should be "more concrete" and
recommended closer contacts with Turkey, which has showed readiness to
help the Gagauz. During a recent meeting with Snegur in Bucharest,
Turkish President Suleiman Demirel said his country was ready to
allocate $35 million to Moldova. A Gagauz delegation is expected to
visit Turkey to establish economic contacts. -- Michael Shafir, OMRI,
Inc.

YEVNEVICH ON ARMS SHIPMENTS. Lt.-Gen. Valeriy Yevnevich, who
commands the former 14th Army in Moldova, denied that four trains loaded
with Russian arms would be withdrawn from the Transdniestr region to
Russia by the end of the month as had been previously reported. In a 23
August Interfax interview, he said his staff had "started to estimate
the condition of the armaments and will prepare a proposal . . . by the
end of the month." He said that some old military trucks might be handed
over to the local authorities as well as some communications equipment
that had become outdated. He reiterated that withdrawal decisions would
be made in Moscow and not by his command. -- Doug Clarke, OMRI, Inc.

MACEDONIAN GOVERNMENT DRAFTS LAW ON RESTITUTION. The Macedonian
government approved a draft law on the restitution of real estate that
was nationalized between August 1944 and February 1968, MIC reported on
23 August. The Ministry of Finance has registered 37,000 hectares of
agricultural land, 16,000 hectares of forest, 21,000 hectares of
pasture, 285 apartment buildings and 169 business objects and various
herds of cattle and sheep that will be affected by the law. Finance
Minister Jane Miljovski said that it is the government's aim to give
back all property that physically exists, or to provide compensation. --
Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.

U.S. MILITARY DELEGATION IN ALBANIA. Secretary of the Army Togo
West is leading a U.S. military delegation to Albania on 24 August,
Rilindja Demokratike reports the same day. West will meet with President
Sali Berisha and Defense Minister Safet Zhulali and visit U.S. army
units deployed to reconstruct a hospital in Tirana in the framework of a
military-medical exercise called "Crystal Water 95." West brings with
him a donation of medical supplies worth $500,000. Elsewhere, deputy
Chief of the General Staff Armand Vincani received the commander of an
Italian frigate that will participate in joint exercises with the
Albanian navy beginning on 26 August. -- Fabian Schmidt, OMRI, Inc.

[As of 12:00 CET]

Compiled by Steve Kettle

The OMRI Daily Digest offers the latest news from the former Soviet
Union and East-Central and Southeastern Europe. It is published Monday
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            Copyright (C) 1995 Open Media Research Institute, Inc.
                             All rights reserved. ISSN 1211-1570


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