A good eater must be a good man; for a good eater must have a good digestion, and a good digestion depends upon a good conscience. - Benjamin Disraeli
OMRI DAILY DIGEST

No. 76, Part I, 17 April 1996

New OMRI Analytical Briefs:
- "Leading Candidates in Russian Presidential Elections Seek to Identify
  Themselves with Orthodoxy," by Penny Morvant
- "Turkey's Prime Minister in Baku," by Lowell Bezanis and Liz Fuller

Available on the World Wide Web:
http://www.omri.cz/Publications/Analytical/Index.html

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, 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/Index.html

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^TODAY'S TOP STORY^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
INTERPOL ISSUES WARRANTS FOR BOSNIAN SERB LEADERS. Interpol has issued
international warrants for the Bosnian Serb civilian leader Radovan
Karadzic and his military counterpart Gen. Ratko Mladic, Onasa reported
on 16 April. Interpol's 176 member states are obliged to provide
Interpol with any information they have regarding such persons, and may
be called on to assist in their apprehension. Bosnian Serb Vice
President Nikola Koljevic told Reuters, however, that his people will
not hand over their leaders to the war-crimes tribunal "for money," an
apparent reference to the international community's growing view that
the Serbs will not get much foreign reconstruction aid as long as they
have indicted war criminals for leaders. Denmark's Foreign Minister
Neils Helveg Petersen said flatly that there will be no Danish money for
the Bosnian Serbs as long as the two men are in power, Onasa added.
Bosnian Prime Minister Hasan Muratovic noted that there can be no
progress in reintegrating the two halves of Bosnia as long as Karadzic
is in office, Oslobodjenje reported on 17 April. -- Patrick Moore
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

BAN ON CIGARETTE AND ALCOHOL ADS STIRS CONTROVERSY. President Leonid
Kuchma has sent a law banning tobacco and alcohol advertising back to
parliament for revision, after the law met with extreme opposition,
Ukrainian TV reported on 15 April. Opponents of the law argue that the
ban is detrimental to Ukraine's economy and will not decrease alcohol
and cigarette consumption. Under the constitutional arrangement between
the president and parliament, Kuchma has the right to return legislation
to parliament. -- Ustina Markus

NATO SECRETARY GENERAL ENDS VISIT TO UKRAINE . . . President Leonid
Kuchma told NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana that Ukraine will not
oppose NATO expansion as long as nuclear weapons are not deployed in new
members' territories, Ukrainian and international agencies reported on
15 April. Kuchma maintained that any expansion of the alliance should be
gradual and take Ukrainian and Russian interests into account. Ukrainian
Defense Minister Valerii Shmarov told Solana that Ukraine may eventually
change its non-aligned status, but not anytime soon, while Foreign
Minister Hennadii Udovenko ruled out Ukraine's participation in NATO.
Solana recognized Ukraine's strategic importance for NATO and European
security. -- Ustina Markus

. . . AND ARRIVES IN BALTICS. After concluding his visit to Ukraine,
Solana flew to Vilnius and met with Lithuanian President Algirdas
Brazauskas, BNS and international agencies reported on 17 April. Solana
refuted suggestions that East European countries may be offered
political, not military membership, saying he did not know what
"political membership" meant. From Vilnius, Solana flew to Latvia and
Estonia. He said by the end of the year, all countries participating in
the Partnership for Peace Program will be evaluated for full membership.
-- Ustina Markus

LATVIAN GOVERNMENT APPROVES DRAFT BILL. The Latvian government approved
on 16 April a bill on obligatory military service and passed it on to
the Saeima for consideration, BNS reported. The bill had been under
consideration by the government for some time, but the cabinet had been
unable to agree on draft rules. The new bill enlarges the pool of people
eligible for the draft including all able-bodied 19-27 year-olds, but
excludes clergymen and Latvian citizens in ecclesiastical schools. Under
current legislation, some 87% of conscription-age people are exempt from
serving in the armed forces. -- Ustina Markus

RED CROSS OPENS OFFICES IN BELARUS. The Red Cross and Red Crescent
opened offices in Minsk in an official ceremony on 15 April, Belarusian
TV reported. The office will deal mainly with treating victims of the
Chornobyl nuclear accident. To date, the Red Cross has helped 12.5
million people affected by the Chornobyl disaster. Belarus has been
allocating 15-20% of its annual state budget to coping with the
Chornobyl aftermath, but due to economic difficulties, has relied
heavily on foreign aid. In 1994, Red Cross aid to Belarus amounted to $4
million, and a further $2 million was spent in 1995. President
Alyaksandr Lukashenka was to meet with Secretary General of the Red
Cross and Red Crescent George Beber on 16 April. -- Ustina Markus

BUDGET LAW DECISION BY POLISH CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSION. The Polish
parliament's Constitutional Commission accepted 26 articles on state
budgetary issues for the country's future constitution on 16 April,
Polish dailies reported the next day. The commission proposed to strip
the president of his current veto right on the budget law. The president
would instead be allowed to send budget laws to the Constitutional
Tribunal for a final ruling. The commission will vote on the
constitution articles concerning the national bank on 17 April.
Meanwhile, the Polish government approved on 16 April Deputy Prime
Minister Grzegorz Kolodko's macroeconomic program, which lists the
following aims: 5-7% annual inflation, 5% minimum GNP growth, and an 8-
10% annual export growth. -- Jakub Karpinski

MEMORIAL MARCH ON AUSCHWITZ. About 5,000 young Jews from 38 countries
took part in a 3.5 kilometer Holocaust memorial march on 16 April from
Auschwitz to Birkenau concentration camp, Polish media reported. The
march was in memory of more than a million people, mostly Jews, murdered
by German Nazis in the camps. Marek Siwiec, aide to Poland's President
Aleksander Kwasniewski, and Israeli Minister of Environment Yossi Sarid
represented their respective governments. Some participants in the march
will fly from Poland to Israel to take part in Israel's Independence Day
celebrations on 24 April. -- Jakub Karpinski

FRANCE TO SUPPORT POLAND IN OECD. Polish President Aleksander
Kwasniewski has invited French President Jacques Chirac to Poland,
Polish media reported on 17 April. Kwasniewski visited France in January
of this year. A Polish presidential spokesman said that Chirac promised
to support Poland in its efforts to join OECD and the EU. The presidents
discussed over the phone Kwasniewski's recent visit to Moscow, deeming
it a success. Kwasniewski also plans to discuss the results of his
Moscow visit with U.S. President Bill Clinton and German Chancellor
Helmut Kohl, Polish dailies reported on 17 April. -- Jakub Karpinski

CZECH PARLIAMENT SESSION ENDS BEFORE IT BEGINS. The last scheduled
session of the Czech parliament before the general elections to be held
at the end of May, failed to get underway on 16 April due to
disagreement among deputies over the session's agenda, Czech media
reported. The leader of the Christian Democratic Union-Czechoslovak
People's Party, Josef Lux, said the proposed order of business did not
correspond with the one agreed upon by the three coalition parties. Only
65 deputies, 15 short of the number needed, voted to approve the agenda;
47 voted against and 40 abstained. Among the 153 points on the agenda
were proposals to redefine the country's local administrative districts,
and to reduce income and corporation tax. Parliament Speaker Milan Uhde
said another session could be called for 18 April. -- Steve Kettle

DEAL SIGNED FOR SLOVAK NUCLEAR POWER PLANT. The head of Slovenske
elektrarny and representatives of a consortium of foreign firms on 16
April signed contracts to complete building the first two blocks at the
Mochovce nuclear power plant, Slovak media reported. The project will
cost 26 billion crowns ($850 million) and is being financed by Slovak,
Russian, French, German and Czech banks. The EBRD pulled out of an
earlier funding project. Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar, who attended
the signing ceremony in Bratislava, said that Slovakia's nuclear power
program will be completed when the third and fourth blocks at Mochovce
are built. -- Steve Kettle

HUNGARIAN PREMIER REASSERTS NEED FOR OFFICE TO INVESTIGATE WHITE-COLLAR
CRIME. Gyula Horn reconfirmed his intention to establish a national
investigation office to curb the black economy, Hungarian media reported
on 17 April. Horn emphasized the need for the office given the relative
ineffectiveness of government efforts in this area. He added that the
office would not undermine the jurisdiction of existing state
authorities with investigative duties, such as the police and the Tax
and Customs Office, and predicted that his party would succeed in
"reaching a consensus" with the coalition partner, the Alliance of Free
Democrats (SZDSZ) on the matter. The SZDSZ is presently opposed to the
idea (see OMRI Daily Digest, 12 April 1996). -- Zsofia Szilagyi

HUNGARY STEPS UP SECURITY AFTER TWO JEWS STABBED. The Hungarian police
announced on 16 April that they would step up security in the Israeli
embassy, Jewish community buildings, and the Israeli airlines after two
Jews were stabbed in Budapest last week, Hungarian media reported. The
Israeli ambassador to Hungary had requested security to be tightened
after an Afghan stabbed and wounded two staff members at a Budapest
Jewish school in response to the Israeli bombing of southern Lebanon.
The suspect, identified as Wahab Abdul Bashkir, is a 40-year-old from
Afghanistan, who settled in Hungary 10 years ago. -- Zsofia Szilagyi

SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

TUZLA AS MODEL FOR BOSNIA? The leader of the ex-communist Union of
Bosnian Social Democrats (UBSD), Sejfudin Tokic, stressed that his party
is in the best position to overcome the ethnic divide in the war-torn
republic, Nasa Borba reported on 16 April. The next day, the same paper
carried an interview with leading UBSD politician and mayor of Tuzla,
Selim Besagic, who also backed Tokic's opinion, pointing out that multi-
ethnic Tuzla could serve as a model for the rest of Bosnia. Both men
claimed that the UBSD has already begun to attract much attention from
Serbs in the Republika Srpska (RS). Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic
has apparently organized his own party bloc to compete with Karadzic's
group in the RS elections due to be held across Bosnia by mid-September.
-- Patrick Moore

BOSNIAN AID UPDATE. The EU is looking into a case of corruption
surrounding its administration in Mostar, AFP reported on 16 April. An
EU spokesman said, however, that it was simply a case of
"irregularities" amid difficult circumstances and apparently not one of
widespread graft. Former EU Adminstrator Hans Koschnick defended his
record and told the Berliner Zeitung that it was simply a question of
"technical accounting matters" and that "there is no suggestion of any
misappropriation of funds." Elsewhere, the OSCE expressed concern that
there might be insufficient funding to promote independent media amid
Bosnia's nationalist-dominated media landscape, Reuters noted. Although
a number of potential financial sources have expressed interest, few
have commited specific sums (see OMRI Special Report, 16 April 1996).
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia has signed a $3 million agreement to repair
Bosnia's railways, Onasa said. The governor of Bosnia's Central Bank,
Kasim Omicevic, added that he is anxious that the international
community's monetary pledges be translated into deeds. -- Patrick Moore

U.S WITHHOLDS RECOGNITION OF RUMP YUGOSLAVIA. State Department officials
assured Kosovar shadow state Prime Minister Bujar Bukoshi that the U.S.
will withhold recognition of rump Yugoslavia, AFP reported on 15 April.
The officials told Bukoshi that Washington wants Belgrade to deliver on
the Bosnian peace agreement before making such a decision, but gave no
assurance that a solution to the Kosovo conflict would be a precondition
for recognition. Nonetheless, U.S. officials said that Kosovo "is very
high on our agenda." Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Rudolph Perina
"reconfirmed the U.S. desire to be helpful in finding a peaceful
solution." Bukoshi said he was satisfied with the U.S. assurances.
Austria recognized rump Yugoslavia on 16 April, Nasa Borba reported. --
Fabian Schmidt

BOMB ATTACK ON BELGRADE MOSQUE. A powerful bomb severely damaged
Belgrade's Bajrakli Mosque and shattered windows of surrounding
buildings on 16 April, Onasa and Reuters reported. Although there were
no casualties, Mufti Hamdija Jusufspahic called it "the most powerful
attack on the mosque and on the Islamic community in Belgrade ever." He
said the explosion caused substantial damage outside and inside the
building. No one has claimed responsibility for the bombing, which was
the third attack on the mosque since 1992. Mayor Nebojsa Covic visited
the scene soon after the attack and promised Mufti full cooperation. The
opposition Reform Democratic Party in Vojvodina called on authorities to
seize and punish the terrorists, while Democratic Party President
Vojislav Kostunica commented that the act harmed the country's
international relations. -- Fabian Schmidt

CROATIAN POLITICAL CONFRONTATION ENTERS NEW PHASE. President Franjo
Tudjman has vetoed for the fourth time in a row the opposition's
candidate for mayor of Zagreb, Novi list reported on 17 April. A loose
opposition coalition won a majority in the city council in last
October's elections, but Tudjman has thus far blocked every candidate
for mayor proposed. He claims that he will not hand the capital over to
"enemies of state policy." Tudjman's Croatian Democratic Community Party
(HDZ) candidate is presently acting-mayor despite a vote of no-
confidence from the council. There is widespread suspicion that the
HDZ's real aim is to hide evidence of its own past corruption. New
elections seem inevitable, and the polls suggest that the voters are
angry with Tudjman's behavior. Seven parties ranging from the right to
the left have formally reaffirmed their alliance. -- Patrick Moore

ROMANIA INAUGURATES CANADIAN-DESIGNED NUCLEAR POWER PLANT . . . At a
ceremony scheduled to take place on 17 April, visiting Canadian Prime
Minister Jean Chretien and President Ion Iliescu will officially
inaugurate Romania's first nuclear power plant. The plant, located in
Cernavoda and built with Canadian Candu technology, will eventually have
five units. The first unit, already completed, has a production capacity
of 705 megawatts, Romanian and international media reported. It is
scheduled to begin functioning in May and will reach its full production
capacity in August, meeting some 10% of the country's electricity needs.
-- Michael Shafir

. . . AS ROMANIAN-CANADIAN ECONOMIC COOPERATION INTENSIFIES. The
Canadian Bombardier Company President, Laurent Beadoin, will deliver on
17 April the first of 24 planes ordered by the Romanian airline Dac Air,
an RFE/RL correspondent in Bucharest reported on 16 April. Dac Air is
buying a fleet of 24 planes of the 8-3000 model. The first plane will be
presented at a ceremony attended by Prime Minister Nicolae Vacaroiu. On
16 April, President Ion Iliescu visited the Bucharest Turbomecanica
factory, which specializes in producing plane engines. He said the
Canadian Pratten Whitney Company is interested in acquiring 51% of
Turbomecanica shares, Romanian TV reported on the same day. -- Michael
Shafir

ROMANIA SETS DATE FOR LOCAL ELECTIONS. Local elections in Romania will
be held on 2 June, Radio Bucharest announced on 16 April. Octav
Cosmanca, who is in charge of local government affairs, said on Radio
Bucharest that the electoral campaign for local elections will start on
19 April. No date has yet been set for the autumn parliamentary and
presidential elections. Cosmanca added that due to a recently-passed new
law on local administration, prefects will no longer be able to dismiss
mayors without prior judicial approval. International bodies had harshly
criticized earlier practices, which allowed for the dismissal of mayors.
-- Michael Shafir

NINE ALBANIAN COMMUNIST-ERA OFFICIALS TO STAND TRIAL. Nine defendants
stood trial on 16 April under charges of committing crimes against
humanity, Reuters reported. In a series of trials, a total of 38
defendants are accused of conducting mass deportations and executions of
fugitives and political prisoners. The charges also include exiling
dissidents. The nine defendants who appeared in the first trial include
ex-Defense Minister Prokop Murra, head of Tirana's secret police Zef
Loka, National Police Chief Dilaver Bengasi, former President Ramiz
Alia's chief ideologist Foto Cami, and five former local party
secretaries. Another trial against five other former senior officials,
including a parliamentary speaker and an ex-Chief Justice of the Supreme
Court will open on 24 April. No trial date has yet been set for the
remaining 24 accused, including Alia. -- Fabian Schmidt

[As of 12:00 CET]

Compiled by Jan Cleave

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