Every custom was once an eccentricity; every idea was once an absurdity. - Holbrook Jackson
OMRI DAILY DIGEST

No. 115, Part II, 13 June 1996

***********************************************************************
Available soon -- The OMRI Annual Survey of Eastern Europe and the
Former Soviet Union -- "1995: Building Democracy."
Published by M.E. Sharpe Inc., this 336-page yearbook provides a
systematic and comprehensive review of the most pivotal events in the 27
countries of the former Communist bloc and former Soviet Union during
1995. Available to OMRI subscribers at a special price of $25 each (plus
postage and handling). To order, please email your request to:
annual@omri.cz
***********************************************************************

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

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT, SPEAKER QUIBBLE OVER EXPIRATION OF CONSTITUTIONAL
AGREEMENT. President Leonid Kuchma blasted Parliament Chairman
Oleksander Moroz for claiming that a power-sharing agreement signed by
the Ukrainian leader and lawmakers last year had expired on 8 June and
needed to be extended, UNIAN and ITAR-TASS reported on 11-12 June. Moroz
said that the so-called constitutional agreement, which allowed a
temporary law on separation of powers to take effect, has run out, but
that he believes it should be extended "either by parliament or the
president." Kuchma said language in the accord means it remains in force
until a new Ukrainian constitution is adopted. He blamed parliament for
delaying the adoption of the draft constitution and accused Moroz of
trying to destabilize the country. -- Chrystyna Lapychak

PARLIAMENTARY COMMITTEE AIMS TO FINALIZE DRAFT CONSTITUTION BY 19 JUNE.
Mykhailo Syrota, chairman of a special parliamentary conciliatory
commission, said in Kyiv on 12 June that commission members are working
long hours to finish the draft of a new Ukrainian constitution for
debate on 19 June, Ukrainian TV reported. He said there are 1100
amendments or additions that needed to be worked out and incorporated
into the draft, which will be reviewed article-by-article during the
second reading. Syrota said he believes legislators will approve the
draft by Ukrainian independence day, on 24 August, with the required
two-thirds majority, and that they will pass the 24 new laws needed for
the new basic law to be implemented. -- Chrystyna Lapychak

RUSSIAN INVESTMENT IN UKRAINE UPS KARBOVANETS. The Ukrainian karbovanets
has increased in value from 191,000 to the dollar to 182,200 to the
dollar because of Russian purchases of Ukrainian treasury bills, Reuters
reported on 12 June. Head of the Ukrainian Central Bank's hard currency
department Mykola Melnychuk said Ukraine had never experienced such a
large influx of foreign capital. Ukrainian T-bills yield an average of
100 percent or more interest over a year. Valerii Lyvytsky, economic
adviser to President Leonid Kuchma, attributed the sudden influx of
Russian investment to political uncertainty in Russia and warned that a
victory for President Boris Yeltsin at the polls could reverse the
trend. He added that the influx carried inflationary risks for Ukraine
and that the accompanying currency stabilization could hurt Ukraine's
exports. -- Ustina Markus

BELARUSIAN PARLIAMENT SPEAKER ON ELECTIONS; ARRESTS UPDATE. Syamyon
Sharetsky told the integration committee of Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan,
and Kyrgyzstan that it would be a mistake to artificially speed the
process of integration among the countries, ITAR-TASS reported on 12
June. Sharetsky said the EU countries, which are coming closer together
while maintaining their sovereignty, are an example to follow. He added
that it is too late to speak of federation or confederation. In other
news, an RFE/RL correspondent reported that poet Slavomir Adamovich's
condition is worsening because he has been on a hunger strike for eight
days. Adamovich was arrested while trying to enter Lithuania several
weeks ago; he is being held in custody for allegedly writing a poem
called "Kill the President." -- Ustina Markus

DUMA DEPUTIES URGE LATVIA TO LET RUBIKS RUN FOR PRESIDENT. Nine deputies
of the Russian State Duma, including Deputy Chairman Sergei Baburin,
sent an appeal to Latvian President Guntis Ulmanis and Saeima Chairwoman
Ilse Kreituse asking that imprisoned former Latvian Communist Party
First Secretary Alfreds Rubiks be provided with equal conditions for
campaigning for president, BNS reported on 12 June. The appeal was
probably prompted by the decision by Interior Minister Dainis Turlais
not to allow Rubiks to hold press conferences in prison. -- Saulius
Girnius

COUNCIL OF EUROPE ASSEMBLY PRESIDENT VISITS ESTONIA. Council of Europe
Parliamentary Assembly President Leni Fischer met on 11 June with
Parliament Chairman Toomas Savi and Prime Minister Tiit Vahi, BNS
reported the next day. She held talks with Foreign Minister Siim Kallas,
the current chairman of the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers,
who will present a report to a CEPA political committee meeting in
Tallinn on 13 June. Fischer said that Russia should provide Estonia
information about Russian residents in there, a request that Russia has
refused to fulfill in order to be allowed to open more polling stations
for the 16 June presidential elections. She also criticized Russia's
policy of refusing to grant visas to Estonian CEPA members, preventing
them from attending CE meetings. -- Saulius Girnius

LITHUANIA ALLOWS EXTRA POLLING STATION IN VISAGINAS. The Lithuanian
Foreign Ministry's CIS Department head, Ricardas Degutis, told BNS on 12
June that Lithuania will allow Russia to open an extra voting station in
Visaginas for the Russian presidential election on 16 June. Visaginas
has a large number of Russian residents, many of whom work at the
Ignalina nuclear power plant. Degutis said the decision was a "political
step of goodwill." Russian citizens will also be able to vote at the
embassy in Vilnius and the consulate in Klaipeda. -- Saulius Girnius

POLAND, GREECE SIGN COOPERATION AGREEMENT. Polish Foreign Minister
Dariusz Rosati and his Greek counterpart, Theodoros Pangalos, signed a
friendship and cooperation agreement on 12 June in Athens, Reuters
reported. Pangalos said Greece will back Poland's bid to join NATO and
the EU and called for increased trade between the two countries. Rosati
said political and economic ties between Warsaw and Athens are
developing well but "there is even greater room for further
cooperation." -- Stefan Krause

GDANSK SHIPYARD MANAGEMENT TO REGISTER NEW FIRM. The management of
Gdansk shipyard said it will file an application to register a new
company that will use assets of the shipyard. The shipyard's president,
Ryszard Goluch, said the new company will employ about 2,500 workers and
lease 60 percent of the old yard's production assets for 10 years,
Rzeczpospolita reported on 13 June. The project appeared to be at
variance with the guidelines set by the Privatization Ministry, which
wanted the new shipyard to lease the assets for one year to complete
construction of 4-5 already-contracted vessels. After one year, the
assets were to be turned over to the liquidator for sale to a future
investor. Goluch is talking with Polish banks about the financing of the
vessels' construction. -- Dagmar Mroziewicz

ANOTHER CONTROVERSIAL CONVERSATION BROADCAST IN SLOVAKIAŠ The private,
Bratislava-based Radio Twist on 12 June aired a recorded conversation
between Deputy Premier and Finance Minister Sergej Kozlik and Justice
Ministry State Secretary Lubomir Dobrik concerning the state insurance
firm Slovenska poistovna. The tape reveals the involvement of Kozlik, a
member of the ruling Movement for a Democratic Slovakia (HZDS), in the
recent management changes at the firm. The installation of new
management with close ties to the HZDS provoked a crisis within the
ruling coalition, and Slovak National Party (SNS) Chairman Jan Slota
reportedly played the tape during recent coalition negotiations. Last
month, Radio Twist made headlines after broadcasting a conversation
between Interior Minister Ludovit Hudek and Slovak Information Service
chief Ivan Lexa in which they discussed the firing of a police
investigator. -- Sharon Fisher

Š AS RULING COALITION FAILS TO REACH AGREEMENT. Representatives of the
government coalition parties met for the third time on 12 June to
discuss the continuing crisis, Slovak media reported. Although Slota
stressed that the SNS "will never initiate the coalition's
disintegration," he noted that the ruling parties have yet to resolve
the conflict over Slovenska poistovna. The HZDS's position on the case
constitutes a partial violation of coalition agreements, he said. Slota
expressed dissatisfaction with the development of coalition talks, but
he emphasized that a solution should be found by the time the parliament
convenes on 19 June. -- Sharon Fisher

SLOVAK PRESIDENT ON FIRST OFFICIAL VISIT TO HUNGARY. Slovak President
Michal Kovac in Budapest on 12 June reassured Hungary that Slovakia will
respect the rights of its Hungarian minority and said he would urge
Slovak legislators to pass a law on the use of minority languages,
Hungarian dailies and international media reported. The Slovak
government introduced a controversial language law late last year that
allowed only Slovak to be used in public places. The government promised
to pass a law on the protection of minority languages but has so far
failed to put the bill before parliament, provoking strong criticism
from Kovac. On this first official visit, Kovac also supported an out-
of-court settlement in the Gabcikovo dam dispute and called on
Hungarians and Slovaks to work for reconciliation between their
countries. -- Zsofia Szilagyi

HUNGARIAN PREMIER SAYS VISEGRAD FOUR SHOULD JOIN EU SIMULTANEOUSLY. "It
is in Hungary's interest that the Visegrad countries become members of
the EU simultaneously and in the first round of enlargement," Gyula Horn
told visiting Slovak President Michal Kovac on 12 June, MTI reported.
Meanwhile, President Arpad Goncz assured Kovac that it is not in
Hungary's interest to keep Slovakia out of any European organization.
The present Hungarian government has repeatedly stressed that it
supports its neighbors' accession to Western organizations, while the
previous Antall-Boross government abstained from the Council of Europe
vote on Slovakia's and Romania's membership in 1993. Budapest also
attempted to block Slovakia's accession to the CSCE in 1992. -- Zsofia
Szilagyi

SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

CLINTON CONTRADICTS PERRY ON IFOR, EXPLAINS NON-ARREST OF WAR CRIMINALS.
U.S. President Bill Clinton said on 12 June he expects IFOR troops to
complete their mission in Bosnia by the end of the year, Deutsche Welle
reported the next day. He apparently overruled Secretary of Defense
William Perry, who had just said that he could see NATO extending its
role into 1997 (see OMRI Daily Digest, 12 June 1996). Clinton
sidestepped a question as to why the peacekeepers have not yet arrested
indicted war criminals like Radovan Karadzic and Gen. Ratko Mladic: "The
IFOR troops can arrest anybody that's been charged with a war crime with
whom they come in contact. But they are not charged with, in effect,
being the domestic or the international police force and targeting
people and going after them." Critics have charged that IFOR has turned
a blind eye as war criminals move about freely, apparently even through
IFOR checkpoints. -- Patrick Moore

BOSNIA'S ELECTION DATE TO BE ANNOUNCED AT END OF JUNE? Robert Frowick,
the head of the OSCE mission in Sarajevo, said that Swiss Foreign
Minister and OSCE Chairman Flavio Cotti will announce in late June
whether elections in Bosnia will be held in fall as scheduled by the
Dayton peace accord, AFP reported on 12 June. But the U.S. and major
European powers are pushing for an exact date to be set at the two-day
conference that will start on 13 June in Florence to review compliance
with the Dayton Agreement six months after it was signed, Reuters
reported. Frowick said that so far no party involved in Bosnia has asked
for a delay of the elections. Meanwhile, international organizations,
such as the International Crisis Group and Human Rights Watch, have
warned that minimum standards for fair elections are already being
flouted, Nasa Borba reported on 13 June. -- Daria Sito Sucic

BILDT HOPES TO AVOID SANCTIONS AGAINST SERBS. After a meeting with
Bosnian Serb Parliament Speaker Momcilo Krajisnik, High Representative
for Bosnia Carl Bildt said that he hopes and has always hoped to avoid
sanctions against the Bosnian Serbs, AFP reported on 12 June. He was
commenting on the recent call by the head of the international war
crimes tribunal, Antonio Cassese, for sanctions against the Bosnian
Serbs. In another development, Bosnian Serb Premier Gojko Klickovic said
Bosnian Serbs will never support the reintegration of Bosnia-Herzegovina
even if the West punishes them economically, Nasa Borba reported on 13
June. -- Daria Sito Sucic

RED CROSS ISSUES "NO FAULT" CALL ON MISSING PERSONS IN BOSNIA. The ICRC
says that there are over 12,000 persons in Bosnia and Herzegovina still
described as missing, Reuters and Onasa reported on 12 June. The Muslims
are looking for 10,805 individuals, the Serbs for 1,703, and the Croats
217. Most are presumed dead, and the ICRC now says it will welcome any
information on the fate of the missing, with no questions asked as to
how they happened to die. The purpose of the new policy is simply to
seek confirmation of deaths in order to put the minds of families at
ease. A spokesman added that it is the business of the war crimes
tribunal and not of the Red Cross to determine guilt and punish
murderers. Meanwhile, the Bosnian government has handed over two
indicted war criminals to The Hague. Hazim Delic and Esad Landzo are
wanted for crimes committed in the Celebici concentration camp. --
Patrick Moore

BELGRADE LOOKS TO ZIMBABWE FOR ECONOMIC BOOST. Zimbabwean President
Robert Mugabe arrived in Belgrade on 12 June for an official three-day
visit, AFP reported the same day. Mugabe, who has been one of the few
world leaders to openly support rump Yugosalvia's authoritarian regime
and to oppose sanctions against Belgrade, is slated to meet with a host
of officials, including Serbian President Milosevic, Federal President
Zoran Lilic, and Federal Premier Radoje Kontic for talks aimed at
reaching agreement on bolstering bilateral trade. -- Stan Markotich

RUMP YUGOSLAV GENERAL CANCELS PRESS CONFERENCE. Rump Yugoslavia's
commander of the army, General Momcilo Perisic, on 12 June abruptly
canceled an annual press conference commemorating army day, Beta
reported. Perisic hinted that an inability to speak openly and low
morale in the ranks were factors in his decision. "It is far better to
say nothing at all than to say that which is already well known.
Besides, what needs to be said, and what would interest you, would be
upsetting," he said. -- Stan Markotich

MACEDONIAN, NATO SIGN COOPERATION AGREEMENT. Foreign Minister Ljubomir
Frckovski signed a document on military cooperation with NATO in
Brussels on 12 June, AFP reported. He met with the ambassadors of the
North Atlantic Council member states. Frckovski said the cooperation
agreement was the first step toward Macedonia's aim of full NATO
membership. He said there is "social and political consensus" in
Macedonia on joining NATO. Meanwhile, U.S. Defense Secretary William
Perry concluded a visit to Macedonia, where he dedicated a military
training center and held talks on the future of UNPROFOR. Addressing the
parliament, Perry named cooperation within NATO's Partnership for Peace
program and military transparency as the keys to stability and peace in
the Balkans. President Kiro Gligorov urged the U.S. to extend its
troops' stay in Bosnia lest "the NATO mission fail and renewed fighting
break out." -- Stefan Krause

BODIUL SKEPTICAL ON TRANSDNIESTRIAN CONFLICT. The former first secretary
of the Moldovan Communist Party, Ivan Bodiul, said in an interview with
Nezavisimaya Moldova cited by Infotag on 12 June that the Moldovan and
the Transdniestrian authorities are very far from a solution to the
conflict. Bodiul said there was no solution but union, adding that
Chisinau should offer Tiraspol a transition period. In his opinion,
Moldova should have two, and possibly three, official languages:
"Moldovan," Russian, and Ukrainian. In other news, for the first time a
Transdniestrian official came out in support of President Boris
Yeltsin's re-election. Grigori Markutsa, chairman of the breakaway
republic's Supreme Soviet, called on Russian troops and citizens
residing in the region to vote for Yeltsin. But Transdniestrian leader
Igor Smirnov, currently in Moscow, met with Yeltsin's main rival in the
elections, Gennadii Zyuganov. -- Michael Shafir

BULGARIA THREATENED WITH ISOLATION FROM FINANCIAL MARKETS. The
Industrial Bank of Japan (IBJ) has threatened that unless Bulgaria
accepts its responsibility to cover payments due by Mineralbank on 14
June, Bulgaria's relations with Japan will seriously worsen, Pari
reported on 13 June. Finance Minister Dimitar Kostov on 31 May had
asserted that the government was not obliged to cover the $47.6 million
owed IBJ by Mineralbank under a loan taken out in 1989. The Bulgarian
National Bank on 31 May applied to initiate bankruptcy proceedings
against the 80% state-owned bank, which had losses of $62.8 million by
the end of 1995. Mineralbank owes other Japanese banks over $100
million. Recently, Belgium's Banque Generale took ECU 5 million from the
BNB's account with it in order to cover Mineralbank's overdue debt to
it, and the BNB threatened to take court action against the Belgian bank
in response. -- Michael Wyzan

BULGARIAN PREMIER SURVIVES NO-CONFIDENCE VOTE. The government of Zhan
Videnov on 13 June easily survived a no-confidence vote called over its
handling of Bulgaria's economic crisis, Bulgarian and Western media
reported. The secret vote was 99 for, and 135 against, with one
abstention. While the government was expected to survive the vote, such
a clear defeat of the motion came as a surprise. The ruling Bulgarian
Socialist Party and its partners hold 125 seats in the 240-member
parliament. All opposition parties had said they would support the no-
confidence vote. In other news, former Tsar Simeon II announced that he
will return to Madrid on 16 June after three weeks in Bulgaria. --
Stefan Krause

OSCE ISSUES REPORT ABOUT ALBANIAN ELECTIONS. An OSCE report released in
Vienna on 12 June said there were serious "irregularities" before and
during the 26 May parliamentary elections. The report says 32 out of 79
articles of Albania's electoral laws were violated during the campaign
and the voting. It also charges Albanian authorities with failing to
cooperate fully with foreign observers, AFP reported. The report did not
call for new elections. President Sali Berisha had earlier decreed a
partial re-run on 16 June, but the OSCE has not yet decided whether to
send monitors. The opposition said it would boycott the partial re-run
and demands complete new elections. -- Fabian Schmidt

ALBANIAN OPPOSITION WANTS AUSTRIA TO MEDIATE. Albanian opposition
parties on 12 June sent a letter to Austrian Chancellor Franz Vranitzky,
asking him to mediate between them and the ruling Democratic Party in
the post-election deadlock. The letter said that "Albania is going
through a critical situation as a result of manipulation and physical
violence during the whole process of the May 26 elections." The letter
was signed by the Social Democratic Party leader Skender Gjinushi and
Democratic Alliance leader Neritan Ceka, Reuters reported. Meanwhile,
more than 2,000 supporters of the Socialists demanded new elections at a
rally in Tirana on the fifth anniversary of their party's founding on 12
June. -- Fabian Schmidt

[As of 1200 CET]

Compiled by Susan Caskie


------------------------------------------------------------------------
            Copyright (c) 1996 Open Media Research Institute, Inc.
                      All rights reserved. ISSN 1211-1570
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                             SUBSCRIBING/UNSUBSCRIBING
1) Compose a message to LISTSERV@UBVM.CC.BUFFALO.EDU
2) To subscribe, write:
     SUBSCRIBE OMRI-L FirstName LastName (include your own name)
   To unsubscribe, write:
     UNSUBSCRIBE OMRI-L
3) Send the message

                                  REPRINT POLICY
To receive a copy of OMRI's reprint policy, contact OMRIPUB@OMRI.CZ
or see the Web page at
http://www.omri.cz/Publications/Digests/DigestReprint.html

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


ECONOMIC DIGEST
The OMRI Economic Digest is for those who need more detailed economic
news from the region.  There is a four-week free trial subscription
available; for more information, write ECON@OMRI.CZ or go to the
Economic Digest Web page at
http://www.omri.cz/Econ/Info.html


RUSSIAN DAILY DIGEST
The OMRI Daily Digest is translated into Russian and distributed the
following day.
1) Compose a message to MAJORDOMO@DEMOS.SU
2) In the body of the message, write SUBSCRIBE OMRI 
   (be sure to replace  with your own name).
3) Send the message

[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