The discovery of a new dish does more for human happines than the discovery of a new star. - Anthelme Brillat-Savarin
OMRI DAILY DIGEST

No. 222, Part II, 15 November 1996

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

UKRAINE MAY RESTART A CHORNOBYL REACTOR. Ukrainian nuclear authorities
prepared plans to restart Chornobyl reactor No. 2, which was shut down
in 1991 after a fire incident, international media reported on 14
November. Valerii Idelson, spokesman for Chornobyl, told Reuters that
technical documents have been sent for approval to the Ukrainian
government. Chornobyl reactors 1 and 3 still function and contribute 5%
of Ukraine's electricity. Ukraine promised to close reactor No. 1 on 30
November and to close the entire plant by 2000 in return for $3.1
billion in grants and credits from G-7 countries. Ukrainian officials
say the country faces severe energy shortages and complain Western help
is coming too slow. -- Oleg Varfolomeyev

PRESIDENT APPOINTS REFORMER TO HEAD STATE TV. Kuchma has appointed
Viktor Leshyk as president of the Ukrainian State TV Company, Ukrainian
TV reported on 14 November. Considered a progressive, Leshyk has headed
the private Gravis-TV company since he was removed nearly two years ago
as program director of Ukrainian State TV in favor of more conservative
management. Kuchma also appointed Valerii Mezhynsky as acting head of
the State TV and Radio Committee. Both posts were held by Zinovii Kulyk,
a conservative, who was recently named the country's minister of
information. -- Chrystyna Lapychak

BELARUSIAN PRESIDENT DISMISSES ELECTORAL COMMISSION CHAIRMAN. Alyaksandr
Lukashenka on 14 November signed a decree firing the chairman of the
Central Electoral Commission, Viktar Ganchar, and replacing him with
Lidiya Yermoshina, Reuters reported. Ganchar had infuriated Lukashenka
by describing the president's 24 November referendum as "a piece of
legal idiocy" and threatening not to validate the results. The
parliament, the Constitutional Court, and Ganchar's commission have all
said the vote should be advisory and have no legal force. But Lukashenka
has decreed that it will have legal force. The last straw in the
conflict between the president and Ganchar was the latter's unsuccessful
attempt to speak before the Russian Duma the same day as Lukashenka.
Ganchar said that he will ignore the decree and continue carrying out
his duties. -- Sergei Solodovnikov

BELARUSIAN DEPUTY FOREIGN MINISTER RESIGNS. Andrei Sannikau tendered his
resignation on 14 November, Reuters reported. Sannikau said he disagrees
with the president's policies. This is the first sign of open resistance
to Lukashenka in the government since Viktar Ganchar quit as deputy
prime minister last December. -- Sergei Solodovnikov

BALTIC PRIME MINISTERS SIGN DECLARATION ON MONEY LAUNDERING. Prime
Ministers Siim Kallas (Estonia), Andris Skele (Latvia), and Mindaugas
Stankevicius (Lithuania) together with representatives of the European
Commission, the U.N. Drug Control Program, and the Financial Action Task
Force signed in Riga on 14 November a joint declaration pledging to
combat money laundering in their countries, Reuters reported. The prime
ministers promised to pass laws in the financial and criminal sphere
that will comply with EU and international directives on money
laundering. Much of the money laundering is believed to be done by
criminal groups operating mainly in Russia who use the Baltic countries
as offshore money centers. -- Saulius Girnius

LITHUANIAN PRESIDENT ON BORDER TALKS WITH LATVIA. Algirdas Brazauskas on
14 November announced that negotiations with Latvia on their common sea
border will practically have to begin all over again, Radio Lithuania
reported. In a decree, the president on 13 November formally renounced
all previous recommendations made by Lithuania dealing with the sea
border question, especially the memorandum Brazauskas and Prime Minister
Adolfas Slezevicius had signed last year with their Latvian counterparts
in Maisiagala. He also set guidelines for negotiation, specifying that
the sea border should go directly west from the northernmost point of
the border on the seashore. -- Saulius Girnius

POLISH, EAST GERMAN POLICE COLLABORATED. The Warsaw prosecutor's office
has established that the Internal Affairs Ministry concluded agreements
in 1974 and 1982 with its East German counterpart that allowed each side
to recruit agents in the other country, Rzeczpospolita reported on 15
November. Former Internal Affairs Minister Gen. Czeslaw Kiszczak
approved the 1982 accord. The prosecutors were investigating former
Prime Minister Jan Olszewski's allegations that the Stasi, the East
German secret police, had acted freely in communist Poland. But the
prosecutors said Kiszczak did not violate then-existing laws by allowing
the Stasi to act in Poland. The prosecutors also concluded that Kiszczak
acted legally when he decided in 1989 to keep the opposition under
surveillance, to create fake opposition organizations, and to infiltrate
the existing ones. -- Jakub Karpinski

WHITE BOOK ON MOSCOW MONEY FOR FORMER COMMUNISTS IN POLAND. Justice
Minister Leszek Kubicki ordered the publication of a "White Book" about
financial links between the Soviet authorities on the one side and the
Polish Communist Party (PZPR) and its successor Social Democracy of
Poland (SdRP) on the other, Gazeta Wyborcza reported on 15 November. The
last PZPR first secretary, Mieczyslaw Rakowski, negotiated a loan of
more than $1 million with then-Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in
December 1989; the money came to Poland in January 1990, but two weeks
later the PZPR dissolved and was replaced by the SdRP. According to
Wprost, former PZPR political bureau member Leszek Miller and Rakowski
partially repaid the debt in the apartment of Vladimir Alganov, a KGB
officer who had contacts with former Prime Minister Jozef Oleksy. Copies
of the "White Book" will be distributed to the media. -- Jakub Karpinski

POLISH SENATE ON 1997 TAX RATES. The Senate has approved the governing
Democratic Left Alliance (SLD)'s version of the 1997 income tax rates,
set at 20%, 32%, and 44%, Polish media reported on 15 November. The move
is expected to end the three-week controversy over taxes. The opposition
Freedom Union backed the SLD against the Polish Peasant Party (PSL),
junior coalition partner of the SLD, which supported four rates ranging
from 18% to 44%. The Sejm on 24 October approved the opposition Labor
Union's proposal of four rates ranging from 17% to 45%. After the Sejm
vote, President Aleksander Kwasniewski had agreed with the government
that introducing the four rates would be economically irresponsible and
said that he would veto the Sejm version. The government welcomed the
Senate decision. -- Beata Pasek

CZECH SENATE ELECTIONS BEGIN. The first-ever elections to the upper
chamber of the Czech parliament take place on 15 and 16 November. A
total of 569 candidates will compete in 81 single-mandate districts for
the 81 Senate seats, Czech media reported. Candidates who win over 50%
of the vote in the first round will gain seats without having to face a
run-off; a second round, in which the two most successful candidates
from the first round will face each other, will take place in one week.
Candidates must be older than 40; the average age is 54. Only 59
candidates are women. The importance of the Senate elections increased
dramatically after the June elections to the lower chamber resulted in a
stalemate. A resounding victory for either Prime Minister Vaclav Klaus's
Civic Democratic Party or the opposition Social Democrats is seen as a
way of breaking the deadlock. -- Jiri Pehe

ANTI-GOVERNMENT RALLY IN BRATISLAVA. All opposition parties except the
Party of the Democratic Left joined with the forum Save Culture in a
rally to commemorate the seventh anniversary of the "velvet revolution,"
international media reported on 15 November. About 20,000 Slovaks, with
their jangling keys reminiscent of November 1989, chanted "Down with
Meciar" and "Resign," TASR reported. Slovak President Michal Kovac sent
a supportive letter to the rally, saying, "It is sad that after seven
years, the citizens of this country again have to raise their voices to
call for justice and human rights." -- Anna Siskova

FORMER SOVIET AGENT ALLEGES WEST TRAINED HUNGARY'S 1956 INSURGENTS.
Vladislav Voronov, a veteran of the Russian state security authorities,
says Western secret services played a major role in preparing and
igniting the 1956 Hungarian uprising, Magyar Hirlap reported on 15
November, quoting an article in the Moscow daily Nezavisimaya gazeta.
Voronov says that British intelligence trained fighters in the British
occupation zone in Austria from 1954 onward. He estimates that nearly
10,000 people were trained to use guns and engage in street fighting. He
says that U.S. intelligence was also involved in the project and that
weapons were transported to Hungary before October 1956 from British and
American arsenals in Austria. Finally, Voronov claims that several
Western organizations applied similar methods in the Soviet Union in the
late 1980s and early 1990s. -- Zsofia Szilagyi

SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

ANOTHER HIGH-PROFILE MEETING ABOUT BOSNIA. Representatives of the five-
member international Contact Group met in Paris on 14 November with the
Bosnian presidency members, the BBC and Reuters reported. The three
presidency members agreed on a 13-point, two-year stabilization program
that stresses the right of refugees to go home, the need for
democratization, the central role of joint institutions, and the
importance of cooperating with the Hague-based war crimes tribunal. U.S.
Secretary of State Warren Christopher threatened sanctions against those
who do not comply. The Paris meeting is but the latest in a series of
gatherings since early in the wars of the Yugoslav succession in which
international diplomats meet with regional politicians in a West
European venue. The former Yugoslavs reaffirm promises they have made
and broken before, and then they go home and do as they please. --
Patrick Moore

IFOR ROUNDS UP WEAPONS IN NORTHEAST BOSNIA. U.S. IFOR troops on 14
November confiscated six truckloads of arms from the Bosnian army's
254th Brigade in the Celic-Koraj area. Russian IFOR troops took a
smaller quantity of weapons from the nearby Serbian police. The worst
fighting in Bosnia since the Dayton agreement was signed took place
there earlier in the week when Muslim refugees tried to go back to their
homes on Serb-held territory in keeping with the peace treaty. NATO
blamed both sides but charged that the Muslims staged a deliberate
provocation with the help of the Sarajevo authorities and the local
military. The weapons seizure is aimed at preventing the refugees from
rearming and at discouraging the army from organizing similar ventures
with other refugees, VOA noted. Muslims tried to block the trucks and,
as in previous days, subjected the U.S. personnel to "considerable
abuse." The Bosnian army then charged IFOR with staging provocations
against it and against its commander, Gen. Rasim Delic, Oslobodjenje
reported on 15 November. -- Patrick Moore

U.S. TO COMMIT TROOPS TO BOSNIA FORCE? NATO Secretary-General Javier
Solana said on 14 November that the U.S. has signaled it will commit
troops to a follow-on force in Bosnia, AFP reported. Solana, who met a
day earlier with U.S. Vice President Al Gore, said he expected President
Bill Clinton to make a decision very soon. The total force is envisaged
as 20,000-30,000 and will replace the existing force when its mandate
ends in December. Solana said the U.S. contingent would number about
7,500, while the proportions of troops of other countries would remain
almost the same. At least 12 of NATO's 16 members support such a
decision, according to Solana, who said he wants to convene a meeting of
the NATO council on 18 November to make a formal decision. -- Daria Sito
Sucic

STANDOFF CONTINUES OVER SACKING OF GEN. MLADIC. Bosnian Serb television
ran a commentary on 14 November indirectly attacking cashiered Gen.
Ratko Mladic and his loyalists for the first time, AFP reported. The
broadcast stressed the importance of civilian control over the military
and noted that Mladic had resisted the civilian authorities since 1993
and often communicated with them only through statements and the media.
Mladic's backers, for their part, told the Belgrade daily Blic that
their dismissals had been purely political. Gen. Manojlo Milovanovic
urged the civilian authorities "to agree to a solution with us and avoid
the spilling of Serbian blood." -- Patrick Moore

CROATIAN PARLIAMENT MEETS WITHOUT OPPOSITION. The Croatian parliament
met on 14 November in the absence of opposition deputies, who a day
earlier had announced a 30-day boycott over the parliament's vote to
reject discussion on their proposal for solving the crisis of the Zagreb
city council (see OMRI Daily Digest, 14 November 1996), Novi List
reported the next day. Meanwhile, as a result of several weeks'
negotiations, the government on 14 November signed an agreement with the
Croatian Association of Unions, Vecernji List reported. The government
promised no more interference in the wage policy. Salaries are set to
increase from January 1997 with no restrictions from the government's
side. The unions had threatened many strikes unless the government met
their demands. -- Daria Sito Sucic

SERBIAN OPPOSITION PARTIES, LOCAL ELECTIONS, AND THE MEDIA. Members of
Serbia's opposition parties said they are having a nearly impossible
time communicating their messages to voters ahead of the 17 November
run-off municipal elections. Members of the Zajedno coalition said that
state-run television flatly refuses to broadcast their political ads.
Also, on 12 November the Democratic Party (DS) alleged that Serbian
Information Minister Aleksandar Tijanic personally intervened and placed
a ban on BK Telecom television's airing of a Zajedno ad, Beta reported.
"This is another severe violation of the law and is evidence of the ...
media darkness that is in force in Serbia," the DS statement charged. --
Stan Markotich

CHALLENGER LEADING IN CAMPAIGN FOR ROMANIAN PRESIDENT. Campaigning for
the second round of the presidential election due on 17 November
officially ended on 14 November. The last opinion poll allowed to be
published confirms challenger Emil Constantinescu's lead over incumbent
President Ion Iliescu. While Constantinescu received 49% and Iliescu
34%, 17% of the voters are still undecided. The poll also showed that
65% of the population view with confidence the change in government.
Meanwhile, international media noted that former tennis star Ilie
Nastase, who lost two bids for public office on behalf of Iliescu's
Party of Social Democracy in Romania (PDSR), said on 13 November he is
quitting the PDSR and politics in general. In an open letter published
in Romanian newspapers, he claimed he had been "dragged into a political
quagmire." -- Zsolt Mato

REACTIONS TO THE RUSSIAN RESOLUTION ON THE DNIESTER REGION. A Russian
State Duma resolution proposing that the government declare the Dniester
region a zone of special strategic interests for Russia has provoked a
sharp reaction in Chisinau, Moldovan media reported on 14 November. The
resolution, adopted a day earlier (see OMRI Daily Digest, 14 November),
was dismissed by Moldova's Deputy Foreign Minister Vasile Sova as
interference in his country's internal affairs. Parliament Deputy
Chairman Dumitru Diacov said the motion may complicate relations between
Chisinau and Moscow. But the Russian ambassador in Moldova, Aleksandr
Papkin, expressed hopes that the document will not damage bilateral
relations. For his part, Grigorii Marakutsa, chairman of the Dniester
Supreme Soviet, welcomed the resolution. -- Dan Ionescu

REFORMERS THREATEN TO LEAVE BULGARIAN SOCIALIST PARTY. Andrey Raychev, a
leading member of the Alliance for a Social Democracy (OSD) within the
ruling Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), on 14 November said the
reformist wing may split from the BSP if no "decisive steps toward
social-democratization" are taken at the upcoming BSP congress on 21-22
December, Bulgarian media reported. "We may look for ways to structure
the Left outside the BSP," he said. He said that OSD representatives and
the leaders of the Alternative Socialist Alliance-Independents decided
to establish contacts between different groups of social-democratic
orientation. Meanwhile, BSP Deputy Boyan Kirov announced the formation
of a "new leftist current" in the BSP as a reaction to the government's
"extreme rightist politics." -- Stefan Krause

BULGARIAN CONSTITUTIONAL COURT INVALIDATES MEDIA LAW. The Constitutional
Court on 14 November invalidated 15 provisions of the electronic media
law, RFE/RL and Demokratsiya reported. The judges declared
unconstitutional the formation of an 11-seat National Radio and TV
Council based on political criteria and on parliamentary representation.
The provisions that the council, a state organ, approve program schemes
and program content and have the right to cancel programs were also
declared unconstitutional. "As I was reading that provision, I thought
it was written not in 1996, but in 1956," said Judge Todor Todorov.
Articles depriving the judiciary of free airtime and banning journalists
from giving "subjective" commentaries were also invalidated. The law had
been vetoed by President Zhelyu Zhelev in August. After the Socialist
majority overruled the veto, 74 opposition deputies asked the court to
invalidate 22 provisions of the law. -- Maria Koinova

ALBANIAN OPPOSITION WANTS REFERENDUM TO ELECT CONSTITUTIONAL ASSEMBLY.
The Center Pole opposition coalition and the Democratic Party of the
Right proposed that a new constitution be developed by a constitutional
assembly, Koha Jone reported on 15 November. When it votes for the
assembly, the electorate should also decide about the form of the future
state--monarchy or presidential or parliamentary republic. The
Socialists supported the initiative, but it is unlikely that the
governing Democrats will agree. They hold the two-thirds majority
necessary to pass a constitution. In other news, the leader of the
National Unity Party, Idajet Beqiri, has sent a letter to U.S. President
Bill Clinton, asking Clinton to support his release from prison. Beqiri
was sentenced to 15 years for crimes against humanity committed during
the communist era, but he says he is a political prisoner, Gazeta
Shqiptare reported on 15 November. -- Fabian Schmidt

[As of 12:00 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

                                    BACK ISSUES
Back issues of the OMRI Daily Digest are available through the World
Wide Web, by FTP and by E-mail.
WWW
http://www.omri.cz/Publications/Digests/Index.html

FTP
ftp://194.108.1.176/Pub/DailyDigest/

E-Mail
Send the words "index daily-digest" to MAJORDOMO@OMRI.CZ


                                  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 or visit the Transition
Web page at
http://www.omri.cz/Publications/Transition/TransitionInfo.html


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 to ECON@OMRI.CZ or go to the
Economic Digest Web page at
http://www.omri.cz/Econ/Info.html


OMRI RUSSIAN REGIONAL REPORT
The OMRI Russian Regional Report is a weekly publication (published
every Wednesday) on initially focusing on the local elections taking
place throughout Russia during the Fall of 1996. After the election
season is over, the Russian Regional Report will continue, turning to
broader social, political and economic issues of Russia's regions. To
subscribe, please follow these instructions:
1) Compose a message to:
     MAJORDOMO@OMRI.CZ
2) In the body of the message, write:
     SUBSCRIBE REGIONS YourName
   Fill in your own first and last names where shown
3) Send the message


PURSUING BALKAN PEACE
Pursuing Balkan Peace focuses on the implementation of the Dayton
Accords in the former Yugoslavia.  This weekly publication, published
every Tuesday, contains both brief news summaries and longer essays on
specific events or issues facing the people of the region.  To
subscribe, please follow these instructions:
1) Compose a message to:
     MAJORDOMO@OMRI.CZ
2) In the body of the message, write:
     SUBSCRIBE BALKAN-PEACE YourName
   Fill in your own first and last names where shown
3) Send the message


RUSSIAN-LANGUAGE OMRI DAILY DIGEST
The full text of the OMRI Daily Digest is translated into Russian and
distributed the following day.
1) Compose a message to:
     MAJORDOMO@ISF.RU
2) In the body of the message, write:
     SUBSCRIBE OMRI YourName
   Fill in your own name where shown
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