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RFE/RL NEWSLINE

RFE/RL NEWSLINE Vol. 3, No. 82, Part II, 28 April 1999


___________________________________________________________
RFE/RL NEWSLINE Vol. 3, No. 82, Part II, 28 April 1999

A daily report of developments in Eastern and Southeastern
Europe, Russia, the Caucasus and Central Asia prepared by the
staff of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.

This is Part II, a compilation of news concerning Central,
Eastern, and Southeastern Europe. Part I covers Russia,
Transcaucasia and Central Asia and is distributed
simultaneously as a second document. Back issues of RFE/RL
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Headlines, Part II

* NATO TO BASE PLANES IN HUNGARY

* THOUSANDS OF KOSOVARS FLEE TO MACEDONIA

* ETHNIC ALBANIANS LEAVE SERBIA, MONTENEGRO

End Note: WORLD BANK PREDICTS ROUGH YEAR AHEAD FOR MOST EAST
EUROPEAN STATES

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EAST-CENTRAL EUROPE

IMF SAYS UKRAINIAN ECONOMY FRAGILE. In an annual report
released on 27 April, the IMF executive directors said
Ukraine's economy remains fragile and may be further
threatened by continued friction between the parliament and
the government, an RFE/RL correspondent reported. The IMF
praises Ukraine for "good progress" in restructuring and
privatizing a number of state enterprises, but it also noted
delayed reforms in the agricultural and energy sectors. The
report cautioned the Ukrainian government that it may face
strong pressure to settle wage and pension arrears before the
presidential elections in October. And it urged government to
clear as many of those arrears as possible before the
election campaign starts. JM

UKRAINIAN NATIONAL BANK CUTS DISCOUNT RATE TO 50 PERCENT.
Ukraine's central bank has lowered its discount rate from 57
percent to 50 percent beginning 28 April, AP reported on 27
April. National Bank Chairman Viktor Yushchenko explained the
decrease by arguing that the country has achieved "stability
in all segments of the currency market." Meanwhile, Ukraine's
hard-currency reserves have dropped to $896 million, down
from $1.05 billion at the beginning of this year. Yushchenko
commented that the resumption of IMF aid will allow Ukraine
to increase those reserves. The government hopes the IMF will
soon release another $150 million installment of its loan to
Ukraine. JM

LUKASHENKA DISSATISFIED WITH CABINET'S PERFORMANCE.
Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka told a cabinet
meeting on 27 April that he is dissatisfied with the
government's economic performance, but he declined to take
any personnel decisions, Belarusian Television reported.
Lukashenka noted that from January to March, the government
was able to meet only one of its 12 socioeconomic targets for
this year--namely, an increase in industrial production.
According to reports given by ministers, economic development
in Belarus is hindered, above all, by the nonpayment of
Belarusian exports to Russia, an increasing number of barter
deals, the instability of the Belarusian ruble, and sinking
agricultural production. JM

FURTHER CUTS NEEDED AT ESTONIAN MINISTRIES. The Finance
Ministry noted on 27 April that the country's ministries have
suggested cuts in their budgets totaling some 579 million
kroons ($39 million), well short of the 861 million kroons
reduction projected by negative supplementary budget, ETA
reported. According to the agency, the main offenders are the
Culture, Education, and Environment Ministries, which have
proposed cuts of only one-fifth of the required amount. The
Economics and Agriculture Ministries have been asked to make
the biggest cuts in their budgets--9.6 percent and 9.5
percent, respectively. Also on 27 April, the government
debated the draft supplementary budget, which foresees total
cuts of 1.03 billion kroons and economic growth of some 2
percent. JC

ESTONIAN CENTRAL BANK POSTS $37 MILLION PROFIT. The Estonian
Central Bank made a profit of 542 million kroons ($36.9
million) last year, up 90 million kroons on the 1997 level,
ETA reported on 27 April. Of that sum, 406 million kroons
will be transferred to the reserve fund. The equity capital
of the central bank was boosted by 395 million kroons last
year to 2.27 billion kroons. JC

PLAN AGREED ON FOR RIGAS KOMERCBANK'S REHABILITATION.
Agreement has been reached on a rehabilitation plan for the
Rigas Komercbanka, which was declared insolvent last month
(see "RFE/RL Newsline," 24 March 1999), LETA reported on 27
April. Under that plan, the European Bank for Reconstruction
and Development, the largest shareholder in the Rigas
Komercbanka, would invest $9 million (part of which would be
a loan), the Latvian government 1 million lats ($1.69
million), and the Bank of Latvia 15.5 million lats. The plan
will be submitted for approval to the Bank of Latvia later
this week. JC

ADAMKUS'S POPULARITY RATING REACHES 'RECORD HIGH.' According
to a poll conducted by the Baltijos Tyrimai/Gallup firm in
mid-April, Lithuanian President Valdas Adamkus's popularity
rating has risen to a "record high" of 88 percent, up 3
percent on the previous month, ELTA reported on 27 April.
Prime Minister Gediminas Vagnorius did not make even the list
of the 20 most popular politicians in the country, receiving
only 17 percent backing, down 5 percent on March. The poll
also showed that 50 percent are in favor of Vagnorius's
government resigning, while 29 percent opposed such a
scenario and 21 percent were undecided. Over the past few
months, Adamkus and Vagnorius have been engaged in a dispute
that peaked last week when the president expressed no
confidence in the premier on nationwide television (see
"RFE/RL Newsline," 20 April 1999). JC

POLAND'S HEALTH SERVICE FACES MASSIVE LAYOFFS. The Polish
cabinet on 27 April approved a program of social protection
and welfare benefits to employees slated to be laid off under
the current health service reform, "Gazeta wyborcza" reported
on 28 April. According to Health Ministry estimates, 50,000
employees may be laid off this year and 16,000 in 2000. The
government has earmarked 180 million zlotys ($45 million) for
low-interest loans to be granted this year to 2,000 doctors
and 1,000 nurses who will lose jobs under the reform. JM

POLAND'S LEFTIST UMBRELLA GROUP REGISTERED AS PARTY. The
Warsaw District Court has registered the Democratic Left
Alliance (SLD), PAP reported on 27 April. The SLD, hitherto a
left-wing electoral coalition of 32 organizations, decided to
transform itself into a political party earlier this month
(see "RFE/RL Newsline," 16 April 1999). "This is a great day
in the history of the Polish left wing," PAP quoted SLD
parliamentary deputy Andrzej Urbanczyk as saying after the
group was registered. JM

CZECH FOREIGN MINISTER DOESN'T SEE HAVEL COMMENTS AS
CRITICAL. Jan Kavan denied on 27 April that there is any
"disunity" between him and Czech President Vaclav Havel over
the Czech military's participation in possible ground troops
for Kosova, CTK reported. Havel said the previous day that he
was embarrassed when Kavan declared that Czech troops would
not take part in any ground invasion of Yugoslavia before
NATO had even made plans for such an action or asked member
countries to contribute to such a force (see "RFE/RL
Newsline," 27 April 1999). Kavan said he "never met with any
criticism" from NATO officials for his comments. Most parties
in the parliament agreed with Havel, with leading officials
from the Civic Democratic Party, the Freedom Union, and the
Christian Democrats saying they backed the president. Members
of the Social Democratic Party, to which Kavan belongs, and
the Communists rejected Havel's criticism. PB

WILL SLOVAKIA JOIN FIRST WAVE? EU officials said at the
closing session of a summit in Luxembourg on 27 April that
Slovakia could be invited for accession talks at the Helsinki
summit in December, TASR reported. Hans van den Broek, the EU
commissioner for foreign relations, said the "situation is
very encouraging, we welcome the political spring in
Slovakia, which is also felt in deeds." He said he believes
that an October report from the European Commission will
allow Slovakia to begin accession talks. He said the EU would
still like to see the legislature adopt a law on the use of
national minorities languages. In other news, Foreign
Minister Eduard Kukan confirmed that he is being considered
by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan as one of two special UN
emissaries to Kosova. The other candidates under
consideration are former Austrian Chancellor Franz Vranitzky
and ex-Swedish Premier and Bosnian High Representative Carl
Bildt. PB

EU OFFICIAL LAUDS HUNGARY AS BEST CANDIDATE. Nikolaus van der
Pas, the head of the European Commission's working group for
EU expansion, said in Budapest on 27 April that Hungary is
the front-runner for EU membership, MTI reported, citing the
daily "Vilaggazdasag." Van der Pas said Hungary is ahead of
the other top candidates in meeting the criteria needed to
join the EU. He said the Hungarian government's goal of
joining the union by 2002 is ambitious and a lot of work
still needs to be done to achieve that. PB

NATO TO BASE PLANES IN HUNGARY. Defense Minister Janos Szabo
said on 27 April that NATO will deploy 20 tanker planes in
Hungary and will likely base attack planes there as well,
Reuters reported. Szabo said the first tankers, which refuel
warplanes in mid-air, have arrived. And he noted that he
expects Brussels to request that a total of 50-70 planes be
stationed in Hungary. The only NATO country that borders
Yugoslavia, Hungary is concerned about the treatment of the
some 300,000 ethnic Hungarians in Yugoslavia should
Budapest's role in the bombing campaign become too involved.
Jozsef Kasza, the mayor of the Vojvodina city of Subotica,
said the Hungarian government is "playing with the fate" of
ethnic Hungarians in Yugoslavia. Prime Minister Viktor Orban
responded that Budapest is "not playing with anything,"
noting that he is in constant contact with ethnic Hungarian
leaders in Vojvodina, Hungarian Radio reported. PB

SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

THOUSANDS OF KOSOVARS FLEE TO MACEDONIA. International aid
workers on Macedonia's northern frontier said on 27 April
that 3,000 Kosovars arrived at Blace and 2,000 at Lojane that
day, bringing the total for the past four days to 13,000. The
aid workers added that all camps and tents are full and that
new arrivals have to sleep in the open. One refugee described
the wave of new arrivals as "huge," adding that "many more
are coming," AP reported. According to the UN High
Commissioner for Refugees, there are some 136,000 Kosovar
refugees in Macedonia, of whom 79,000 are staying in private
homes. The Macedonian government believes that some 183,000
Kosovars have taken refuge in Macedonia. In Luxembourg,
Foreign Minister Aleksendar Dimitrov said that up to 150,000
Kosovars are en route to Macedonia. PM

TROUBLE IMMINENT IN CAMPS? A spokesman for the UNHCR noted in
Skopje on 27 April that cases of measles, hepatitis, and
dysentery have appeared among the refugees. He added that
"this is a sign of things to come." The next day, another
UNHCR spokesman said in Geneva that some of the people in the
camps are "on the verge of rioting. It's very, very tense and
it has to be defused very, very quickly. If we get another
trainload or two and a few busloads again today, it's really
going to be a horrific situation there in terms of
overcrowding," he concluded. PM

ETHNIC ALBANIANS LEAVE SERBIA, MONTENEGRO. "Large groups" of
ethnic Albanians have begun to arrive in Macedonia from
Presevo, which is in Serbia proper, the "Financial Times"
reported on 28 April. This is the first time that numbers of
ethnic Albanians from Serbia outside Kosova have fled their
homes. In northern Albania, Roman Catholic aid workers said
that ethnic Albanian refugees have begun arriving from
Montenegro. Refugees told the aid workers that they are
fleeing ethnic cleansing in that mountainous republic,
Vatican Radio reported. The broadcast did not provide details
about the refugees or where they came from. PM

GLIGOROV: REFUGEES WILL NOT GO HOME SOON. Macedonian
President Kiro Gligorov said in Skopje on 27 April that "it
would be another act of violence to push for the speedy
return of refugees" to Kosova. He noted that the homes of
many of them have been destroyed and that the Kosovars "see
that life is better" in Macedonia than in Kosova or Albania.
Gligorov pointed out that "ethnic Albanians are an active
part of our society" and government. PM

GLIGOROV TO GAIN NEW POWERS? The Macedonian president also
said in Skopje on 27 April that he wants the National
Security Council and the legislature to declare a "state of
imminent military threat." Observers noted that such a
measure would increase the Social Democratic president's
powers vis-a-vis the center-right government. They added that
Gligorov lacks a majority either in the council or in the
parliament and hence is unlikely to obtain the declaration he
wants. Prime Minister Ljubco Georgievski maintains that there
is no need to declare any sort of state of emergency (see
"RFE/RL Newsline," 22 April 1999). PM

SCHARPING: ATROCITIES PRE-DATE AIR STRIKES. German Defense
Minister Rudolf Scharping said in Bonn on 27 April that
photographs taken by an international monitor in Rogova some
four months ago, on 29 January, show 15 corpses in a yard.
They appear to be civilians, one of whom was beheaded,
Scharping added. He noted that uniformed Serbian police stood
in one corner of the yard holding automatic weapons, AP
reported. Scharping concluded: "this makes clear the degree
of brutality that was used when all this began and which is
continuing." The German Defense Ministry in a recent report
noted that Serbian forces launched their program of ethnic
cleansing in January under the name of "Operation Horseshoe"
(see "RFE/RL Newsline," 7 April 1999). PM

NEW EVIDENCE OF SYSTEMATIC RAPE BY SERBIAN FORCES. "For the
first time since the conflict [in Kosova] began, credible
evidence emerged yesterday of a case of systematic rape
committed by Serb troops, after the victims crossed into
Albania and began giving their accounts," "The Guardian"
reported on 28 April. Many of the more than 300 women "were
hysterical and in shock." A UNICEF spokeswoman said that "by
all accounts, they went through three nights and three days
of hell" recently when Serbian troops "turned their village
[near Suhareka] into a rape camp." She added: "I haven't come
across anything like this" before. The women also reported
that the Serbs "marched off 11 old men," whom the fellow
villagers did not see again alive. PM

ARBOUR: NO DEAL FOR WAR CRIMINALS. Louise Arbour, who is the
chief prosecutor for the Hague-based war crimes tribunal,
said in London on 28 April that she is "very adamant" that
any peace deal for Kosova must not include an amnesty for
those responsible for atrocities. She stressed that "we will
always explore personal criminal liability at the very
highest possible level that the evidence will sustain." PM

REFUGEES REPORT MASSACRES. More than 2,000 refugees entered
Albania at the Morina border crossing on 27 April, most of
whom were children and women from villages near Gjakova. It
was the largest influx into Morina in more than a week,
Reuters reported. Some of the new arrivals said they saw
villages being burned behind them as they fled. Refugees
added that Serbian troops took military-age men out of the
column of refugees at a village referred to as "Mej." One
refugee told Reuters that she saw between 100 and 200 bodies
by the side of the road near that village. Several others
also reported seeing bodies by the road during their journey.
The reports could not be independently confirmed, but
observers noted that almost all Kosovar refugees tell very
similar stories. UNHCR spokesman Ray Wilkinson noted that
"there seems to be some degree of consistency" in the
refugees' reports. FS

NATO PLANES ATTACK TARGETS NEAR ALBANIAN BORDER. Four F-15
fighter jets and at least two A-10 "Warthog" anti-tank planes
attacked targets near the Albanian border and around Prizren
on 27 April, AP reported. It was the first deployment of NATO
planes in the immediate vicinity of the Albanian-Kosovar
border. FS

ALBANIAN PRESIDENT CALLS FOR HELP TO UCK. Rexhep Meidani told
AP in Paris on 27 April that the Kosova Liberation Army (UCK)
"is in Kosova to defend human lives." He stressed that "these
young people, who average 22 years of age, are sacrificing
their lives to save others." Meidani called on the
international community to support the UCK and suggested that
NATO could support it with modern communications equipment.
He repeated calls for the establishment of an international
protectorate in Kosova. French President Jacques Chirac said
that the French government has "great esteem for Albania,
which with extraordinary generosity opened its doors to
hundreds of thousands of ethnic Albanians...chased like
beasts by the Serbs." Meidani earlier told "Le Parisien" that
Albania will not set limits on the number of refugees it
takes in, but he called for more international aid to help it
to avoid such action. FS

EU SUPPORT FOR 'FRONT-LINE STATES.' The foreign ministers of
Albania, Macedonia, and Romania discussed their respective
countries' financial needs with their counterparts from
Austria, Germany, and Finland, as well as with other top EU
officials, in Luxembourg, "The Guardian" reported on 28
April. The EU representatives promised their guests aid to
help offset their costs for taking care of refugees. Brussels
will also seek to help compensate Yugoslavia's neighbors for
their trade losses stemming from the conflict. German Deputy
Foreign Minister Guenther Verheugen noted that the crisis in
Kosova "has made Southeastern Europe strategically the most
important region in Europe." EU officials will provide
detailed information on their aid plans in Bonn on 27 May,
when Germany will host a meeting on its proposed "stability
pact" for the region. Observers suggested that any pledges of
assistance are likely to fall well short of the needs of what
NATO calls "the front-line states." PM

INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY PLANS BALKAN RECONSTRUCTION STRATEGY.
Representatives of seven international agencies and 33
countries met in Washington on 27 April to discuss ways of
meeting the immediate financial needs of and developing long-
term reconstruction plans for Albania, Bosnia, Bulgaria,
Croatia, Macedonia, and Romania. The heads of the World Bank
and IMF chaired the session, AP reported. Participants
concluded that the international community is likely to
underestimate the needs of the countries most affected by the
conflict and that the international community should
constantly review those estimates. In Athens, several
government ministers appealed to Greek businessmen to take an
active part in postwar regional reconstruction efforts. PM

GRANIC: CROATIA TO JOIN PARTNERSHIP FOR PEACE. Foreign
Minister Mate Granic told "Jutarnji list" of 27 April that
NATO will accept Croatia into its Partnership for Peace
Program as soon as Croatia changes its electoral law. Granic
added that this should be possible in about six weeks. He
added that the crisis in Kosova has raised Croatia's
importance in the eyes of NATO officials, who have become
more sympathetic to its request for membership than they were
before the crisis began. Granic noted that Western leaders at
the recent NATO summit expressed support for the
democratization of Serbia, but he added that they have no
clear idea on how to bring it about. Granic added that the
Atlantic alliance will establish a "long-term protectorate"
in Kosova and promote stability in the region as a whole. PM

ROMANIA TO CLOSE DOWN UNPROFITABLE MINES. The Ministry of
Industry and Trade said on 27 April that it plans to close 61
loss-making coal mines this year, Rompres reported. Funds
from the 1999 budget will be used to shut down 32 mines,
while the government will use money provided by the World
Bank to close another 29, a ministry official told the daily
"Adevarul." A major cost incurred by closures will be the
environmental cleanup and ecological rehabilitation of the
mining areas, the official said. Some 180 unprofitable mines
have been closed by the government in the last two years. In
other news, AP reports that hundreds of Romanians are driving
their fully tanked cars to the Yugoslav town of Vrsac and re-
selling the gas for four times the price paid in Romania. PB

MOLDOVAN PARLIAMENT CHAIRMAN IN BUCHAREST. Dumitru Diacov
said on 27 April that Moldova and Romania enjoy good
bilateral relations but must increase economic cooperation,
ITAR-TASS reported. Diacov, who was heading a delegation of
Moldovan deputies, said after talks with Mihai Razvan
Ungureanu, Romania's Foreign Ministry state secretary, that
"no special problems" exist between the two countries. The
two sides also discussed the situations in the breakaway
Transdniester and Kosova regions. PB

EU FOREIGN MINISTERS PRAISE BUCHAREST, SOFIA. EU foreign
ministers meeting in Luxembourg praised Romania and Bulgaria
for their "positive responses" to the crisis in Kosova, dpa
reported on 27 April. In a statement, the EU officials
recognized the "specific needs and burdens" of the two
countries and the "challenges and difficulties which the
governments and citizens of Romania and Bulgaria are facing."
The statement said the EU foreign ministers favor "further
steps" that would bring Sofia and Bucharest into line with EU
policies on the Balkans. And it appealed to private foreign
investors to continue with investment plans in the two
countries. PB

BULGARIA MOVES AIR DEFENSE TO NUCLEAR POWER PLANT. The
Defense Ministry said on 27 April that it is relocating anti-
aircraft missiles deployed in the eastern part of the country
to the Kozloduy nuclear power plant, AP reported, citing BTA.
The power plant is situated just 110 kilometers from the
Yugoslav border and would be inside the zone to which the
government has offered NATO access. There are four 440-
megawatt reactors at Kozloduy, which have no safety
encasement, and two 1,000 megawatt units, both of which are
covered by an encasement. Officials say the encasements could
withstand the force of a jet crashing into them, but they
admit that the reactors without such protection are
vulnerable. Deputy Defense Minister Velizar Shalamanov said
last month that Bulgaria's air defense could prevent any air
attack against it (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 24 March 1999). PB

VOTE ON NATO AIR SPACE REQUEST IN BULGARIA POSTPONED. The
Bulgarian parliament has postponed until next week a vote on
the government's proposal to grant NATO use of a restricted
air corridor over Bulgaria, an RFE/RL correspondent in Sofia
reported on 28 April. The vote was originally scheduled for
early this week. No reason for the postponement has been
given to date. PB

END NOTE

WORLD BANK PREDICTS ROUGH YEAR AHEAD FOR MOST EAST EUROPEAN
STATES

by Robert Lyle

	The World Bank's top official dealing with Russia and
the other transition states in Central and Eastern Europe
paints a sobering, even daunting, picture of what many in the
region will face over the next year or so.
	Johannes Linn, the bank's vice president for Europe and
Central Asia, says the region faces a protracted crisis of
economic, social, and, most recently, security problems,
especially over the next 12 months.
	Speaking to reporters in Washington on 25 April, before
the start of this week's annual meetings of the bank and the
International Monetary Fund (IMF), Linn said Russia and
Ukraine especially face serious economic difficulties
	"We continue to expect a decline in output and an
uncertain political outlook due to elections that are coming
up this year and next year," he said. "The social situation
in these countries is fragile since incomes are continuing to
decline and social support systems are continuing to weaken.
Poverty is on the rise, in Russia, for example, in our
estimate, almost 20 percent of the population is in extreme
poverty. And we of course also see a situation where
structural and social reforms are incomplete and proceeding
only very slowly and with limited political support."
	Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic are the good
news, he said, noting that these countries remain relatively
stable and unaffected by the ongoing Russian financial crisis
because of early reforms and strong policies.
	But for most former Soviet countries, the impact of that
crisis has been severe and will be felt for a long time to
come, according to Linn. The global economy won't make the
real difference among these nations, he says, it depends on
their own policies and their proximity to Russia.
	Asked about the lessons learned from the Asian and
Russian financial crises, Linn said there were many,
including the basics of strong domestic reforms. But one
lesson that was part of Russia's collapse last summer was its
strong defense of currency exchange rates. A major part of
the IMF's last loan drawing for Russia was eaten up in the
Central Bank's attempt to defend the exchange rate of the
ruble. Linn says it is clear now this can lead to severe
crises: "Ukraine is a good example where in fact a rather
sensible management of getting away entirely from a fixed
exchange rate in fact prevented the kind of meltdown we see
in Russia.
	"The weakness of banking systems and supervision,
linking this of course also with the exposure of short term
debts, in appropriate foreign exchange positions--again
Russia being a good example--are another important lesson
that we are drawing for much more work and attention has to
be given."
	Another significant lesson, according to Linn, is the
danger of a weak social safety net. Very weak social
protection systems are unable to deal with the fallout of
severe economic crisis, he argued, noting that the case of
Russia was particularly bad.
	"We had difficulty in engaging the Russians through 1996
in an active dialogue on social reforms," he noted, "and
still have difficulty in Ukraine today. Earlier attention to
social system reforms of social systems and then more
significant action also would have helped in crisis
response."
	Linn pointed out that Russia has still not dealt
adequately with its social safety net and the deepening
crisis only makes clearer that Russia cannot afford further
postponement of reform. He said that in a recent study of the
social system in Russia, the bank predicted that the worst of
the crisis is still ahead in the coming 12 months. Next
winter will be the hardest time, said Linn, far worse than
this year.
	The bank projects that real personal incomes in Russia
will fall an average of 13 percent through 1999, with the
extreme poverty rate rising to more than 18 percent of the
population, while social expenditures by the government will
fall by 15 percent.
	More broadly for the region, Linn said the major lesson
from the crisis has been the necessity of a political
consensus on reforms. He compares the examples of Bulgaria
and Romania:
	"Bulgaria has now in fact recovered from a severe
financial crisis only two years ago because in fact it has
pursued a consistent and comprehensive reform and
stabilization process based on a reasonably clear and
sustainable political consensus between the president, the
government, parliament, and wide segments in the population.
Romania, by contrast, has had considerable difficulties that
one can trace back to the lack of political consensus and
difficulty of forming a clear political underpinning for
reform and stabilization.
	"Now we're hopeful that in looking forward, Romania can
find a more consensus-oriented reform process, and indeed
Romania is one of the pilot countries for the comprehensive
development framework where we will focus very much with the
leadership and under the leadership of the president, on
trying to build this broader consensus."

The author is a Washington-based, senior RFE/RL
correspondent.

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Updated: 1998-11-

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Please write to us with any comments, questions or suggestions -- Natasha Bulashova, Greg Cole