THE DUMA SUSPENDS RELATIONS WITH LATVIA

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THE DUMA SUSPENDS RELATIONS WITH LATVIA

ORT, Parlamentsky Chas, May 23, 1999, 15:15

In response to the actions of the Latvian government against ethnic Russian citizens of the republic, a federal bill on measures to prevent violations of the rights of Russians in Latvia has been prepared. After the breakup of the USSR, Latvian legislation was not brought into accordance with international laws, and one-third of the population of the country (mostly Russians) were deprived of all political and economic rights.

The bill practically suspends all economic relations with Latvia. And it is no secret that Latvia’s economy depends on the development of its trade and economic relations with Russia. It is an extreme measure, but, according to Duma deputies, it is necessary, because if the bill is not passed pressure on Russians will increase.

After debates, the bill was passed in the first reading.

AN INTERVIEW WITH DMITRY YAKUSHKIN, YELTSIN’S PRESS SECRETARY

NT, Geroi Dnia, May 21, 1999, 19:40

Question: The Russian president has gone on leave rather unexpectedly. Was is a surprise for you?

Dmitry Yakushkin: I wouldn’t say that. A few days ago we discussed the possibility of his leaving Moscow for a few days. He is to come back from Sochi by the end of the week. On Friday he will meet the president of South Korea, who is making an official visit to Moscow.

Q: There are rumors that Victor Chernomyrdin may be appointed Secretary of the presidential administration. Where could these rumors come from?

DY: It is difficult to say. In this particular case the rumors do not correspond to reality. Voloshin is Secretary of the presidential administration, and I think nothing will change.

Q: Concerning the ministerial appointments: is it a personal decision of the president, or does he consult the administration?

DY: Of course he consults the administration, because it is his political headquarters. But the president has his own taste in the appointments. And he keeps the names in his mind.

NEW INTERNAL AFFAIRS MINISTER

Russian Television,Vesti, May 22, 1999, 20:00

Vladimir Rushailo has been appointed Internal Affairs Minister. This was a personal choice of Stepashin. As he said, “Rushailo is a professional, he can take risks, and he can work”.

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