INTERVIEW WITH GOVERNOR VIKTOR KRESS OF THE TOMSK REGION

0
6

INTERVIEW WITH GOVERNOR VIKTOR KRESS OF THE TOMSK REGION

Izvestia, August 17, 2000, pp. 1, 3

Kress: We need balance. Unfortunately, the corridors of power in Russia are in a situation nowadays where they are forced to choose between bad and very bad, instead of between bad and good. Sure, I would like all my proposals to be heeded by oligarchs. I would like YUKOS to pay its taxes to the region, perhaps on more than the market price of oil. Unfortunately, this is not what can be realistically expected.

Since the system of power is still being formed, the interests of the federal center are not all that should be taken into consideration. The interests of the territories should also be taken into account.

As for the idea of the State Council, I support it. I really do. Governors need it, to be able to meet and exchange opinions – and, perhaps, settle some problems.

PRESIDENT IN SOCHI

Izvestia, August 17, 2000, p. 3

CIS leaders are meeting in the resort town of Yalta on August 18 and 19. Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma invited them for an informal chat and some rest on the Black Sea coast. Not all CIS leaders have the time for some relaxation. Some, like Eduard Shevardnadze of Georgia, are preparing their proposals to colleagues.

So far, only two presidents (Saparmurat Niyazov of Turkmenistan and Islam Karimov of Uzbekistan) have declined the invitations. Niyazov’s PR department had announced that Turkmenistan would not attend the summit well before the invitation was sent. Karimov declined it later “in light of the aggravated situation on the southern borders of Uzbekistan.”

Apparently, leaders of at least two more states (Kyrgyzstan, where battles with Islamic militants continue, and Tajikistan, where the militants are based) could have declined the invitation. In Kyrgyzstan, we were told that President Askar Akayev would definitely attend the summit. As for Emomali Rakhmonov of Tajikistan, he already met with Vladimir Putin in Sochi this week and discussed all moot points privately. The PR department of Kazakh president Nursultan Nazarbayev also says that “The presidential plane is ready.”

It is clear that Uzbekistan does not want to discuss its problems in public. According to our information, Russian military assistance is already being provided to Kyrgyzstan – military hardware and equipment are made available to Kyrgyz government troops. There are no Russian servicemen in the conflict area yet…

TERRORIST ACTS IN CHECHNYA

Nezavisimaya Gazeta, August 17, 2000

There was a series of terrorist acts in Chechnya on the eve of this week’s parliamentary elections.

The home of a candidate, Ibragim Khuseinov, in the village of Meskety was blown up. The homes of local administration heads were blown up in Meskety, Alleroi, and Dovletbi-Khotor. Fortunately, there were no reports of casualties.

The son of the head of the Urus-Martan district administration was killed in a similar explosion.

UNION OF RIGHT FORCES REGISTERED

Nezavisimaya Gazeta, August 17, 2000

On Wednesday, Justice Minister Yuri Chaika handed over the registration badge which recognizes the Union of Right Forces as a national political-public organization to Boris Nemtsov, leader of the Union of Right Forces faction in the Duma.

RUSSIA AND TAJIKISTAN AGAINST ISLAMIC MILITANTS

Nezavisimaya Gazeta, August 17, 2000

Russia and Tajikistan will coordinate efforts with other countries of the region to forestall the plans of religious extremists. The agreement was reached at the meeting of presidents Vladimir Putin and Emomali Rakhmonov in Sochi yesterday, according to Zafar Saidov, Press Secretary to the Tajik president.

Saidov says that Putin and Rakhmonov discussed the situation in Central Asia, aggravated by actions of armed formations of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, who are out to destabilize the situation in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan bordering on Tajikistan.

LEAVE A REPLY