PRESIDENT ENDORSED THE NEW COMPOSITION OF HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION

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PRESIDENT ENDORSED THE NEW COMPOSITION OF HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION

Vremya Novostei, October 21, 2002, p. 2

Last Saturday, President Vladimir Putin signed the decree “On composition of Presidential Human Rights Commission”. The Commission is chaired by Ella Pamfilova, chairman of the presidium of Civil Dignity, and chairman of the All-Russian Union of public organizations “Civil Society for Children of Russia”.

Pamfilova: The state of affairs with human rights in Russia is appalling. The problem of human rights was viewed as a problem of opposing the totalitarian state once, but it is much broader now. It includes civil, social, and economic issues. Plus other subjects like immigration, situation in prisons, ethnic relations, and religious problems.

Covering of all spheres is the new interpretation of the problem that dictated the principle of selection of members of the Commission. Emphasis was made on prominent human rights activists, lawyers, and those dealing with specific problems like drugs or protection of rights of women. According to Pamfilova, “We invited people with their own resources – professional, power, or administrative, people with contacts with human rights organizations in the regions.”

PACIFIC FLEET SHORT OF MONEY

Vremya Novostei, October 21, 2002, p. 3

Pacific Fleet ordnance storage facilities located three kilometers from the Vtoraya Rechka district of Vladivostok, the ones that were exploding last week, will be moved from the city by the middle of the next year according to Pacific Fleet Commander Admiral Viktor Fedorov. The fleet command admits, however, that it does not have the money for the operation.

Oleg Konyushenko, Senior Assistant to the Fleet Military Prosecutor: All of that requires colossal sums not stipulated by the military budget.

Konyushenko says that the military prosecutor’s office insisted on withdrawal of ordnance a decade ago, when almost 1,300 railroad carriages loaded with ordnance went off in midsummer heat.

With the admirals busy looking for money for new arsenals, sappers are worried about security at the old ones. “Local kids are attracted to the ordnance and there is nothing we can do about it,” an officer said. The work of sappers here becomes more dangerous with each passing year.

BEREZOVSKY TO BE REINSTATED AS A MEMBER OF LIBERAL RUSSIA

Gazeta, October 21, 2002, p. 3

St. Petersburg liberals, in their letter to the Moscow central organization, emphasize that the decision to expel Boris Berezovsky was made in their absence. This nuance did not irk St. Petersburg alone – the Tumen, Irkutsk, Tver, and Bashkir organizations also objected to expulsion of the oligarch. Larisa Pegova, leader of the St. Petersburg organization, says that it will be necessary for Berezovsky at the emergency congress “to get his party membership back and have himself elected the single party leader.”

Central organization under three chairmen Viktor Pokhmelkin, Sergei Yushenkov, and Boris Zolotukhin announced that “there will be no emergency congresses”. Yushenkov explained that “Berezovsky’s reinstatement into the party requires a congress, and a congress may be convened only with the consent of every third regional organization.” Yushenkov is of the opinion that only 10-15 organizations will back up the St. Petersburg initiative, which is too few for a congress. (These days, Liberal Russia has 67 organizations in the regions.) Yushenkov emphasizes that the decision of the St. Petersburg organization collided with the charter because decision like that should be made by conferences and not political councils. Moreover, Yushenkov says that Berezovsky himself is calling regional organizations and asking them to demand an emergency congress.

NEW COMMANDER OF THE UNITED FEDERAL GROUP IN CHECHNYA APPOINTED

Moskovsky Komsomolets, October 21, 2002, p. 2

Replacement of General Moltenskoy with Makarov cannot be called a sensation. The former was commander for fifteen months, a long time.

Four years after graduation from the Military Academy of the General Staff, Lieutenant General Makarov, 50, became a representative of the Defense Ministry for the deputy commander-in-chief of the Internal Troops.

THE UNION OF RIGHT FORCES WANTS TO BE RIGHT-WING LEADER

Nezavisimaya Gazeta, October 21, 2002, p. 2

As for the motives, we asked our experts.

Dmitry Oreshik of the Merkator Group: I do not think it is barter or something like that. It is something else. In the first place, the Union of Right-wing Forces positions itself closer to the Kremlin than to United Russia. In the second, the Kremlin wants the Duma party structure more clear and precise. In other words, this is probably an indication of a deal between the Union of Right-wing Forces and the Kremlin administration, i.e. a compromise. More importantly, all of that is a corollary of the concept of the Union of Right-wing Forces of the necessity of consolidation of forces on the democratic flank:because 7% is a serious stimulus for consolidation of the Union of Right-wing Forces and Yabloko.

Sergei Markov, Political Surveys Institute: As a matter of fact, it was a proposal to up the barrier to 7% for political blocs and leave it at 5% for political parties. I.e. problems for alliances.

Andrei Fedorov, Political Surveys and Consulting Center: As I see it, the 7% barrier puts Yabloko in jeopardy.

INTERIOR MINISTER SAYS THAT CONTROL STRUCTURES IN CHECHNYA WILL BE DIFFERENT BY NEXT SPRING

Moskovsky Komsomolets, October 22, 2002, p. 2

What Boris Gryzlov meant was another structure responsible for the counter-terrorism operation in Chechnya, the Interior Ministry and not Federal Security Service anymore.

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