Izvestia, May 4, 2001, p. 2

Swiss prosecutor Bernard Bertossa says he has summoned Pavel Borodin, State Secretary of the Russia-Belarus Union, for questioning. The prosecutor refused to give the date, only saying Borodin’s meeting with Daniel Devaud was to take place in May. Borodin’s lawyer Genrikh Padva cannot say whether his client will be able to meet with Devaud this month, referring to Borodin’s state of health.

Borodin himself has said on more than one occasion that he would fly to Switzerland at the first request. His relatives say Borodin is being examined by doctors now, but is determined to meet with investigators whenever necessary.


Izvestia, May 4, 2001, p. 2

When the Trans-Volga Military District and Urals Military District have merged, their center will be in Yekaterinburg, the city where the Urals Military District has its headquarters now. The directive on unification has already been sent to the Urals. Some units of the two military districts will be disbanded, the command structures will be reformed, and unification will be complete by September 1. Nothing is known about who will command the new military district. Some sources do not rule out the possibility that the post will be offered to Colonel General Alexander Baranov, now commander of the Urals Military District.

Russia will be split into six military districts – Moscow, Leningrad, Volga-Urals, Siberia, Far East, and Caucasus.


Rossiiskaya Gazeta, May 4, 2001, p. 2

During talks in Washington before the spring session of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, the US promised Russia postponement of its payments due in 2003 and restructuring of the debts afterwards. Aleksei Kudrin, Finance Minister and a deputy Prime minister, says it will happen if the Russian government appeals to the United States.

This was the first time the Russian delegation actively participated in the discussion of plans of development of the IMF and World Bank. Russia did not seek loans or credits at the session, which made it possible for its delegation to represent a full-fledged shareholder.

Addressing the IMF session, Kudrin quoted some optimistic figures concerning the state of the Russian economy. Industrial growth reached 7.6% in 2000, and will reach 4% this year (according to the government’s forecast). Inflation was 20% in 2000 and will fall to 14-16% this year. The government is fairly confident that a budget surplus will again be recorded this year. According to Kudrin, all this helps Russia fulfill its financial obligations.

Kudrin says Russia will pay its debts in 2001 and plans to do so in 2002 as well. As for 2003, Russia’s repayments will be $20 billion that year – a sum it cannot hope to pay.

Kudrin: We reached an agreement with the Paris Club of creditor nations. Some payments due in 2003 will be restructured if need be.


Rossiiskaya Gazeta, May 4, 2001, p. 3

Two soldiers escaped from the Tula garrison detention cell yesterday, together with the sentry.

In the morning, the sentry escorted the detainees to the bathroom. Neither returned. The detainees had been drafted from Bashkortostan and Tula and sentenced for robbery and going AWOL. Unlike them, the sentry was described by his commanders and comrades positively, so the military does not rule out the possibility that he was abducted.

Two deserters from Chita made their escape Wednesday. They disarmed Senior Lieutenant Boris Valov and shot him in the head. The two left the territory of the unit and were noticed by Major General Sergei Bayev, commander of the military district training facility, driving by in his service car. Bayev got out of the car to talk to the soldiers, and was shot. Bayev’s driver abandoned the car and escaped. The servicemen took the car and drove off. Several hours later both were detained in Chita. An investigation is underway.


Moskovsky Komsomolets, May 4, 2001, p. 2

Police and labor unions have made their reports on May Day celebrations. Analysts are left with the impression that the police and the Federation of Independent Labor Unions are talking about different countries. “No incidents” is the only thing the reports agree on.

According to the labor unions, almost 2.5 million Russians attended demonstrations. The Interior Ministry says only 765,000 rallied all over the country. Moreover, the police counted demonstrations organized by labor unions and various “political” actions of leftist organizations.


Tribuna, May 4, 2001, p. 3

Sources in the Voronezh Regional Directorate of the Federal Security Service say a Russian citizen of Chechen origin, aged 20, name undisclosed, has approached secret services to say he had been working for French intelligence since 1998. The young man attracted foreigners with his knowledge of the situation in Chechnya, plus personal contacts with many influential Chechens like Khasbulatov, Yandarbiyev, and Khadzhiyev. In 1995, the young man was Khasbulatov’s press secretary.

The information he was supposed to provide covered a broad range of issues from the general situation in Chechnya to whether Russian secret services had been involved in abduction of foreigners.


Moskovsky Komsomolets, May 4, 2001, p. 1

Tax returns in Russia had to be submitted by May 3.

The system of monitoring major purchases by Russian citizens is all but complete. Property deals are registered at the Moscow Committee of Registration, gold purchases at banks licensed by the Central Bank, and all vehicle purchases are registered at the traffic police. All these bodies (and others as well) send all relevant information to the State Tax Inspectorate.

In 2001, the state hopes to receive almost 3 million tax returns.


Trud-7, May 4, 2001, p. 4

Ziyabuddin Ziyabuddinov, 24, has been detained by Kazakhstan law enforcement agencies in Almaty. Ziyabuddinov is suspected of being behind the bomb blast in Buinaksk, Dagestan, on September 4, 1999, which killed 64 and wounded over 100.

The regional department of the National Security Committee says Ziyabuddinov used a different identity. He is now in detention in Kazakhstan, to be extradited to Russia.

Six involved criminals have already been tried by the Supreme Court of Dagestan. Two of them, Isa Zainutdinov and Alisultan Salikhov, received life sentences. Shamil Omarov and Magomed Salikhov are still at large.

The investigation says all involved criminals are Wahhabi fundamentalists acting on orders from Khattab.