ORTHODOX, CATHOLIC CHURCHES APPROVE MISSION TO UKRAINE. Following closed-door meetings in Moscow, Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholic officials have agreed to send a delegation to Ukraine in an effort to resolve a dispute between the Orthodox and Greek Catholic Churches, ITAR-TASS and dpa reported on 15 January. The Russian Orthodox Church claims the Greek Catholic Church has taken over Orthodox churches in western Ukraine. The Greek Catholic Church follows Eastern Orthodox rituals but is loyal to the Vatican. PB

TURKEY PROTESTS TO KYIV OVER SINKING OF FISHING BOAT. Turkey on 16 January lodged an official protest with the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry after a Turkish fishing boat sank and two seamen drowned during an incident the previous day that involved a Ukrainian coast guard ship, dpa reported. Ukrainian border guards said 17 Turkish boats were fishing in waters that Ukraine claims as its territory. They say that one of those boats capsized only after it tried to ram a Ukrainian coast guard vessel. Alp Karaosmanoglu, the Turkish ambassador in Kyiv, said Turkey has the right to claim damages. PB

MOLDOVAN PRESIDENT MARKS ONE YEAR IN OFFICE. At a press conference marking his first year in office, Petru Lucinschi on 15 January counted among his main foreign policy achievements the resumption of the dialogue with Tiraspol and the economic agreement reached with the separatists, RFE/RL's Chisinau bureau reported. Lucinschi said he has Russian President Boris Yeltsin's "clear promise" to withdraw the forces from the Transdniester whenever Moldova wishes, adding that this was now a matter of "time sequence." The withdrawal of troops before arms would mean that weapons would "be stolen," he argued. "Logically, armament is first withdrawn, and only then the troops," Lucinschi said. He also noted that Ukraine has agreed to the arms transit and that now "all we need is a timetable." MS