UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT PRAISES RELATIONS WITH POLAND. Leonid Kuchma said on 25 June that ties between Kyiv and Warsaw are "very good" and that his regular meetings with Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski relieve any tension in the relations, ITAR-TASS reported. Kuchma was speaking in Kyiv on the eve of a two-day visit by Kwasniewski to Ukraine. The presidents are to hold talks in Kharkov. Polish business leaders are accompanying their president. PB

KUCHMA'S GOOD NEWS (AND BAD NEWS) ON THE ECONOMY. President Kuchma said on 25 June that although Ukraine's GDP and industrial production have increased, the economy is in a "very difficult" situation, ITAR-TASS reported. Kuchma said that the dismal performance of the stock market is also worrisome. He added that his country must continue to borrow money from foreign lenders, saying that without loans from the IMF "Ukraine will be financially blockaded." PB

BOMB THREAT DURING SUPREME COUNCIL SESSION. A bomb threat on 25 June disrupted the Ukrainian parliament shortly after it failed for the 15th time to elect a speaker, the "Eastern Economist" reported. The parliament was searched but no bomb was found and the session was continued behind closed doors. Oleksander Moroz received the most votes in the latest failed vote, which has caused a parliamentary crisis and led President Kuchma to issue decrees in an attempt to heal the economy. Kuchma dismissed rumors that he would dissolve the parliament and call new elections in an effort to break the deadlock. He said new elections would not be politically or economically "expedient" and that he is confident the Supreme Council will elect a speaker soon. PB

POLAND WILLING TO INTRODUCE VISAS FOR "EASTERNERS." Wojciech Brochwicz, a deputy interior minister, said on 25 June that Warsaw would impose a visa regime for citizens of Eastern countries if the European Union made such a request, AP reported. Brochwicz, returning to Warsaw from an EU conference on border issues, said it was not possible to set a date for the imposition of visas on its Eastern neighbors. Poland instituted a controversial visa regime on Russians and Belarussians in December that was later eased. Ukraine has a visa-free agreement with Ukraine. PB