IMF POSTPONES DECISION ON NEXT LOAN TRANCHE TO UKRAINE. An IMF mission that arrived in Kyiv last week to examine Ukraine's implementation of the $2.2 billion loan program has reached "negative" conclusions, Ukrainian News reported on 9 November. While citing Ukraine's successes in stabilizing the national currency and restructuring foreign debts, the IMF said major setbacks are decreasing budget revenues, too strict controls on state prices, the lack of administrative reform, and the slow pace of reform in the energy and agricultural sectors. The IMF also warned the government against a money emission, saying it might lead to higher inflation and aggravate the situation on the financial market. The IMF mission left Ukraine without signing any accord on the provision of the next loan tranche. An unnamed IMF representative told the agency that the decision on the tranche "depends on further negotiations" and may be made in late November. JM

UKRAINE ASKS FOR UN, EU HELP TO FLOOD VICTIMS. Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk has sent letters to the UN and EU asking for humanitarian help to victims of the floods in Ukraine's Transcarpathian region, dpa reported on 8 November. Heavy rains have caused five mountain rivers to inundate some 120 settlements in Zakarpatska Oblast, forcing some 25,000 people to leave their homes. The Ukrainian government has provided $600,000 for rescue efforts, while neighboring Hungary donated $250,000 to help the flooded area. JM

UKRAINIAN COMMUNISTS MARK OCTOBER REVOLUTION ANNIVERSARY... Some 4,000 people led by Communist leaders marched through Kyiv on 7 November to celebrate the 81st anniversary of the Bolshevik revolution in Russia, AP reported. Communist Party Secretary Petro Symonenko told the crowd that "those in power in Ukraine are waging war against their own people and living on the money that was stolen from us." The Kiev demonstrators called for Ukraine's reunion with Russia and Belarus as the first step toward creating "a new union of brotherly independent Soviet republics." Rallies were also held in other Ukrainian cities, drawing 5,000 people in Kharkiv and 2,000 in Sevastopol. JM