UKRAINE'S SECURITY SERVICE CLAIMS TO HAVE PREVENTED RIOTS... The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) said in an 18 October statement to Interfax that "certain forces linked to the election staffs of the so-called Kaniv Four" were preparing riots in Kyiv on 19 October. The Kaniv Four is a presidential election alliance composed of Yevhen Marchuk, Oleksandr Moroz, Volodymyr Oliynyk, and Oleksandr Tkachenko, The SBU added that the riots were organized by a "dozen hired Russian image-makers who are ready to use Russian media to announce a 'mutiny' in Kyiv." An SBU official said on 19 October that measures taken by the SBU had prevented the riots from taking place, but he did not elaborate. The same day President Leonid Kuchma praised the SBU for its timely action to stave off the planned unrest. JM

...WHILE KUCHMA RIVAL SAY REGIME USES 'PROVOCATIONS.' Moroz said the SBU statement on the alleged riots is a "provocation" intended "to introduce elements of a state of emergency" or discredit his candidacy, Interfax reported. Marchuk commented that the methods used against Kuchma's rivals in the presidential race remind him of "special services' techniques" used in staging coups in Nicaragua and Angola or used by Nazis before the attack on the USSR. Marchuk accused the authorities of arranging other "provocations," such as printing a fake issue of the "Silski visti" newspaper that contained criticism of the Kaniv Four or disseminating anti-Semitic leaflets in which he was described as Jewish. JM

TRADE UNION PROTESTS BUT CLAIMS NO TIES WITH KANIV FOUR. According to Yuriy Pyvovarov, head of the Solidarnist trade union federation, some 750 unionists from around the country picketed government and parliament buildings in Kyiv on 19 October to protest against the Kuchma administration and demand back wages. Pyvovarov added that the action was in no way linked to the Kaniv Four. Some 400 unionists picketed the parliament with placards expressing support for parliamentary speaker Tkachenko in his bid for the presidency. Tkachenko said the Solidarnist protests were a surprise to him, adding that the Kaniv Four was not involved in their organization. JM