Lily Hyde is an RFE/RL correspondent based in Kyiv.

UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT APPOINTS ECONOMICS MINISTER. Leonid Kuchma on 9 August appointed Vasyl Rohovyy as economics minister, Interfax reported. Rohovyy was economics minister from April 1998 to January 2000, when he was appointed first deputy head of the presidential administration. Rohovyy's predecessor, Serhiy Tyhypko, resigned in June and won a parliamentary seat in by-elections held the same month. JM

UKRAINE'S POPULATION CONTINUES TO DECREASE. The State Statistics Committee reported on 9 August that the Ukrainian population fell to 49.47 million from 49.71 million at the beginning of this year. The committee said deaths are outpacing births in the country by more than two to one. Ukraine's population has been declining steadily since independence in 1991, when it stood at 52.06 million. JM

RUSSIA ADDRESSES POLAND OVER GAS PIPELINE PROJECT. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Khristenko has sent a letter to Prime Minister Jerzy Buzek with a proposal to boost PolishRussian cooperation regarding the planned construction of a gas pipeline to Western Europe via Poland, PAP reported on 9 August. Khristenko told journalists in Moscow the same day that the letter proposes a meeting between representatives of Russian and Polish ministries, as well as those of Russia's Gazprom and Poland's Oil and Gas Concern to discuss the construction of a southwestern segment of the Yamal-Western Europe pipeline and to work out plans for further cooperation in sending Russian gas to Western Europe. Khristenko noted that the governments of both countries concluded an agreement in 1993 relating to similar plans (see "RFE/RL Poland, Belarus, and Ukraine Report," 25 July 2000). JM

ANOTHER ANTI-SEMITIC BROADCAST ON PETERSBURG CITY-OWNED TELEVISION. "The Jews own Russia" was the answer to the question "Who Rules Russia?" provided at 11:20 pm on 2 August 2000 by a report for the show "Between the Lines." The broadcast was reported to the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews (UCSJ) by Leonid Lvov, director of the Harold Light Center for Human Rights in Saint Petersburg. "It is outrageous that a television station owned by the government of Russia's second city would broadcast such hateful, dangerous propaganda against Jews," said Lvov. "There is a definite pattern at work here--the stronger the security services get, the greater the danger not just for the Jewish community, but for all minority groups." This report was based on an article of the same title from the next day's issue of the virulently anti-Semitic local newspaper "Novy Peterburg," which is published by convicted murderer Yuri Shutov, who allegedly has links to the Petersburg administration. (Union of Councils for Soviet Jews Press Release, 3 August)


NEWS ON CULTURAL CHANGE SOUGHT. The Institute of Social and Cultural Management has set up a network of cultural institutes and NGO centers in regions of Ukraine. The institute was organized by the Center for Creative Initiatives, the League of NGO Resource Centers, and supported by the Ministry of Culture to provide education on NGO management, establish a joint information system, and open NGO centers in regional cultural institutions. The institute is seeking international partners with experience in cultural change, culture management, and funding. Contact (CivilSoc mailing list, 26 July)

RUSSIAN-LANGUAGE WEEKLY NOW HAS UKRAINIAN EDITION. July saw the launch of the Ukrainian-language edition of one of Ukraine's most popular weeklies, "Zerkalo Nedeli," which has appeared in Russian since it was founded in 1995. This is the first time that a major Russianlanguage paper in Ukraine decided to begin publishing in Ukrainian, according to Ivan Drach, chairman of the state Committee for Information Policy, Television, and Radio. ("Kyiv Post," 13 July)

CRIMEAN SPEAKER SLAMS ACCORD BETWEEN PRESIDENTIAL REPRESENTATIVE, TATARS. Leonid Hrach has called the 2 August agreement between the Ukrainian president's permanent representative in Crimea, Anatoly Korniychuk, and the Council of Representatives of the Crimean Tatar People an "overt insult to the Crimean Constitution," Interfax reported on 7 August. Korniychuk and Crimean Tatar activist Mustafa Dzhimilev signed a "plan of joint measures oriented towards the resolution of problems of the Crimean Tatar people in the socio-economic sphere," according the agency. "Who delegated those functions to them, who will carry out [that accord], where is, under such circumstances, the place of the official authorities of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea?" Hrach asked indignantly as a session of the Crimean Supreme Council. ("RFE/RL Newsline," 8 August)