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ukraine-related news stories from RFE

RUSSIA, UKRAINE DISCUSS TRANSPORTATION TIES. Russian Transportation Minister Sergei Frank and his visiting Ukrainian counterpart Valeriy Pustovoytenko on 13 September discussed expanding cooperation between the two countries in transportation, Interfax reported. They also reached agreement on simplifying border procedures for ground transport. Meanwhile, Russian Ambassador to Ukraine Viktor Chernomyrdin said the same day in Kyiv that Russia will not increase oil prices for Ukraine as a result of any price rises that take place after the terrorist attacks on the U.S., ITAR-TASS reported. PG

YELTSIN SAID TO HAVE FEARED ARREST AFTER BELOVEZHSKAYA ACCORDS. Andrei Grachev, former press secretary to former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, writes in his new book on Gorbachev that Russian President Boris Yeltsin knew that his agreement in December 1991 disbanding the Soviet Union was a crime and expected to be arrested by the KGB, according to an article in "Trud" on 13 September. When Gorbachev invited Yeltsin for a discussion of what he, together with the leaders of Belarus and Ukraine, had done, Grachev wrote, Yeltsin asked whether there would be an attempt to detain him. Grachev also suggests that the three participants in the Belovezhskaya agreement selected that location in order to be in a position to flee to Poland if the Soviet authorities pursued them. VY

UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT PASSES ELECTION LAW... The parliament on 13 September voted by 230 to 113, with 6 abstentions, to adopt a bill on parliamentary elections, Interfax reported. The bill introduces a number of amendments to the current election law but leaves unchanged the hitherto controversial provision that 225 deputies are elected in one-seat constituencies and another 225 under a proportional party-list system. Kuchma has repeatedly vetoed the parliament's previous attempts at changing this provision in favor of increasing the number of deputies elected under a party-list system. JM

...AND RESOLUTION ON LIVE RADIO COVERAGE OF SESSION. The parliament passed a resolution ordering the National Radio Company to provide live coverage of the current parliamentary session four days a week. The resolution also obliges the National Television Company to air a daily 30-minute information program about parliamentary session proceedings on the UT-1 and UT-2 state-run channels. The document requests that President Leonid Kuchma sack National Television Company head Vadym Dolhanov for his failure to implement last year's parliamentary resolution on the television coverage of the preceding parliamentary session. JM