On May 22, the Russian Duma adopted in its second reading a bill on the transfer of power from one president to another. The Communist-supported bill seeks to block the possibility that if Gennady Zyuganov wins next month’s presidential election, Boris Yeltsin will find some way of preventing Zyuganov from taking over the reins of power. During the 30 days elapsing between the announcement of the election results and the inauguration of the new president, the outgoing president would be obliged to keep the president-elect fully informed of troop movements and of any decision concerning the introduction of a state of emergency or martial law. The president-elect would have the right to attend meetings of the Security Council, government and parliament, though he would not be allowed to interfere in the work of the outgoing president.
As soon as the new president is inaugurated, the government would tender its resignation. The new president would appoint an acting prime minister, subject to Duma approval, while the outgoing government would continue to perform its functions until a new government is formed. The law would also require a newly elected president to suspend his membership in all political parties and movements — a provision proposed by the Yabloko faction. (Interfax, May 22)
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