The latest wave of industrial unrest has subsided in all but one place, Chelyabinsk Oblast in the Urals, where striking miners have been blocking rail links to the Mayak nuclear processing facility. Miners agreed on August 7 to withdraw their pickets but, no sooner had they done so, than radical union leader Eduard Kinstler moved them a little further down the line and put them up again. Regional Governor Petr Sumin has threatened to declare a state of emergency and a team of Interior Ministry investigators has been dispatched from Moscow to conduct an inquiry that may lead to criminal charges against miners’ leaders. The miners say they will continue their protest until they are paid their overdue wages. Deputy Premier Boris Nemtsov says the government will send no money to any area where workers are engaging in illegal strike activity. As of yesterday, the standoff was continuing. (Itar-Tass, August 9; RTR, August 10)
RUSSIAN CHURCH IN ESTONIA SEEKS RETENTION OF ITS SOVIET-ERA POSITION.