Some 7,000 Belarusans demonstrated in Minsk on April 25 at the call of the Popular Front to commemorate the 1986 Chornobyl disaster in neighboring Ukraine, the fallout from which contaminated Belarus. Marchers carried the banned national colors and placards which spoke of “two disasters–Chornobyl and Lukashenka.” Speakers at the rally described the accident as one of the Soviet-era crimes against Belarus. They called on Russia, as the USSR’s legal successor, to compensate the Belarusan victims. A group of twenty-six students, members of the Russian Anti-Fascist Youth Movement, arrived from Moscow and participated in the march and rally. Most of them were arrested by Belarusan police. The Russian embassy in Minsk sought yesterday to obtain their release in the hope of avoiding another “political scandal” in advance of the April 28 meeting of Presidents Boris Yeltsin and Alyaksandr Lukashenka. (AP, Reuters, ORT, Itar-Tass and other Russian agencies, April 25 and 26).
MOSCOW BLAMES TBILISI FOR “TERRORISM” IN ABKHAZIA.