Further evidence that Russia’s new Prime Minister Sergei Kirienko will have no real role in foreign affairs came when Boris Yeltsin’s office announced the appointment of Ivan Rybkin as “plenipotentiary representative” to the members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). Rybkin, stepping down as secretary of the National Security Council, will retain his rank as deputy premier, placing him above Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov. That raises the number of deputy premiers to four, just days after Kirienko announced a cutback to three…. Rybkin will work closely with his longtime protector Boris Berezovsky, the politically active tycoon who became CIS executive secretary earlier this month. Under Berezovsky and Rybkin, Russia’s CIS diplomacy is likely to emphasize investment–Russian acquisition of assets in CIS member states–over building new political structures.