The Russian parliament failed yesterday to adopt a motion calling on President Boris Yeltsin to step down on health grounds. The bid was undermined when it became known that Yeltsin had unexpectedly returned to work in the Kremlin. After hours of often heated debate, a small majority of deputies gave preliminary approval to a resolution saying Yeltsin was unfit to rule and considering his authority terminated for health reasons. However, a motion to put the resolution to a vote was supported by only 87 of the Duma’s 450 deputies after Communist sponsor Viktor Ilyukhin asked for a delay to enable parliamentarians to consult with their constituents. Yeltsin’s doctors have expressed concern that the 65-year-old president is trying to do too much too soon. But he is clearly determined not to allow his illness to make him vulnerable to attack by rivals. (UPI, Reuters, January 22)
Duma Considers Re-Instituting Vice-President.