Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 4

Lithuanian prime minister Adolfas Slezevicius admitted at a news conference yesterday that he had made "a moral and political mistake" by withdrawing his personal deposits from the LAIB bank two days before the bank was declared insolvent. Slezevicius said he would consider contributing the money toward a fund for offsetting losses incurred by the bank’s most needy depositors. Slezevicius’ comments echoed a statement on his conduct issued yesterday by the presidium of Lithuania’s ruling Democratic Labor Party (DLPL), of which he is also head. The presidium resolved that Slezevicius’ resignation would jeopardize the country’s recovery from the banking crisis and endorsed a government program and special working group, headed by Slezevicius himself, to rescue the insolvent banks.

President Algirdas Brazauskas told journalists yesterday that he disapproved of a prime minister who "looks after his personal interests while the man in the street can not do so." Brazauskas said the entire government ought to resign on moral grounds, but such action would only delay the resolution of the banking crisis and hurt the mass of depositors. Although the country’s leading daily Diena again reported yesterday that Brazauskas and senior DLPL figures were considering possible replacements for Slezevicius, (14) the president maintained that he was not empowered to remove either the prime minister or the cabinet. The parliament has scheduled an extraordinary session for January 9 to discuss the situation.

Reformist Faction Forms in Belarusian Parliament…