LOCAL COURT SAYS VLADIVOSTOK MAY NOT HOLD VOTE FOR MAYOR.
Publication: Monitor Volume: 5 Issue: 7
The city of Vladivostok will hold elections on January 17 for its Duma, but not, as originally planned, for its mayor. On January 10 a Vladivostok district court ruled that holding a mayoral election prior to local legislative elections would be illegal. The judges based their decision on the federal Russian law on local self-government–according to which a municipality, before it elects a mayor, must first elect a city legislative assembly, then elect deputies who pass a city charter. The same court ruled yesterday that the scheduled legislative assembly vote would be perfectly legal (Russian agencies, January 10-11). The January 10th court decision marked the fourteenth time in a row that an election in Vladivostok has been canceled or declared invalid. The decision means that acting Mayor Yuri Kopylov, whom Primorsky Governor Yevgeny Nazdratenko appointed last month after President Boris Yeltsin removed Mayor Viktor Cherepkov, will remain in office (Moscow Times, January 11). Nazdratenko, a long-time enemy of Cherepkov, who had planned to win back his seat, said on January 10 that he supported the court’s decision. Nazdratenko said Cherepkov and his supporters had turned the mayoral race into a “farce” and that the court “simply canceled the election and proceeded the legal way.” Cherepkov charged that a “coup” had been staged “in order to leave the mafiosi in power,” and hinted that he might even “be done away with” (Radio Ekho Moskvy, January 10).
NORTH CAUCASUS HIT BY MORE KIDNAPPINGS.