Known in Estonia as a former Soviet KGB major-general who handled Baltic affairs, Aleksandr Perelygin now covers the Baltic area as an adviser to Yuri Luzhkov, Moscow mayor and Russian presidential aspirant. According to Estonian press reports, Perelygin has retained his links to the KGB’s successor, Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service. Perelygin expressed pique yesterday over the Estonian authorities’ recent decision to deny him an entry visa–a gesture of “disrespect to Russia,” Perelygin told Tallinn’s leading newspaper. He warned that Russia will not exempt Estonian goods from customs surcharges until Estonia “begins to respect Russia. If you respect us, you get it [nondiscriminatory trade]. But if you say we were occupants, you won’t.”
With Estonia on the threshold of parliamentary elections, Perelygin told the newspaper that “Russian-Estonian relations can improve if the United People’s Party [UPP] can get into the Estonian government.” The UPP is Estonia’s largest Russian party. Perelygin, presumably as an old hand at personnel selection, was to have overseen in Tallinn the session of an awards committee empowered to select sixty local recipients of scholarships offered by Luzhkov (Postimees (Tallinn), BNS, March 1).
BELARUSAN OPPOSITION NOMINATES PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES DESPITE REPRESSION.