Latvia’s policy toward Russia, according to a Russian Foreign Ministry statement yesterday, is not only “hypocritical and deceptive” but “revanchist” as well. A resolution the Latvian parliament recently issued is even a “provokatsiya.” (Russian agencies, June 17) Revanchism and provokatsiya (the latter denoting a deliberate instigation to conflict) are among the strongest denunciations in the Soviet political parlance, which seems to be creeping back into the rhetoric of Yevgeny Primakov’s ministry. (Russian agencies, June 17)
In this case, Moscow reacted to a Latvian parliamentary resolution instructing the Latvian Foreign Ministry to disseminate abroad a 1996 parliamentary statement on the Soviet occupation of Latvia. The deputies apparently felt that Riga had not done enough to publicize that document, which was restating for the record that the USSR had occupied Latvia. In a follow-up action yesterday, the parliament instituted a Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Communist Genocide. (BNS, June 17)
The Russian government does not recognize Soviet occupation of the Baltic states. It adheres, rather, to the position that the three states “joined” the USSR. Yesterday’s blast, while part of a broader propaganda campaign, appeared specifically designed to soften the Latvian parliament just before the crucial vote on the citizenship law.
BELARUS APPARENTLY BACKING DOWN IN THE DISPUTE WITH FOREIGN MISSIONS.