On July 4 Russian president Boris Yeltsin signed power-sharing treaties on behalf of the Russian Federation with Bryansk, Chelyabinsk, Magadan, Saratov, and Vologda oblasts. The event was heralded as an achievement in Moscow since Bryansk and Chelyabinsk are firm members of Russia’s "red belt." Moscow has now signed 31 such agreements, and work is in progress on an additional 24, according to Yeltsin aide Sergei Shakhrai. (Itar-Tass, RTR, July 4)
Maskhadov Sets Up Anti-Kidnap Squad.