Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 64

An April Fool’s day joke played yesterday by the Russian Itar-Tass news agency caused as much anxiety as laughter in at least two east European capitals. Itar-Tass’s false report that the Russian Duma was considering revival of the former Soviet Warsaw Pact military alliance was picked up by news agencies in the Czech Republic and Bulgaria, apparently causing a minor sensation in those countries until an explanation — and an apology — arrived from Itar-Tass. (AP, April 1) Coming in the wake of the Russian Duma’s recent vote for restoration of the USSR, the reactions suggested the extent to which foreign capitals — and the Monitor — have been conditioned to expect the outrageous from Russia’s Communist-dominated parliament.

Fighting Continues in Chechnya.