The conclusion January 31 of an interim trade agreement between Russia and the European Union (See Monitor, February 1) reflects a change in the EU’s attitude toward the conflict in Chechnya, according to a Russian government source. The parliament of the European Union had issued a stinging rebuke to Russia January 18 for Moscow’s policy of settling the conflict in Chechnya by force. Displeasure with Moscow’s actions in Chechnya had also delayed conclusion of the interim trade agreement. A Russian foreign trade expert said that the new agreement would facilitate resolution of some of the trade disputes that have arisen between Russia and the EU. He pointed especially to differences over Russian exports of canned fish and furs and its import of textiles.
IMF Chief to Visit Moscow.