Boris Yeltsin has ordered a full investigation into the November 10 bomb blast at a south Moscow cemetery in which 14 people were killed. (NTV, RTR, November 11) The explosion killed the head of the Fund for Invalids of the Afghan War, Sergei Trakhirov. Stung by a rebuke from Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin that the bombing had occurred on the very day Russians annually honor the militia, Interior Minister Anatoly Kulikov announced that he was entrusting the investigation to his own first deputy. Police said the bomb was clearly a settling of scores among criminals who use veterans’ groups — which benefit from generous tax and excise exemptions on imports and exports — as a means of evading tax and laundering money. (Reuters, November 11) The Russian police do not have a good track record in bringing the perpetrators of contract killings to justice.
Lebed oon Fate of Chernomyrdin; Chechnya and Big Business.