Some half million residents of Kostroma, 250 miles northeast of Moscow, voted Sunday against the construction of a nuclear power plant in their rural region. The vote was unprecedented since all the candidates in the gubernatorial election held on the same day had promised to respect the voters’ verdict. Until now, the Kremlin-appointed governor had supported the plant. Construction of the nuclear plant was halted after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident in nearby Ukraine, but the Atomic Energy Ministry resumed the building a couple of years ago. Environmentalists managed to get enough signatures to put the issue to a regional referendum. (AP, BBC World Service, December 8; UPI, December 9)
Chernomyrdin Outlines Defense Spending Plans.