Publication: Monitor Volume: 3 Issue: 97

Aleksandr Shokhin, deputy speaker of the Russian Duma, has denied that he told the newspaper Kommersant-daily earlier this week that, if the Russia/Belarus union results in a new state, Boris Yeltsin could stand for president of the new entity and thereby win a third term in office. Shokhin now says he was speaking hypothetically and did not mean to imply that Yeltsin would actually adopt such a course. Shokhin’s original assertion created a stir among Russian provincial leaders, who are categorically opposed to the idea of a new "superstate" because they fear it would weaken the influence of their own republics and regions. (Kommersant-daily, May 14-15)

Russia and West Clash over NATO Agreement.