According to a Russian media report today, Swiss federal prosecutor Carla del Ponte is expected to arrive in Moscow on March 23. While the Swiss authorities have thus far said that the trip only concerns “coordinating forces in the fight against crime,” one newspaper said today that she probably has “serious kompromat” (comprising materials) on Russian officials connected with the raid last month on the Swiss construction/engineering firm Mabetex, which she is likely to present to Prosecutor General Yuri Skuratov, with whom she has good relations (see the Monitor, March 15-18). The paper reported that the Russian authorities suspect Mabetex’s head, Bedzhet Pacolli, of having ties with Russian organized crime (Novye izvestia, March 19).
Yeltsin appointed a commission yesterday to look into the Skuratov scandal after he and Primakov met with the resurrected prosecutor general. While details of the meeting have not been revealed, “Vremya-MN” today speculated on what might have transpired. In addition to making conjectures on the scandal involving Skuratov, the paper predicted there will be scandalous exposes in the press concerning real estate deals which involved Tatyana Dyachenko, Yeltsin’s daughter and adviser, and Mabetex (Vremya-MN, March 19).
CHECHEN-KISTIN MINORITY ALLEGEDLY SPREADS “CORRUPTION.”