At the invitation of Russia’s Agrarian party, supported by other Duma factions, Transdniester leader Igor Smirnov addressed the Duma’s September 9 special session, which also discussed the situation in Yugoslavia. Smirnov told the Duma that Transdniester considers itself a part of Russia and that the separate statehood it seeks is a transitional stage toward accession to the Russian Federation. Smirnov added that the prospect of NATO drawing closer to Eastern Europe increases Transdniester’s importance to Russia. Smirnov was accompanied in Moscow by Transdniester’s security minister Vadim Shevtsov, a former officer of the USSR MVD, wanted in Latvia for crimes committed there in 1990-1991. Moldova’s foreign ministry has officially protested the Duma’s decision to give Smirnov the floor as an "unfriendly act." (13)
Chernomyrdin To Visit Georgia.