Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 189

A publishing house in Lviv (western Ukraine), which is a political stronghold of Ukraine’s national-democrats, has just printed Chechen leader Zelimkhan Yandarbiev’s new book, "Chechnya: The Struggle for Freedom." A consignment of 5,000 Russian-language copies of the book was confiscated by Russian customs at the Ukrainian-Russian border, but other copies are being sent to Russia from Ukraine by circumventing Russian customs. (Interfax-Ukraine, NTV, October 8 and 9)

Last week a Chechen Information Center opened in Kiev for the declared purpose of supplying accurate information on Chechnya and correcting misinformation often appearing in Russian media. Rukh (the Ukrainian Popular Movement) is providing legal sponsorship and office space. Rukh leader Vyacheslav Chornovyl told the inaugural news conference at the movement’s headquarters that the Center could eventually grow into a semi-official mission, akin to those of Taiwan in some countries. Chornovyl expressed gratitude to Chechnya for having "helped us a lot by diverting the attention of Russian imperialists away from Ukraine." (UNIAN, October 4; NTV, October 3)

The Center is the first of its kind in a former Soviet country, although individual Chechen representatives authorized by the late president Jokhar Dudaev and by Yandarbiev have been working informally with sympathizers in the Baltic states. A Chechen Information Center has been operating since 1995 in the Polish city of Krakow.

Inter-Factional Disagreements Plague Crimean Politics.