Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 118

The sackings elicited an enthusiastic response from most of the members of Russia’s democratic camp, such as former premier Yegor Gaidar. Commentators pointed out that the way was now open for Yeltsin to strike an electoral deal with Yabloko leader Grigory Yavlinsky, since the three men sacked were among those for whose dismissal Yavlinsky had called as a precondition for an alliance between himself and Yeltsin. Yavlinsky welcomed the dismissals yesterday but reserved final judgment, saying that it was important to see who the replacements would be.

Meanwhile, Yeltsin’s Communist challenger Gennady Zyuganov said it was a sign of Yeltsin’s weakness that he had had to sack so many leading members of his entourage in the middle of the election campaign. (Interfax, June 20) Other commentators saw the developments as an indication of the lengths to which Yeltsin was prepared to go in order to retain his grip on power.

Yeltsin Slams Military Corruption.