Russia’s Communist-dominated Duma set off a storm of controversy March 15 by voting to annul the December 1991 Belovezhye accord, which disbanded the USSR. President Boris Yeltsin, one of the architects of the treaty, called the Duma’s vote "scandalous," and accused Communist parliamentarians of trying to derail the June presidential elections. The vote, which is of dubious legality, was approved by Communist and many nationalist leaders, but denounced by the centrist "Russia is Our Home" and by reformist and democratic leaders.
Writing in Segodnya March 16, Tatyana Malkina commented that, while Yeltsin’s huffing and puffing were predictable, the president would try to turn the vote to his own advantage. On the one hand, Malkina wrote, he would use it to frighten voters at home