Publication: Monitor Volume: 1 Issue: 124

Presidential press spokesman Sergei Medvedev said yesterday that Yeltsin’s condition "has certainly not deteriorated and remains stable." Medvedev anticipated that "we shall soon see a strong and vital president." He reaffirmed that there was no need to delegate powers from Yeltsin to Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin. But Chernomyrdin told the press while visiting a Moscow factory yesterday that for the duration of Yeltsin’s illness, the "power ministers" would be reporting to him. (1)

The spokesman’s official optimism contrasted with the Russian media’s cautious and reserved coverage of Yeltsin’s illness. The fact that no visitors have been allowed to see Yeltsin since he fell ill and that he must remain under constant cardiological observation for six weeks suggests that his condition may be significantly more serious than officially admitted.