Vladimir Zhirinovsky yesterday expressed indignation over the shooting of Aleksandr Saidakov, leader of the Transdniester section of Zhirinovsky’s party (see the Monitor, June 15). Interviewed on Russia’s state radio network, the ultranationalist politician described the assault on Saidakov as a “commissioned political crime.” Transdniester authorities for their part mentioned a possible link to Saidakov’s business activities. Saidakov lies in a Tirasapol hospital in critical condition with multiple wounds.
As a businessman, Saidakov was believed to be linked to organized crime. General Aleksandr Lebed, during his service in Transdniester, named Saidakov among those Transdniester leaders with suspected criminal connections. Transdniester president Igor Smirnov announced yesterday that he is personally supervising the investigation. Because Smirnov is himself widely suspected of involvement with criminal organizations, he may well wish to control information about the case. (Flux, Basapress, Radio Mayak, Itar-Tass and other Russian agencies, June 15)
BAKU-NOVOROSSIISK OIL PIPELINE–A HOSTAGE TO MOSCOW’S POLICIES.