Communist presidential candidate Gennady Zyuganov has also responded positively to the bankers’ appeal, expressing willingness to hold negotiations with other candidates. Yesterday, Zyuganov published an open letter outlining three measures that would, he says, ward off the danger of civic strife. These are (1) constitutional reform to reduce the wide powers presently vested in the Russian president; (2) an increase in the powers of parliament, to give it the right to appoint the government (presently the president’s prerogative) and monitor its work; (3) direct popular elections of regional governors to be held after the June presidential election (at present, most regional leaders are appointed by the president). (Itar-Tass, April 29) Some of these measures, such as reducing the powers of the president, would be supported by a number of non-Communist politicians, while many regional leaders are keen to move to direct election in the hope that this would strengthen their hands against the center.
Poll Says Yeltsin Would Win if Zyuganov Were Sole Opponent.