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30 September 1998
For immediate release
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President's Permanent Representative In Parliament Doubts If Stable Majority Can Be Built In Verkhovna Rada

As forecast by President's Permanent VR Representative Roman Bessmertny at a briefing held on September 25, a parliamentary majority during VR plenary sessions can be built situationally [sic], depending on an issue being considered. According to Roman Bessmertny, factors dominating in the parliament such an occasional majority will be the membership of VR committees set up by parliamentary factions, and the structure of the VR leadership. A stable majority, as it is, is unlikely to be built, in Mr. Bessmertny’s opinion. The president's representative also predicted that as the race for president was developing, the situation in the session hall could change. According to him, forthcoming party congresses, which will nominate party members for the Presidency, will exercise direct influence on parliamentary factions' structure. Roman Bessmetrny referred to this as a "purely Ukrainian phenomenon": even having a leader, Ukrainians will continue looking for such. At the same time, Roman Bessmertny expressed his opinion that the current economic situation in Ukraine could make legislative and executive branches productively cooperate. The president's representative interpreted such a fruitful cooperation as an ability to make decisions by way of mutual compromise. The approach of presidential elections dictates a necessity for both branches of power to see this point, stressed Mr. Bessmertny.

Scholars Draft Program For Asserting Ukrainian As National Language

Ukrainian scholars drafted a number of recommendations on asserting Ukrainian as Ukraine's official language. The recommendations were adopted at a two-day conference that ended in Kiev on September 25. The conference was initiated by the Ukrainian National Academy of Sciences, the Academy of Sciences' Ukrainian Language Institute, the State Committee for Nationality and Migration, and the Prosvita Society. According to Vasyl Nimchuk, director of the Ukrainian Language Institute, participants in the conference heard over 30 reports, on the basis of which the recommendations were worked out. The next step, in his opinion, should be familiarizing the population with the result of the conference. The recommendations urge the president of Ukraine to implement a policy of Ukrainian language’s revival, check government employees' knowledge of Ukrainian, provide subsidies to Ukrainian-language publications and audio-video products, ensure that Ukrainian computer networks and Internet home pages were in Ukrainian, ensure implementation of the legislation on the use the Ukrainian language in trade, advertising, consumer services, transport, etc., take measures to prevent the violation of Ukrainian citizens' rights to study in the Ukrainian language in the Eastern and Southern parts of Ukraine as well as in its capital, and increase a number of Ukrainian language schools and kindergartens there.

Kyiv Honors Memories Of Babyn Yar Victims

On September 29, the 57th anniversary of the genocide, Kiev residents honored the memories of the victims of the Babyn Yar massacres. The ceremony was attended by Prime Minister Valeriy Pustovoitenko, and Parliament's Deputy Speaker Viktor Medvedchuk, and other officials. All of them laid wreaths at the monument to the genocide, and observed a minute of silence in honor of the victims. Over 100 000 Ukrainian citizens, mostly civilians, were massacred by Nazi troops at Babyn Yar, a ravine outside Kiev, in 1941-1945.

Environment Ministry Officials Unveil Concept For Protecting Azov And Black Seas

Representatives of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Nuclear Safety unveiled a concept for environmental protection in the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea. The concept was drafted in implementation of the "Strategic Action Plan to Reviving and Protecting the Black Sea in 1997-2007." The concept defines the areas of cooperation between government and non-governmental organizations. Yaroslav Movchan, representative of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Nuclear Safety, said at the press conference that international and inter-sector actions are required to solve the problem. The concept provides for using deductions from business activities to finance an ecological program. The government will focus its efforts on preventing further pollution of the seas. The conference was attended by representatives of the World Bank and the US Peace Corps, among others

Mykola Knyazhytsky Appointed Chairman Of "Ukrteleradio" Company's Board

With a view to raise effectiveness of management in the electronic media and in pursuance of the President's Decree "On Improvement of State Management in Information Sphere" of September 16, 1998, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine has resolved to set up the National Joint Stock Company "Ukrainian Television and Radio Broadcasting" in the form of an open-type joint-stock society. Mykola Knyazhytsky was appointed the chairman of the company's board.

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