Zhukov to report on government structural reform

ITAR-TASS News Agency
March 10, 2004 Wednesday

Zhukov to report on government structural reform

By Oksana Polishchuk, Natalya Slavina


Russian Vice-Premier Alexander Zhukov will report on structural
changes in the federal bodies of executive power at the first cabinet
meeting on Thursday, March 11, the government information department

Russian Deputy Interior Minister Alexander Chekalin will report on
the possibility of extending the Russian-Armenian inter-governmental
agreement on regulation of voluntary resettlement.

Russian First Deputy Foreign Minister Valery Loshchinin will submit
his proposals on ratification by the State Duma of an agreement
signed by the Russian and Ukrainian governments that provides for
settling all claims concerning an air crash that occurred over the
Black Sea on October 4, 2001.

The cabinet will also discuss the presentation of state housing
certificates to the Ingush government. Ruslan Tsalikov, the deputy
head of the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry, will report on
this subject.

However, Russia’s new Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov said that the
cabinet would focus on implementation of the presidential decree on
forming a new government line-up at its meeting on Thursday.

“This will actually be the sole issue that we intend to discuss with
the new government at tomorrow’s cabinet meeting,” Russian Prime
Minister Mikhail Fradkov told a news conference on Wednesday.

The Prime-Tass economic and financial news agency cited the prime
minister as saying that he was continuously studying the issue and
discussed the matter with Russian President Vladimir Putin every day.

Fradkov emphasized that the process of forming a new government
marked the beginning of an administrative reform. He called for the
earliest solution of all organizational issues in order to preserve a
workable government and not to disrupt the budget process.

Fradkov reiterated once again that the idea of an administrative
reform should be regarded as part of efforts to make Russia more
competitive and ensure that prompt and needed decisions are passed.
Bureaucrats should model their actions according to a single concept
so as to avoid the duplication of functions and to single out
responsible bosses.

At the same time, Fradkov warned about the possibility of
inaccuracies in carrying out the government reform. “We are going to
remove these inaccuracies. The logic of this reform allows for
clarification as we proceed with the process,” Fradkov stressed.

The prime minister also promised to be open with the press.

Fradkov admitted at a news conference held at the Russian government
building on Wednesday that he never did that because he hadn’t faced
such a task before.

At the same time, Fradkov emphasized that the process of creating a
new government structure was, among many other things, aimed at
making it more open and transparent.

“It will make it possible to define the responsibilities of each
leader and to enable them to develop creative approach to their work.
We favour an open approach,” the Russian prime minister stressed.

Fradkov believes that society needed such actions for tracking down
the efficiency of government bureaucrats.

Damascus: Syrian Students in Warsaw and Yerevan celebrate March 8

Syrian Arab News Agency
Wed 10 Mar 2004

Syrian Students in Warsaw and Yerevan/ Celebration

Yerevan, Warsaw, March. 10 (SANA)

The Administrative Office of the National Union of the Syrian
Students (NUSY) in Armenia and the Organization of al-Baath Arab
Socialist Party (OBASP), in cooperation with the Syrian Embassy in
Yerevan, held on Wednesday a speech rally on the occasion of the 41st
anniversary of March 8 Revolution.

Participants disclosed the American false pretexts used to justify
the war on Iraq , pointing out to the dangerous situation in the
Middle East.

They also stressed Syria’s firm national stances under the leadership
of President Bashar al-Assad.

Attending the rally were Charge D’ Affairs at the Embassy Ghassan
Raslan , Embassy staff and Arab ambassadors in Armenia.

Also in Warsaw the NUSY and OBASP in Poland held a similar
celebration on this occasion.

Attending the celebration were the Syrian Ambassador Mohammad Ali
al-Hamwi, Embassy Personnel, members of the Syrian community.


Uruguay parliament recognizes Armenian genocide

March 12 2004


YEREVAN, MARCH 12, ARMENPRESS: The lower chamber of Uruguay’s
parliament approved a bill on March 10, which indirectly recognizes
the Armenian Genocide. The bill calls for April 24 to be “the
commemoration day of Armenians martyred in 1915,” and obligates the
state owned media to “cover those events” on that day.
There is no reference to “genocide” in the wording of the bill,
though parliament speeches in favor of the bill did not avoid calling
the genocide, a “genocide.” The resolution will become a law with the
president’s signature.
In 2000, Uruguay’s Senate unanimously passed a resolution marking
“April 24 a national day of remembrance for the Armenian Genocide.”
In 1965, the Armenian National Committee of Uruguay advanced the
passage of an Armenian Genocide resolution in Uruguay’s
parliament–to mark the first time a country officially recognized
the genocide of Armenians.
At the time, the author of that resolution Senator Dr. Alberto
Sid, said that the bill aimed to register Uruguay’s official position
on the Armenian Genocide as a crime against humanity.
Interestingly, the world’s first April 24 demonstration also took
place in Uruguay, in 1964.

Kazakhstan shocked by brutal murder of Armenian officer in Budapest

March 12 2004


YEREVAN, MARCH 12, ARMENPRESS: Foreign minister of Kazakhstan,
Kasimzhomart Tokaev, sent a letter to his Armenian counterpart Vartan
Oskanian to convey his condolences over the brutal murder of an
Armenian officer, Gurgen Margarian, by an Azerbaijani classmate on
February 19 in Budapest.
“The news about the gruesome murder of the Armenian officer in
Budapest has shocked Kazakhs. We condemn the barbaric act of violence
and think that such crimes cannot be justified,” the message runs.