Moscow, March 19 (RFE/RL) - A top member of President Boris
Yeltsin's staff says Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan will
sign an agreement on "closer integration" at the end of the month.
The official, requesting anonymity, told our Moscow correspondent
that Presidents Alyaksandr Lukashenka, Askar Akayev and Nursultan
Nazarbayev are expected to travel to Moscow for the signing ceremony.
The official said the ceremony is scheduled March 29, but this date
has not been confirmed.
It remains unclear what kind of documents will be signed by the four
CIS leaders in Moscow, but the Yeltsin staff member said it will be
some kind of "confederation accord."
Yeltsin's campaign manager, First Deputy Prime Minister Oleg
Soskovets, early this month said Yeltsin would announce plans for a
"confederation" as he unveiled his re-election campaign platform
March 22-23. Since then, Yeltsin has said there will be an agreement
on "deeper integration, gradually developing into the possibility of
forming a confederation."
RFE/RL correspondents in Almaty and Bishkek report a series of
documents under preparation, but they have been told by officials in
each capital that the word "confederation" is not being used.