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Kyrgyzstan, Russia To Sign Accords

  • Brian Whitmore



St. Petersburg, March 27 (RTL/RL) - Kyrgyzstan's President Askar Akayev says he and Russian President Boris Yeltsin will sign several broad bilateral accords. But he also shows reluctance to integrate with other former Soviet republics and Russia.

Speaking yesterday at a press conference in St. Petersburg, Akayev said that the accords are to include a provision allowing ethnic Russians in Kyrgyzstan to hold dual citizenship and a military pact permitting Russian troops to be stationed in Kyrgyzstan. He also said that he would sign an agreement with Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus to join their customs union.

But he also said that he and Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev were in agreement on their opposition to rapid integration with Russia.

Akayev said that some type of integration might be desirable later, probably along the model of the European Union. But he remarked that Belarus' President Alyaksandr Lykashenka migh have moved too quickly when he recently announced readiness to complete a Belarus-Russia union treaty.

Also yesterday, Akayev signed a protocol with the St. Petersburg city government permitting workers and specialists from St Petersburg to be employed in Kyrgyzstan to help build a nuclear reactor.

Akayev arrives in Moscow today. He is to sign bi-lateral agreements with Russia tomorrow, and the quadri-lateral accord Friday.
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