Moscow, 19 March 1997 (RFE/RL) - Russian Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin said today that the reshuffle of his government will be completed early next week.
Itar-Tass quotes Chernomyrdin as saying he is still looking for people capable of what he called "new approaches" to fill a number of vacancies in the streamlined cabinet. Chernomyrdin said that Boris Nemtsov, one of two new first deputies, had been asked to recruit new ministers from the Yabloko parliamentary faction, headed by pro-reform economist Grigory Yavlinsky.
Yabloko has so far rejected proposals to join the new government. Yavlinsky, however, has said he is willing to talk to Nemtsov, who as governor of Nizhni-Novgorod has drawn attention for some of his reform proposals.
Today, the communist-dominated State Duma asked President Boris Yeltsin to appoint a special deputy prime minister in charge of the key agricultural sector, which lawmakers said has been neglected.
Itar-Tass reports that the reshuffled government will hold a meeting tomorrow morning, at which Chernomyrdin is expected to present his deputies as well as new cabinet ministers.