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Ukraine: Kuchma, Trans-Dniestr Leader Meet in Kyiv

Kyiv, 20 June 1997 (RFE/RL) - Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma met today with the leader of Moldova's separatist Trans-Dniestr region Igor Smirnov, who is in Kyiv for consultations.

Itar-tass, citing the presidential press service, said the main topic of discussion was the deployment of Ukrainian peacekeepers in the region. The deployment of Ukrainian peacekeepers was agreed upon in a memorandum on normalizing relations, signed early last month between Chisinau and Tiraspol. Russia and Ukraine are guarantors of the agreement.

Until now only Russia had some 5,000 peacekeepers in the region. The Russian peacekeepers were deployed after the brief civil war, which followed Trans-Dniestr's 1992 unilateral declaration of independence.