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Moldova: President Picks Candidate For Foreign Minister

Prague, 22 July 1997 (RFE/RL) - Dumitru Diacov, who last week was dismissed by the Moldovan parliament from the position of vice-chairman, says President Petru Lucinschi has offered him the portfolio of Minister of Foreign Affairs. Incumbent Foreign Minister Mihai Popov intends to resign for health reasons.

In an interview with RFE/RL's Chisinau bureau yesterday, Diacov said a group of deputies tomorrow will announce their resignation from the main coalition party, the Democratic Agrarian Party of Moldova. He said the group will act in support of President Petru Lucinschi's economic reforms program, which is meeting resistance in the legislature.

Diacov said the group will support the cabinet of Prime Minister Ion Ciubuc only if the government undergoes a reshuffle and appoints new ministers who back Lucinschi's program.