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Russia: Yeltsin Says Budget Unusual But Realistic

Moscow, 25 August 1997 (RFE/RL) - Russian President Boris Yeltsin says the 1998 budget endorsed last week by his cabinet is "unusual, but realistic."

Russian news agencies quoted Yeltsin as making the comment during a meeting in the Kremlin today with Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin and his two first deputies, Anatoly Chubais and Boris Nemtsov.

Yeltsin said that the draft will be submitted to the State Duma by Thursday. He expressed the hope that following the Duma discussion the cabinet will be able to implement the budget "without changes."

However, the communist and nationalists-dominated Duma has yet to consider the government's plan for this year's budget and is expected to attempt to boost spending for next year.

Yeltsin today warned deputies against such moves. He called on legislators to tell government "at whose expense extra spending could be made." And added that the draft has been "coordinated in detail" with regional leaders who form the upper house of parliament, Federation Council.