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Latvia: Russian Security Offer Rejected

Riga, 31 October 1997 (RFE/RL) - Latvian Prime Minister Guntar Krasts today turned down an offer from Russia for security guarantees. The announcement, which was prompted by a question from a reporter, follows Lithuania's rejection of the offer yesterday.

Russian President Boris Yeltsin made the offer of security guarantees to Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia last week.

The leaders of the three Baltic republics are expected to discuss Yeltsin's proposal at a meeting on November 10. All three states are eager to join NATO but have been excluded from a first round of NATO expansion talks. Russian leaders have said they would strongly oppose NATO membership for the Baltic states.