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Security Watch: November 21, 2001

21 November 2001, Volume 2, Number 44
PUTIN SAYS MOSCOW PREPARED TO BE FLEXIBLE ON ABM TREATY... President Vladimir Putin told ABC news interviewer Barbara Walters, according to a transcript released by the network on 7 November, that Russia will be flexible during what he said will be tough talks with U.S. President George W. Bush concerning modifications in the 1972 ABM Treaty, Reuters reported. He said that he believes that the treaty is important, "but we have a negotiating platform starting from which we could reach agreements. At least I hope so."

...ANTHRAX SPORES IN U.S. NOT FROM RUSSIA. In the same interview with the ABC network, Putin said that the anthrax spores that have been found in the United States are not of either Russian or Soviet origin. He added that the analysis of the spores "shows with a great degree of certainty that they could not have been produced in the Soviet Union, let alone in Russia." Putin also said that there has not been, and will not be, any leak of nuclear weapons or technology from Russia. At the same time, he said that it is possible that some nuclear secrets may have been sold, but noted that "we don't have documentary confirmation of any such cases." Putin also said that he joined the Soviet intelligence service in order to be "useful to the Motherland." He added that he is not ashamed of his past service in the KGB and that if he could live his life over again, "I would do the same."

FOREIGN MINISTER WANTS CLOSER COOPERATION WITH NATO... Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said on 3 November that Moscow wants to increase the level and closeness of its relationship with NATO in order to counter new threats to humanity, Interfax reported. Foreign Ministry spokesman Aleksandr Yakovenko said on 3 November that Moscow welcomes the backing of UN member states for the continued observance of the 1972 ABM Treaty, ITAR-TASS reported.

...WHILE DEFENSE MINISTER REPORTS PROGRESS IN TALKS WITH U.S. ON MISSILE DEFENSE. Sergei Ivanov said on 5 November that Moscow and Washington have made progress in their talks on missile defense, ITAR-TASS reported. "Nezavisimaya gazeta" on 3 November predicted that the two countries are likely to reach a compromise in which Washington would cut the number of nuclear warheads as Moscow wants while Moscow would agree to a limited missile defense system as the U.S. wants. Meanwhile, Deputy Foreign Minister Georgii Mamedov continued discussions on this issue with visiting U.S. Assistant Secretary of State John Bolton the same day, Interfax reported.

RUSSIAN DIPLOMATS PREPARE FOR SUMMIT. Judging by the preparatory work done for the Russian-American summit, it will differ both in style and content from previous summits, according to "Vremya novostei" on 9 November. Experts and negotiators involved in developing Russia's positions and documents for the meeting were instructed to avoid "overplaying" their American counterparts, while U.S. negotiators also expect fair play during the summit. As for the essence of the talks, the focus will not be on numerical reductions of nuclear arsenals or a "breakthrough" on missile defense, but in a change of the strategic attitude of both countries toward each other. Meanwhile, Foreign Minster Igor Ivanov said in New York that "all aspects of the new nature in [the Russia-U.S.] bilateral relationship will be reflected in the documents."

DUGIN SAYS SUMMIT WILL NOT LEAD TO RUSSIA'S INTEGRATION INTO WEST. Eurasia movement leader Aleksandr Dugin told on 8 November that the upcoming Russian-American summit will not lead to the integration of Russia into the West because the contradictions between Russia and the West are too great. As a result, Dugin said, the summit will probably be a disappointment for Moscow and force Putin to revert to his earlier, more confrontational approach with Washington. But Sergei Rogov, the director of the Moscow USA and Canada Institute, said the summit may prove to be a turning point in East-West relations unequalled in the past 50 years, Russian agencies reported.

DUMA DEPUTY SAYS PAKISTAN'S THINKING ON MOVING NUKES TO CHINA 'LOGICAL.' ITAR-TASS reported on 5 November that the government of Pakistan is considering the possibility of shifting its nuclear arsenal to China if the U.S. makes any moves to put that arsenal under its control. The discussions reportedly were prompted by media reports that the U.S. is concerned that Pakistani nuclear weapons may fall into the hands of Islamist extremists. Dmitrii Rogozin, the chairman of the Duma's Foreign Affairs Committee, told Ekho Moskvy radio the same day that, from Islamabad's perspective, China is the best play to store these weapons.

RUSSIA, U.S. SAID BUILDING UP AIR BASE IN NORTHERN AFGHANISTAN. RBK reported on 5 November that the U.S. with Russian help has been improving an airstrip near Sherkat, in a region of Afghanistan controlled by the Northern Alliance. The base can now handle not only fighters but also heavy transport aircraft, the news service said.

U.S., IAEA FEAR TERRORISTS COULD OBTAIN NUCLEAR MATERIALS FROM DECOMMISSIONED RUSSIAN SUBMARINES. U.S. and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) officials told Reuters on 7 November that terrorists might be able to extract nuclear materials from decommissioned Russian nuclear submarines that are now floating off the Kola Peninsula. Michael Bell, head of the IAEA's Nuclear Waste Technology Section, said that "of course it's possible that a terrorist could make a 'dirty nuclear bomb' from the nuclear fuel on board the submarines." Dieter Rudolf of the U.S. Defense Department also said such a danger exists, albeit it a remote one. Meanwhile, Russian Deputy Atomic Energy Minister Valerii Lebedev said, "Russia has taken emergency security measures [in this area] because we know there is a real threat from international terrorism."

MOSCOW SEEKS AGREEMENT ON INFORMATION SECURITY. A source in the Foreign Ministry told Interfax on 5 November that Russia, like all other countries, is vulnerable to attacks on its electronic communications infrastructure. He called on all countries to support a Russian proposal at the United Nations to provide a common defense of information systems against terrorism, asserting that this initiative in no way "is directed at limiting the free flow of information."

PAPER SAYS RUSSIANS MORE SUPPORTIVE THAN EVER OF U.S. ANTITERROR EFFORT, BUT POLLS SUGGEST THEY HAVE QUESTIONS. "Izvestiya" on 5 November noted that opinion polls in Russia suggest that Russians are more supportive of the U.S. antiterrorist operation in Afghanistan than they were a month ago, even as Americans have become less uncritically supportive of that effort. The paper said that "public opinion in Russia has been growing steadily more pro-American" as well. At the same time, however, polls conducted by VTsIOM and reported by Interfax on 6 November found that 46 percent of Russians say the U.S. has not proved that Osama bin Laden was behind the 11 September attacks. Thirty-six percent of Russians believe that the U.S. will be successful in its campaign in Afghanistan but 46 percent do not believe that the U.S. will win. Moreover, 62 percent of Russians believe the current military action in Afghanistan will destabilize Central Asia, and 80 percent think the campaign will lead to more Muslim extremist actions around the world.

REPORT U.S. RECRUITING RUSSIAN AFGHANISTAN VETERANS DENIED. "Nezavisimaya gazeta" on 3 November said that reports by "Zavtra" and other media outlets that the United States is recruiting Russian veterans of the war in Afghanistan to fight there against the Taliban are not true. Despite this denial, media outlets continued to publish such reports, including "Izvestiya" on 5 November. Also, APN reported on 10 November that the military and intelligence agencies of Uzbekistan are recruiting Russian veterans of the Afghanistan wars into the army of General Rashid Dostum, who is part of the Northern Alliance.

RUSHAILO WANTS TERRORISM CLASSIFIED AS CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY. Russian Security Council Secretary Vladimir Rushailo said in Warsaw on 6 November that terrorism should be put in the category of especially dangerous crimes against humanity, Interfax reported. He also said terrorists are "getting better organized and becoming increasingly cunning," and that their opponents must do the same to beak up "the large web of financial, commercial, and public organizations which, under the cover of advocating religious and national ideas, are in fact creating a real terrorist international." Rushailo also said that Moscow would like to see a special organization set up under the direction of the United Nations to help defray the costs of antiterrorist actions by individual countries, ORT reported. He also urged that all countries cooperate in their customs regulations in order to create "real barriers" to international terrorist networks.

...SAYS ANTITERROR CAMPAIGN DOESN'T JUSTIFY NATO EXPANSION. Rushailo said on 8 November that the international antiterrorist campaign should not be invoked to justify the expansion of NATO as some of the alliance's proponents have done, ITAR-TASS reported. He said, "NATO's expansion, both past and planned, is not linked directly with the intensification of the fight against terrorism, and for several reasons it can hardly be expected to give a powerful impetus to the pooling of the efforts of all states in the fight against the 21st-century challenge." Instead, Rushailo said, "only the formation of a broad antiterrorist coalition, outside the bounds of individual blocs and alliances, will help create a single world system of security without any dividing lines."

RUSSIAN SMALLPOX VIRUS MAY HAVE BEEN SOLD TO TERRORISTS. Lev Sandakhchiev, the head of the Vektor Biotechnology Center, told NTV on 8 November that there is a possibility that poorly paid staffers at his institution may have sold smallpox virus samples to terrorist groups. He urged that the entire Russian population be vaccinated against the disease, noting that 90 percent of all Russians have lost their immunity to it. But Russian President Putin said in his ABC interview with Barbara Walters that "it is impossible" that terrorists could obtain the smallpox virus or anthrax spores in Russia, according to Interfax on 8 November.

RUSSIA TO COOPERATE WITH INDIA ON NUCLEAR TECHNOLOGY, FIFTH-GENERATION FIGHTER. Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee on 6 November met with President Putin and Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov to discuss expanding cooperation in the area of nuclear power, including Russian construction of a new nuclear power station in India and the joint development of a fifth-generation fighter plane, Interfax reported.

FOREIGN MINISTER SAYS RUSSIA, CHINA, AND INDIA INCREASINGLY IMPORTANT FOR WORLD SECURITY. In an interview published in the Indian newspaper "The Hindu" on 7 November, Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said Russia, India, and China bear increasing responsibility for security throughout the world and especially in Asia. He added that the joint efforts of the three countries to coordinate policy contribute to that goal. He also called for the peaceful resolution of the Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan and the destruction of the Taliban government in Afghanistan.

RUSSIA, INDIA TO COOPERATE ON WEAPONS, SPACE EXPLORATION. During his visit to Moscow on 4-5 November, Indian Prime Minister Vajpayee signed an agreement with Deputy Prime Minister Mikhail Klebanov calling for the joint production of modifications to the Russian T-90 tanks, the BBC reported on 6 November. This agreement represents a breakthrough in that it is the first time in the history of Russian-Indian military ties that New Delhi will invest money in the development of advanced military hardware planned for export to India. Also during Vajpayee's visit, the two countries agreed to coordinate the development of booster rockets for space exploration.

LOSYUKOV SEES EMERGENCE OF RUSSIA-INDIA-CHINA GROUP. Deputy Foreign Minister Aleksandr Losyukov told Interfax on 5 November that he believes that the common approaches of Russia, India, and China to many political questions make the emergence of a political mechanism among them possible, but that "to speak about such a triangle now and about its construction as a political form would be unrealistic." He said discussions about that possible alignment are still best conducted among academics rather than among policymakers whose words would have direct political consequences.

DUMA DEPUTY SAYS RUSSIA DOES NOT INTEND TO RATIFY KYOTO PROTOCOL. Vladimir Grachev, the chairman of the Duma Ecology Committee, told ITAR-TASS on 7 November that Russia does not intend to ratify the Kyoto Protocol on the environment because Moscow has certain disagreements with its provisions that allow developing countries "which have not assumed any obligations" to take part in the verification regime. At the same time, he said, Russia remains committed to the principles of the Kyoto Protocol and hopes to ratify it once these difficulties are resolved.

RUSSIA'S NUCLEAR ARSENAL LARGE, AGING. Officials at the Moscow Center for the Study of the Problems of Disarmament told Interfax on 8 November that Russia has 6,094 nuclear weapons, of which 3,444 are on ICBMs, 2,024 are on submarines, and 626 are on bombers. The majority of the rockets have a predicted useful life lasting until 2010, the strategic bombers have an expected use until 2020, but many of the land-based rockets will be beyond their projected lifetimes by 2005, the center's officials said.

RUSSIA NEEDS SEVERAL HUNDRED MILLION DOLLARS TO SALVAGE NUCLEAR SUBMARINES. Deputy Energy Minister Valerii Lebedev told ITAR-TASS on 8 November that Russia needs several hundred million U.S. dollars to salvage the 109 decommissioned Russian nuclear submarines kept along the Kola Peninsula. He added that construction of a long-term storage facility for empty reactors alone is estimated to cost up to $100 million.

JUSTICE MINISTRY SEEKS TO BAN NATIONAL BOLSHEVIK PARTY. The Justice Ministry on 5 November asked the Supreme Court to overturn a Moscow region court decision on 27 September and ban the activity of the National Bolshevik Party, Interfax reported. Party leaders said that they have not yet received any official notification of this action.

SHAMIL LETTERS RETURNED TO RUSSIA. Prince Alexei Shcherbatov, the head of the Noble Assembly of North America, has handed over to presidential aide Sergei Yastrzhembskii 19 letters by Imam Shamil, who in the 19th century resisted Russian incursions in the North Caucasus for a generation before his surrender in 1859, ITAR-TASS reported. Yastrzhembskii expressed his gratitude for the gift and said the letters are extremely topical because they show "a profound transformation of Shamil's views concerning relations with Russia."

PUTIN REITERATES OPPOSITION TO BURYING LENIN. President Putin on 5 November reiterated his opposition to any move in the near future to remove Soviet state founder Vladimir Lenin from the mausoleum on Red Square and bury him as Lenin and his family requested, "Vremya MN" reported on 6 November. As he has in the past, Putin said that "actions of that kind could violate civil peace and the consolidation of society."

7 NOVEMBER HOLIDAY PASSES 'WITHOUT EXCESSES,' MVD SAYS. The Interior Ministry said on 7 November that the four major marches in Moscow to mark the national holiday took place "without excesses," Interfax reported. More than 3,000 police and internal forces officers were on guard in the Russian capital, Interfax said. According to a poll conducted by ROMIR and reported by Interfax on 7 November, older, less well-educated, and poorer Russians are far more likely to view 7 November as the anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution while younger, better-educated, and richer Russians are more inclined to view it as the Day of Peace and Accord.

VETERANS MARK 60TH ANNIVERSARY OF 1941 PARADE. Some 1,200 marchers, including 1,000 military veterans, marched through Red Square on 7 November to mark the 60th anniversary of a Revolution Day march from which participants immediately went on to fight against the Germans at the gates of Moscow, Interfax reported. The city government and the veterans laid flowers at the tomb of the unknown and at other memorials, the news service said.

JOURNALIST WHO COVERED CORRUPTION GIVEN MVD PRIZE. The Interior Ministry has awarded its annual prize in literature to "Moskovskii komsomolets" journalist Aleksandr Khinshtein for his coverage of corruption not only generally but also within the MVD itself, his paper reported on 6 November. By giving him this award, Interior Minster Boris Gryzlov hopes to show that he is serious about overcoming corruption within his own agency's ranks, the paper said.

FSB FINDS LARGE WEAPONS CACHE IN MOSCOW. A special unit of the Federal Security Service (FSB) has found a major arms cache in the city of Moscow, ORT television reported on 7 November. Among the weapons found were two large-caliber Kalashnikov machine guns, 21 Kalashnikov submachine guns, 12 SKS carbines, and 45 pistols of various sizes. The FSB discovery came after a tip from an informer who thought it must belong to a terrorist group. But the officials have learned that the weapons collection in fact belonged to a criminal enforcer gang.

FOREIGN OWNERSHIP IN DEFENSE SECTOR SPARKS PROBE. The Interior Ministry has launched a probe of foreign ownership of shares of Russian defense firms, "Vremya novostei" reported on 6 November. Interior Ministry investigators said they are "horrified" by their initial findings, which suggest that "foreigners have purchased more than 50 percent of the shares" in firms in this sector, "thereby gaining access to Russian state secrets."

AUDIT CHAMBER INVESTIGATES OFFICE OF PRESIDENTIAL PROPERTY... The head of Russia's Audit Chamber, Sergei Stepashin, is quoted in "Argumenty i fakty" on 9 November as saying that government agencies being investigated by the Chamber include the Office of Presidential Property (UDP) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. "One should not expect any surprises from these probes and they certainly will not shock President Putin, as he previously worked in the FSB and is well-informed," noted Stepashin. However, Chamber auditor Alexander Kushnar told "Izvestiya" on 6 November that the audit of the UDP is focused on the "Barvikha" government residence, one of former President Boris Yeltsin's favorite places to relax.

...AND PRIVATIZATION PROCESS. Stepashin said in an interview published in "Argumenty i fakty" on 8 November that his agency would examine the course of privatization in Russia. He said privatization in Russia sometimes took advantage of the absence of necessary laws, but often simply flaunted those laws that did exist. He noted that time is of the essence because some of the earliest privatizations in 1992 will soon be beyond the reach of prosecutors as a result of the 10-year statute of limitations on such actions.

SENIOR MVD OFFICER UNDER INVESTIGATION. Retired Interior Ministry Lieutenant General Aleksandr Orlov, whom the mass media have dubbed "the godfather of law enforcement corruption" and who now lives in Israel, is being investigated by his own agency, "Komsomolskaya pravda" reported on 6 November. MVD officials said that the investigation was launched at the request of the Duma, following media reports that Orlov has amassed a $100 million fortune through his close ties with organized crime in Russia and abroad. Among Orlov's most notorious associates was underworld chieftain Anton Malevskii. Orlov himself was an assistant to then-Interior Minister and current Security Council Secretary Vladimir Rushailo.

RUSSIAN ORGANIZED CRIME KINGPIN DIES MYSTERIOUSLY IN ISRAEL. Anton Malevskii, the leader of the Izmailovo organized crime group, died in Israel when his parachute failed to open during a jump, Interfax reported on 7 November. Malevskii, whose criminal group controlled much of the Russian non-ferrous metal market, was famous for his friendship with corrupt law enforcement personnel, including Aleksandr Orlov.

RUSSIA ASKS GEORGIA TO EXTRADITE SENIOR BEREZOVSKY AIDE. Deputy Prosecutor-General Valentin Simunchenkov told on 10 November that his agency has twice submitted official requests of Georgian officials to extradite Badri Patarkatsishvili, who is accused by Russian prosecutors of involvement in the massive embezzlement of funds from the state airline Aeroflot. Patarkatsishvili was a long-serving "number 2" in magnate Boris Berezovsky's financial empire and the person who implemented many of Berezovsky's projects. The website noted that Georgia, suffering from government instability, is more likely now than ever to return Patarkatsishvili, in order to avoid irritating Moscow.

CAPITAL FLIGHT INCREASES. Frightened by the anticorruption zeal of the Office of the Prosecutor-General, many Russian business groups are hurriedly moving their capital abroad or transferring it into trusts held by foreign partners, according to a report in "Nezavisimaya gazeta" on 10 November. According to the report, Sibneft and Russian Aluminum have in recent weeks transferred some of their assets to London-based holding companies, the United Machine Building Works moved some of their capital to a subsidiary in the Netherlands, and Mikhail Fridman's Alfa group has made investments worth more than $100 million in an unnamed Arab country.

DELYAGIN SAYS CAMPAIGN AGAINST CORRUPTION HAS BECOME A STRUGGLE BETWEEN CLANS. Moscow Globalization Institute Director Mikhail Delyagin said in an interview published in "Obshchaya gazeta" on 8 November that the anticorruption campaign launched by prosecutors looks more and more like a struggle among political clans, with the new St. Petersburg clan around Putin struggling to take property away from the groups that prospered under former President Boris Yeltsin. Delyagin, who has advised Putin in the past on how to fight corruption, said Russia needs an independent agency like the American FBI to do so.

MOSCOW LAYS CLAIM TO OIL-RICH ARCTIC SEABED. The Russian government has informed the United States, Canada, Norway, and Denmark that it is launching the legal procedure necessary to extend its national economic exclusion zone into the Barents and Karsk seas, Mayak Radio reported on 5 November. According to "Ekspert," No. 44, there are approximately 5 billion tons of hydrocarbons located in this shelf area, some 80 percent of all Russian reserves on the continental shelf. But "Versty" on 5 November warned that Russian claims to Arctic seabeds could prompt counterclaims by other countries that would leave some straits now used by Russia as part of the coastal waters of other countries.

MENATEP TO BUY OUT U.S. TELECOM OPERATOR IN RUSSIA. The Menatep financial group has reached an agreement to purchase the Russian holdings of the U.S. telecommunications company Andrew Corporation, Prime-TASS reported on 6 November. The details of the accord have not been made public, but a Menatep spokesman said this action will allow his company not only to control more of the Russian market in this sector but to enter the American telecommunications market as well.

ILLARIONOV SAYS RUSSIA HAS BECOME A MARKET ECONOMY. In an interview published in "Nezavisimaya gazeta" on 6 November, the 10th anniversary of the launch of economic reforms by then-President Yeltsin, presidential economics adviser Andrei Illarionov said that "the chief result of these 10 years is the establishment of a market economy." He said that despite many mistakes, what has taken place in Russia is "a genuine economic revolution."

FEDERAL INSPECTOR ALLEGES CRIMINALS IN TVER GOVERNMENT. Tver Oblast Governor Vladimir Platov is suing the chief federal inspector for Tver, Vladislav Kosenko, for libel, Russian agencies reported on 6 November. According to, the suit centers around comments Kosenko made to the publication "Moskovskii komsomolets v Tvere," in which he suggested that two of Platov's deputies have a "criminal past" and that another deputy, Aleksandr Zatvan, has ties to the "criminal authority Taramov." Platov's deputies have also appealed to the local prosecutor to file criminal charges of libel against Kosenko. Platov is seeking 2 million rubles in damages, which he promises to pass on to an educational establishment for children.

KASYANOV TAKES STEPS TO SUPPORT OIL PRICES. Prime-TASS reported on 9 November that Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov said proposals by Russian oil producers to reduce Russia's exports of hydrocarbons and de facto cuts already made by individual companies are not directly linked to a request by the international oil cartel OPEC that Moscow help prevent a drop in world oil prices. According to Kasyanov, were the worldwide price for oil to stabilize at a level under $18, Russia would not be able to maintain its currency reserves and would be forced to again seek foreign loans. Any additional cut in the price of oil would lead to an interruption of most social programs and the growth of inflation. As a result, the government supports the oil producers' initiative and will make export reduction its policy.

PUTIN SPEAKS AT GRU CELEBRATION. Speaking at a ceremony at Russian military intelligence (GRU) headquarters, Vladimir Putin said that the role of the agency "will greatly increase, not only as a tool of foreign policy but also as an element of military policy and defense," Russian news agencies reported on 5 November. In this context, Putin continued, the GRU is an important part of Russian military efforts in the Caucasus and, especially, in Chechnya, where 421 GRU officers have died in the past two years alone. Putin's visit to GRU headquarters is highly symbolic -- even though the Russian military intelligence service was first created in 1810 by Tsar Aleksandr I, the GRU celebrates its anniversary on the date Leon Trotsky signed a directive establishing the agency in 1918.

PUTIN SAID LEANING TO DEMILITARIZING LAW ENFORCEMENT BODIES. "Kommersant-Daily," No. 44, reported that President Putin currently is leaning toward approving the request of Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov that military-type units in the Interior Ministry, the Prosecutor-General's Office, the Emergency Situations Ministry, and the Customs Service should be transferred from those agencies to the Defense Ministry. The weekly also reported that Kremlin officials are planning to cut Interior Ministry personnel from 2 million to 500,000, Prosecutor-General's Office personnel from 50,000 to 35,000, and the Customs Service from 60,000 to 25,000.

SUPREME COURT STRIKES DOWN SOME MILITARY SECRECY RULES. The Russian Supreme Court on 6 November ruled that some of the provisions of the Defense Ministry's classification system are not in conformity with the law, NTV reported on 6 November. Among those struck down are some that were used by prosecutors against former Russian naval officer and environmentalist Aleksandr Nikitin in the past and against a variety of scientists and journalists today. The most important finding of the court, however, may be its conclusion that the military cannot classify information about its activities that cause negative effects on people and the environment.

DUMA LIKELY TO INCREASE FUNDS FOR SECURITY AGENCIES. Vladimir Reznik, the deputy head of the Duma's Unity faction, said on 8 November that his fellow parliamentarians are likely to revise the draft 2002 budget and provide more money for national defense, security agencies, and law enforcement personnel. He added that FSB and Interior Ministry units fighting in Chechnya will receive particularly large increases in funding.

PUTIN CALLS FOR COMBATING EXTREMISM. President Putin told senior law enforcement officials on 5 November to work harder to prevent extremist actions and to punish those who engage in them, Russian and Western agencies reported. He said that "negative instances of an extremist character are continuing." Meanwhile, the 30 October pogrom in which 300 young people attacked people from the Caucasus and Central Asia in Moscow claimed its third victim, Karam Dzhanmamaedov, 37, of Tajikistan, Interfax-Moscow reported. Police identified one of the instigators of the pogrom as Valerii Rusakov, 17, from the suburbs of the Russian capital, who goes by the nickname "Fascist." Meanwhile, in a move that may further anger Russian extremists, the Interior Ministry announced that illegal migrants with steady work in Russia could regularize their situation, "Izvestiya" reported on 5 November.

NORILSK AGAIN A CLOSED CITY. Prime Minister Kasyanov has signed a decree designating Norilsk a closed city just as it was before the collapse of the USSR, ORT reported on 8 November. The new status means that citizens of CIS countries and other foreigners can visit Norilsk only with the permission of the FSB, and travel agencies are prohibited from selling air and train tickets to Norilsk. But the city's mayor, Oleg Budarin, said he is pleased by Kasyanov's ruling because at present the city "is full of unwanted nonresidents and foreigners."