Yeltsin Confers with Kocharian On Possible Berezovsky Dismissal

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–Armenian President Robert Kocharian does not object to relieving Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky from the duties of the Commonwealth of Independent States executive secretary–a spokesman’said on Friday.

Russian President Boris Yeltsin wants Berezovsky removed for "regular actions going beyond the authority of the executive secretary of the CIS," according to his press service. The move was criticized by Georgia and Azerbaijan. Snark news agency quoted Presidents Eduard Shevardnadze of Georgia and Haydar Aliyev of Azerbaijan as saying that Yeltsin was not in a position to make the decision single-handedly.

Spokesman Vahe Gabrielian told RFE/RL that in a phone conversation with Kocharian on Friday–Yeltsin pointed to Berezovsky’s involvement in "internal political affairs of some CIS countries."This post does require certain restraint in internal political issues. In this context–would be wrong not to support the Russian president," Gabrielian said.

But the spokesman’said Kocharian thinks that the "interesting ideas on reforming the CIS," worked out by Berezovsky–should be utilized. Kocharian was the only CIS leader to express reservations about Berezovsky’s appointment to the post last year. But he has said he agrees with Berezovsky’s view that the loose grouping of twelve former Soviet republics can be made viable through economic incentives.

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