1.  Sustainable Development of Small Island
Developing States -- Timothy E. Wirth
2.  Fact Sheet:  Russia
3.  Country Fact Sheet:  Afghanistan
4.  Expanded Military and Defense Cooperation
With the Baltic States
5.  Rwanda:  Arms Embargo
6.  New Ambassadors
Sustainable Development of Small Island
Developing States
Deputy Secretary Talbott
Address before the UN Global Conference on the
Sustainable Development of Small Island
Developing States, Bridgetown, Barbados, May 5,
Thank you, Mr. Prime Minister and distinguished
delegates.  Standing here on this beautiful
island it is hard to picture the challenges
facing small island developing states that have
been identified during the past two weeks.  The
idea of an island is frequently associated in
the human mind with refuge from ordinary cares.
But we realize that today many small islands
face unprecedented threats to their
environments and tremendous challenges in their
efforts to achieve sustainable development.
The Earth Summit recognized these problems and
called for this conference to be held in order
to bring special attention to the problems
facing the small island developing states.  Our
delegations have worked hard and well
throughout these past two weeks to identify and
define the specific concerns and needs of these
Now, we must turn our attention to implementing
a sound, effective program of action that can
help ensure the sustainable development of
small island states.  As is clear from the work
done thus far, this will require a concerted
and sustained international commitment.
However, it is also clear from the events of
these past two weeks that there is no lack of
commitment to taking action in this area.
First, we must begin with climate change,
which, with its potential for sea level rise,
presents such a forbidding prospect for the
future of many small island states.  The United
States considers addressing climate change to
be a very high priority, and we are committed
to a global partnership in this area.  As an
initial step, we are committed to limiting U.S.
greenhouse gas emissions to their 1990 levels
by the year 2000.  We urge all developed
countries to take the steps necessary to
achieve their national commitments for limiting
emissions this century.
However, we recognize that even if these
measures are implemented, atmospheric
concentrations of greenhouse gases will
continue to grow, thus increasing the potential
for sea level rise and other severe global
consequences.  We, therefore, believe
international discussions need to begin now
with regard to what steps should be taken for
the period after the year 2000.  A strong,
sustained program of action in the area of
climate change is one of the most important
things the international community can do to
help ensure the sustainable development of
small island states.
Another long-term threat for island nations is
the rapid rate of population growth, which
undermines their national efforts to promote
sustainable development and achieve better
living standards.  Because of their size and
limited habitable area, many island nations
have already reached the limits of their
ability to provide the necessary infrastructure
and economic opportunities for all their
citizens, to sustain and nurture their
environments, and to maintain political
That is why we believe the International
Conference on Population and Development, to be
held later this year in Cairo, is of great
significance both to the world and the small
island states.  We are strongly committed to
making the ICPD a success and to expanding our
cooperation with other countries in a wide
range of areas, including family planning,
child survival, the education and improved
status of women, strengthening the role and
responsibility of the family, and linking
population stabilization to sustainable
Marine pollution and coastal zone degradation
present even more immediate dangers for small
island developing states.  We believe that
dealing with land-based sources of marine
pollution, which account for more than two-
thirds of all marine pollution, should be a
priority for international action.  To further
international efforts to address marine
pollution problems, the United States will host
the UNEP Intergovernmental Conference on the
Protection of the Marine Environment from Land
Based Activities in November 1995.  As called
for in "Agenda 21," this conference will help
identify specific measures that can be taken to
ameliorate the serious marine pollution
problems faced by a great many countries,
including most small island developing states.
Closer to home, we are supporting efforts under
the UNEP Regional Seas Program to develop a
protocol on land-based sources of marine
pollution for the wider Caribbean region.  In a
recent meeting of experts in Puerto Rico, we
urged that negotiations on this protocol begin
as soon as possible.  We hope that a successful
land-based sources protocol in the Caribbean
will provide an example of how regional marine
pollution problems can be dealt with.
An important symbol of the problems facing
small island states can be found in the current
disturbing situation of coral reefs around the
world.  Coral reefs and related ecosystems have
been degraded over the past few decades as a
result of pollution, sedimentation,
overfishing, coastal development, and, perhaps,
climate change and ozone depletion.  The
current massive outbreak of coral bleaching in
French Polynesia is just one more sign of the
seriousness of this problem.  Some sources
estimate that 10% of all coral reefs have been
degraded beyond recovery and that another 30%
will be in peril over the next 10-20 years.
This is of particular concern to us here,
because coral reefs are an essential resource
base for the sustainable development of many
small island states and are a rich resource of
biodiversity--key to the discovery of new
foods, fiber, fuel, and pharmaceuticals for our
children and grandchildren.
The United States believes that we must all
begin to work together now to halt this
alarming trend.  As a first step in this
effort, I am pleased to announce that the
United States is developing a multifaceted
Coral Reef Initiative.  Plans for its core
elements include strengthening countries'
capacity to preserve, manage, and protect such
ecosystems and improving research and
monitoring for management and sustainable
development.  As this initiative becomes more
fully developed, we will invite partnerships
with other countries and entities, including
non-governmental organizations, in what will
need to become a truly international effort.
We intend to invite key countries,
international organizations, and NGOs to a
proposed intersessional meeting under the
auspices of the UN Commission on Sustainable
Development by early 1995.  We hope to focus
attention on coral reef ecosystems and provide
an opportunity for substantive and pragmatic
discussion about how we can all cooperate in
protecting these vital resources.  If we can
address the threats to coral reefs--like marine
pollution and coastal zone degradation--we will
also address many fundamental challenges to the
sustainable development of small island states.
Finally, if we are to realize all the ambitious
goals set out during these past two weeks, a
unified inter-national effort will be needed.
This will include an unprecedented degree of
cooperation among the major funding sources for
sustainable development, including bilateral
donors, multilateral development banks, and the
private sector.  It will require what Prime
Minister Sandiford so well described this
morning in a new concept of  multilateralism.
It will require new and imaginative forms of
financing, including debt-for-nature exchanges,
public-private partnerships, and the promise of
intellectual property protection combined with
the enormous patrimony from nature's diversity.
It will require the full engagement of   non-
governmental organizations--some of the most
effective and creative institutions available
to carry out the mandate of sustainable
development--and, at the same time, to hold
governments accountable.  And from the
perspective of the United States of America, it
will require what President Clinton and Vice
President Gore have called a new partnership:
We look forward to working with you and to
receiving your ideas, suggestions, criticism,
and input.  We are all in this together and
must act accordingly.  All of these processes
must consider the special needs of the small
island developing states, and the United States
intends to play an active role.
Today, the plight of small island states--which
are so vulnerable to problems that affect all
humankind, such as climate change,
overpopulation, pollution, and economic decline-
-is like a warning to us all.  If we cannot
work together to address the basic concerns of
these states, then surely we will fail in our
broader efforts to deal with the long-term
challenges facing this planet.
Mr. Prime Minister, I thank you and all the
delegates for this opportunity to participate
in what is an extremely important historical
event.  The United States is committed to doing
everything possible to address the problems and
concerns expressed in this conference.  We
intend to begin immediately to help to
implement the program of action for the
sustainable development of small island
nations.  (###)
Fact Sheet:  Russia
U.S.-Russian Relations
During the summit meeting in Moscow, January 12-
15, 1994, President Clinton and President
Yeltsin reaffirmed the fundamental importance
of U.S.-Russian cooperation based on the
Charter of American-Russian Partnership and
Friendship, the Vancouver Declaration, and
existing treaties and agreements.  They noted
that the relationship between the U.S. and
Russia has entered a new stage of mature
strategic partnership based on equality, mutual
advantage, and recognition of each other's
national interests.  From this perspective,
they reviewed the full range of bilateral and
international issues.  The two Presidents are
convinced that the U.S. and Russia will
continue to consolidate their partnership and
together promote global stability, peace, and
Additionally, the two Presidents, with
President Kravchuk of Ukraine, signed a
trilateral statement providing for the transfer
of all nuclear weapons in Ukraine to Russia for
dismantlement and specifying prompt
compensation by Russia to Ukraine for the
highly enriched uranium in transferred nuclear
Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin also agreed to
de-target the strategic nuclear missiles under
their command by May 30, 1994.
During their summit meeting in Vancouver,
Canada, April 3-4, 1993, Presidents Clinton and
Yeltsin agreed on a new package of bilateral
economic programs to address Russia's immediate
humanitarian needs and contribute to its
successful transition to a market economy and
democracy.  The economic package announced at
the Vancouver summit totaled $1.6 billion for
In September 1993, Congress passed a $2.45-
billion assistance package for the New
Independent States (NIS) which included a
$1.8-billion bilateral package, initially
announced during the summit meeting of the
Group of Seven (G-7) industrialized countries
in Tokyo in July 1993. The funding supports
seven categories of assistance:  private sector
development, a special privatization and
restructuring fund, trade and investment,
democracy initiatives, humanitarian assistance,
energy and environment, and support for troop
withdrawal and housing.  About two-thirds of
the approved $2.45-billion assistance package
will be directed to Russia, while the remaining
one-third will be disbursed among the other 11
New Independent States.
The accomplishments of the Moscow, G-7 Tokyo,
and Vancouver summits built upon the wide range
of specific agreements on political, security,
and economic issues reached during the June
1992 U.S.-Russia summit in Washington, DC (see
Dispatch, Vol. 3, No. 25, June 22, 1992).
The United States has pledged active American
support for the Russian people as they pursue
their course toward democratic institutions and
a free market economy.  The cornerstone of the
continuing U.S. partnership with Russia and the
other NIS has been the Freedom for Russia and
Emerging Eurasian Democracies and Open Markets
(FREEDOM) Support Act, enacted in October 1992,
which directly addresses their political,
economic, and military transformation.
Through 1993, U.S. assistance provided to
Russia has been about $1.6 billion in
humanitarian assistance and $355 million in
technical assistance (not including nuclear
weapons dismantlement--see p. 370, "Military
Issues.")  The focus of U.S. assistance to
Russia is support for Russia's transition to a
market economy, transition to democracy, and
providing humanitarian assistance.
Assistance To Support Transition to a Market
Economy.   The U.S. Government has been at the
forefront of delivering privatization
assistance to Russia since October 1992.  The
U.S. Agency for International Development's
(USAID) privatization assistance program
focuses mainly on:
--   Creating privatization policies, programs,
and transactions to move government-owned
assets--such as trucks, factories, or small
enterprises-- into the hands of private owners;
--  Developing complementary infrastructure, to
include the creation of laws and regulations, a
viable stock exchange, regulatory agencies, and
business support organizations--all of which
help to safeguard the commercial viability of
privatized enterprises.
The thrust of these two initiatives helps
create a business environment which is
transparent, fair, and predictable, and
encourages foreign and domestic investment.
On September 28, 1993, USAID signed a grant
agreement to initiate the Russian-American
Enterprise Fund.  The U.S. plans to capitalize
the fund with more than $300 million in foreign
assistance appropriations over the next three
years.  It will focus $40 million on activities
in the Russian Far East.  Given the rich
resources in the Far East and the importance of
the Pacific Rim, this assistance will help
catalyze the region's vast business potential,
including joint ventures with American firms.
The fund, which is managed by a private Board
of Directors, has authority to make loans and
equity investments and offer technical
assistance to promote new private businesses
and entrepreneurs in Russia, with special
emphasis on the promotion of  small and medium-
sized enterprises.  It uses U.S. Government
capitalization to attract other resources for
private-sector development in Russia.
In addition to privatization assistance,
technical assistance and training programs also
have been provided in small business
development and management; export marketing;
market economy; securities market and exchange
operations and regulations; banking; auditing;
finance; budget management; tax policy; revenue
forecasting; agricultural and agribusiness
development; food systems restructuring; energy
management; pricing; regulation and efficiency;
design of geological database project; gas
distribution; nuclear reactor safety; coal mine
safety; petroleum trade; defense conversion;
land titling; land use planning; review of
draft housing policy law; housing development,
reform, management, and finance; insurance and
health care financing; health regulation;
hospital administration; and vaccine
manufacturing, quality control, and monitoring
Eight medical partnerships have been
established between U.S. institutions and
Russian institutions in Moscow, Dubna,
Murmansk, St. Petersburg, Vladivostok, and
Stavropol.  Funding for grain and potato
storage facilities has been provided.  Peace
Corps volunteers are working in Russia with a
focus on small enterprise development.  A U.S.-
Russia Joint Commission for Agri-business and
Rural Development was established in March
1994.  The commission will channel funds
generated by the sale of donated U.S.
commodities to support private and social
initiatives in rural communities throughout
The Eurasia Foundation is a privately managed
grant-making organization established with
USAID financing to support NIS activities in
economic and democratic reform.  Funding of $4
million has been provided to U.S. private
voluntary organizations (PVOs) to enhance the
capabilities of indigenous non-governmental
organizations in Russia to foster volunteerism.
In response to the $6-million Russian Officer
Resettlement Initiative announced during the
Vancouver summit, a pilot project for
constructing 450 housing units and training
demobilizing officers returning from the
Baltics and elsewhere began in September 1993.
U.S. teams visited Moscow in October and
November 1993 to meet with Russian officials to
initiate design of a follow-on project to
provide an additional 5,000 housing units, for
demobilizing and retiring Russian officers from
the Baltics and elsewhere, through direct
construction and voucher programs.  This
program was announced by President Clinton at
the G-7 summit.  Actual construction is
scheduled to begin in late summer 1994.
Assistance To Support Transition to Democracy.
Technical assistance and training programs
provided in the rule of law have included
legislative drafting; judicial restructuring,
including jury trials; criminal law reform;
U.S. legal and judicial system; federal, state,
and local court systems; adversarial court
systems; mock jury trials; judicial exchanges;
labor relations; conflict resolution;
legislative drafting; constitutional reform and
the draft Russian constitution; food and drug
legislation; and law-making for democracy.  A
USAID rule-of-law program for Russia was
launched in early 1994 with the opening of a
Moscow office to coordinate programs.  Programs
in public administration have included local
self-government, parliamentary exchange,
promotion of civilian involvement in military
affairs,  municipal management and finance,
municipal education, business involvement in
city government, and intergovernmental fiscal
management.  Programs in media have included
independent press and broadcast media,
publishing, editing, marketing, advertising,
legal aspects of advertising, legal aspects of
publishing, station management, communications,
and copyright legislation.  The U.S.
Information Agency has signed Worldnet
rebroadcast agreements with 54 national, local,
and independent television stations throughout
In the area of political process development to
support free and fair elections, the U.S. has
provided technical assistance and training to
political parties in preparation for the
December 1993 parliamentary elections, as well
as assistance in election law analysis and
encouragement of voter participation through
media activities and public dialogue, training
of Russian monitoring teams, and work with the
Russian Central Election Commission and support
for electoral administrations.
U.S. technical assistance has been provided to
teachers and national and regional
administrators in the form of seminars and
consultations in the areas of education,
civics, American studies, long-distance
learning methods, new methodologies in the
instruction process, strategies for adding
social sciences and humanities to the
curriculum of Russian technical colleges, the
development of a management training curriculum
for the manufacturing and industrial base
(including a faculty exchange and an internship
program), higher education reform, and
community colleges.  U.S. educators also are
teaching English at universities and higher
schools of learning.  Many Russian students and
scholars have participated in higher education
exchange programs.  Books and articles on
topics such as free market economy and
democracy have been translated, published, and
Humanitarian Assistance.  Much of the U.S.
Government's humanitarian assistance effort has
been under Operation Provide Hope, which was
officially launched in January 1992.  Three
phases have been completed involving the
delivery of Department of Defense (DoD) excess
food, medicines, and medical supplies to Russia
and other destinations using DoD transportation
assets (including contracts with private
shipping entities).  Under these  phases, the
U.S. has delivered an estimated $48.8 million
worth of food and more than $97 million worth
of medicines, medical supplies, and equipment
to Russia.  Recent additional deliveries of DoD
excess medical equipment and supplies included
two 1,000-bed hospitals to Moscow, 40,000
pounds of medical supplies worth $1.2 million
to Yakutsk, and $3.8 million worth of medical
supplies to the Russian Far East.
--  The Medical Assistance Initiative--Under
the Medical Assistance Initiative (formerly the
Presidential Medical Initiative), deliveries of
medicines and medical supplies worth about $55
million have been made.
--  The USAID Emergency Medicines Initiative
drew upon a $10 million appropriation to
purchase emergency medicines for the New
Independent States.  For Russia, this fund has
been used to purchase more than $16,000 worth
of pharmaceuticals, primarily leukemia drugs,
that were delivered to Khabarovsk in November
--  Public Health and Nutritional Surveillances-
-The Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control
(CDC) has been working with Russian Ministry of
Health departments and other organizations
since October 1992 to study the availability of
health care resources, to identify early
warning indicators of disease, and strengthen
existing health and nutrition information
systems.  The CDC also has assessed the Russian
nutritional surveillance system and worked with
the Russian Institute for Nutrition in
designing a nutrition survey.  In 1993, the
U.S. provided $371,880 for migration capacity-
building, including emergency support,
resettlement, and reintegration of forced
migrants in Russia; $50,000 was provided for
direct assistance projects for returning
migrants.  These funds were contributed to the
International Organization for Migration for
these efforts.
--  Food Assistance--Separate from the food
deliveries made under Operation Provide Hope,
the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has
three supply initiatives to provide food
assistance to Russia.  USDA provided more than
$250 million in grant food aid to Russia in
fiscal year (FY) 1993 for a variety of
commodities including:  rice, corn, baby food,
wheat and wheat flour, whole dry milk, and
peanuts and peanut products.  The U.S. also has
provided donations of corn ($29 million) and
feed wheat ($24.7 million) to Russia in FY
In 1992, USDA provided Russia with 63,485
metric tons of commodities worth $52.5 million
under the Food for Progress program and 39,365
metric tons of food worth about $75 million
under the Section 416 (b) program.
(Transportation costs were included.)
In FY 1994, the U.S. expects to provide 14,350
metric tons of commodities, valued at $13.7
million, through two U.S. PVOs, under the Food
for Progress program.  An additional 15,000
metric tons of food aid, valued at $25.2
million, will be provided through four U.S.
PVOs under the Section 416(b) program.
--  Special Commodities--Under separate
programs, the U.S. Government purchased more
than $75 million worth of commodities which
were distributed by nine U.S. private voluntary
organizations to further their charitable work
with vulnerable populations, especially women
and children.
A second component of the U.S. humanitarian
assistance effort has been donations by the
private sector.  Under the Medical Assistance
Initiative, the non-profit organization Project
HOPE was authorized to solicit, collect, and
distribute medicines and medical supplies
within the New Independent States.  Since the
announcement of this initiative in February
1991, Project HOPE has shipped more than $54
million worth of medical items to more than 50
locations in Russia.
Working through non-profit contractors, U.S.
private voluntary organizations have their
donated humanitarian assistance items
transported by the U.S. Government.  In 1992
and 1993, about 18,728 tons of food, medicines,
and medical supplies were delivered to more
than 150 cities in Russia.  The value of these
shipments was more than $54 million.  Also in
1993, the U.S. provided funding to airlift
medicines and medical supplies valued at $10
million to five locations in Russia.
Multilateral Cooperation.  On April 2, 1993,
the U.S. and Russia's other bilateral creditors
signed an agreement to reschedule about $15
billion of Russia's debt service payments that
are now due or will come due during 1993.  The
agreement obliges Russia to pay its official
bilateral creditors about $2 billion during
1993.  This debt rescheduling is a major
development because it regularizes Russia's
arrearages with the U.S. and other official
creditors.  The agreement is generous by normal
international standards and is intended to give
the Russian Government time to implement
economic reforms.  On September 30, 1993, the
U.S. and Russia signed a bilateral agreement to
implement rescheduling.
At the 1992 Munich summit, the U.S. and other
members of the   G-7 announced a $24-billion
package to support Russia's macroeconomic
reforms.  The package included $11 billion in
bilateral financing, $4.5 billion in
International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World
Bank loans, $2.5 billion in debt referral, and
a $6-billion currency stabilization fund.  The
G-7 has provided more than $12 billion in
bilateral financing, and the World Bank granted
Russia a credit of $600 million as a
"rehabilitation loan" to finance critical
imports in the consumer sector and a $70-
million loan to improve social services.  In
August 1992, the IMF approved a first tranche
of $1 billion for Russia (disbursed in July
1993) under the Systemic Transformation
Facility.  In March 1994, agreement was reached
for release of a second, $1.5 billion tranche.
Russia's access to much of the $24-billion
package, including the fund to help stabilize
the ruble, depends on the conclusion of a full-
scale IMF stand-by program, which Russia and
the IMF have yet to conclude.
Bilateral Economic Issues.  Current U.S.
bilateral trade with Russia is only about $3
billion.  Although American companies are the
largest investors in Russia, total U.S.
investment is estimated at only $400 million.
At Vancouver, Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin
made bilateral trade and investment growth a
major priority.  Implementation centers in the
U.S.-Russia Business Development Committee
(BDC), which was established at the June 1992
summit and is now co-chaired by U.S. Commerce
Secretary Brown and Russian Deputy Prime
Minister Shokhin.  The BDC will be the primary
vehicle to help identify and remove impediments
to trade and investment.  In October 1993,
Russia received General System of Preferences
(GSP) status.  More than $440 million of
Russian goods will benefit.  The U.S. also will
support Russia's application to become a member
of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade
Under the leadership of Vice President Gore and
Prime Minister Chernomyrdin, the U.S. and
Russia are advancing bilateral cooperation
through six working committees known
collectively as the Gore-Chernomyrdin
Commission (GCC).  Progress continues at the
working level on a range of specific issues in
the fields of science and technology, business
development, space, energy policy,
environmental protection, and defense
diversification.  The next high-level GCC
meeting is scheduled for June 1994 in the U.S.
The Export-Import Bank (Eximbank) has approved
more than $240 million in loan guarantees and
insurance for transactions in Russia.  In  July
1993, Eximbank signed an Oil and Gas Framework
Agreement with Russia under which secured
credit guarantees of about $2 billion will be
extended to support capital equipment exports
for the rehabilitation of Russia's energy
sector.  In March 1994, Eximbank approved its
first transaction under the framework, a $231
million credit for Permeneft, an oil production
association.  Exim-bank has received more than
$750 million in additional Government of Russia-
approved applications that are eligible for
support under this framework agreement.
The Trade and Development Agency and the
Commerce Department's Special American Business
Internship Training Program also have programs
in Russia.  The U.S. will open four American
business centers in Russia this year to help
U.S. and Russian companies do business with
each other.
In addition, the U.S. and Russia signed an
agreement at the June 1992 summit which grants
reciprocal most-favored-nation status and
offers strong intellectual property rights
protection.  At the same time, the two
countries signed two other treaties.  The
Treaty for the Avoidance of Double Taxation,
which entered into force in January 1994,
provides relief from double taxation, assurance
of non-discriminatory tax treatment,
cooperative efforts between officials to
resolve potential problems, and the exchange of
information between tax authorities to improve
compliance with tax laws.  The Bilateral
Investment Treaty, when ratified by the Russian
Parliament, will guarantee the right to
repatriate ruble profits in hard currency, non-
discriminatory treatment for U.S. investments,
effective compensation in case of
expropriation, and international arbitration in
the event of a dispute between the U.S.
investor and the Russian Government.
Military Issues.  The U.S. and Russia have
begun to define a new security partnership
emphasizing cooperation in the interest of
strategic stability, nuclear safety, the
dismantlement of nuclear weapons, the
prevention of the proliferation of weapons of
mass destruction and their delivery systems,
and enhanced military-to-military contacts.  In
Lisbon on May 23, 1992, the United States
signed a protocol to the START I Treaty with
Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine--those
states on whose territory strategic nuclear
weapons of the former Soviet Union were located-
-making the four states party to the treaty and
committing all signatories to reductions in
strategic nuclear weapons within the seven-year
period provided by the treaty.
 On November 4, 1992, Russia ratified START but
stipulated that it would not exchange its
instrument of ratification until the other
three states accede to the nuclear Non-
Proliferation Treaty as non-nuclear weapons
states.  On January 3, 1993, the U.S. and
Russia signed the Treaty between the United
States of America and the Russian Federation on
Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic
Offensive Arms (START II), which reduces
overall deployments of strategic nuclear
weapons on each side by more than two-thirds
from current levels and will eliminate the most
destabilizing strategic weapons--heavy
intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and
all other deployed multiple-warhead ICBMs.
Following ratification by Russia and the other
NIS, the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe
Treaty entered into force on November 9, 1992.
This treaty establishes comprehensive limits on
key categories of military equipment--such as
tanks, artillery, armored combat vehicles,
combat aircraft, and combat helicopters--and
provides for the destruction of weapons in
excess of these limits.
On September 8, 1993, the U.S. and Russia
signed a memorandum of understanding on defense
cooperation that institutionalized and expanded
relations between their defense ministries,
including through a broad range of military-to-
military contacts and joint training for peace-
keeping.  On January 14, 1994, Presidents
Clinton and Yeltsin agreed that by May 30,
1994, the strategic nuclear missiles of each
country will not be targeted.
On April 10, 1992, the Deputy Secretary of
State certified that the Russian Federation had
met the criteria required under the Soviet
Nuclear Threat Reduction Act, commonly known as
the "Nunn-Lugar Act," for financial assistance
to dismantle and destroy nuclear and chemical
weapons and to convert defense industries to
civilian pursuits.  In January 1993, the U.S.
delivered the first set of emergency equipment
for use in the transport, storage, and
dismantlement of nuclear weapons. Overall, the
U.S. has agreed to provide nearly $500 million
in Nunn-Lugar assistance to Russia.
On March 3, 1994, the International Science and
Technology Center opened in Moscow through the
efforts of the founding parties--the U.S., the
European Union, Japan, and Russia.  With Nunn-
Lugar funding, the U.S. provided $25 million
for the center, which is designed to prevent
the proliferation of technology and expertise
related to weapons of mass destruction by
providing peaceful employment opportunities to
scientists and engineers formerly involved with
such weapons and their delivery systems.
Political Conditions
In free elections in June 1991, Boris Yeltsin
was elected President of the Russian
Federation.  His mandate was strengthened in a
national referendum in April 1993, in which a
majority of Russian voters expressed--in
response to separate questions--their support
for Present Yeltsin, for his economic reform
program, and for early elections to a new
By the fall of 1993, politics in Russia had
reached a stalemate between President Yeltsin
and the parliament.  The parliament had
succeeded in blocking, overturning, or ignoring
the President's initiatives on drafting a new
constitution, conducting new elections, and
making further progress on democratic and
economic reform.
In a dramatic speech on September 21, President
Yeltsin dissolved the Russian parliament and
scheduled national elections for December 12,
1993.  Fifty-four percent (58 million) of
registered voters participated in the
elections.  Two houses of the new Russian
parliament were elected on that date--the upper
Federation Council (170 members) and the lower
State Duma (450 members).  Members of both
houses will serve for two-year terms for the
first sitting.
Half of the Duma members were elected from
party lists and the other half in single-seat
races in individual election districts.  Pro-
reform groups won a total of 112 Duma seats:
--  Yegor Gaidar's "Russia's Choice," 65 seats;
-- Grigoriy Yavlinskiy's "Yabloko," 26 seats;
--  Sergey Shakhray's "Party of Russian Unity
and Accord," 21 seats.
Opposition groups won 144 seats:
--  Vladimir Zhirinovskiy's "Liberal Democratic
Party," 65 seats;
--  Gennadiy Zyuganov's "Russian Communist
Party," 42 seats;
--  Agrarian Party, 37 seats.
Centrists and other parties won 38 seats;
--  Nikolai Travkin's "Democratic Party," 15
seats; and
--  "Women of Russia," 23 seats.
Independents won 135 seats, while
representatives from other parties gained 15
In the Federation Council, 170 deputies were
elected on December 12.  Voters elected many
regional officials to the Council, including 42
governors, 6 republic presidents, 8 republic
prime ministers, and 17 republic Supreme Soviet
chairs.  Other deputies include directors of
privatized state enterprises, journalists, and
professors.  Most winners were not identified
with any party.  The parliamentary leadership--
as well as President Yeltsin--has called for a
new era of compromise and mutual accommodation
between the executive and legislative branches
in Russia.
A new constitution also was adopted in 1993.
Foreign Relations
On December 27, 1991, Russia assumed the seat
formerly held by the Soviet Union in the UN
Security Council.  Russia also is a member of
the Conference on Security and Cooperation in
Europe (CSCE) and the North Atlantic
Cooperation Council.
Russia has played a constructive role in
mediating international conflicts through its
co-sponsorship of the Middle East peace process
and its support of UN and multilateral
initiatives in the Persian Gulf, Cambodia,
Angola, and the former Yugoslavia.  Russia has
affirmed its respect for international law and
CSCE principles.  It has welcomed CSCE
involvement in instances of regional conflict
on its periphery, including the  dispatch of
observers to Georgia, Moldova, Tajikistan, and
Economic Outlook
The Russian Federation comprises roughly three-
quarters of the territory of the New
Independent States, more than one-half of their
population, and 60% of their total gross
domestic product.  Agricultural production,
chiefly grain and potatoes, accounts for more
than one-half of the production of the NIS.
Russia is rich in energy sources such as oil
and natural gas (two-thirds of which come from
Siberia) as well as coal.
The Russian economy is experiencing a wrenching
contraction as it moves from a command to a
free market system.  GDP decreased by 12% in
1993 (an improvement from the 19% drop in
1992).  Agricultural production declined by 6%
in 1993.  Industrial output fell by 16% and the
rate of investment fell by 15% in the same
year.  Official unemployment was only 1% of the
71 million in the work force in 1993 (excluding
the estimated 4-5 million who work reduced
hours or are on voluntary leave).
Inflation rose to a peak of 30% in January
1993.  It has fluctuated at double-digit rates
since then as the government has pursued
various economic policies (such as raising
interest rates, cutting food subsidies, and
delaying debt payments) with limited success.
As of early 1994, the inflation rate was
estimated at 10%.
Russia's trade balance was positive in 1993,
primarily as a result of lower grain import
requirements, higher import duties, and reduced
use of Western trade credits.  The government
has rescheduled its official debt payment
obligations but has been unable to do so with
its commercial creditors.  It has increased
official foreign exchange reserves to about $5
billion in 1993 (to some extent due to non-
payment of commercial creditors).  Capital
flight remains a serious problem.
Russia has made significant headway in
privatizing many economic sectors.  About 50%
of GDP is now produced in the market economy.
As of March 1994, about 15,000 large, state
enterprises had sold shares to the public
through auctions; more than 80,000 small firms
had been transferred to the private sector.
There are 270,000 private farms.  Although
private and reorganized state-cooperative farms
are increasingly productive and efficient,
privatization has not yet generated efficiency
gains in industry.  About 30% of state-owned
housing (about 8 million dwellings) had been
turned over to private individuals by the end
of 1993.  However, state-subsidized rents and
utilities discourage individual home ownership.
Consumers make 70% of their purchases in the
private sector to take advantage of better
selection, quality, and service.  Food
availability and real per capita income have
improved or stabilized, but social welfare
problems, such as increased crime and health
care shortages, are serious.  Also, the gap
between rich and poor has widened; about one-
third of the population lives below the
official poverty level.
Environmental Issues
The Russian Government has inherited serious
environmental problems.  Air pollution and
inadequate supplies of uncontaminated water
have affected the health of the population and
contributed to increased infant mortality
rates.  Radioactive pollution-- generated by
military nuclear testing and unsafe nuclear
production plants, institutes, and laboratories-
-is especially dangerous.
At the April 1993 Vancouver summit, the U.S.
and Russia announced their intention to expand
joint work in the area of environmental
protection.  They agreed to coordinate joint
ecological measures and support for financing
these programs.
In cooperation with the international
community, Russia works to develop sound
environmental policies.  It has established a
Ministry of Environment and has introduced a
pollution-fee system which taxes air and water
emissions and solid waste disposal and channels
revenues to environmental protection
activities.  Russia also aims to develop
regional cooperation among the NIS on
transborder environmental problems.
Russia at a Glance
Many ethnically diverse peoples migrated into
the East European plain, but the East Slavs
remained and gradually became dominant.
Predecessors of the modern Russians, the East
Slavs first appeared in the steppe region north
of the Black Sea.  Kievan Rus', the first East
Slavic state, emerged in the late 9th century
AD, coinciding with the arrival of Scandinavian
traders and warriors, the Varangians.
According to tradition, a Varangian named Rurik
first established himself peaceably at Novgorod
by 860 and founded a dynasty.  Kievan Rus' was
not able to maintain its position as a powerful
and prosperous state.  Nevertheless, it left a
strong legacy, and its traditions were adapted
to form the Russian state.
When the Mongols invaded Kievan Rus' in the
13th century, Moscow was an insignificant
trading outpost in the principality of Vladimir-
Suzdal'.  The greatest expansion of the
principality of Muscovy took place under the
rule of Ivan III (1461-1505), who took the
title of Czar and "Ruler of all Rus'."  By the
beginning of the 16th century, Muscovy had
united virtually all ethnically Russian lands.
Under the guidance of two Western-looking
monarchs, Peter the Great (1682-1725) and
Catherine the Great (1762-96), Muscovy was
transformed from an isolated, traditional state
into the dynamic, powerful Russian Empire which
played an increasingly active role in the
affairs of Europe.
In 1917, the Bolsheviks overthrew the czarist
regime, ending three centuries of Romanov rule.
On December 30, 1922,  Bolshevik leaders
established the Union of Soviet Socialist
Republics on territory generally corresponding
to that of the old Russian Empire.  With the
breakup of the Soviet Union in December 1991,
Russia became an independent country.
According to 1991 estimates, Russia's
population is about 148 million, of whom 81.5%
are ethnic Russians.  The territory of Russia
is about 17 million square kilometers, making
it the world's largest country.
Principal Government Officials
President:  Boris Yeltsin
Prime Minister: Viktor Chernomyrdin
Foreign Minister:  Andrei Kozyrev  (###)
Country Fact Sheet:  Afghanistan
Afghanistan's ethnically and linguistically
mixed population reflects its location astride
historic trade and invasion routes leading from
Central Asia into South and Southwest Asia.
Pashtuns are the dominant ethnic group,
accounting for about 38% of the population.
Tajik (25%), Uzbek (6%), Hazara (19%), Aimaq
(6%), Turkmen (2%), and other small groups are
also represented.  Dari (Afghan Persian) and
Pashto are official languages.  Dari is spoken
by more than one-third of the population as a
first language and serves as a lingua franca
for most Afghans.  Tajik, Uzbek, and Turkmen
are spoken widely in the north.  More than 70
other languages and numerous dialects are also
spoken by smaller groups throughout the
Afghanistan is an Islamic country.  An
estimated 84% of the population is Sunni;  the
remainder is predominantly Shi'a, including
Isma'ilis, Hazaras, and the Qizilbash.  Despite
attempts during the years of communist rule to
secularize Afghan society, Islamic practices
still pervade all aspects of life.  Likewise,
Islamic religious tradition and codes provide
the principal means of controlling personal
conduct and settling legal disputes.  Excluding
urban populations in the principal cities, most
Afghans are divided into clans and tribal
groups, which follow centuries-old customs and
religious practices.
Afghanistan, often called the crossroads of
Central Asia, has had a turbulent history.  In
328 BC, Alexander the Great entered the
territory of present-day Afghanistan, then part
of the Persian Empire, to capture Bactria
(present-day Balkh).  Invasions by the
Scythians, White Huns, and Turks followed in
succeeding centuries.  In AD 642, Arabs invaded
the entire region and introduced Islam.
Arab rule quickly gave way to the Persians, who
controlled the area until conquered by the
Turkic Ghaznavids in 998.  Mahmud of Ghazni
(998-1030) consolidated the conquests of his
predecessors and turned Ghazni into a great
cultural center as well as a base for frequent
forays into India.  Following Mahmud's short-
lived dynasty, various princes attempted to
rule sections of the country until the Mongol
invasion of 1219.  The Mongol invasion, led by
Genghis Khan, resulted in the destruction of
many cities, including Herat, Ghazni, and
Balkh, and the despoliation of fertile
agricultural areas.
Following Genghis Khan's death in 1227, a
succession of petty chieftains and princes
struggled for supremacy until the late 14th
century, when his descendant, Tamerlane,
incorporated Afghanistan into his own vast
Asian empire.  Babur, a descendant of Tamerlane
and the founder of India's Moghul dynasty at
the beginning of the 16th century, made Kabul
the capital of an Afghan principality.
In 1747, Ahmad Shah Durrani, the founder of
what is known today as Afghanistan, established
his rule.  A Pashtun, Durrani was elected king
by a tribal council after the assassination of
the Persian ruler Nadir Shah at Khabushan in
the same year.  Throughout his reign, Durrani
consolidated chieftainships, petty
principalities, and fragmented provinces into
one country.  His rule extended from Mashhad in
the west to Kashmir and Delhi in the east, and
from the Amu Darya (Oxus) River in the north to
the Arabian Sea in the south.  All of
Afghanistan's rulers until the 1978 Marxist
coup were from Durrani's Pashtun tribal
confederation, and all were members of that
tribe's Mohammadzai clan after 1818.
European Influence
Collision between the expanding British and
Russian Empires significantly influenced
Afghanistan during the 19th century.  British
concern over Russian advances in Central Asia
and growing influence in Persia culminated in
two Anglo-Afghan wars.  The first (1839-42)
resulted not only in the destruction of a
British army but is remembered today as an
example of the ferocity of Afghan resistance to
foreign rule.  The second Anglo-Afghan war
(1878-80) was sparked by Amir Shir Ali's
refusal to accept a British mission in Kabul.
This conflict brought Amir Abdur Rahman to the
Afghan throne.  During his reign (1880-1901),
the British and Russians officially established
the boundaries of what would become modern
Afghanistan.  The British retained effective
control over Kabul's foreign affairs.
Afghanistan remained neutral during World War
I, despite German encouragement of anti-British
feelings and Afghan rebellion along the borders
of British India.  The Afghan king's policy of
neutrality was not universally popular within
the country, however.  Habibullah, Abdur
Rahman's son and successor, was assassinated by
members of an anti-British movement in 1919.
His third son, Amanullah, regained control of
Afghanistan's foreign policy after launching
the third Anglo-Afghan war with an attack on
India in the same year.  During the ensuing
conflict, the war-weary British relinquished
their control over Afghan foreign affairs by
signing the Treaty of Rawalpindi in August
1919.  In commemoration of this event, Afghans
celebrate August 19 as their Independence Day.
Reform and Reaction
King Amanullah (1919-29) moved to end his
country's traditional isolation in the years
following the third Anglo-Afghan war.  He
established diplomatic relations with most
major countries and, following a 1927 tour of
Europe and Turkey--which had seen modernization
and secularization under Attaturk--introduced
several reforms intended to modernize the
country.  Some of these, such as the abolition
of the traditional Muslim veil for women and
the opening of a number of coeducational
schools, quickly alienated many tribal and
religious leaders.  The weakness of the army
under Amanullah further jeopardized his
position.  He was forced to abdicate in January
1929 after Kabul fell to forces led by Bacha-i-
Saqao, a Tajik brigand.  Prince Nadir Khan, a
cousin of Amanullah's, in turn defeated Bacha-i-
Saqao in October of the same year.  With
considerable Pashtun tribal support, Khan was
declared King Nadir Shah.  Four years later,
however, he was assassinated in a revenge
killing by a Kabul student.
Mohammad Zahir Shah, Nadir Khan's 19-year-old
son, succeeded to the throne and reigned from
1933 to 1973.  In 1964, King Zahir Shah
promulgated a liberal constitution providing
for a two-chamber legislature to which the king
appointed one-third of the deputies.  The
people elected another third and the remainder
were selected indirectly by provincial
assemblies.  Although Zahir's "experiment in
democracy" produced few lasting reforms, it
permitted the growth of unofficial extremist
parties of both left and right.  This included
the communist People's Democratic Party of
Afghanistan (PDPA), which had close ideological
ties to the Soviet Union.  In 1967, the PDPA
split into two major rival factions:  the Khalq
(Masses) faction headed by Nur Muhammad Taraki
and supported by the military, and the Parcham
(Banner) faction led by Babrak Karmal.  The
split reflected deep ethnic, class, and
ideological divisions within Afghan society.
Zahir's cousin, Sardar Mohammad Daoud, served
as his prime minister from 1953 to 1963.
During his tenure as prime minister, Daoud
solicited both military and economic assistance
from Washington and Moscow and introduced
controversial social policies.  Daoud's alleged
support for the creation of a Pashtun state in
the Pakistan-Afghan border area heightened
tensions with Pakistan and eventually resulted
in Daoud's dismissal in March 1963.
Daoud's Republic (1973-78)   And the April 1978
Amid charges of corruption and malfeasance
against the royal family and poor economic
conditions caused by the severe 1971-72
drought, former Prime Minister Daoud seized
power in a military coup on July 17, 1973.
Daoud abolished the monarchy, abrogated the
1964 constitution, and declared Afghanistan a
republic with himself as its first president
and prime minister.  His attempts to carry out
badly needed economic and social reforms met
with little success, and the new constitution
promulgated in February 1977 failed to quell
chronic political instability.
Seeking to more effectively exploit mounting
popular disaffection, the PDPA reunified with
Moscow's support.  On April 27-28, 1978, the
PDPA initiated a bloody coup which resulted in
the overthrow and death of Daoud and most of
his family.  Nur Muhammad Taraki, Secretary
General of the PDPA, became president of the
Revolutionary Council and prime minister of the
newly established Democratic Republic of
Opposition to the Marxist government emerged
almost immediately.  During its first 18 months
of rule, the PDPA brutally imposed a Marxist-
style "reform" program which ran counter to
deeply rooted Islamic traditions.  Decrees
advocating the abolition of usury, changes in
marriage customs, and land reform were
particularly misunderstood and upsetting to
highly conservative villagers.  In addition,
thousands of members of the traditional elite,
the religious establishment, and the
intelligentsia were imprisoned, tortured, or
murdered.  Conflicts within the PDPA also
surfaced early and resulted in exiles, purges,
imprisonments, and executions.  By the summer
of 1978, a major revolt in the Nuristan region
of eastern Afghanistan spread into a country-
wide insurgency.  In September 1979, Hafizullah
Amin, who had earlier been the prime minister
and minister of defense, seized power from
Taraki after a palace shootout.  Over the next
two months, instability plagued Amin's regime
as he moved against perceived enemies in the
PDPA.  By December, party morale was crumbling,
and the insurgency was growing.
The Soviet Invasion
The Soviet Union moved quickly to take
advantage of the April 1978 coup.  In December
1978, Moscow signed a new bilateral treaty of
friendship and cooperation with Afghanistan,
and the Soviet military assistance program
increased significantly.  The regime's survival
increasingly was dependent upon Soviet military
equipment and advisers as the insurgency spread
and the Afghan army began to collapse.  By
October 1979, however, relations between
Afghanistan and the Soviet Union were tense as
Hafizullah Amin refused to take Soviet advice
on how to stabilize and consolidate his
government.  Faced with a deteriorating
security situation, on December 24, 1979, large
numbers of Soviet airborne forces, joining
thousands of Soviet troops already on the
ground, began to land in Kabul under the
pretext of a field exercise.  On December 26,
these invasion forces killed Hafizullah Amin
and installed Babrak Karmal, exiled leader of
the Parcham faction, as prime minister.
Massive Soviet ground forces invaded from the
north on December 27.
Following the invasion, the Karmal regime,
although backed by an expeditionary force of
about 120,000 Soviet troops, was unable to
establish authority outside Kabul.  As much as
80% of the countryside, including parts of
Herat and Kandahar, eluded effective government
control.  An overwhelming majority of Afghans
opposed the communist regime, either actively
or passively.  Afghan freedom fighters
(mujahidin) made it almost impossible for the
regime to maintain a system of local government
outside major urban centers.  Poorly armed at
first, in 1984 the mujahidin began receiving
substantial assistance in the form of weapons
and training from the U.S. and other outside
In May 1985, the seven principal Peshawar-based
guerrilla organizations formed an alliance to
coordinate their political and military
operations against the Soviet occupation.  By
late-1985, the mujahidin were active in and
around Kabul, launching rocket attacks and
assassinating high government officials.  The
failure of the Soviet Union to win over a
significant number of Afghan collaborators or
to rebuild a viable Afghan army forced it to
bear an increasing responsibility for fighting
the Afghan Resistance and for civilian
Soviet and popular displeasure with the Karmal
regime led to its demise in May 1986.  Karmal
was replaced by Muhammad Najibullah, former
chief of the Afghan secret police (KHAD).
Najibullah had established a reputation for
brutal efficiency during his tenure as KHAD
Prime Minister Najibullah was ineffective and
highly dependent on Soviet support.  Undercut
by deep-seated divisions within the PDPA,
regime efforts to broaden its base of support
proved futile.
The Geneva Accords And Aftermath
By the mid-1980s, the tenacious Afghan
Resistance movement--aided by the United
States, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and others--was
exacting a high price from the Soviets, both
militarily within Afghanistan and by souring
the U.S.S.R.'s relations with much of the
Western and Islamic world.  Although informal
negotiations for a Soviet withdrawal from
Afghanistan had been underway since 1982, it
was not until 1988 that the Governments of
Pakistan and Afghanistan, with the United
States and Soviet Union serving as guarantors,
signed an agreement settling the major
differences between them.  The agreement, known
as the Geneva accords, included five major
documents, which, among other things, called
for U.S. and Soviet non-interference in the
internal affairs of Pakistan and Afghanistan,
the right of refugees to return to Afghanistan
without fear of persecution or harassment, and,
most importantly, a timetable that ensured full
Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan by February
15, 1989.  About 14,500 Soviet and an estimated
one million Afghan lives were lost between 1979
and the Soviet withdrawal in 1989.
Significantly, the mujahidin were neither party
to the negotiations nor to the 1988 agreement
and, consequently, refused to accept the terms
of the accords.  As a result, civil war did not
end with the Soviet withdrawal, completed as
scheduled in February 1989.  Instead, it
escalated.  Najibullah's regime, though failing
to win popular support, territory, or
international recognition, was able to remain
in power until 1992.
The Soviet-supported Najibullah regime
collapsed with the defection of General Abdul
Rashid Dostam and his Uzbek militia in late
March 1992.  However, as the victorious
mujahidin entered Kabul to assume control over
the city and the central government, a new
round of internecine fighting began between the
various militias, which had coexisted only
uneasily during the Soviet occupation.  With
the demise of their common enemy, the militias'
ethnic, clan, religious, and personality
differences surfaced, and the civil war
Seeking to resolve these differences, the
leaders of the Peshawar- based mujahidin groups
agreed in mid-April to establish a 51-member
interim Islamic Jihad Council to assume power
in Kabul.  Moderate leader Professor
Sibghatullah Mojaddedi was to chair the council
for three months, after which a 10-member
leadership council composed of mujahidin
leaders and presided over by the head of the
Jamiat-i-Islami, Professor Burhanuddin Rabbani,
was to be set up for a period of four months.
During this six-month period, a Loya Jirga, or
grand council of Afghan elders and notables
would convene and designate an interim
administration which would hold power up to a
year, pending elections.
But in May 1992, Rabbani prematurely formed the
leadership council, undermining Mojaddedi's
fragile authority.  In June, Mojaddedi
surrendered power to the leadership council,
which then elected Rabbani as president.
Nonetheless, heavy fighting broke out in August
1992 in Kabul between forces loyal to President
Rabbani and rival factions, particularly those
who supported Gulbuddin Hekmatyar's Hezb-i-
Islami.  After Rabbani convened a highly
controversial council to extend his tenure in
December 1992, fighting in the capital flared
up in January and February 1993.  The Islamabad
accord, signed in March 1993, which appointed
Hekmatyar as prime minister, failed to have a
lasting effect.  A follow-up agreement, the
Jalalabad accord, called for the militias to be
disarmed but was never fully implemented.
Through 1993, Hekmatyar's Hezb-i-Islami forces,
allied with the Shi'a Hezb-i-Wahdat militia,
clashed intermittently with Rabbani and
Masood's Jamiat forces.  Cooperating with
Jamiat were militants of Sayyaf's Ittehad-i-
Islami and, periodically, troops loyal to
ethnic Uzbek strongman Abdul Rashid Dostam.  On
January 1, 1994, Dostam switched sides,
precipitating large-scale fighting in Kabul and
in northern provinces, which caused thousands
of civilian casualties in Kabul and elsewhere
and created a new wave of displaced persons and
The central government still exercises only
limited control over the countryside, where
local leaders and militia commanders, some with
only nominal allegiance to any of the national
figures battling for power in Kabul, hold sway.
A date for elections in Afghanistan has yet to
be established.
President--Burhanuddin Rabbani
Prime Minister--Gulbuddin Hekmatyar
Minister of Finance--Abdul Karim Khalili
Minister of Foreign Affairs--Hidayat Amin
Charge d'Affaires to the U.S.-- Abdul Rahim
Afghanistan maintains an embassy in the United
States at 2341 Wyoming Avenue, NW, Washington,
DC  20008 (tel. 202-234-3770/71/72).
Historically, there has been a dearth of
information and reliable statistics about
Afghanistan's economy.  This was exacerbated by
the Soviet invasion and the ensuing civil war,
which destroyed much of the underdeveloped
country's infrastructure and disrupted normal
patterns of economic activity.
The Afghan economy continues to be
overwhelmingly agricultural, despite the fact
that only 15% of its total land area is arable
and less than 6% currently is cultivated.
Agricultural production is constrained by an
almost total dependence on erratic winter snows
and spring rains for water; irrigation is
primitive.  Relatively little use is made of
machines, chemical fertilizer, or pesticides.
Grain production is Afghanistan's traditional
agricultural mainstay.  Overall agricultural
production declined from a pre-war level of $35
million to $23 million in 1990, an average
decline of 3.5% per year.  This can be
attributed to sustained fighting, instability
in rural areas, prolonged drought, and
deteriorated infrastructure.  Soviet efforts to
disrupt production in Resistance- dominated
areas also contributed to this decline.
Furthermore, Soviet efforts to centralize the
economy through state ownership and control and
consolidation of farmland into large collective
farms contributed to lower production.
The war against the Soviet Union and the
ensuing civil war also led to migration to the
cities and refugee flight to Pakistan and Iran,
further disrupting normal agricultural
production.  Recent studies indicate that
agricultural production and livestock numbers
are less than one-half of what they were in
1978.  It is estimated that Afghanistan's food
production levels are about 15% lower than what
is necessary to feed the population.  Shortages
are exacerbated by the country's already
limited transportation network, which has
deteriorated due to damage and neglect
resulting from war and the lack of an effective
central government.
Opium is increasingly becoming a source of cash
for many Afghans, especially since the
breakdown in central authority after the Soviet
withdrawal.  Opium is easy to cultivate and
transport and offers a quick source of income
for returning refugees and other impoverished
Afghans.  Afghanistan is the second-largest
producer of raw opium in the world, after
Burma.  In 1993, despite efforts by the U.S.
and others to encourage alternative crops,
poppy and opium production increased 8% and 7%,
respectively, from a year earlier.  Much of
Afghanistan's opium production is shipped to
laboratories in Pakistan and refined into
heroin which is either consumed by a growing
South Asian addict population or exported
primarily to Europe and North America.
Trade and Industry
Trade accounts for a small portion of the
Afghan economy, and there are no reliable
statistics relating to trade flows.  Since the
Soviet withdrawal and the collapse of the
Soviet Union, other limited trade relationships
appear to be emerging with Iran, Pakistan, and
the West.  Afghanistan trades little with the
United States; its 1992 trade is estimated at
$6 million.  Afghanistan does not enjoy U.S.
most-favored-nation trading status, which was
revoked in 1986.
Afghanistan is endowed with a wealth of natural
resources, including extensive deposits of
coal, salt, chromium, iron ore, gold, fluorite,
talc, copper, and lapis lazuli.  Unfortunately,
the country's remote and rugged terrain and its
inadequate transportation network usually have
made mining these resources unprofitable
The most important resource has been natural
gas, first tapped in 1967.  At its peak during
the 1980s, gas sales accounted for $300 million
a year in export revenues (56% of the total).
Ninety percent of these exports went to the
Soviet Union to pay for imports and debts.
However, during the withdrawal of Soviet troops
in 1989, Afghanistan's natural gas fields were
capped to prevent sabotage by the mujahidin.
Restoration of gas production has been hampered
by internal strife and the disruption of
traditional trading relationships following the
collapse of the Soviet Union.
Landlocked Afghanistan has no railways, but the
Amu Darya (Oxus) River, which forms part of
Afghanistan's border with Turkmenistan,
Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan, has barge traffic.
During their occupation of the country, the
Soviets completed a bridge across the Amu Darya
and built a motor vehicle and railroad bridge
between Termez and Jeyretan.
Most road-building occurred in the 1960s,
funded by the U.S. and the Soviet Union.  The
Soviets built a road and tunnel through the
Salang Pass in 1964, connecting northern and
southern Afghanistan.  A circular highway
connecting the principal cities of Herat,
Kandahar, Ghazni, and Kabul forms the primary
road system.  All but the northern quadrant has
been completed.
The highway system requires significant
reconstruction, and regional roads are in a
state of disrepair.  The poor state of the
Afghan transportation and communication
networks has further fragmented and hobbled the
struggling economy.
Economic Development and Recovery
Afghanistan embarked on a modest economic
development program in the 1930s.  The
government founded banks, introduced paper
money, established a university, expanded
primary, secondary, and technical schools, and
sent students abroad for education.  In 1956,
the Afghan Government promulgated the first in
a long series of ambitious development plans.
By the late 1970s, these had achieved only
mixed results due to flaws in the planning
process itself as well as inadequate funding
and a shortage of the skilled managers and
technicians needed for implementation.
These constraints on development have been
exacerbated by the flight of refugees and the
disruption and instability stemming from the
Soviet occupation and ensuing civil war.
Today, economic recovery and long-term
development  will depend on establishing an
effective and stable political system.
The UN and the international donor community
continue to provide considerable humanitarian
relief.  Since its inception in 1988, the
umbrella UN Office for the Coordination of
Humanitarian Assistance to Afghanistan (UNOCHA)
has channeled $512 million in multilateral cash
assistance to Afghan refugees and vulnerable
persons inside Afghanistan.  The United States
and Japan are the leading contributors to this
relief effort.  One of its key tasks is to
eliminate from priority areas (such as
villages, arable fields, and roads) some of the
estimated 10 million landmines which continue
to litter the Afghan landscape.  Afghanistan is
the most heavily mined country in the world;
mine-related injuries number up to 100 per
month in Afghanistan.  Without successful mine
clearing, refugee repatriation, political
stability, and economic reconstruction will be
severely constrained.
The UN, through the UN Development Program, is
expected to play a major role in the post-war
recovery and reconstruction of Afghanistan.  In
November 1993, the UNDP Action Plan for the
Immediate Rehabilitation of Afghanistan
identified more than $600 million in quick-
impact development projects which could be
implemented within two years where security
conditions permit.
Before the Soviet invasion, Afghanistan pursued
a policy of neutrality and nonalignment in its
foreign relations.  In international forums,
Afghanistan generally followed the voting
patterns of Asian and African non-aligned
countries.  Following the Marxist coup of April
1978, the Taraki Government developed
significantly closer ties with the Soviet Union
and its communist satellites.
After the December 1979 invasion, Afghanistan's
foreign policy mirrored that of the Soviet
Union.  Afghan foreign policy-makers attempted,
with little success, to increase their regime's
low standing in the non-communist world.  With
the signing of the Geneva accords, Najibullah
unsuccessfully sought to end Afghanistan's
isolation within the Islamic world and in the
Non-Aligned Movement.
Most Western countries, including the United
States, maintained small diplomatic missions in
Kabul during the Soviet occupation.  Many
subsequently closed their missions due to
instability and heavy fighting in Kabul.
Although a few states have reestablished a
diplomatic presence in Kabul, most embassies,
including that of the United States, remain
Two areas--Pashtunistan and Baluchistan--have
long complicated Afghanistan's relations with
Pakistan.  Controversies involving these areas
date back to the establishment of the Durand
Line in 1893 dividing Pashtun and Baluch tribes
living in Afghanistan from those living in what
later became Pakistan.  Afghanistan vigorously
protested the inclusion of Pashtun and Baluch
areas within Pakistan without providing the
inhabitants with an opportunity for self-
determination.  Since 1947, this problem has
led to incidents along the border, with
extensive disruption of normal trade patterns.
The most serious crisis lasted from September
1961 to June 1963, when diplomatic, trade,
transit, and consular relations between the
countries were suspended.
The 1978 Marxist coup further strained
relations between the two countries.  Pakistan
took the lead diplomatically in the United
Nations, the Non-Aligned Movement, and the
Organization of the Islamic Conference in
opposing the Soviet occupation.  During the war
against the Soviet occupation, Pakistan served
as the primary logistical conduit for the
Afghan Resistance.  Pakistan, aided by UN
agencies, private groups, and many friendly
countries, continues to provide refuge to about
1.4 million Afghans.
Much of Afghanistan remains dependent on
Pakistani links for trade and travel to the
outside world, and Pakistan views Afghanistan
as eventually becoming its primary route for
trade with Central Asia.
Afghanistan's relations with Iran have
fluctuated over the years, with periodic
disputes over the water rights of the Helmand
River as the main issue of contention.
Following the Soviet invasion, which Iran
opposed, relations deteriorated.  The Iranian
consulate in Herat closed, as did the Afghan
consulate in Mashhad.  The Iranians complained
of periodic border violations following the
Soviet invasion.  In 1985, they urged feuding
Afghan Shi'a resistance groups to unite to
oppose the Soviets.  Iran supported the cause
of the Afghan Resistance and provided limited
financial and military assistance to rebel
leaders who pledged loyalty to the Iranian
vision of Islamic revolution.  Iran provides
refuge to about 2 million Afghans.
In the 19th century, Afghanistan served as a
strategic buffer state between czarist Russia
and the British Empire in the sub-continent.
Afghanistan's relations with Moscow became more
cordial after the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917.
The Soviet Union was the first country to
establish diplomatic relations with Afghanistan
after the third Anglo-Afghan war and signed an
Afghan-Soviet non-aggression pact in 1921,
which also provided for Afghan transit rights
through the Soviet Union.  Early Soviet
assistance included financial aid, more than a
dozen aircraft and attendant technical
personnel, and a number of telegraph operators.
The Soviets began a major economic assistance
program in Afghanistan in the 1950s.  Between
1954 and 1978, Afghanistan received more than
$1 billion in Soviet aid, including substantial
military assistance.  In 1973, the two
countries announced a $200-million assistance
agreement on gas and oil development, trade,
transport, irrigation, and factory
construction.  Following the 1979 invasion, the
Soviets augmented their large aid commitments
to shore up the Afghan economy and rebuild the
Afghan military.  They provided the Karmal
regime an unprecedented $800 million.  The
Soviet Union supported the Najibullah regime
even after the withdrawal of Soviet troops in
February 1989.   Today, unresolved questions
concerning Soviet MIA/POWs in Afghanistan
remain an issue between Russia and Afghanistan.
In July 1993, Tajik rebels based in Afghanistan
attacked a Russian border outpost in
Tajikistan, killing 25 Russians and prompting
Russian retaliatory strikes which caused
extensive damage in northern Afghanistan.
Reports of Afghan support for the Tajik rebels
have led to cool relations between the two
Afghanistan's relations with newly independent
Tajikistan have been complicated by ongoing
political upheaval and civil war in Tajikistan
which spurred some 100,000 Tajiks to seek
refuge in Afghanistan in late 1992 and early
1993.  Tajik rebels seeking to overthrow the
regime of Russian-backed former communist
Imamali Rahmanov began operating from Afghan
bases and recruiting Tajik refugees into their
ranks.  These rebels, reportedly aided by
Afghans and a number of foreign Islamic
extremists, conduct cross-border raids against
Russian and Tajik security posts and seek to
infiltrate fighters and materiel from
Afghanistan into Tajikistan.
The first extensive American contact with
Afghanistan was made by Josiah Harlan, an
adventurer from Pennsylvania who was an adviser
in Afghan politics in the 1830s and reputedly
inspired Rudyard Kipling's story, "The Man Who
Would be King."
After the establishment of diplomatic relations
in 1934, the U.S. policy of helping developing
nations raise their standard of living was an
important factor in maintaining and improving
U.S.-Afghan ties.  From 1950 to 1979, U.S.
foreign assistance provided Afghanistan with
more than $500 million in loans, grants, and
surplus agricultural commodities to develop
transportation facilities, increase
agricultural production, expand the educational
system, stimulate industry, and improve
government administration.
In the 1950s, the U.S. declined Afghanistan's
request for defense cooperation but extended an
economic assistance program focused on the
development of Afghanistan's physical
infrastructure--roads, dams, and power plants.
Later, U.S. aid shifted from infrastructure
projects to technical assistance programs to
help develop the skills needed to build a
modern economy.  The Peace Corps was active in
Afghanistan between 1962 and 1979.
After the April 1978 coup, relations
deteriorated.  In February 1979,  U.S.
Ambassador Adolph Dubs was murdered after
Afghan security forces burst in on his
kidnapers.  The U.S. then reduced bilateral
assistance and terminated a small military
training program.  All remaining assistance
agreements were ended after the Soviet
Following the Soviet invasion, the United
States supported diplomatic efforts to achieve
a Soviet withdrawal.  In addition, generous
U.S. contributions to the refugee program in
Pakistan played a major part in efforts to
assist Afghans in need.  U.S. efforts also
included helping Afghans living inside
Afghanistan.  This cross-border humanitarian
assistance program increased Afghan self-
sufficiency and helped Afghans resist Soviet
attempts to drive civilians out of the
Resistance-dominated countryside.  During the
period of Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, the
U.S. provided about $3 billion in military and
economic assistance to Afghans and the
resistance movement.
The U.S. Embassy in Kabul was closed in January
1989 for security reasons.  The U.S. has
supported the peaceful emergence of a broad-
based government representative of all Afghans
and has been active in encouraging a UN role in
the national reconciliation process in
Afghanistan.  The U.S. provides financial aid
for mine-clearing activities and other
humanitarian assistance to Afghans through
international organizations.  Currently, the
security situation in much of Afghanistan is
unstable and some 10 million landmines remain.
In addition to the efforts of the UN and other
donors, the U.S. has provided $328 million in
direct bilateral assistance to Afghanistan
since 1985 through its cross-border program
based in Islamabad, Pakistan.  However,
assistance levels have fallen dramatically in
recent years due to overall budgetary
constraints in the U.S. and the difficulties
inherent in administering a cross-border aid
program.  For these reasons, the program is
scheduled for closure by the end of 1994.
During the Soviet occupation, the United
Nations was highly critical of the U.S.S.R.'s
interference in the internal affairs of
Afghanistan and was instrumental in obtaining a
negotiated Soviet withdrawal under the terms of
the Geneva accords.
In the aftermath of the accords and subsequent
Soviet withdrawal, the United Nations has
assisted in the repatriation of refugees and
has provided humanitarian aid such as health
care, educational programs, and food and has
supported mine-clearing operations.  The UNDP
and associated agencies have undertaken a
limited number of development projects.
However, the UN reduced its role in Afghanistan
in 1992 in the wake of fierce factional strife
in and around Kabul.  The UN Secretary General
has designated a personal representative to
head the Office for the Coordination of
Humanitarian Assistance to Afghanistan (UNOCHA)
and the Office of the Secretary General in
Afghanistan and Pakistan (OSGAP), both based in
Islamabad, Pakistan.  (###)
Expanded Military and Defense Cooperation With
the Baltic States
Statement by Department Spokesman Michael
McCurry, Washington, DC, May 31, 1994
The United States considers the maintenance of
regional stability in the Baltic Sea area to be
a high priority.  In order to contribute to
stability and harmony in the region, the United
States has been actively engaged in promoting
the withdrawal of Russian forces from the
Baltic States and has been similarly engaged in
promoting Baltic defense organizations that are
firmly grounded in democratic principles.
Consequently, the United States has expanded
its level of military and defense cooperation
with Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania in three
main categories:  bilaterally, cooperatively
with NATO/NACC members in conjunction with
Partnership for Peace (PFP), and regionally.
Earlier this month, the Departments of State
and Defense co-chaired the first annual Working
Group on Defense and Military Relations in each
of the Baltic capitals in order to define more
precisely the elements of our expanded
cooperation--high-level visits, ship visits,
exchanges of officers, visits by other
officials, training programs, and other
security assistance--for the purpose of
promoting the development of defense
establishments accountable to civilian
authorities and democratic processes.
On March 22, 1994, the President signed a
determination making Estonia, Latvia, and
Lithuania eligible to receive U.S. Government-
origin defense articles and defense services.
This eligibility will allow these states to
participate in the Foreign Military Sales
program.  The following day, the Department
approved the removal of the Baltic States from
the International Traffic in Arms Regulations,
which now will facilitate these states' ability
to purchase commercially U.S.-origin defense
articles and defense services, based on a case-
by-case basis.  The United States also will
follow up on seeking increased International
Military Education Training funding and the
possibility of authorizing both retired and
active-duty Baltic-speaking U.S. officers to
assist the defense structures in Estonia,
Latvia, and Lithuania in their development as
democratic institutions.
The Administration has proposed to Congress a
$10-million request in the Department's fiscal
year 1995 budget to support regional peace-
keeping units in Central and Eastern Europe.
The Baltic Peacekeeping Battalion constitutes
the first example of voluntary regional peace-
keeping cooperation in the area.  Through
material and technical support--including
financing for training and for transfer of
communications, transportation, and other
related equipment--this program would recognize
regional cooperation, encourage Baltic efforts
to improve NATO interoperability, provide an
incentive for other former communist states to
cooperate in peace-keeping, promote the success
of PFP, and enable the battalion to participate
effectively in joint field exercises with U.S.
and NATO units as early as 1995.  This program
would be designed to complement, reinforce, and
incorporate other ongoing U.S. security
assistance programs, such as the Joint Contact
Team Program, defense training, and English-
language classes.
In parallel with the efforts of the Nordic
States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and
France, in May 1993, the United States sent
military liaison teams to Tallinn, Riga, and
Vilnius.  Drawing primarily on resources in the
U.S. National Guard, Coast Guard, and reserves,
the teams help develop and organize the Baltic
forces in peacetime responsibilities such as
disaster relief, border control, crisis
management, drug interdiction, and counter-
We look forward to working with Estonia,
Latvia, and Lithuania in NATO's Partnership for
Peace, which will allow for the development of
joint procedures and the conduct of joint
planning, training, and exercises.
The United States will continue to consult with
the Baltic States and their Nordic and other
neighbors about ways to encourage greater
regional cooperation in the defense and
military fields.  We look forward to an
increasingly productive and cooperative
relationship over a broad spectrum of issues
with the Governments of Estonia, Latvia, and
Lithuania. (###)
Rwanda:  Arms Embargo
Statement issued by the Departments of State
and Commerce on May 27, 1994, and released by
the State Department, Office of the Spokesman,
Washington, DC, May 31, 1994
The President remains gravely concerned about
the continued bloodshed in Rwanda.  The U.S.
repeats its urgent demand for an immediate end
to the killings, cessation of hostilities, and
resumption of talks between the warring
parties.  The U.S. is pursuing these key goals
through a combination of diplomatic pressure
and multilateral action, including strong
support for the UN arms embargo passed on May
On May 26, 1994, the President signed an
executive order prohibiting the sale or supply
to Rwanda of arms and related materiel of all
types, irrespective of origin:
--  From the territory of the United States by
any person; or
--  By any United States person in any foreign
country or other location; or
--  Using any U.S.-registered vessel or
This executive order implements United Nations
Security Council Resolution 918 of May 17,
1994, which requires all countries to prohibit
such sale or supply to Rwanda by their
nationals or from their territories or using
their flag vessels or aircraft.
In the executive order, the President delegated
authority to take such actions as may be
necessary to carry out the Rwanda embargo to
the Secretary of Commerce and the Secretary of
State with regard to the types of arms and
related materiel which come under their
respective control.
The Secretary of State is implementing the
embargo as it relates to arms and related
materiel of a type enumerated on the United
States Munitions List (USML) (22 C.F.R. part
121).  The USML contains defense articles and
services including firearms, ammunition,
artillery, missiles, bombs, naval vessels,
tanks and military vehicles, military aircraft,
and various chemical and biological agents.
Under the authority of the Arms Export Control
Act, the State Department has denied all
requests to export such items to Rwanda that
have been submitted since the current strife
began April 6, 1994.
The Secretary of Commerce is implementing the
embargo as it relates to arms and related
materiel identified in the Export
Administration Regulations (EAR) (15 C.F.R.
parts 730-799).  The following items on the
Commerce Control List are the types of items
covered by this action:  all crime control and
detection items, such as shotguns and
handcuffs; regional stability items, such as
certain military vehicles and equipment for
production of arms and munitions; military-
related goods, such as certain ammunition,
military aircraft, and bayonets; and
bulletproof and bullet-resistant vests,
equipment to manufacture shotgun shells,
communications-intercepting devices, and
Commerce Secretary Ronald H. Brown said in
announcing the action, "We will aggressively
enforce the embargo.  The Clinton
Administration supports the United Nations
action and its efforts to assist the people of
A rule revising the Commerce-administered EAR
to reflect the embargo of items subject to the
United Nations action will be published in the
Federal Register.  Moreover, the complete list
of items made subject to a Commerce Department-
validated license requirement for purposes of
this embargo will be included in the Federal
Register notice.  Applications to export to
Rwanda such items will be subject to a general
policy of denial.
The Department of Commerce controls exports and
re-exports of dual-use commodities and
technical data.  Under the authority of the
Export Administration Act, Commerce's Bureau of
Export Administration maintains control on
these commodities and technologies for reasons
of national security, foreign policy, non-
proliferation, and short supply. (###)
New Ambassadors
Bahamas--Sidney Williams, March 4, 1994
Bangladesh--David Nathan Merrill, February 23,
Hungary--Donald M. Blinken, March 29, 1994
Jordan--Wesley William Egan, February 26, 1994
Morocco--Marc Charles Ginsberg, January 6, 1994
Nepal--Sandra Louise Vogelgesang, February 22,
Netherlands--K. Terry Dornbush, March 4, 1994
Swaziland--John T. Sprott, January 7, 1994
Sweden--Thomas L. Siebert, March 10, 1994
Switzerland--M. Larry Lawrence, February 28,
U.S. Mission to the Vienna Office of the UN--
John B. Ritch III, January 21, 1994  (###)

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