Written Answers. - Government of Russia.

Michael Finucane


40 Mr. Finucane asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if he will make a statement on the situation in Russia following the dismissal of the Government. [8242/98]

As the Deputy is aware, on 23 March the President of the Russian Federation, Boris Yeltsin, announced the dismissal of the Russian Prime Minister and Cabinet. The grounds given by the President related to the desire for a stronger performance by the Government in the economic area especially, in the social sphere. President Yeltsin subsequently appointed Mr. Sergei Kiriyenko, former Minister for Fuel and Energy, as acting Prime Minister and on 27 March, formally nominated him for the position of Prime Minister. The nomination of Mr. Kiriyenko is now before the Duma.

Ireland welcomes President Yeltsin's emphasis on the fact that "the dismissal of the Government does not mean a change of course.it is an effort to make economic reforms more energetic and effective, to give them a political push, a new impetus"
Russia has realised significant achievements in political and economic reforms in a short period of time. However, the difficult task of continuing to consolidate these achievements lies ahead. Ireland, together with EU partners, looks forward to working closely, in due course, with the new Government of Russia in this regard.