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December 08, 1987|DEBORAH CAULFIELD | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press

A top Soviet official Sunday called CBS News' claim that General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev nixed a one-on-one interview with Dan Rather because of previous tough questioning by the anchorman "simple imagination," the Washington Post reported. Nikolai Shishlin, deputy chief of information for the Central Committee, said he had offered no explanation for the rejection when he notified CBS News Moscow bureau chief Wyatt Andrews in late November that the network would not get the interview. But CBS News President Howard Stringer stood by his Nov. 18 letter, saying that Wyatt was told that the network's coverage of Afghanistan and a question on human rights posed by Rather to Gorbachev in Paris two years ago was behind the decision.

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