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THE WEEK AHEAD

MOSCOW : The More It Changes. . .

January 11, 1994

Russia has a whole new parliament, operating under a new constitution and in different chambers, but as the Federal Assembly opens its first session today, it promises to present many of the same problems that led President Boris N. Yeltsin to dissolve the old Supreme Soviet last September.

At most, only between one-quarter and one-third of the new lawmakers are seen as solid supporters of Yeltsin's tough, free-market reforms. The remainder are largely Communists, their sympathizers or backers of ultra-nationalist demagogue Vladimir Zhirinovsky. Initial attempts at forming a pro-Yeltsin coalition appear to have failed.

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