The meeting of the Supreme State Council of the Union of Russia and Belarus scheduled to take place on December 26 will be devoted to discussing and preparing the draft constitution of the Union, said Gennady Seleznyov, the head of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Russian-Belarussian Union. Mr. Seleznyov stressed that the development of a constitution - the main document of the Union - is a responsibility of the Constitutional Committee of the Union. However, in Mr. Seleznev's words, other members of the Parliamentary Assembly thought about the document as well and a number of them have prepared an alternative constitution. Therefore, Mr. Seleznyov added, both versions will be considered and one of the two will be selected. Mr. Seleznyov believes that 2002 will become a year of the Russian-Belarussian Union. According to him, there exists an idea to hold a referendum in both Russia and Belarus on further integration of the two states.
Forest fires in Siberia have been raging for three months already. They have become a disaster not only of Russian, but of global scale. The fires have already scorched 12 million hectares of land