The Kremlin on Tuesday ordered authorities in Armenia and Azerbaijan to "take necessary measures" to end a wave of protests by Armenians demanding control of the disputed region of Nagorno Karabakh.
Tass released the text of the resolution supporting the republic of Azerbaijan's control over the predominantly Armenian enclave Tuesday, 24 hours after the Kremlin's decision was announced.Soviet newspapers, apparently fearful of the Armenian reaction, omitted any mention of the decision taken by the presidium of the Supreme Soviet, the nation's highest state body.
The release of the full text of the resolution follows months of mass strikes and nationalist demonstrations in the neighboring republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan.
The resolution ordered national and local authorities "to take necessary measures to normalize the situation in Armenia, Nagorno Karabakh and other regions of Azerbaijan."
It said authorities must "provide for strengthening labor discipline, to provide for keeping the constitution of the U.S.S.R. and Soviet laws and stop resolutely any activity that is inciting national enmity and attempts to use democratic rights for anti-democratic aims."
Reflecting nervousness about the reaction, even the speech by Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev at the conclusion of the one-day meeting of the presidium failed to appear in the state newspapers, although the decision clearly reflected his support for the status quo.