Saturday 24 May 1997
The charter, initialled in the Grand Kremlin Palace by Boris Yeltsin and Alexander Lukashenko, follows a union treaty concluded by the two neighbouring nations last month.
Mr Lukashenko makes no secret of his nostalgia for the old Soviet Union, but April's treaty and yesterday's more detailed version fall short of creating a single state, and only call for closer economic, political and military co-operation.
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