Russian reshuffle brings in liberal reformers

The Russian Prime Minister, Viktor Chernomyrdin, said he was forming a new government of liberal reformers in a reshuffle the Communist opposition branded "ruinous" for Russia.

President Boris Yeltsin has given Mr Chernomyrdin one week to reorganise his cabinet. "Professional market economists, firm supporters of the President's course of reforms, will come into the government," the Itar-Tass news agency quoted the Prime Minister as saying.

The lower house of parliament, dominated by Mr Yeltsin's communist opponents, demanded a reversal of the changes. "They are an eloquent testimony to the readiness of the leadership to subject Russia and her vital interests to the diktat of the International Monetary Fund [IMF] and foreign capital." Reuters - Moscow