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Monitoring Saturday, 25 April, 1998, 18:47 GMT 19:47 UK
Yeltsin praises Kiriyenko's 'fighting talents'
President Yeltsin
Prime Minister Sergei Kirienko introduces his wife Marina to Boris Yeltsin
A few hours after the debate, Russian President Boris Yeltsin said that parliament's approval of Prime Minister Sergei Kiriyenko was a victory for common sense.

In a recorded TV address to the nation, he said the government and parliament had ended the crisis with dignity and preserved nationwide peace and accord.

Mr Yeltsin said he wanted parliament to approve the other ministers by the end of next week, as they had the vital task of industrial and economy recovery to deal with.

Here is the full text of his television address:

Dear citizens of Russia,
I have just had a meeting with Sergey Vladilenovich Kiriyenko, who is now the chairman of the government of the Russian Federation. I have signed a decree appointing him to this post.

I am glad that this issue has finally been brought to an end. The government crisis was dragging on for too long, but the Russian authorities have come out of it with dignity. They have not compromised their integrity and they have preserved peace and accord in the country.

I see the result of today's Duma vote as a victory for common sense over emotions. The Duma has realised the necessity for preserving political balance and for allowing the government to work as normal.

I know that the MPs made up their minds at the very last minute. They wanted to get to know the young candidate better, and to get to grips with his programme. And it is to Kiriyenko's credit they he gave them plenty of opportunity to do so.

Ministers must be approved quickly

I am convinced - the fact that the Duma has finally accepted Kiriyenko's candidacy is largely a tribute to Sergey Vladilenovich himself. Now, after Kiriyenko has been appointed, I will say to you openly: I am impressed with his performance over the past four weeks.

I liked the way he responded to his attackers and rejected any blackmail. Three times he went to face his exam with dignity. This job will make a good use of his fighting talents.

But his main exam is still ahead, and when sitting it he will have to answer to the whole country. Of course, the appointment of a prime minister, irrespective of how long it might drag out, is only the beginning of the process of the formation of the new cabinet.

It has taken the State Duma 30 days to agree with my choice. Regarding the appointment of the remaining government members, we cannot afford such a luxury. I hope that by the end of next week the formation of the cabinet will be mainly completed.

Dear fellow countrymen. Of course, the new prime minister won't find it easy. Even over the past month a lot of important and urgent matters have accumulated.

Today, however, I want to say something else: a qualitatively new period begins for the federal executive power. All our problems have been known for a long time. We also know rather well what to do and how to do it.

All that is needed now is to act dynamically and professionally.

Industrial recovery is priority

Sergey Vladilenovich is right: a government can only earn the name of a government of people's trust, and therefore today I would like to tell all those who are already working in the government or who are about to join it that your policy should focus first of all on industry and your strategy - on the economy, while your course should aspire towards economic recovery for the sake of the prosperity and glory of Russia.

It is this understanding that the previous government lacked. It is for this reason that I have been fighting so hard for a new one. And I will make it accountable for this. Thank you for your attention.

BBC Monitoring (http://www.monitor.bbc.co.uk), based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages.

See also:

24 Apr 98 | Russian crisis
24 Apr 98 | Russian crisis
24 Apr 98 | Russian crisis
24 Apr 98 | Russian crisis
24 Apr 98 | Russian crisis
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