• ACI Russia

08/14/1998 16:08:53 Yeltsin and Clinton have long conversation

MOSCOW, Aug 14 (Reuters) - Russian President Boris Yeltsin

had a long telephone conversation with U.S. President Bill

Clinton on Friday, the Kremlin press service said, giving no

more details.

The United States on Thursday called on Russia to stabilise

its economy after sharp falls in Moscow's financial markets and

pressure on the rouble. Some analysts say Russia may need more

Western credits to help it through its crisis. Clinton is due in

Moscow on September 1-3 for a summit.

"It's critical that the Russian government act quickly to

restore confidence in their economy," White House spokesman Mike

McCurry said in unusually blunt terms on Thursday after Wall

Street was hit by Russian jitters, showing U.S. alarm at the

prospect of instability in the world's second nuclear power.

McCurry said Washington was working on a way to help but

declined to be drawn on whether there might be more cash for

Russia, which won a $22.6 billion Western bail-out last month.

Yeltsin, blaming Russia's woes partly on global problems and

responding to the U.S. calls, vowed earlier on Friday not to

devalue the rouble and appealed to parliament to hold a special

mid-recess session to approve crisis measures.

Russian shares rose by 14 percent after what was dubbed

"Black Thursday", jumping so sharply that trading was suspended

at one point. But dealers said trade was extremely thin and so

the rise did not signify a return of investor confidence.

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