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Primakov, Yevgeny Maksimovich

Russian Pres. Boris Yeltsin's appointment of Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov as prime minister in September 1998 was greeted with a mixture of relief and skepticism. Forced to compromise on a candidate acceptable to both the impatient reformers and hard-core Communists in the Duma (the lower house of parliament), Yeltsin had tapped Primakov, many felt, for his acceptability rather than his qualifications. The idea of a former intelligence chief as prime minister rang warning bells in the West owing to Primakov's tough pro-Russian, anti-NATO, and pro-Arab positions

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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