Russian Channel 1 chief named

Yeltsin appointment follows Ponomareva resignation

MOSCOW — Two weeks after Ksenia Ponomareva resigned as managing director of Russia’s Channel 1 ORT (Public Russian Television) following management clashes, Russian President Boris Yeltsin has nominated Igor Shabdurasulov to replace her.

Shabdurasulov, who formerly headed Russia’s Information Department, now faces confirmation at a general shareholders’ meeting scheduled for Oct.15.

Some 51% of ORT’s shares are held by the state, with the rest divided between a consortium of local financial and industrial groupings, dominated by businessman Boris Berezovsky.

Ponomareva left her post claiming that her authority had been undermined by Berezovsky’s interference in broadcasting matters — in particular, his appointing Sergei Dorenko to anchor the channel’s nightly news broadcast Vremya.

“Maintaining the informational space is one of the pillars of federalism and sovereignty,” Shabdurasulov said. “Our task will be to put in place exact rules in the area of television.”

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