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Church Leader Elected, U.S. Expert Arbatov Loses With AM-Soviet-Elections, Bjt

March 23, 1989

MOSCOW (AP) _ Patriarch Pimen, head of the Russian Orthodox Church, won a seat in the new Soviet parliament, but Georgy Arbatov, the Kremlin’s longtime expert on the United States, lost in a surprise defeat, Tass said Thursday.

Under the new electoral law, 750 seats in the 2,250-member Congress of People’s Deputies have been allocated to public organizations, such as trade unions, the Academy of Science and the Communist Party.

Patriarch Pimen and Arbatov, former head of the Institute of American and Canadian Studies, were among six nominees put forth by the Soviet Peace Committee in a contest for five allocated seats.

The five Peace Committee members were elected Wednesday. National voting to elect deputies for the remaining 1,500 seats will be held Sunday.

″Surprisingly for many, chairman of the Soviet U.N. Association Georgy Arbatov, who has for 20 years headed the academic Institute of American and Canadian Studies in Moscow, failed to get a seat in parliament,″ Tass said.

At a Communist Party meeting in June, the 65-year-old Arbatov was publicly criticized for being too old to function effectively. Also criticized at that meeting were former Foreign Minister Andrei A. Gromyko, 79, and Mikhail S. Solomentsev, 75, both of whom were retired at a subsequent plenum in September.

Of the six nominees, Patriarch Pimen won the most votes, Tass said.

Among other public organizations that chose members of parliament Wednesday and Thursday was the Komsomol, the party’s youth organization, Tass said. It filled its 75 seats with 64 men and 11 women.

The Central Council of Trade Unions, representing 142 million trade unionists, chose 100 deputies for its allocated seats from among 114 nominees, Tass said.

Other groups voting for deputies included the Union of Filmmakers and the Consumer Cooperative Societies.

The new Congress of People’s Deputies will meet once a year and will elect a smaller Supreme Soviet from within its ranks that will sit about eight months a year and function as a full-time legislative body.

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