Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev said he had not ordered Soviet troop assaults in the Baltic republics of Latvia and Lithuania. The ``self-styled actions by the military side are not tolerable,'' he added. He did not say who ordered the attacks or if any action would be taken against the officers or soldiers responsible for the incidents.
Mr. Gorbachev also denied there had been a political shift to the right in the Soviet Union and said emphatically: ``Neither domestic nor foreign policy has undergone changes.''
``The developments in Vilnius, [Lithuania], and Riga, [Latvia], are by no means the manifestation of the policy line of the presidential authority,'' Gorbachev said at a news conference Tuesday.
Gorbachev said ``there was no mythical command from above'' for the Soviet troop assaults in the Baltics.
The violence did not represent the end of perestroika (restructuring), he said. ``As president I will defend the achievements of perestroika.''