Yeltsin Gives Oswald File to Clinton

<i> From Associated Press</i>

Documents given by Russian President Boris N. Yeltsin to President Clinton on Sunday could shed light on whether Lee Harvey Oswald schemed to kill President Kennedy while he was an American defector living in the Soviet Union, assassination researchers said.

Yeltsin’s surprise gift to Clinton, declassified papers containing information gathered by Russian intelligence agencies about Oswald, are a “monumental breakthrough,” said historian Kermit Hall, a former member of the Assassination Records Review Board. That federal panel, which went out of business last September, was created to gather all records regarding the assassination.

Hall said the Russian records, which the board could not obtain when it sent Hall and two other board members to Russia in 1996, could show what Oswald was thinking and doing in the years leading up to the 1963 assassination of Kennedy in Dallas.


“It’s really critical,” said Hall, an Ohio State University historian.

Other researchers doubt the Minsk files will be a blockbuster.