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Soviet coup news update: Acting President of the Soviet Union has suggested that President Gorbachev is still in the Crimea, in conflict with an earlier report that he had been brought to Moscow for consultation

PETER THOMPSON: And now, back to Moscow and our correspondent, Monica Attard. Well, since AM began just over half an hour ago, we have heard that Mr Gorbachev was apparently taken to Moscow from his holiday in the Crimea last Saturday, Monica. What's being said in Moscow about that?

MONICA ATTARD: Very very little, Peter. This afternoon at a press conference with Gennady Yanayev, the Deputy President, and the man who now heads this state emergency committee, he was asked very directly: where is the President? He said he was in the Crimea at the dacha. He said that he was being guarded there but he made absolutely no mention of the President having been flown to Moscow, and he made absolutely no mention of any consultations between Gorbachev and the hardliners who have assumed control of the country. So the first signs that we have that this may be the case, are these current reports that are emerging tonight. But this is not to say of course, that this course of events didn't happen because Yanayev said this morning that President Gorbachev was no longer able to perform his duties for reasons of ill health, but as we now know, that is not the case. He says that the President is exhausted but clearly what has happened is that there has been a coup. It is not a case of the President being too ill to perform his duties as President.

PETER THOMPSON: So at the moment, without confirmation from Moscow, we are relying for that information on the French television network, TF1. Monica, any other developments?

MONICA ATTARD: Peter, there are literally thousands of people gathering around the Russian parliamentary building as we speak. There are lots and lots of young people, particularly young people. They are climbing onto the tanks that have amassed around the place, tanks that are loyal to Boris Yeltsin, with their guns pointed towards the Kremlin. The reports that I am receiving here is that people are literally flooding into the city centre, so we are yet to see what comes out of that one.

PETER THOMPSON: Monica Attard in Moscow.