From an interview with Oscar Arias, president of Costa Rica, broadcast Sept. 13 on John McLaughlin's "One on One":

Q. Why did {Daniel} Ortega sign {the Arias peace plan}?

A. Because he prefers a negotiated solution to more war.

Q. Because the country is so run down?

A. It's totally devastated. It's the poorest country in all of Latin America, you know that.

Q. Seven hundred percent inflation.

A. Yes. The exchange rate is 13,000 cordobas per dollar, and the official rate is 17 cordobas per dollar.

Q. The Russians are cutting back on his oil. He has doubled the price of gasoline . . . . He has reduced the rations. Izvestia says that his country, Nicaragua, is guilty of parasitism -- they're acting like parasites, and they've also become swindlers. Do you think the Russians are cutting them off?

A. I don't think the Nicaraguans or the Sandinistas can count on the support of the Russians.

Q. What about military aid? Do you have reason to believe the Russians are giving them more military aid despite the cutback of oil?

A. No, I don't think so. They are being left alone by almost everybody. This is why Daniel Ortega decided to take a chance on the 7th of August Guatemala accord