VILNIUS, U.S.S.R., JUNE 28 -- The Lithuanian legislature began debating possible suspension of its declaration of independence from the Soviet Union today, as some members questioned whether they could trust the Soviet leadership to abide by any compromise they might make to begin formal negotiations on secession of the Baltic republic.
Lithuanian Premier Kazimiera Prunskiene told the lawmakers that Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev had offered to end an economic embargo against the republic and begin negotiations if Lithuania suspends the March 11 declaration. She suggested imposing a three-month moratorium that would take effect when talks with the Kremlin begin.
Prunskiene said Gorbachev did not ask for a freeze on laws passed after the declaration, one of which replaced the Soviet Constitution with a Lithuanian charter, but her assurances were not enough for many members.
"We fear that if we accept this, Moscow would install an alternative government," said legislator Klemas Inta. "They could deceive us."
"There is a panic in the country that we might be tricked," said Algis Cekuolis, a legislative adviser.
Prunskiene told the legislature it must accept a deal because the West is demanding a compromise and the Soviet economic embargo could bring disaster by winter.