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rl items (February 27-28, 2003)

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  • Uli Schamiloglu
    RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY, PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC ___________________________________________________________ RFE/RL NEWSLINE Vol. 7, No. 38, Part I, 27
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 3, 2003
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      RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY, PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC
      ___________________________________________________________
      RFE/RL NEWSLINE Vol. 7, No. 38, Part I, 27 February 2003

      TOP RUSSIAN MUSLIM OFFICIAL SAYS TRIP TO IRAQ MIGHT BE IN THE WORKS.
      Ravil Gainutdin, chairman of the Council of Muftis of Russia, told
      reporters in Moscow on 26 February that a delegation of Muslim
      leaders from Russia might travel to Iraq soon, Interfax reported. He
      also commented that the Russians who have reportedly volunteered to
      form a "human shield" in Iraq are not all Muslims. According to the
      Iraqi Embassy in Moscow, more than 3,500 Russians have received visas
      to travel to Iraq, and a total of 10,000 Russian citizens have
      expressed a willingness to go there, regions.ru reported on 26
      February. Lenta.ru reported earlier this week that the embassy's
      claims are a public-relations stunt and that no such visas have been
      issued. JAC

      RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY, PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC
      ___________________________________________________________
      RFE/RL NEWSLINE Vol. 7, No. 39, Part I, 28 February 2003

      BASHKIR JUDGE CLAIMS PERSECUTION BY LOCAL AUTHORITIES... Marat
      Vakilov, chairman of Bashkortostan's Supreme Court, and his family
      have allegedly been subjected to harassment after his court's ruling
      last March that the republic's new constitution runs counter to
      federal legislation (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 20 and 21 March 2002),
      REN-TV reported on 27 February. Vakilov told the station that the day
      after the ruling, Bashkir President Murtaza Rakhimov called him and
      told him to resign. Rakhimov also reportedly threatened Vakilov and
      his relatives. Nonetheless, Vakilov has remained in office. However,
      he told REN-TV that his son has been expelled from the university and
      drafted into the army and that a criminal case has been launched
      against his younger brother, a state-farm director, for allegedly not
      paying wages to an employee. Vakilov himself has been accused of
      misappropriating 60,000 rubles ($19,350) and of speaking too much on
      a court-provided mobile phone (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 23 and 30 April
      2002). JAC

      ...AS ETHNIC FACTOR PREDICTED TO LOOM LARGE IN UPCOMING ELECTIONS.
      Independent ethnic-policy expert Ildar Gabdrefikov told an RFE/RL Ufa
      correspondent on 26 February that ethnic factors will play a
      significant role in the 16 March elections for Bashkortostan's State
      Assembly. Gabdrefikov noted that Bashkir is the nationality granted
      official status in the republic and that this is reflected by local
      staffing policies. He cited official statistics that show that,
      although Bashkirs constitute only 22 percent of Bashkortostan's
      population, they occupy more than 60 percent of the posts in local
      executive branches and the same percentage in the republican
      parliament. Gabdrefikov predicted that the role of ethnicity in this
      year's presidential race will be similar to that seen in the 1998
      presidential campaign, when Bashkortostan's Russian, Tatar, and
      Bashkir communities each promoted their own candidates. JAC




      Uli Schamiloglu
      Professor of Turkic & Central Eurasian Studies
      Department of Languages and Cultures of Asia
      1254 Van Hise, 1220 Linden Drive
      Madison, WI  53706 USA
      tel. 1-608-262-7141 (office), 1-608-262-3012 (department), 1-608-265-3538 (fax)
      Email: uschamil@...
      LCA website:  lca.wisc.edu

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