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RFE/RL Tatar-Bashkir Daily Report -- 20 April 2005

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  • Uli Schamiloglu
    This article below appears on the web site of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) http://www.rferl.org Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty 2005 RFE/RL, Inc.
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 6, 2005
      This article below appears on the web site of Radio Free Europe/Radio
      Liberty (RFE/RL)

      Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty

      2005 RFE/RL, Inc.
      All Rights Reserved

      RFE/RL Tatar-Bashkir Daily Report
      20 April 2005
      Federal Legislators Said To Favor Federal Regulation Of Tatar Language Status
      Tatar State Council deputy Razil Weliev, who is a member of the
      intergovernmental working group on amending the Kazan-Moscow power-sharing
      treaty, told RFE/RL's Kazan bureau after the group's latest meeting on 19
      April that there was a "misunderstanding" between the republican and
      federal legislators over the treaty's articles on the official status of
      Tatar in Tatarstan (see "RFE/RL's Tatar-Bashkir Report," 19 April 2005).
      The federal officials reportedly considered the article declaring Tatar a
      state language in Tatarstan subject to regulation by republican
      authorities, which could lead them to reintroduce the law on Latin Tatar
      script reform, which was already halted by federal law.

      To prevent such legal collisions, federal legislators proposed that the
      Kazan-Moscow treaty should mention that Tatarstan defines its official
      language according to Russian laws. Weliev commented that by doing so, they
      are failing to acknowledge the article of the Russian Constitution saying
      that republics of the Russian Federation possess statehood within federal
      laws. In its previous version, the power-sharing treaty mentioned that both
      the Russian and Tatar constitutions were to be used for regulating the
      language issue.

      EBRD Considers Holding Shareholders Meeting In Kazan
      Christer Carlsson, head of the protocol department of the European Bank for
      Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), met with Tatar Minister of Trade and
      Foreign Economic Cooperation Khafiz Salikhov to discuss the possibility of
      holding the annual EBRD shareholders meeting in Kazan in May 2007, RFE/RL's
      Kazan bureau reported the next day (see "RFE/RL Tatar-Bashkir Report," 19
      April 2005).

      FSB Detains Former Guantanamo Prisoners
      According to "Kommersant-Daily" on 19 April, Tatarstan's branch of the
      Federal Security Service (FSB) arrested Timur Ishmoradov and Rawyl Gumarov,
      who had returned after being captured with Taliban militants in
      Afghanistan. The two had been cleared of terrorism charges and released
      after being kept at the U.S. military's base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
      According to investigators in Tatarstan, Ishmoradov and Gumarov are charged
      with organizing the 8 January 2005 gas-pipeline bombing in Bogelme.

      Compiled by Iskender Nurmi

      Bashkir Legislature Tightens Regulation Of Demonstrations
      The Bashkir State Assembly on 19 April passed in its third reading by a
      vote of 88 to five a law on registering public demonstrations, an RFE/RL
      Ufa correspondent reported the same day. The law obliges organizers of
      actions involving more than 500 participants to present notification of the
      action not only to local authorities, but also to the Bashkir government.
      If there are several organizers of an event, notification must be presented
      by the leaders of all organizations personally and at the same time. Among
      other requirements, the notification must be accompanied by a protocol on
      holding an action and copies of initiating organizations' charters and
      registration documents confirmed by a notary.

      Bashkir parliament deputy Edvard Murzin told "Kommersant-Volga-Urals" on 20
      April that the parliament's initiative was the result of growing pressure
      by the opposition on republican authorities. Opposition representatives
      announced that they will follow federal, not local law during their
      actions. Foundation for Development of Local Self-Government head Robert
      Zagreev told the daily that the local law was passed "to suppress opposition."

      Bashkortostan's Opposition Appeals To Putin
      The Coordinating Council of Bashkortostan's united opposition appealed on
      18 April to President Vladimir Putin, the Russian Prosecutor-General's
      Office, and the Federal Security Service to establish a special government
      commission to investigate the 16 April events in Ufa (see "RFE/RL
      Tatar-Bashkir Report," 18 April 2005), bashnews.ru reported on 19 April. In
      the appeal, opposition leaders called for holding responsible the heads of
      the administration, law enforcement, and other authorities for the beating
      of opposition members during the pro-Rakhimov demonstration. The authors
      said six beaten oppositionists appealed on 16 April to the Ufa Oktyabr
      Raion interior department. The opposition leaders said republican
      authorities organized transportation to the demonstration of fighters from
      the pro-Rakhimov Union of Bashkir Youth. Those fighters, dressed in
      camouflage uniforms with stylized swastikas on their sleeves, demonstrated
      under black banners featuring similar swastikas and images of a wolf. The
      appeal says police let fighters take part in the demonstration, while on
      the eve of the meeting they banned security companies from "participating
      in antigovernment meetings and providing security services" to opposition
      leaders. Thus, the republican authorities did everything to deprive
      peaceful participants of the opposition demonstration of security and to
      have opposition supporters beaten, the appeal concludes.

      Ufa Oil Refineries Pay Tax Debts
      Bashkir President Murtaza Rakhimov told reporters on 19 April that
      Bashkortostan's three oil refineries -- Ufaneftekhim, Novo-Ufa Oil
      Refinery, and Ufa Oil Refinery -- have paid some 10 billion rubles ($360
      million) in debts for illegal use of tax breaks in Kazakhstan's Baikonur
      offshore zone in 2001-02 (see "RFE/RL Tatar-Bashkir Report," 3 February, 20
      March, 26 May, 6 June 23 July, 24 October 2003), RosBalt reported the same
      day. Rakhimov said the refineries "have paid everything except the fines"
      of 2.7 billion rubles that were contested in court. To pay the debt, the
      refineries borrowed $250 million, "Kommersant-Volga-Urals" reported on 20

      Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova

      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: <http://lca.wisc.edu/>lca.wisc.edu
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