January 23, 2007 -- Tajikistan has asked Russia to ease restrictions on migrant labor to allow one-third more Tajiks into the country than planned this year.
Dushanbe is seeking the increase to permit up to 800,000 of its nationals into Russia, instead of the planned 600,000.
Labor Minister Shukurjon Zuhurov said Tajik Prime Minister Oqil Oqilov sent a letter to that effect to his Russian counterpart, Mikhail Fradkov.
Russia began implementing tougher immigration rules in January, under which the number of non-nationals working at retail markets should be reduced to zero by the end of this year.
The Post-Soviet Environment
The skull of a male saiga antelope in Kalmykia. Saiga numbers have collapsed disastrously over the last decade. (shpilenok.com)
THE FRAGILE PLANET: Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, old environmental disasters have come to light and new ones have emerged. War, poverty, and weak central-government control have led to serious environmental problems from Eastern Europe to the Russian Far East. RFE/RL has provided extensive coverage of these important issues and of efforts to cope with them.