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Tatar-Bashkir Report: April 30, 2001

30 April 2001
World Tatar Congress Against Duma Ethnic Policy Bill
The Executive Committee of World Tatar Congress said that the Duma nationalities policy draft is "destructive for Russia" and "unacceptable for us because Tatars want to live in a democratic and prosperous state," WTC Executive Committee chairman Indus Tahirov said, RFE/RL's Kazan bureau reported on 27 April. The same day WTC adopted a resolution calling for accelerating the introduction of the Latin script and appealed to the Bashkortostan government to open Tatar schools and youth centers.

Chally TPC Denies Man Detained was a Member
The Chally branch of Tatar Public Center said on 28 April that the arrest of Fanis Shaykhutdinov "was ideologically motivated" and declared its willingness to defend even though "Shaykhutdinov is not its member."

Demand For KamAZ' Small Cars Growing
KamAZ produced 150,000 cars during the last 13 years, its press service reported on 28 April. Although the Oka has not passed European safety tests, it is increasingly popular with drivers, the service said, adding that 50 percent of the company's sales had come during the last 13 years.

Compiled by Iskender Nurmi

Bashkortostan to Pay Off External Debts
Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Foat Khantimerov said on 28 April that Ufa will pay off its $45 million external debt by March 2002. He said that Prime Minister Rafael Baydavletov had reached agreement with the directors of HSBC Midland Bank and Moscow Narodny Bank Ltd.

�But Government Presents People with a Problematic Present
The Bashkortostan government on 28 April raised the prices of city transport by 30 to 50 percent, the state press service reported.

Regions to Sponsor Satellite TV in Bashkortostan
Bashkortostan is to launch its satellite TV by 2002 in order to solve the broadcasting problem in the highland areas, Bashinform reported on 28 April. The republic's regions are expected to provide a major share to the project's cost totaling $200 million.

President Begins 1 May Celebrations�
On the eve of 1 May president Murtaza Rakhimov greeted the citizens of Bashkortostan with the "holiday of spring and labor," wishing them "optimism and joy."

State Board Urges More Attention To Local Self-Government
The State Board on local self governments gathered on 28 April to discuss how best to promote the development of decision making by local administrations, reported.

Compiled by Iskender Nurmi