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Tatar-Bashkir Report: March 26, 1999

26 March 1999
Shaimiev Says Moscow Went Too Far In Supporting Belgrade
Tatar President Mintimer Shaimiev said that though doesn't support NATO's military strikes against Yugoslavia, he does takes into account the reality of the situation. Shaimiev made his comments at a press conference on 25 March. He said "it's impermissible for Russia to get involved in this war. It does not have enough means to affect the decision [by NATO] that has already been taken. In our support for Milosevic's position, we went too far. Is our position defending the interests of Serbs faultless? How much do forces in the world support the Serbian side and [really] intend to help it during a military conflict?" Shaimiev said a "sovereign state should be able to ensure internal security" in the first place. If it can't, then "a proposal to bring peacekeepers into Yugoslavia for" a limited period had to be accepted. Shaimiev said "It's necessary to return to the process of negotiations." Shaimiev said accusations made by Russian Premier Yevgenii Primakov in connection with the cancelation of his U.S. visit are "unjustified." He said some political forces want to use Primakov's action as a reason to press the government. Shaimiev added that Primakov was forced to submit to the weakened position of the Russian state.

Indian Ambassador In Tatarstan
An Indian delegation headed by the ambassador to Russia, Satinder Kumar Lamba, began a two-day visit to Tatarstan on 25 March. Lamba met with the deputy chairman of the State Council, Renat Kharisov, and the minister of trade and economic cooperation, Khafiz Salikhov, to discuss economics, state structures, and Tatarstan's sovereignty. The visitors are interested in oil and oil products, production by some of Tatarstan's firms, among them the Nizhnekamskshina tire company, the KamAZ truck plant, the Tatspirtprom alcohol company, and helicopter and compressor plants. They also studied the conditions that have been created in Tatarstan in order to attract foreign investment. Tatarstan imports medicines, coffee, spices, and tea from India. Last year, the Tatar-Indian turnover dropped by 30 percent, making New Dehli Tatarstan's 25th largest trade partner, Tatar radio and television reported. On 26 March Lamba is scheduled to meet with President Mintimer Shaimiev and Health Minister Kamil Ziatdinov, visit the Ministry of Economics and Industry and the Chamber of Trade and Industry, Tatar-inform reported.

Algeria To Work With Rosvooruzheniye Office In Tatarstan
The Algerian ambassador to Russia, Ammar Makhlufi, visited several defense industry enterprises and met with Tatarstan's Rosvooruzheniye representative, Mikhail Tikhonov, during a three-day visit to Tatarstan. During the meeting, Makhlufi suggested the creation of a long-term cooperation program. Tikhonov said in an interview with Tatar-inform that "we are ready to restore regular deliveries of Tatarstan's defense production and to develop new directions of cooperation." Possibilities for the modernization of Tatarstan-produced helicopters and ships already sold to Algeria was also discussed.

Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova