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Russia: Patriarch Begins Tour Of Tatarstan

Kazan, 1 September 1997 (RFE/RL) -- Russian Patriarch Alexy the Second begins his tour of Tatarstan today after arriving in the republic yesterday.

Speaking at a news conference at Kazan's airport on arrival, Patriarch Alexy said Tatarstan is different from the other regions of Russia because there have never been any conflicts between the representatives of different nations and confessions in it. He said the republic is an example to the entire Russian Federation.

During his three-day visit, Alexy is to visit the churches of Kazan, the Nurulla mosque, Raifofsky Monastery and the tank forces' training school in Kazan. He will also hold talks with Tatarstan President Mintimer Shaimiyev.