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Tatar-Bashkir Report: January 19, 2001

19 January 2001
Culprits Behind Pipeline Explosion Condemned
Tatarstan Supreme Court on 18 January sentenced to imprisonment people who exploded a year ago the Urengoy-Uzhgorod gas pipeline near the Tatarstan and Kirov oblast border, Tatar television reported. The republic KGB which conducted investigation accused them of sabotage. They recognized during the preliminary investigation that they tried to attract attention of foreign countries to the Chechen events but at the trial, they denied their guilt. One of the accused said during the hearings �death of thousands of people in the Caucasus should also be a subject of investigation.� The counsel for the defense said at the trial that there is not enough evidence and the case should be stopped because of failure to prove the charge, while prosecution required 15 years� imprisonment. Of twelve the accused, one is in hiding, another one is recognized to be not responsible for his actions, two organizers were sentenced to 13 and 14 years, and the others participants - to 12 years of imprisonment. According to KGB, two of the participants passed training in the Chechen field commanders� camp �Caucasus.�

Tatarstan Again Stops Issuing Russian Passport
The republic television on 18 January reported that Tatarstan postponed once more introduction of new Russian passports on its territory that was scheduled to start current week. The supplement in Tatar, which was allowed by Moscow, does not suit the Republic State Council deputies, and they plan to form a commission to maintain the possibility of making entry in Tatar on the document�s regular pages.

A Number Of Kazan Weekly Delayed
The chairman of Tatarstan Central Electoral Commission Anatoly Fomin on 18 January told Tatar television that the Kazanskoye vremya weekly might violate laws on presidential elections, on the press, and on publishing activity as the weekly�s 18 January number had been published in two versions - on 8 and on 24 pages and in over 60,000 copies while usually it is printed in 5,000-10,000 copies. He said that Tatarstan Press Ministry�s state inspection appealed to �definite organizations� which will investigate into the case, and added that CEC will comment on the issue when the investigation result are available. ITAR-TASS reported the same day that Tatarstan interior bodies had withdrawn issue of the weekly and carried from a body official that it exceeded announced edition of the number and differed very much from the check copy represented to the Press Ministry.

Gorbachev Won�t Run
Former soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev on 18 January refused to ballot for the Tatarstan president, ITAR-TASS reported. Tatarstan branch of Gorbachev�s Russian united social-democratic party (ROSDP) earlier moved him. Gorbachev wrote in a message he sent to Kazan that it takes him a lot of time to head ROSDP as well as the Gorbachev Fund and the International Green Cross.

By Gulnara Khasanova

Russia Helps Bashkortostan To Cope With Hurricane Results
Russian government on 18 January allocated 110,000 rubles from its reserve fund for Bashkortostan to cover damage from the hurricane which had taken place the past May and June, AK&M reported. The means will be used for repair works and financial aid to victims.

Government Hopes Agricultural Companies To Return Loans
Bashkortostan Prime Minister Rafael Baidavletov on 17 January sharply criticized republic Agriculture Ministry for failure by state-owned agricultural companies to repay 2 billion rubles� credits and loans to the republic budget. He called unsatisfactory the proposed schedule according to which Bashkhleboprodukt, Bashptitseprom, and Bashagroprodukt would repay only a half of this sum within nine month while the other part would be returned during next several years. He charged the ministry with developing the stricter schedule and controlling over payments. And he said that heads of companies irrespective of their field and ownership should keep personal responsibility for their institutions� obligations before the state.

Tax Police Replenishes Budgets
The deputy head of Tax Police republic board Vyacheslav Nasyrov on 18 January said that his institution returned more than 6 billion rubles to federal, republic and local budgets and state funds, Bashinform reported. He reported large number of cases when profitable companies evaded obligations to pay to the Pension Fund, and said that the fund received 90 million rubles due to the republic body�s efforts.

Young Hacker Caught Out In Bashkortostan Village
Interfax reported on 18 January that a hacker-schoolboy in Bashkortostan village Qarmasqaly had broken a site of local sanitary-epidemiology station to connect to the Internet. Using login and password of the body, he obtained an illegal access to the information prohibited by law. Interior bodies instituted proceedings against the computer burglar. According to Interfax, this is the second case over past several months connected to under-age hackers residing in Bashkortostan rural locations.

By Gulnara Khasanova