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Tatar-Bashkir Report: May 10, 2001

10 May 2001
Businessman Says Putin Fails To Curb Economic Crisis�
Rafail Kargin, the head of the Hiton chemical company, told "Vechernyaya Kazan" that Putin had failed to overcome the country's economic progress or promote industrial growth.

�But Former KGB Chief Praises Current Achievements�
Viner Salimov, Tatarstan�s Security Council secretary and himself a former State Security Committee officer, told the paper that Putin had been very successful in foreign affairs and in reviving hte state but needed to do more for the economy.

...Communist Leader Says State Interests Suffer�
Robert Sadikov, Communist Party secretary, added that �Putin had failed to take advantage of the favorable economic situation in 2000 and had not defended the interests of the state in the face of the power of the oligarchs.

�And Theater Director Calls Chechen Problem a Major One.
Rinat Zinnurov, director of the Tatar Muppet Theater, told the paper that Putin's greatest failure has been in Chechnya. Not only did he fail to end it but he converted it into a civil war. Zinnurov said that Tatarstan should have been more forthright in opposing the war.

Draft Evader Fined.
For the first time, a Kazan court has imposed a fine of 8,000 rubles ($275) on a young man who failed to show up when he was drafted, the Tatar press reported on 8 May.

Gulnara Khasanova

Putin Sends Greetings to Republic.
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent greetings to the republic on Victory Day, Bashinform reported. President Murtaza Rakhimov thanked Putin for his message but used his own speech to say that the 35,500 World War II veterans now living in Bashkortostan deserve a better life than they now have, RFE/RL's Tatar-Bashkir Service reported. Republic Inflation Below Russian Average. The Bashkortostan State Statistics Committee on 8 May said that inflation in the republic over the first three months of 2000 was 0.5 percent lower than the Russian average, Bashinform reported.

Ufa Promotes Bashkir Culture in Perm Oblast.
The Bashkortostan republic folk art center conducted a culture trainig session in Perm oblast to help support the Bashkir diaspora there, Bashinform reported on 8 May. Republic's Schools May Participate in UNESCO Project. UNESCO officials are scheduled to arrive in Ufa on 10-11 May to consider whether the republic's schools might participate in one of its projects, BAshinform reported. HIV INFECTIONS UP 3500 PERCENT IN ONE YEAR. The number of HIV carriers in Bashkortostan has risen by 35 times over the last year, Bashinform reported. MOst live in Ufa and are involved with drugs.

Gulnara Khasanova