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Tatar-Bashkir Report: June 18, 2001

18 June 2001
Klebanov in Kazan to Discuss Aircraft Industry
Russian Deputy Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov and presidential business-manager Vladimir Kozhin on 16 June visited Kazan to discuss domestic aircraft construction development, Tatarstan television reported. They attended a demonstration flights of the MI-17 and Ansat helicopters. Klebanov believes that the Ansat helicopter has good chances to win a tender on the delivery of 100 helicopters to the Defense Ministry that is to be held next month, he said. He urged Kazan aircraft producers to speed up creation of the TU-324 plane so that to begin its serial production in 2004.

Shaimiev Says Debate on Land Code Overly Politicized
President Mintimer Shaimiev on 15 June told RTR that debates on the Land Code issue are �too politicized� especially since the KPRF has no attractive alternative ideas. He said that the prohibition against private property in land had hindered reform and he said that the buying and selling of agricultural land must be approved this year.

Tatarstan Deputies Defend Their President
The State Council�s commission on issues of state structure, local self-governance and foreign relations rejected a proposal to prohibit use of the concept �president� concerning heads of federation subjects, reported on 15 June. The corresponding amendment to the federal legislation requires that the �president� name be applied only to a head of independent sovereign state that is the Russian Federation but not its subjects. Tatarstan deputies said that this amendment, if it is passed, would contradict the Russian Constitution which recognizes republics to be states as well as their right to call their leaders in a way they would like to.

People�s Front Formed in Tatarstan
The forum of Tatar public organizations on 14 June set up a People�s Front to defend Tatarstan�s sovereignty, Tatar-inform reported. The Tatar Public Center, Milli Mejlis, the Tatar youth union Azatliq, the public movement Idel-Ural, the Fund for the Defense of Human Rights and Freedoms joined the new organization. State Council deputies and Kazan administration officials were in attendance. The Charter-2001 passed at the forum said that the official policy of the Russian leaders aims at the annihilation of state sovereignty of the national republics. The document blames inactivity of Tatarstan�s authorities that allow Russia to suppress peoples� self-determination and republic sovereignty. Participants stressed that changes in the inter-budget relations between Moscow and Kazan have undermined republic sovereignty.

Recent �Drug Store Reform� Called a Mistake
First Deputy Prime Minister Ravil Muratov told �Respublika Tatarstan� on 14 June that setting up of the Tattekhmedfarm drug trading monopoly in the republic had been �a mistake.� He said �the state will never be able to compete in the sector of everyday servicing population.�

ZMA Holds Shareholders Meeting
The KamAZ� small car plant ZMA annual shareholders meeting decided not to pay dividends and compensations to board members for 2000, Tatar-inform reported on 15 June.

Tatarstan Opens Mission in Khanty-Mansi Okrug
Tatarstan�s trade and economic representation office has opened in Khanty-Mansi okrug, �Vremya i dengi� reported on 15 June. Sibneftemashservis general manager Fanis Gataullin was nominated head of the mission. Gataullin, from Tatarstan but currently residing in Surgut, is a chairman of the Tatar national-cultural autonomy of Khanty-Mansi okrug and a member of the national issues council in the office of the okrug governor.

Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova

Rakhimov Concerned About Agriculture
President Murtaza Rakhimov on 15 June said that the situation in agricultural sector remains a subject of "special concern" for republic leaders as there are no signs of either stabilization or reform, Bashinform reported. In other comments, Rakhimov noted that Ufa had collected 25 percent more taxes than a year ago but said that capital outflow remains "a serious problem."

Russian Defense Ministry Awards Rakhimov
President Murtaza Rakhimov on 15 June was presented an award by the Russian Defense Ministry for his contribution to the military draft in Bashkortostan, the presidential press service reported. Only Voronezh had a better record during the spring draft than did Bashkortostan.

Deputy Says Draft Land Code Conforms to Bashkortostan Referendum
Duma deputy (Regions of Russia) Mikhail Bugera said on 15 June that the government's draft land code corresponds to Bashkortostan's 1995 referendum and that opposition to it from the communists and agrarians reflect narrow party interests, reported.

Red Cross Delegation Visits Ufa
A delegation of the Red Cross� International Committee visited Bashkortostan to see how international humanitarian law is taught in the republic schools, Bashinform reported on 15 June.

Air Traffic Control Officers Threaten Strike
Air traffic control officers of Bashaeronavigatsia have postponed a strike threatened for 19 June but say they will join a Russia-wide action on 25 June about low salaries, Bashinform reported on 15 June.

Soros Fund Provides Bashkortostan Libraries With New Books
A delegation of George Soros' Open Society Institution arrived in Ufa on 17 June to present the republic's libraries with $1.9 million in books and other publications, Bashinform reported.

Bashkirenergo Disconnects Debtors From Heating
Bashkirenergo on 15 June disconnected its debtors, including several industrial plants, and announced that it will not reconnect them until they pay all bills owed, Bashinform reported.

Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova