KARACHAY-CHERKESSIA, Russia, May 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
International congress in Karachay-Cherkessia demands protection of minorities and general rejection of external interference with sovereign states. Russia assumes responsibility for ethnic minorities.
Members of the European Parliament warn of "Arabian Spring" situations in Russia's South. They demand strict guarantee of international contracts on the non-intervention of foreign states.
The protection of national minorities and the rights of multi-national states are not a contradiction, but a basic prerequisite for peaceful cooperation. This is the result of an international experts' meeting in the Russian Karachay-Cherkess Republic. Diverse national and religious identities enrich multi-national states like the Russian Federation. They are not a justification for external intervention.
Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Johann Ewald Stadler from Austria noted with concern how ethnical and religious minorities were abused in the past to justify destabilisation of the region. The influence of external organisations and states had led to disputes that could have caused great trouble. "Only the considerate action of the central government was able to calm down the situation again," Stadler explains.
Destabilisation in South Russia and the entire Russian Federation was attempted in the name of the national minority rights over the years. Belgian Parliamentary Delegate Frank Creyelman believes that they were initiated from the outside. MEP Stadler sees dangerous parallels to the current development in Syria, where ethnical and religious minorities were also instrumentalised from the outside, with cruel consequences for all Syrian citizens. Russia would not permit this, however.
Dutchman Daniel van der Stoep, also a member of the European Parliament, demanded that ethno-nationalism be replaced by the ideas of democracy, peaceful coexistence of different nations and mutual respect as a basis of international law.
The peoples of the North Caucasus have gone through a tragic period of their history in the past. This is a trait that they share with many nations in Europe, as MEP Fabrizio Bertot from Italy notes. Deportations, for example, were not a solitary incidence in the complex history of Europe. "Today's Russia is different from the Russia of the past. It is not responsible for the crimes of Stalin's time."
Rashid Borispiyevič Temerzov, the head of the local government of the Karachay-Cherkess Republic, emphasized the special rights of small nations. At the same time, he noted that the citizens of the multi-national state of Russia "put into practice their shared future in the cooperation and mutual respect for their different traditions."
The most important bodies for freedom and the rights of the individual nations are the constitution and the Federal laws of the Russian Federation that prevent historic tragedies like the deportations that took place during the times of Stalin. The central government in Moscow supports the small Caucasus Republics not only legally, but also financially. These funds are used for infrastructure measures as well as for the general economic development of the entire area.
The chairman of the committee for national matters of the State Duma, G. K. Safarilev, considers this to be an essential success for the benefit of a stable and peaceful development of the entire southern region of Russia. It will also be an asset for the Winter Olympics 2014 in Sotchi.
All congress participants agree that they hope that the experiences of the recent past of the Caucasus will set examples for those states and peoples that are facing similar threats to a peaceful, sustainable development in a multi-national state.
For more information, see http://www.geopolityka.org
Minister of Information and National Policy of Karachay-Cherkess Republic
International Institute of Newly Established States