By Paul Goble
Vladimir Putin’s acceptance of the idea that the Russian Federation needs to adopt a new law on the definition of the civic Russian nation has so overshadowed everything else that happened at the Astrakhan session of the Presidential Council on Inter-Ethnic Relations that a simple list of all the ideas raised there is necessary.
The journalists of the Nazaccent portal have provided a list of ten proposals that the site said had been made and discussed in front of Putin (nazaccent.ru/content/22276-korotko-o-glavnom.html). They include the following:
- Adopt a law on the Russian nation.
- Set responsibilities for the adaptation of immigrants.
- Build roads and accessible housing in the cities of Russia.
- Include the services performed by ethno-cultural organizations in the list of the socially useful.
- Adopt a law on ethnological expertise.
- Subordinate regional and local national-cultural autonomies to the federal level ones.
- Create in the Federal Agency for Nationality Affairs a Department for Work with Compatriots.
- Support the institution of federal national-cultural autonomies.
- Create a structure for distributing presidential grants on projects in the inter-ethnic sphere.
- Have a Year of the Unity of Peoples of Russia and Build a Palace of the Unity of the Peoples of Russia.
The list itself says a great deal about where things are headed in Putin’s Russia. Many of these topics will undoubtedly be revisited in the future.