People have vanised and keep on vanishing in Russia. Even officials from the Ministry for Internal Affairs do not know where the people are. The Agency for Political News cited Duma deputy Valentin Nikitin, who admits “the migration problem is extremely pressing in Russia, as it has reached the crisis point and needs to be solved immediately.”
In Nikitin’s words, some 5 million people from republics of the former USSR settled in Russia over the past ten years. Over 2 million people left the Far East territories for Russia’s central regions within the same period. About 500,000 Russians left Chechnya and other regions of the Northern Caucasus. One of the main problems in the regions where migrants settle is the aggravation of international conflicts.
Valentin Nikitin mentions the situation in the Krasnodar region as an example; relations between the local population and the Turks who arrived in the region have turned for the worse . The deputy said that there are one million recently arrived people in the area already, which causes an additional burden for the authorities. These people have to be provided with jobs and lodging. The region is not able to provide everything that is necessary for these people, like many other regions and the country on the whole.
One more problem is the risk of the modification of the ethnic makeup, which is becoming more and more troublesome for some federation regions, for example, the Far East. The ethnic makeup may be completely changed there. The inflow of Chinese to the region is rapidly increasing each year. This demonstrates once again that the problem is to be dealt with on the governmental level (entry and exit regulations need to be toughened in Russia). Necessary need to be passed to solve this problem.
A hearing held last week entitled “Migration in Russia: problems and contradictions” was held in the State Duma with participation of all branches of the government. The hearing resulted in distressing conclusions, and the government was called upon to take urgent measures.
Deputy head of the presidential administration Viktor Ivanov believes that “Russia needs a good migration policy that can meet the concerns of the social and economic development of the country.” In particular, it will be a struggle against illegal immigration, which is a large threat to Russia. The increasing number of illegal workers was paid special attention to by Viktor Ivanov. He says the amount of illegal workers may grow to 19 million people if no measures are taken.
Duma Speaker Gennady Seleznev says that only 1.6 million people of the 9 million refugees and forced migrants have an official refugee status. The living conditions of 20 million of our compatriots living outside Russia after the breakup of the USSR was mentioned as the greatest tragedy.
Gennady Seleznev also dislikes today’s immigration policy in Russia. The parliamentary hearing was held under the motto: “The immigration problem is a problem of national security.” It was recommended that the president and the Russian government work thoroughly on the development and adoption of a state immigration policy.
The Rosbalt news agency reports that a concept for Russia’s immigration policy is in the making now. In addition, new laws on citizenship, the legal status of foreigners in the Russian Federation, on entry and exit, and on labor migration are to be passed.
Sergey Yugov PRAVDA.Ru
Photo by ITOGI
Translated by Maria Gousseva
Read the original in Russian: http://pravda.ru/main/2002/04/10/39519.html