Monday, October 7, 2019

A Cry of Despair from Khakassia: People Being Robbed and State isn’t Acting Like a State

Paul Goble

            Staunton, October 5 -- Khakassia, a small Turkic republic adjoining Krasnoyarsk Kray with an overwhelmingly ethnic Russian population, rarely attracts attention except when it is rumored to be on Vladimir Putin’s list of non-Russian republics to be amalgamated with Russian ones or when there is an accident or prison violence there. 

            But two developments, one at the end of August and the second yesterday, have brought that republic to the center of Russian attention, not so much because they are unique to Khakassia but rather because Khakassia, so long out of public view, has developed extreme forms of problems that are true for most of the Russian Federation.

            On the one hand, on August 22, the Russian Procurator General has brought charges against an official of the Khakass natural resources ministry for illegally cutting down 100  million rubles (1.6 million US dollars) worth of cedar, an action that highlights the fusion of state and business and has led some to conclude that the impression in Khakassia is “that there is no state left” (For the indictment, see; for the background and fallout of this case, see

            And on the other, yesterday, Valery Shtygashev, the head of the Supreme Soviet of Khakassia, publicly denounced the way in which Moscow has allowed major businesses to escape taxation while starving the republic government by not providing it even with the funds it says it will ( and

            After detailing just how cozy business and the state are and how that allows business to escape paying the taxes it owes, Shtygashev said everyone must obey the law and serve the fatherland. But now all too often, “no one fulfills the laws which are adopted in the Russian Federation fully and in the interests of the state.”

No comments:

Post a Comment