Staunton, February 15 – The Azatlyk Union of Tatar Youth says it will do everything it can to prevent tensions in Naberezhny Chelny from spinning out of control and creating there a “Kondopoga-2,” a reference to the Karelian city where inter-ethnic violence in 2006 disturbed the entire country.
In a statement, Azatlyk pointed to the appearance of calls for “driving out of Chelny and Tatarstan the non-Russians” after an Uzbek was arrested for the murder of a local Russian girl. “We want to warn everyone that a Kondopoga-2 will not be allowed to happen” here (nazaccent.ru/content/6804-tatarskie-nacionalisty-kondopogi-v-naberezhnyh-chelnah.html
In recent months, the Russian media have sought to portray the Turkic republics of the Middle Volga region as sliding into the kind of Islamist violence and chaos that have characterized the North Caucasus. Azatlyk is obviously worried that this latest tragedy may be exploited by those who want Moscow to intervene and crackdown on their homelands.