Staunton, August 21 -- Although they rarely attract much attention from the national media, the predominantly ethnic Russian regions of Central Russia and the Middle Volga represent and are seen by Moscow officials to represent an increasingly serious threat to the political stability of the Russian Federation.
Indeed, according to Vladimir Gusev, a regional affairs expert at the Stolypin Institute of Administration, these Russian provinces are now “a zone of political and economic instability on the basis of which can arise the most fantastic forms of political relations between the main subjects and branches of power” (isras.ru/files/File/Vlast/2013/08/Gusev.pdf
The Saratov official held a meeting only with Balashov officials and not with the members of the initiative group. According to Viktor Volkov, the secretary of the local KPRF organization, that meant that Fadeyev was “not capable either of deciding or even becoming familiar with the problems” of the district.
Volkov added that he had nonetheless been able to meet with him and “for more than an hour” told the Saratov official “about the serious problems of the district and city, the theft, corruption and criminality” and about the ways in which the authorities had ignored these problems or were even complicit in them.
Fadeyev’s reaction, the KPRF secretary and a member of the initiative committee said, shows that Saratov has no intention of addressing the problems in Balashov. As a result, the citizenry is increasingly distrustful of the oblast authorities who “are not ready for constructive dialogue and are not able to function.”
Today, the Balashov media reported yesterday, Balashov residents plan to demonstrate against the Saratov officials and demand the replacement of the officials Saratov has imposed on them before and after their as yet unsuccessful campaign to “secede” from Saratov and join Voronezh (nversia.ru/news/view/id/42770).