Information Centre of Finno-Ugric Peoples
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Press release 19 August 2005

Press releases

Finnish journalist denied Russian visa (27.12.05)

Young Finno-Ugrians at the Congress of Turkic Youth (21.11.05)

International attention to problems of national minorities in the Russian Federation is not decreasing (01.11.05)

Chairman of Youth Association of Finno-Ugric Peoples attacked in Mari Republic, Russia (28.08.05)

Lusatian Sorbs express their solidarity with Udmurts (26.08.05)

Ethnic minority in Russia: media is filled with misinformation (25.08.05)

Closing of the 10th International Congress of Finno-Ugric Studies in Yoshkar-Ola (21.08.05)

Hopeless Udmurts appeal to Europe for support (19.08.05)

Russian authorities threatening an ethnic minority organisation (17.08.05)

Scientists replaced with officials at a scientific congress in Russia (16.08.05)

Tenth International Congress of Finno-Ugric Studies in Russia (15.08.05)

Estonian delegation to the 10th International Congress of Finno-Ugric Studies smaller than expected (12.08.05)

Estonian and Saami Theatres Start Co-operating with the Kalevala in Estonia (10.08.05)

An ethnographic film banned in Russia now available on DVD (09.08.05)

Doctoral scholarship in Estonia for foreign Finno-Ugrians (06.08.05)

An open letter to the President of Finland Tarja Halonen (02.08.05)

Estonian students caught in the wheels of Russia's internal politics (02.08.05)

Expulsion of Estonian students from the Mari Republic of Russian Federation (22.07.05)

The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organisation supporting the Mari people in Russia (07.07.05)

Ethnic minority convenes its congress in the underground (07.06.05)

Fascist group in Russia asserts being instructed by local administration (31.05.05)

Russian composer did not celebrate his anniversary in his home town (19.05.05)

European Parliament steps forth in defence of a national minority in Russia (12.05.05)

Federal Union of European Nationalities examined the situation of a Russia's minority (07.05.05)

Members of the European Parliament pass an action plan to improve the situation of Finno-Ugric minorities in Russia (27.04.05)

Finno-Ugric Minority of Russia Grateful to the European Parliament for Support (26.04.05)

Estonian Member of European Parliament on discussion with Russian parliamentarians on Russia’s minorities (22.04.05)

European Parliament Examining the Mari Situation in Russia (11.03.05)

Mari Nation Under Threat in Russia (22.02.05)

Opposition leaders still persecuted in Mari El: Vladimir Kozlov assaulted (04.02.05)

Read more
(information and news about Mari people in Mari, Russian, Estonian, English)

 Press releases by the Estonian Institute for Human Rights:



Unrepresented Nations' and Peoples' Organisation


The authorities of Udmurtia, an autonomous republic of the Russian Federation, have practically liquidated the only grammar school in the capital city of Izhkar (Izhevsk) with the instruction in Udmurt language. The school had been functioning for eleven years. The lengthy struggle of schoolchildren's parents for normal conditions for their children has ended with removing the pupils to schools with the instruction in Russian.

The Kuzebay Gerd School was named in the honour of an Udmurt enlightener killed in 1937 by the Russian authorities under the pretext of being a Finnish spy. As the school has now practically ceased to exist, interethnic tensions in the Udmurt Republic have strained. The hopeless parents complained to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) of which the Russian Federation is a member. They accuse the authorities of disregarding the interests of Udmurts who are the native population of Udmurtia.

The official policy was vividly articulated by President of Udmurtia Aleksandr Volkov. At a recent meeting with leaders of ethnic and cultural associations, he stated that creation of such "ethnic reservations" is undesirable.

The Udmurts are a Finno-Ugric people. They live in the Udmurt Republic, an administrative unit located between the Kama and Vyatka rivers. The territory of Udmurtia is covered with the forest and forest-steppe, and borders the steppe zone. According to the 2002 All-Russia population census, the number of Udmurts is 637 000, with 429 000 (67%) speaking the Udmurt language. Two-thirds of the Udmurts live in Udmurtia, and one-third reside in the adjacent republics of Bashkortostan and Tatarstan, and in the Perm and Kirov districts. The Udmurt language is taught in Udmurtia, as a rule, only in primary classes of rural schools.