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Saturday, February 17, 2018

A clash of two of the Kremlin: why Putin did not renew the Treaty with Tatarstan

11 August 2017 expired term of the contract on differentiation of powers between the Federal center and Tatarstan. The new Treaty, there is not expected. If this news has left you indifferent, that from the point of view of practical politics, you’re probably right. After termination of the agreement the actual circuit arrangement of the two Kremlin – Moscow and Kazan – hasn’t changed. But from the point of view of legal casuistry, an event that just took place, can be called a landmark. This is such a cornerstone concept of the territorial integrity of Russia on the legal bases of the finding of Tatarstan part of our state.

photo: Lily Sharlovskoe

According to the Constitution of the Republic of Tatarstan, the agreement on differentiation of powers between Moscow and Kazan is one of the three main reasons due to which this region is the subject of the Russian Federation. The first article of the basic law of the Republic States: “ the Republic of Tatarstan is a democratic legal state United with the Russian Federation Constitution of the Russian Federation, the Constitution of the Republic of Tatarstan and Treaty between the Russian Federation and the Republic of Tatarstan “ On delimitation of jurisdictional subjects and mutual delegation of powers between public authorities of the Russian Federation and bodies of state power of the Republic of Tatarstan”.

Translated from the legal language into easily understood this language means or, put it this careful, can mean the following: since the Treaty on the delimitation of powers between the Federal centre and Kazan no more, the finding of Tatarstan as part of Russia is in question. Fortunately, the legal reality does not always coincide with reality itself. Regardless of what is written in official documents, Tatarstan will come from Russia not today, not tomorrow and not the day after. But to dismiss possible legal repercussions from something insignificant too.

We are faced not with a minor legal curiosity, of interest only to fans of constitutional law. We are faced with the need to build a new pattern of relations between the Federal center and one of the most important and influential regions of Russia. Old Yeltsin’s scheme these vzaimootnoshenii just died. And the new Putin, despite the duration of stay of the current President in power, has not yet built.

Being 6 August 1990 on a visit to Kazan, the newly elected Chairman of the Supreme Soviet of the RSFSR Boris Yeltsin said his fateful phrase: “Take as much sovereignty as you can pogolotti”. Gracious hosts Yeltsin, the first violin among which played holding then a post of the head of the local party Committee Mintimer Shaimiev, vospolzovalis this invitation to the fullest. In the period of sharp weakening of the Central structures of power, which coincided with Yeltsin’s reign, under the leadership of Tatarstan Shaimiev took a course to maximize their independence.

Please note the above quoted first article of the basic law of the Republic: “ Tatarstan is a state United with Russia”. Pay – and compare it with the other fundamental law of our Republic, whose leadership in the Yeltsin era is also very successful in the case of pressure on the Federal centre: “ the Republic of Bashkortostan yavlyaetsya democratic legal state within the Russian Federation”. Feel the difference? In the Yeltsin period of our history the political elite in Kazan did everything to constantly “feel the difference” between Tatarstan and other Russian regions. In December 1993, the Republic actually boycotted the referendum on the new Constitution of Russia. Voter turnout in Tatarstan was less than 15%. And in one of the districts with a population of thirty thousand people on the site came only three persons. Similarly, in Tatarstan, then failed elections in the new Federal Parliament. His messengers to the State Duma and the Federation Council, the Republic sent only after signing in February 1994 the first contract on differentiation of powers between Moscow and Kazan.

But even after the signing of this contract, Mintemir Shaimiev, has made it clear: the Tatarstan Republic is something more than ordinary subject of the Russian Federation. Small, but colorful example. The name of the KGB disappeared from official usage in Moscow in the autumn of 1991. But in Tatarstan KGB continued to exist right up to the spring of 2001. Permanent team Shaimiev on the brink – or, as some believe, even a little beyond – not necessarily can be considered dokazatelstvom the presence of the leadership of the Republic of separatist sentiment. In the 90s nimble regional leaders often used politicheskie threats as a lever to extract from the Federal center for economic preferences.

For example, as the first President of Ingushetia Ruslan Aushev knocked out of Prime Minister Chernomyrdin the right to establish in the Republic a free economic zone. Quoting the story Aushev, his friend and biographer of Vladimir Snelgrove: “ I already have a bit of confidence in the corridors of power, knew that the best thing to come immediately, it is better to first interlocutor to prepare. So started from afar: – Victor Stepanovich, we have trouble. Really bad: no money, refugees winter spent without a roof over your head. Throw us from the master’s table.

But Chernomyrdin then all went smoothly with that sort of talk, so the answer was predetermined: – I have no Money. Don’t ask and don’t assume. Then I lightly blackmail: -Just do not give money, then give independence. He raised his eyebrows and even stood up from the table: – fuck you! Enough of us one of Dudayev. Drop such talk. Forget it! – and added a few unprintable, but very expressive words. But, see, excited. Yeah, now you can and the cards vykladyvat: – Victor Stepanovich, the money centre, there is not expected. Allow yourself to earn them. For a common cause. – It’s like? – Yes, here is one idea.”

Don’t know, was limited to whether the appetite command Shaimiev “blackmail” of the Federal center or from Kazan, Yeltsin had broader ambitions. But the fact that the Yeltsin era is over, and when Putin Tatarstan began postino “vozvrat in the system.” In 2006, Putin and Shaimiev, however, signed a new contract on differentiation of powers between Moscow and Kazan. But even then, the leadership of Tatarstan made a transparent hint: we really can’t go. After the contract is signed the GDP, so absolutely obedient to the authority as the Council of the Federation suddenly “rebelled” and voted against it. The document was confirmed when the President and the State Duma together overcome the veto of Council of Federation.

And here in the summer of 2017 Tatarstan remained without an agreement on the delimitation of powers. How to get out of this situation? I am opposed to any manifestations of separatism and attempts by individual regions to get themselves a semi-independent status. There is another argument against signing a new contract on differentiation of powers. For such a document now, just no “stuffing” In contrast to the past all the issues of relations between the center and the regions are now governed by Federal laws. But at the same time I am convinced that Russia should avoid any action that can be described as the humiliation of Tatarstan or the manifestation to him of disrespect.

Kazan should be able to “save face”. For East – and not only Eastern societies is not just important, but paramount. The Federal center and Tatarstan authorities should work together to find a compromise, popular and legally-regulated decision. Based on my conversations with experts of the Kazan political behind the scenes, officials in Moscow and Kazan already understand the contours of such a solution. Not going into details, which are interesting and even understandable only to lawyers. The main thing is that compromise is both possible and highly desirable. The Federal center and Tatarstan managed not to quarrel in “dashing” the 90th. In stable Teens, they have especially no right.


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