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YESSENTUKI, October 12 (Itar-Tass) —— The terrorist threat remains the main factor for instability of the socio-political situation in the North Caucasus, Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said at an on-site conference in Yessentuki on progress in implementing the state policy in the North Caucasus and the elaboration of additional measures of enhancing social and political stability in the region.
"This year the district saw 335 terrorism-related crimes, this is 90 percent of all crimes of this category in the Russian Federation,” Patrushev said. “The every-day environment in the area remains strained. This causes the people’s distrust towards the government's actions and requires the heads of federal agencies territories make a realistic assessment of the situation and take the corresponding appropriate action. Flaws here are one of the main reasons for the lack of investment activity in implementing major projects under the development strategy for the North Caucasus."
"The significance of the North Caucasus for the socio-economic development and national security is difficult to overestimate," said Patrushev. But many of the problems of national security "in the North Caucasus look sharper than in other regions of the country," he added. The federal government and the office of the permanent representative in the North Caucasus Federal District exert considerable efforts to promote large-scale projects that can ensure positive developments in the region and meet the challenges of security. "This is also the aim of the state program for the development of the North Caucasus until 2025. Its budget amounts to more than 2.6 trillion rubles, and the total budget, including funds drawn from extra-budgetary sources, exceeds 5.5 trillion rubles. In the implementation phase there are some federal programs, better results have been achieved by measures to combat corruption, clan attitudes and organized crime," said Patrushev.
According to the secretary of the Russian Security Council, "the task of addressing the NCFD problems is interconnected with the settlement of issues in the field of ethno-confessional and interethnic relations." Among the remaining negative factors in the district Patrushev mentioned lower employment, especially that of young people, and "the preservation of the imbalances in the labor market," as well as "insufficient efforts to return militants to a peaceful life" and to resolve "problems of the ethno-religious and inter-ethnic character." One of the main problems is the high level of officially registered joblessness - more than 350 thousand. "Particularly high unemployment figures are in Chechnya - almost 214 thousand, in Ingushetia - about 50 thousand, and in Dagestan, about 40 thousand," he said.
There remains a very low average income of the working population - in the North Caucasus Federal District the average monthly salary is about 13 thousand rubles, as compared to 22 thousand rubles in Russia on average.
"The situation is exacerbated by the growth of wage arrears. One must also remember the misuse of budget funds, parent capital, unemployment and other forms of financial assistance," said Patrushev.
"The main problems of social and political stability in the district are ways of increasing employment, achieving the cessation of the outflow of the population, including Russian speakers, and prevention of terrorist and extremist crimes," Patrushev said.