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7th regional conference of Russian compatriots opens in Cuba

May 09, 2013, 2:59 UTC+3

Cuba hosts such conference for the first time

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HAVANA, May 9 (Itar-Tass) - The seventh regional conference of Russian compatriots from the countries of the Western Hemisphere opens in the Cuban capital on Thursday. Its participants will include heads and delegates from coordinating councils of compatriots from 18 countries of that region, such as Argentina, Bolivia, Venezuela, and Mexico.

Cuba hosts such conference for the first time. The previous one was held in the summer of 2012 in Canada. This one will end on May 11.

“Such conferences focus on the problems of the countries of the region, take concrete decisions how to popularize the Russian culture, the Russian language and projects linked with the help to our compatriots, and to attract the younger generation,” Russian consul general in Cuba Mikhail Yevdokimov told Itar-Tass. “Apart from that, such conferences are tasked to consolidate and promote this movement in the interest of Russia.”

Cuba’s Russian-speaking community is not big. It numbers about 3,000 people, including Russia-speakers from the former Soviet republics. About 1,770 of them are registered with the Russian consulate. But whatever small, the Russian-speaking community marks Russian national holidays and organizes cultural and educations actions.

The Russian delegation to the forum will include officials from the Russian foreign ministry’s department for work with compatriots, representatives from the Foundation for the Support and Protection of Rights of Compatriots, and from a number of other organizations.

The first ever regional conference of Russian compatriots was held in Brazil’s Sao Paolo in 2007.

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