ADDRESS BY OKSANA KOZLOVSKAYA AT THE 47TH SESSION OF THE LEGISLATIVE DUMA OF TOMSK OBLAST
“This autumn’s events will be recorded in the national history as the time of pain and sorrow about the tragic deaths of hundreds of people in different corners of the world: terrorist attacks in Paris, Turkey, Lebanon, Yemen, Tunisia and Mali; ISIS massacre of 200 Syrian children; the biggest ever Russian plane crash in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula.
Terrorism has declared war on the entire global society. I believe, it is not right to talk today about other subjects however important they are. In the light of new threats many countries have put on full alert their national safety systems. Russia is no exception.”
According to the Institute of Economics and Peace the number of lives claimed by terrorism in 2015 increased by 80% and exceeded 32,500 people. More than half of it are victims of extremist organizations’ attacks. Economic damage from terrorist attacks is estimated at around 60 billion dollars.
Proposals by senators and deputies of the Russian State Duma at the joint session of the two Houses of the Federal Assembly are in tune with the world’s public opinion.
The Assembly recognized justified and appropriate the Russian President’s proposal to apply the Russian nation’s right of self-defense. They also support a proposal to toughen criminal responsibility for terrorism and aiding or abetting terrorists. Their unanimous opinion is that terrorists, like Nazis, should be prosecuted by international tribunal.
Serious work has already started to bring the highest level of detail into the migration legislation in order to set reliable barriers to extremism.
At the same time, every individual wants to be sure that everything possible is being or has been done in their town or city or country so that the tragedy never happens again.
I would like to remind you that Tomsk Oblast is implementing a population security program for 2020. A lot has been done lately. Still, there are many pressing issues. That is why the region increased funding of the program in 2016 by 60 million rubles.
Tomsk Oblast is proud of its tolerance
Sociological studies have shown that people in the region do not mind migrants and welcome foreign students. Almost 92% of foreign respondents feel safe in Tomsk Oblast and like Tomsk people. Tomsk Migration Center is the second migration center out of two such centers available in Siberia. The Center provides all kinds of help from registration to issuing the labor patent (by the way, we will discuss it as part of our agenda today). All this is very good. But! Given new challenges, issues such as analyzing migration flows and implementing additional criteria for labor migrants become very topical.
In an extraordinary session in November, the Governor’s Anti-Terrorism Committee reported that the safety environment in the region is stable with no signs of terrorist or extremist threats. Still, extra safety precautions have been taken to reinforce safety of the population.
At the same time, in many ways it is a matter of citizens’ and deputies’ own accountability. It is very important to avoid and prevent complacency and nonchalance, failure to recognize hazards. Today’s time requires alertness and vigilance from every one of us. Many our countrymen fought in the Great Patriotic War, many went through Afghanistan and Chechnya. They all know how high the price of peace is!
This background shows in a different light the substance of the law on patriotic education which we are going to discuss soon. We must always remember that terrorists’ most popular targets are the hearts and minds of people. Young people above all. Together with public associations we will have to work hard with the young audience to fight that evil. The role of the Youth Parliament and the new NGO Russian School Pupils Movement is very important in this work.
On the days of the tragic events thousands of Tomsk people shared their sincere sympathy and support for all victims of terrorist attacks in Russia and the world. I thank and respect them for their commiseration.
I am confident that respect for human life and rights is the foundation for the consolidation of people in these tough times.