Russian Cabinet to address ethnic, religious issues

A department on ethnic and religious issues will be set up within the Russian government, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday.

“I believe a special structure will be established within the government staff to deal with such issues,” Putin said at a meeting with representatives of religious and public organizations.

It is important to identify outstanding issues and find effective ways of resolving them, he said.

A special coordinator will be appointed to act as a mediator between the government and public and religious groups, he added.

The prime minister urged religious and ethnic associations to solve their problems through the All Russian People’s Front, his latest pet project.

Putin called for the creation of the All-Russia People’s Front at a conference of the ruling United Russia party in May to broaden the party’s electoral base with “non-party people,” including trade unions, NGOs, business associations and youth groups.

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