Opening the meeting, Acting President Vladimir Putin said that only the people’s welfare, respect for their ethnical and cultural needs and human rights would make Russia stronger.
Mr Putin underlined that the efforts to improve and consolidate the Russian Government would have no negative consequences for the people.
Speaking about the celebrations of Kazan’s 1,000th anniversary in 2004, Mr Putin said that the event should be held on an international scale, rather than celebrated only in the republic or nationwide. He described Kazan as a city with centuries-old traditions, a perfect example of harmonious co-existence between different ethnic groups and religions.
Prior to the meeting, Mr Putin took a walk around the city, strolled along Bauman Street, visited the new Azino residential development under construction, and stopped at an old block of flats whose residents received new housing as part of a state sponsored programme.
Mr Putin also visited a metro construction site, the Kazan Kremlin and the Annunciation Cathedral, and the Kul Sharif Mosque currently under construction.