President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: I would like you to report on the situation in the Republic, in the light of the dramatic events that have occurred, including the assassination attempt on the President [of the Republic of Ingushetia, Yunus-Bek Yevkurov].
I hope that his treatment will have the desired results, because his condition has been improving. Of course we were all happy to hear that news. That said, people cannot simply wait until the President recovers. The region needs a full-fledged leader. Hence my executive order appointing you acting president.
I would like you to report on the economic situation, the region’s main problems – of course I know what they are but nevertheless we need to think about what should be done about them – and security measures, because the assassination attempt has made the situation very difficult.
I would also like to know how you are cooperating with other agencies and with Russia’s federal authorities.
Please, go ahead.
Acting President of Republic of Ingushetia Rashid Gaisanov: First, the President is indeed improving, steadily improving. Currently all the requisite authorities in the Republic, both the Cabinet and the legislature, are functioning normally and perform as they should, so there is no power vacuum.
Dmitry Medvedev: That’s important.
Rashid Gaisanov: We are continuing to implement our plans on both the economic and security fronts. The social and political situation in the Republic is stable.
In this regard your personal involvement and that of the federal authorities have been of great importance for Ingushetia, and the executive order you referred to has further stabilised the overall situation.
Regarding the crime, it is serious but under control. The Ministry of the Interior, Federal Security Service [FSB] and all the law-enforcement agencies, continue to assist us with carrying out the activities that were initiated by President Yunus-Bek Yevkurov and are now gradually implemented. The coordination of these efforts has gone smoothly and we are all working together effectively. The results have been good, and there have been very positive results with regards to the activities underway in the mountains and wooded areas as well as those carried out directly in villages and towns. So we have made a break through and continue stepping up our efforts.
Dmitry Medvedev: We need to be sure that these efforts continue. I just talked with the director of the FSB and have also spoken with other colleagues. We have recently had good success in the fight against criminal gangs who hide out in the woods; some 20 militants have been killed. We must continue to build on these efforts: we need to smoke them out of there.
In this regard, you have done well in cooperating with other republics as well as with federal agencies. Keep it up.
Rashid Gaisanov: We certainly will. As for the economic part of your instruction, the plan to develop a federal target programme for socio-economic development, last week I had several meetings, including one with top government officials. We find common ground, and we are determined to get the programme finalised before September 1, 2009. This will be of great help in stabilising the situation and will of course assist our social and economic development.
Dmitry Medvedev: You know this subject well, because you worked on it previously under Yunus-Bek Yevkurov [as Prime Minister of the Republic of Ingushetia], and now you are doing the job of two people. This means that you are the one who needs to prepare all of the proposals for the Cabinet. As I told you during my visit to Ingushetia, you can be assured of my support. So let’s continue down the right path, as they say. I want you to keep everything under your direct control, as this is going to be a difficult period. If you need something, just contact me. I am always ready to give the necessary instructions to the federal agencies and the Cabinet.
Rashid Gaisanov: Thank you.