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Yet another national minority paper ceases publication in the Crimea

30.06.2011    source: www.radiosvoboda.org

 

The largest Crimean Tatar publication, the newspaper “Kiyrym” has not been published now for a month. Since the beginning of the year the Ukrainian government has totally stopped funding of this paper, one of the two in Ukraine published in the Crimean Tatar language. Up till the end of May the newspaper had survived on subscriptions and was printed with the money to be paid later. “Kiyrym” is the second newspaper in the Crimea which has stopped being published since Yanukovych became President, following the closure of “Krymskaya Svitlytsa”, a Ukrainian-language newspaper, last year.

The Chief Editor of “Kiyrym”, Bekyr Mamutov believes that the government would only need a few months to launch a financial mechanism for State subsidies of ethnic minority press outlets. Yet the government programme of support for the return and resettlement of previously deported Crimean Tatars has still not been approved. This financed cultural and media projects in the Crimean Tatar language from the beginning of the 1990s. He adds that the chaos which has ensued in State bodies following the beginning of the administrative reform has struck a serious blow to the Crimean Tatar language, culture, education and press.  This is a major loss and obviously people are taking it hard, he says.

He says that there have been many appeals to the President from readers, members of civic organizations, the Crimean Tatar intelligentsia, but these receive only formal fob-off answers. All of this, he says, arouses serious disgruntlement among activists of the national movement.

“Krymskaya Svitlytsa” was published in the Ukrainian language in the only part of Ukraine where Ukrainians are a minority. It stopped coming out over a year ago. After the regime change it lost financial support, for the first time in the 16 years of its existence.  The premises were sealed 9 months ago because of the newspaper’s debts.

However there is a glimmer of hope, the Editor of “Krymskaya Svitlytsa”, Viktor Kachula says. The management of the State Journal and Newspaper Publishing House of the Ministry of Culture changed recently and they are hoping that the change will be for the better.

At present in the Crimea around 40 State-owned and municipal weeklies and dailies are published in the Russian language. For their support the Crimean budget envisages over 4 million UAH.

Abridged from the original report at http://radiosvoboda.org/content/article/24248213.html

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