Ufa, Russia, November 21, 2011
"All attempts to sow ethnic or religious hostility must be given a fitting and tough response, no matter where this happens, in the center of the country, in the Caucasus, or in the Far East," Medvedev said during a meeting in Ufa with Muslim clerics. "There must be no regions where this part of Russian legislation does not apply."
"Our country is now on the threshold of major political events," the president said.
"That is an element of democracy, but we must not forget the main point, that we are a multiethnic and multireligious state but, at the same time, we must see ourselves as citizens of the same state. We cannot do this the way it was done in the Soviet period. But it is very important now that we shouldn't lose those special methods of coexistence that have taken millennia to be shaped," he said.
President Medvedev also informed the Muslims clerics that the government has alloted over a billion rubles (32 million USD) to contribute to the Muslim religious education in Russia. He said that he feels strongly that a higher level of religious education among Muslims will help prevent ethnic and inter-confessional strife, reports Interfax - Religion.