Mari-El activists still persecuted in Russia

Vladimir Kozlov, the editor of the Mari newspaper Kudo+Kodu and Chairman of the Mari Council, was denied entry to Finland for attending a seminar of ethnic museum leaders.

The Finnish Embassy in Moscow had granted him a visa, but when Mr. Kozlov tried to leave Russia, the Russian border officials claimed his passport had all of its even numbered pages missing.

One can only guess how the pages went missing after Mr. Kozlov handed the passport to the officials.

Mr. Kozlov was badly beaten in February 2005 by “unknown” assailants. Nobody has been arrested, charged or convicted for his near fatal beating.