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UN ISSUES DECLARATION ON 1932-33 FAMINE IN UKRAINE. The Ukrainian mission at the United Nations on 10 November issued a declaration, cosponsored by 26 countries, to commemorate victims of the Great Famine (Holodomor) in Ukraine in 1932-33, the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation reported. The declaration is to be circulated as an official document of the 58th Session of the UN General Assembly. "The Great Famine engineered by the totalitarian Soviet regime claimed the lives of 7 [million] to 10 million of our compatriots, the figure that can be compared with the population of an average European country," Ukrainian Ambassador to the UN Valeriy Kuchynskyy said at the UN session the same day. "The dreadful famine that engulfed Ukraine in 1932-33 was the result of Josef Stalin's policy of forced collectivization." Observances of the 70th anniversary of Holodomor in New York include an international conference at Columbia University, a special exhibit at the UN headquarters, and an ecumenical memorial service at St. Patrick's Cathedral. JM
OUR UKRAINE HEAD CONDEMNS ATTACK ON RUSSIAN BOOKSTORE IN LVIV. Our Ukraine leader Viktor Yushchenko on 11 November condemned an attack earlier the same day on the Otkrytoe Kafe and Russian-language bookstore in Lviv, Interfax reported. Yushchenko said the attack was a provocation, adding that it might have been organized by "the same political force that is waging an information war against Our Ukraine and wants to turn western Ukraine into a bugbear for eastern Ukraine." According to Interfax, four masked men armed with clubs broke into the store, smashed computers and windows, and destroyed books before fleeing. They left the inscription "This is for Sumy" on the floor, in an apparent reference to the attempt at preventing a forum of democratic forces organized by Our Ukraine in Sumy, northeastern Ukraine, on 9 November (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 10 November 2003). JM
RUSSIAN MINISTER UNVEILS CENSUS DATA ON ETHNIC, RELIGIOUS MINORITIES. According to the preliminary results of the Russian census conducted last year, there are 14.5 million Muslims in the Russian Federation, which is equal to 10 percent of the total population, Nationalities Minister Vladimir Zorin told a press conference in Moscow on 10 November, Interfax reported. Recent estimates of the number of Muslims in Russia have ranged from 12 million to 20 million. Zorin said the number of Jews in Russia has fallen by over 50 percent since the last (1989) Soviet census, from 540,000 to 230,000. He said there are currently seven ethnic groups in Russia numbering over 1 million people, including the Tatars, Bashkirs, Chechens, and Armenians. The number of Mordvins has fallen below 1 million (at the time of the 1989 census, there were 1,153,516 Mordvins in the USSR). The number of Ukrainians and Belarusians in Russia has fallen by one-third since 1989, while the number of Armenians, Azerbaijanis, Tajiks, and Chechens has risen. LF