The race starts today. It is dedicated to the 145th anniversary of Gayaz Iskhaki, the Tatar leader, and Sadri Maksudi, the first President of the Tatars. Its only participant is Nail Nabiullin, the journalist and chairman of the Azatlyk Tatar Youth Union.
All the way through Burdur, Isparta, Afyon and Eskisehir, Nail will be supported by a team of Azatlyk activists moving in a car. Nail wants to run up to 55-60 km a day in order to complete the entire marathon in 12 days. However, it is important to note that Turkey’s surface is mountainous.
On the 7th day of the running, the marathon runner should reach Osmaniye village, which was founded by Tatar settlers in the 19th century – this move should draw attention to the Tatar diaspora around the world.
The marathon will end on October 12 near the Ataturk Mausoleum. From there, the activists will go to Istanbul, where they will visit the graves of Gayaz Iskhaki and Sadri Maksudi.
Nail Nabiullin also compiled a list of demands for the Russian government (which, however, will never be fulfilled by them):
— compulsory study of the Tatar language and its implementation in all spheres of life;
— state status of the Tatar language in Tatarstan;
— monuments and museums to the Tatar leaders and heroes;
— national Day of Mourning in honor of the defenders of Kazan;
— ending repressions against the national activists, etc.
All this and even more will be achieved only when Tatarstan becomes an independent country – not earlier. Only the Tatars themselves can take back their rights. No one will give them away for nothing, no matter how many rallies are held. Otherwise they would not have taken them away.