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Tatarstan to Move Prisoners From Kazan Before Universiade

Tatarstan authorities said Thursday they plan on relocating an unspecified number of prisoners from Kazan to detention centers elsewhere in the region ahead of the 2013 Summer Universiade.

At a press conference in Kazan, Tatarstan penitentiary services head Daufit Hamadishin said the transfers were merely precautionary security measures as more than 10,000 student athletes are expected to descend on the regional capital from July 6-17.

Hamadishin noted that the region has not seen a prison escape in more than 10 years.

While he did not reveal the number of inmates taking part in the relocation program, he told the RBC news agency it amounts to "not many." According to RBC, Tatarstan is home to three prisons, one labor camp and two temporary holding centers for people awaiting trial.

It remains unclear when the moves, which are believed to already be underway, will be complete.

Hamadishin told RBC the prisoners are "likely to return" once the Universiade wraps up.

In the wake of the deadly Boston Marathon bombings in April, Tatarstan's sports ministry said authorities planned to beef up regional security during the Universiade, one of the world's largest sporting events based on athlete participation.

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