Via Georgian Daily:
Over the last two decades, many of the mosques in Moscow and other Russian cities have gone over to the use of Russian, a practice that has allowed them to reach out to and draw in many non-Tatars and thus boost the number of practicing Muslims even while reducing the role of the mosque as the center of Tatar life.
For Russian officials and commentators, as a result, the language question among that country’s Muslims has also been a divisive. Some Russian officials have supported the shift from Tatar to Russian either out of simple nationalism or in order to reduce the influence of independent fundamentalists.
But others, more comfortable with the earlier situation in which Tatars and Muslims were almost synonymous in many parts of Russia, have been worried that this shift has allowed the influence of Islam to grow not only among “ethnic Muslims” of various kinds but also among ethnic Russians and other groups that have not traditionally chosen Islam.