Russian presidential envoy to the North Caucasus Alexander Khloponin described the problems of unemployment, housing and education as three main threats facing the region.
The statement came during Khloponin's visit to the volatile North Caucasus republic of Chechnya, the first since he was appointed presidential envoy to the region by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.
"I found out that key problems are problems of unemployment. We should make it possible for young people, in particular, to work and see the perspective. The housing problem for young families is also important, as well as the problem of education," he told a news conference on Thursday.
He said the overcoming of these problems would become a basis of the regional development strategy, which will focus on tourism, agriculture and construction.
Khloponin also said infrastructure and the banking system should be improved in Chechnya.
The presidential envoy described the Chechen people as "strong and high-spirited", adding that besides the problems, he also saw many positive things during his trip across the republic.
Pointing to recent terror attacks in Moscow and in the North Caucasus republics of Dagestan and Ingushetia, Khloponin said they were aimed at sparking panic in the region. He suggested that local authorities should fight terrorism by spreading spiritual education among residents of the North Caucasus.
"I believe that we should provide spiritual education to more people, so that they would really understand that is Islam, Orthodoxy, and other faiths, what religion teaches us," he said.
Medvedev created the North Caucasus Federal District in January as part of efforts to improve the regional economy and remove incentives for locals to join militant groups. The president then named Krasnoyarsk governor and former business executive Khloponin as deputy prime minister and his envoy to the region.
Khloponin has headed the Krasnoyarsk Territory, a vast Siberian province, nearly four times the size of France, since 2002. His gubernatorial term was marked with a fast economic growth in the region and a visible improvement in living standards.
Following Khloponin's new appointment, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin ordered him to develop a complex strategy to increase social and economic stability in the region. He said special economic zones and industrial parks should be established in the North Caucasus to attract investment to the region.
After the deadly terror attacks hit the Moscow subway and the Dagestani town of Kizlyar, claiming dozens of lives, Medvedev ordered the creation of a special anti-terrorism task force in the North Caucasus Federal District.
The president also ordered officials to prepare by the end of the month a proposal on a new program to combat crime and terrorist acts in the North Caucasus.
GUDERMES, April 9 (RIA Novosti)