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According to the Constitution, the is divided into 85 federal subjects (constituent units), 22 of which are "". Most of the republics represent areas of non-Russian ethnicity, although there are several republics with Russian majority. The indigenous ethnic group of a republic that gives it its name is referred to as the "titular nationality". Due to decades (in some cases centuries) of inside Russia, each nationality is not necessarily a majority of a republic's population.


History
The republics were established in early Soviet Russia. On 15 November 1917, issued the Declaration of the Rights of the Peoples of Russia, giving Russia's minorities the right to self-determination.
(2019). 9781543447651, Xlibris Corporation.
However, most of these new states would be re-conquered by the Soviets during the Russian Civil War. When the was formally created on 30 December 1922, the minorities of the country were relegated to Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republics (ASSR), which had less power than the Republics of the Soviet Union. The early Soviet authorities nevertheless encouraged minorities to join the governments of their republics to represent themselves and de- the country in a period known as . This policy also affected ethnic Russians and was particularly enforced in ASSRs where indigenous people were already a minority in their own homeland, like the Buryat ASSR. Bazarova V. V. On the problems of indigenization in the national autonomies of Eastern Siberia in the 1920s - 1930s. // Power. - 2013. - № 12. - p. 176.

By the 1930s, however, the mood shifted as the Soviet Union, now under , stopped enforcing korenizatsiya and began purging non-Russians from government and intelligentsia. Thus, a period of Russification set in. became mandatory in all areas of non-Russian ethnicity and the became compulsory for all languages of the Soviet Union.Timo Vihavainen: Nationalism and Internationalism. How did the Bolsheviks Cope with National Sentiments? in Chulos & Piirainen 2000, p. 85. In theory, the ASSRs had power to enforce their own policies on language and culture, but by the time of the , the ASSRs and their titular nationalities were some of the most effected by the purge and were in practice, strictly monitored by Moscow. From 1937, the "bourgeois nationalists" became the "enemy of the Russian people" and korenizatsiya was abolished. The autonomies of the ASSRs varied greatly throughout the history of the Soviet Union but Russification would nevertheless continue unabated and internal Russian migration to the ASSRs would result in various indigenous people becoming minorities in their own republics. At the same time, the number of ASSRs grew; the Karelian ASSR was formed on 6 July 1956 after briefly being a union republic from 1940

(2019). 9781857432480, Europa Publications.
while the partially recognized state of Tannu Tuva was annexed by the Soviets on 11 October 1944 and became the Tuvan ASSR on 10 October 1961. By the 1980s General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev's introduction of began a period of revitalization of minority culture in the ASSRs.
(2019). 9781472449696, Ashgate Publishing.

The Soviet Union collapsed in 1991 and the position of the ASSRs became uncertain. By law, the ASSRs did not have the right to secede from the Soviet Union like the union republics did

(1996). 9781563246395, M.E. Sharpe.
(2019). 9780810874602, Scarecrow Press.
but the question of national sovereignty became a topic of discussion in some of the ASSRs. Prior to the Union's collapse, future Russian President was an avid supporter of national sovereignty and granted the union republics independence in what was called a "parade of sovereignties". In regards to the ASSRs, however, Yeltsin did not support secession and tried to prevent them from declaring independence. The Checheno-Ingush ASSR, led by , unilaterally declared independence on 1 November 1991 and Yeltsin would attempt to retake it on 11 December 1994, beginning the First Chechen War. When the Tatar ASSR held a referendum on whether to declare independence on 21 March 1992, he had the ballot declared illegal by the Constitutional Court. Yeltsin nevertheless supported giving the republics autonomy, appealing for them to "take as much sovereignty as you can swallow".

On 31 March 1992, every subject of Russia except the Tatar ASSR and the de facto state of Chechnya signed the Treaty of Federation with the government of Russia, solidifying its federal structure and Boris Yeltsin became the country's first president. The ASSRs were dissolved and became the modern day republics. The number of republics increased dramatically as former autonomous oblasts were elevated to full republics, including and Karachay-Cherkessia, while the Ingush portion of the Checheno-Ingush ASSR refused to be part of the breakaway state and rejoined Russia as the on 4 June 1992. The demanded its own agreement to preserve its autonomy within the Russian Federation and on 15 February 1994, Moscow and Kazan signed a power-sharing agreement, in which the latter was granted a high degree of autonomy. 45 other regions, including the other republics, would go on to sign autonomy agreements with the federal center. Toward the end of the 1990s, the overly complex structure of the various bilateral agreements between regional governments and Moscow sparked a call for reform. The constitution of Russia was the supreme law of the country, but in practice, the power-sharing agreements superseded it while the poor oversight of regional affairs left the republics to be governed by leaders who ruled for personal benefit. Yeltsin lost the First Chechen War and he resigned on 31 December 1999.

was declared interim president. Prior to his resignation, an invasion by jihadists into the resulted in Yeltsin sending troops into Chechnya again on 1 October 1999.

(2019). 9781843311645, Anthem Press.
Putin inherited the war and forced the separatists to surrender, reintegrating Chechnya in to the Russian Federation as the after federal troops captured Grozny on 6 February 2000. He would participate in the 26 March 2000 election on the promise of completely restructuring the federal system and restoring the authority of the central government. The power-sharing agreements began to gradually expire or be voluntarily abolished and after 2003, only Tatarstan and continued to negotiate on their treaties' extensions. Bashkortostan's power-sharing treaty expired on 7 July 2005, leaving Tatarstan as the sole republic to maintain its autonomy, which was renewed on 11 July 2007. After an attack by Chechen separatists at a school in , North Ossetia – Alania, Putin abolished direct elections for governors and assumed the power to personally appoint and dismiss them. Throughout the decade, influential regional leaders like Mintimer Shaimiev of Tatarstan and of Bashkortostan, who were adamant on extending their bilateral agreements with Moscow, were dismissed, removing the last vestiges of regional autonomy from the 1990s. On 24 July 2017, Tatarstan's power-sharing agreement with Moscow expired, making it the last republic to lose its special status. After the agreement's termination, some commentators expressed the view that Russia ceased to be a federation.


Constitutional status
Republics differ from other federal subjects in that they have the right to establish their own official language,Article 68 of the Constitution of Russia have their own constitution, and have a national anthem. Other federal subjects, such as krais and oblasts, are not explicitly given this right. During Boris Yeltsin's presidency, the republics were the first subjects to be granted extensive power from the federal government, and were often given preferential treatment over other subjects, which has led to Russia being characterized as an "asymmetrical federation ".
(2019). 082134840X, International Bank for Reconstruction. 082134840X
The Treat of Federation signed on 31 March 1992 stipulated that the republics were "sovereign states" that had expanded rights over natural resources, external trade, and internal budgets. The signing of bilateral treaties with the republics would grant them additional powers, however, the amount of autonomy given differed by republic and was mainly based on their economic wealth rather than ethnic composition. The , for example, was granted more control over its resources, being able to keep most of its revenue and sell and receive its profits for up to 20% independently due to its vast diamond deposits.
(2019). 9780275973063, Praeger.
Tatarstan and Bashkortostan had the authority to establish their own foreign relations and conduct agreements with foreign governments.
(2019). 9783838267821, Ibidem.
This has led to criticism from oblasts and krais. After the 1993 Russian constitutional crisis, the current constitution was adopted but the republics were no longer classified as "sovereign states" and declared all subjects of the federation as equal, though maintaining the validity of the bilateral agreements.
(2019). 9780275973063, Praeger.

In theory, the constitution of Russia was the ultimate authority over the republics, but the power-sharing treaties held greater weight in practice. Republics often created their own laws which contradicted the constitution. Yeltsin, however, made little effort to reign in renegade laws, preferring to turn a blind eye to violations in exchange for political loyalty.

(2019). 9781442239197, Rowman & Littlefield.
Vladimir Putin's election on 26 March 2000 began a period of extensive reforms to centralize authority with the federal government and bring all laws in line with the constitution. His first act as president was the creation of federal districts on 18 May 2000, which were tasked with exerting federal control over the country's subjects. Putin later established the so-called "Kozak Commission" in June 2001 to examine the division of powers between the government and regions.
(2019). 9780203816233, Routledge.
The Commission's recommendations focus mainly on minimizing the bases of regional autonomy and transferring lucrative powers meant for the republics to the federal government.
(2019). 9781857435177, Routledge.
Centralization of power would continue as the republics gradually lost more and more autonomy to the federal government, leading the European Parliament to conclude that despite calling itself a federation, Russia functions as a . On 21 December 2010, the State Duma voted to overturn previous laws allowing the leaders of the republics to hold the title of President while a bill was passed on 19 June 2018 that elevated the status of the Russian language at the expense of other official languages in the republics. The bill authorized for the abolishment of mandatory minority language classes in schools and for voluntary teaching to be reduced to two hours a week.

There are secessionist movements in most republics, but these are generally not very strong. The constitution makes no mention on whether a republic can legally secede from the Russian Federation. However, the Constitutional Court of Russia ruled after the unilateral secession of Chechnya in 1991 that the republics do not have the right to secede and are inalienable parts of the country. Despite this, some republican constitutions in the 1990s had articles giving them the right to become independent. This included Tuva, whose constitution had an article explicitly giving it the right to secede. However, following Putin's centralization reforms in the early 2000s, these articles were subsequently dropped. The Kabardino-Balkar Republic, for example, adopted a new constitution in 2001 which prevents the republic from existing independently of the Russian Federation.

(2019). 185743191X, Europa Publications. 185743191X
After Russia's annexation of Crimea, the State Duma adopted a law to penalize people calling for the separation of any part of the country on 5 July 2014.


Status of Crimea
On 18 March 2014, the Autonomous Republic of Crimea of was annexed by Russia after a disputed referendum. The peninsula subsequently became the Republic of Crimea, the 22nd republic of Russia. However, Ukraine and most of the international community do not recognize Crimea's annexation and the United Nations General Assembly declared the vote to be illegitimate.


Republics


Republic of Adygea
Адыгея — Республика Адыгея ( )

Адыгэ — Адыгэ Республик ()


Майкоп ( )

Мыекъуапэ ()
439,996 1991-07-03
(1999). 9780765602763, M.E. Sharpe.


Altai Republic
Алтай — Республика Алтай ( )

Алтай — Алтай Республика ()


Горно-Алтайск ( )

Туулу Алтай ()
206,168 1991-07-03


Republic of Bashkortostan
Башкортостан — Республика Башкортостан ( )

Башҡортостан — Башҡортостан Республикаһы ()


Уфа ( )

Өфө ()
4,072,292 1919-03-23
(2019). 9780306480836, Springer Science & Business Media.


Republic of Buryatia
Бурятия — Республика Бурятия ( )

Буряадия — Буряад Улас ()


Улан-Удэ ( )

Улаан Үдэ ()
972,021 1923-05-30


Chechen Republic
Чечня — Чеченская Республика ( )

Нохчийчоь — Нохчийн Республика ()


Грозный ( )

Соьлжа-ГӀала ()
1,268,989 1993-01-10


Chuvash Republic
Чувашия — Чувашская Республика ( )

Чӑваш Ен — Чӑваш Республики ()


Чебоксары ( )

Шупашкар ()
1,251,619 1925-04-21
Crimea

Republic of Crimea
Крым — Республика Крым ( )

Крим — Республіка Крим ()

Къырым — Къырым Джумхуриети ( )


Симферополь ( )

Сiмферополь ()

Акъмесджит ( )
1,913,731 2014-03-18


Republic of Dagestan
Дагестан — Республика Дагестан ( )

Махачкала ( )
Nine indigenous nationalities2,910,249 1921-01-20
(1988). 9781349194483, Palgrave Macmillan.


Republic of Ingushetia
Ингушетия — Республика Ингушетия ( )

ГӀалгIайче — ГIалгIай Мохк ()


Магас ( )

Магас ()
412,529 1992-06-04
Kabardino-Balkaria

Kabardino-Balkar Republic
Кабардино-Балкария — Кабардино-Балкарская Республика ( )

Къэбэрдей-Балъкъэрия — Къэбэрдей-Балъкъэр Республикэ ()

Къабарты-Малкъария — Къабарты-Малкъар Республика ( )


Нальчик ( )

Налщӏэч ()

Нальчик ( )
, 859,939 1936-12-05
(2019). 9780814797242, New York University Press.


Republic of Kalmykia
Калмыкия — Республика Калмыкия ( )

Хальмг — Хальмг Таңһч ()


Элиста ( )

Элст ()
289,481 1935-10-22
Karachay-Cherkessia

Karachay-Cherkess Republic
Карачаево-Черкесия — Карачаево-Черкесская Республика ( )

Къарачай-Черкесия — Къарачай-Черкес Республика ()

Къэрэшей-Шэрджэсия — Къэрэшей-Шэрджэс Республикэ ( )


Черкесск ( )

Черкесск ()

Шэрджэс къалэ ( )
, 477,859 1991-07-03
Karelia

Republic of Karelia
Карелия — Республика Карелия ( )

Karjala — Karjalan tazavaldu


Петрозаводск ( )

Petroskoi
643,548 1923-06-27


Republic of Khakassia
Хакасия — Республика Хакасия ( )

: Хакасия — Хакас Республиказы ( Khakasiya — Khakas Respublikazy)


Абакан ( )

: Абахан ( Abakhan)
532,403 1991-07-03


Komi Republic
Коми — Республика Коми ( )

Коми — Коми Республика ()


Сыктывкар ( )

Сыктывкар ()
901,189 1936-12-05


Mari El Republic
Марий Эл — Республика Марий Эл ( )

Мары Эл — Мары Эл Республик ()

Марий Эл — Марий Эл Республик ( )


Йошкар-Ола ( )

Йошкар-Ола ()

Йошкар-Ола ( )
696,459 1936-12-05


Republic of Mordovia
Мордовия — Республика Мордовия ( )

Мордовия — Мордовия Pеспубликсь ()

Мордовия — Мордовия Республикась ( )


Саранск ( )

Саранош ()

Саран ош ( )
834,755 1934-12-20
(2019). 9780230597334, Palgrave Macmillan.
North Ossetia–Alania

Republic of North Ossetia–Alania
Северная Осетия–Алания — Республика Северная Осетия–Алания ( )

Цæгат Ирыстон–Алани — Республикӕ Цæгат Ирыстон–Алани ()


Владикавказ ( )

Дзæуджыхъæу ()
712,980 1936-12-05


Sakha Republic
Caxa — Республика Саха ( )

Caxa — Саха Өрөспүүбүлүкэтэ ()


Якутск ( )

Дьокуускай ()
958,528 1922-04-27


Republic of Tatarstan
Татарстан — Республика Татарстан ( )

Татарстан — Татарстан Республикасы ()


Казань ( )

Казан ()
3,786,488 1920-06-25


Tuva Republic
Тува — Республика Тyва ( )

Тыва — Тыва Республика ()


Кызыл ( )

Кызыл ()
307,930 1961-10-10


Udmurt Republic
Удмуртия — Удмурт Республика ( )

Удмуртия — Удмурт Элькун ()


Ижевск ( )

Ижкар ()
1,521,420 1934-12-28


Demographics trend

!Ethnic group

other (%)

!Republic

2010

6,2

25,4

12,7

11,9


Attempted republics
In response to the apparent federal inequality, in which the republics were given special privileges during the early years of Yeltsin's tenure at the expense of other subjects, , then governor of Sverdlovsk Oblast and advocate of equal rights for all subjects, attempted to transform his oblast in to the on 1 July 1993 in order to receive the same benefits.
(2019). 9780765605597, EastWest Institute.
Initially supportive, Yeltsin later dissolved the republic and fired Rossel on 9 November 1993.
(2019). 9780415170697, Routledge.
The only other attempt to formally create a republic occurred in when authorities declared their wish to create a "Vologda Republic" on 14 May 1993. This declaration, however, was ignored by Moscow and eventually faded from public consciousness.
(2019). 9780230609693, Springer.
Other attempts to unilaterally create a republic never materialized. These included a "Pomor Republic" in Arkhangelsk Oblast, a "Southern Urals Republic" in Chelyabinsk Oblast,
(2019). 9780719058691, Manchester University Press.
a "Yenisei Republic" in , a "Leningrad Republic" in , a "Nenets Republic" in the Nenets Autonomous Okrug, a "Siberian Republic" in Novosibirsk Oblast, a "Primorsky Republic" in , a "Neva Republic" in the city of , and a republic consisting of eleven regions in western Russia centered around .

Other attempts to create republics came in the form of splitting up already existing territories. After the Soviet Union's collapse, a proposal was put forth to split the Karachay-Cherkess Republic in to multiple smaller republics. The idea was rejected by referendum on 28 March 1992.

(2019). 9780691127286, Princeton University Press.
A similar proposal occurred in the to divide it in to separate Erzyan and Mokshan homelands. The proposal was rejected in 1995.
(2019). 9780415919777, Routledge.


Entities outside Russia


See also
  • Republics of the Soviet Union


External links
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