May 08, 2005

Circassians Publish a Petition to Recognize the Circassian Genocide

A petition was published addressing the UN, the U.S. Congress, the Council of Europe and the international community to recognize the Circassian Genocide
Untitled Document
A petition with a demand of recognising the genocide of the Circassian people by the Russian tsarist government in the 18-19 centuries is posted at and addressed to the UN, U.S. Congress, the Council of Europe and international community, Regnum news agency says.

The address is timed to 21 May which is a Caucasus War Victims Commemoration Day traditionally observed by Circassians around the world. A victory parade of the tsar's troops was conducted on 21 May 1864 to mark the complete victory over the Circassians.

The international community should recognise the genocide of the Circassian people and provide Circassians with an opportunity to come back to their historic homeland. At the same time, any violent measures to restore justice, including terrorism, are resolutely excluded the message says.

More than 1.5 million Circassians died in the 100-year war with Russia, more than 1 million were deported to Turkey and Middle East countries.

Circassians are still deprived of an opportunity to preserve themselves as an ethnicity. Those living in various countries around the world are assimilated and losing their ethnic identity. But even those Circassians that remain in the Caucasus (in Shapsugia, Karachay-Cherkessia and Kabardino-Balkaria) are doomed to gradually die out by Russia's nationalities policy, the petition says. The Russian government in all possible ways prevents Adyghs from coming back to their homeland and intolerable conditions are created for repatriates, indicates the document.

Recognition of the genocide of the Circassian is, in the opinion of the authors of the address, a prerequisite to restore historic justice and preserve the ethnic cultural heritage of the Adyghs and the ethnicity itself.

Fewer than 1 million Adyghs (Adygeis, Kabardians and Circassians) live in Russia according to the International Circassian Association, whereas the foreign diaspora numbers over 6 million ethnic Circassians.

To the petition.

Source: Caucasian Knot