Latest Articles about North Caucasus

Moscow Postpones South Ossetian Referendum on Joining Russia

On May 20, the newly inaugurated “president” of Georgia’s breakaway region of South Ossetia, Alan Gagloev (who was elected on May 8), signed a decree to suspend a planned referendum on this statelet’s accession to the Russian Federation (Radio Tavisupleba, May 30;, May 31).... MORE

Inter-Ethnic Animosity Saps Effectiveness of Russia’s Army in Ukraine

Russia’s 2022 re-invasion of Ukraine has damaged not only bilateral relations between the two majority–Eastern Slavic neighbors but also—perhaps inadvertently—destabilized ties, links, goodwill, and mutual trust between the Russian periphery and the center, on the one hand, and between certain ethnic groups within the Russian... MORE

Russia Is Ready to Reward Georgia for Standing Down

On May 17, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin signed an order to lift all restrictions on the movement of Russian citizens through the Nizhny Zaramag checkpoint, located near the border with Georgia, at the north end of the Roki Tunnel (Kommersant, May 18). The Roki... MORE

Tensions Between Moscow and Circassians Reach Crisis Proportions

Tensions between Moscow and the Circassians, both within Russia and abroad, have reached a boiling point. The driving factors are numerous and multi-varied. In part, they stem from long-time Circassian efforts to promote their national language and identity, to return Circassians living abroad back to... MORE

Moscow Considers Abolishing Direct Elections of Regional Governors

The authorities are considering abolishing direct elections of regional governors across the Russian Federation, according to Vladimir Mazur, the deputy head of the Domestic Policy Department of the Russian Presidential Administration. Several governors reportedly asked the Kremlin to change the regional election rules due to... MORE

No Retreat Permitted for Putin’s Hapless Conscripts in Ukraine

In a throwback to Stalinist-era practices, Russian forces in Ukraine may have been using some of their own detachments as “barrier troops”—a term originating in World War II for so-called anti-retreat forces (, March 11;, March 12). The deployment of such units to deter... MORE