Monday, March 26, 2018

North Caucasus Expanding Northward, Driving Out Ethnic Russians from Adjoining Regions

Paul Goble

            Staunton, March 26 – Migrants from Daghestan, Chechnya and Ingushetia are not only driving out the indigenous Russian population of Stavropol kray but also fundamentally changing the economic situation there, replacing relatively high-tech agriculture with more primitive kinds, according to Yury Yefimov.

            The new arrivals are not coming as did their predecessors in the 1990s did because of the fear of violence but rather because of demographic pressures in their home areas where the populations are growing faster than the economies, according to the Stavropol political scientist (

                But despite that change, he says, “before the kray today as was the case 10 to 20 years ago, there stand serious threats which neither the authorities nor society has yet been able to deal with,” despite intense public discussion of what scholars call “’succession,’” the replacement of one ethnic group by another. 

            Most of the new migrants, Yefiimov continues, have been coming into the eastern districts of Starvropol, both because these adjoin the three North Caucasus republics and because local conditions are prompting Russian agriculturalists to leave and thus allowing North Caucasian pastoralists to take over.

            The new arrivals, he says, “have won the competition in a whole range of branches of the economy, including for example, in trade.  Moreover, the migrants have begun to exert significant influence on the underlying agricultural branch of the economy,” largely displacing mechanized agriculture with sheep herding.

            This process of “ethnic replacement,” Yefimov says, “continues and will continue until two major tasks are solved” – “the establishment on the territory of conditions for retaining the indigenous population” and “the imposition of law and order … in the east of Stavropol and other parts of the kray.”

            “If we want that the new, already labor migrants do not become again the cause of a deterioration of the social-economic situation, conditions must be created for their complete integration into the life of the region. And this also is a task in which precisely the state must play first fiddle, with the active cooperation of civil society, of course.”

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