Sunday, August 14, 2022

Access to Archives in North Caucasus Varies Widely from One Federal Subject to Another, Vachagayev Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, July 20 – Within the general trend to re-close archives about the Soviet past since Putin came to power, there have been significant differences among various parts of the Russian bureaucracy and among the various regions and republics of the country as far as access to such resources are concerned, Mayrbek Vachagayev says.

            If the differences among various parts of the federal bureaucracy are well-known with the FSB and the military far and away more closed than other structures, the differences among the regions have attracted less attention but they also are affecting what people can learn about the past, the émigré Chechen scholar says.

            Within a remarkably broad range, each region and republic can establish its own rules or at least its own approach, either closing certain archives entirely or using other means such as not answering requests or failing to organize archives or provide guides to them so that investigators will know what is there and how to look for it (

            In the North Caucasus, Vachagayev says, “the most accessible” archives are those in Daghestan while the least are those in the predominantly ethnic Russian Stavropol Kray.

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