Sunday, January 15, 2023

Majority of 15 Largest Nations in Russia Today from North Caucasus, New Census Shows

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Jan. 12 – Because Slavic, Finno-Ugric and some Turkic peoples in the Middle Volga have declined in size while nations from the North Caucasus have continued to grow, the last now form eight of the 15 largest nations in the Russian Federation and are set to increase their size and overall demographic weight still further, newly released census results show.

            Since the 2010 census, the Chechens have increased in number by 17 percent and risen in the rankings of nationalities by size from sixth place to third. Other North Caucasian nations have also increased in size and ranking: the Avars have advanced from eighth to sixth place and the Dargins from 12th to nineth (

            North Caucasian nations now occupy all the rankings from 11th to 15th, with all but the Ossetians rising many places because of the increase in their size between 2010 and 2021: the Kumyks from 18th to 11th, the Kabardins from 17th to 12th, the Ingush from 22nd to 13th, the Lezgins from 20th to 14th; and the Ossetians holding steady at 15th.

            Moreover, all these nationalities have a vastly younger age structure with far more children under five compared to older cohorts and thus are on course to increase their rankings and demographic “weight” still further in the future, a trend that flies in the face of Putin’s desire to Russianize if not Russify these and other peoples.

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