While official statistics may say otherwise, many see unemployment in Kabardino-Balkaria and Karachay–Cherkessia as among the worst in Russia. Deindustrialisation, social alienation, and local corruption have all played a part in the region’s stagnation.
On 14 March, the Circassian people celebrate the Day of Circassian Language and Writing. Circassian, a native language of the North Caucasus, faces many serious challenges, including a lack of official support, a divided literary standard, a decreasing interest in learning it in educational institutions, and a diminishing presence at home. [Read more…]
Despite the appearance of antiquity in Kabardino-Balkaria’s clan system, they are less a part of Circassian culture than a product of imperialism.
The Circassian national movement in the North Caucasus has for years been under pressure from the authorities. Facing detention, prosecution, or outright violence, Circassian activists, scholars, and young people all feel the pressure, but there is much disagreement as to why they are being targeted.
Authorities in Kabardino-Balkaria have been promoting ambitious plans to kickstart the republic’s industry with a new hydrometallurgical plant. But for ‘environmental reasons’, and supposed archaeological discoveries at the site, the plans — the estimated cost of which had began to spiral — may now be permanently on ice.
On 8 September, Kabardino-Balkaria celebrated the ‘460th anniversary of its voluntary entry’ into Russia. While the Northwest Caucasus — including what is now Kabardino-Balkaria — was conquered by Russia in the 19th century, this false narrative now serves as a loyalty test for local political elites.
A group of prisoners in Russia’s Krasnoyarsk penal colony are complaining of systematic torture and bullying in the prison. A video message with statements from the prisoners was sent to the Public Monitoring Commission, a prison rights watchdog, on 8 August. Among the prisoners was Aslan Cherkesov a native of Kabardino-Balkaria. [Read more…]
An atmosphere of impunity and poor funding for schools in Kabardino-Balkaria has led to state schools being run as businesses, with a teachers making money at the expense of parents and their children.