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Autonomous okrug
CategoryFederated state
LocationRussian Federation
Number4
Populations42,090 (Nenets Autonomous Okrug) – 1,532,243 (Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug)
Areas177,000 km2 (68,200 sq mi) (Nenets Autonomous Okrug) - 750,000 km2 (289,700 sq mi) (Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug)
Government
  • Okrug government
Subdivisions

Autonomous okrugs (Russian: автономный округ, avtonomnyy okrug; more correctly referred to as "autonomous districts" or "autonomous areas") are a type of federal subject of the Russian Federation and simultaneously an administrative division type of some federal subjects. As of 2024, Russia has four autonomous okrugs of its 83 federal subjects.[a] The Chukotka Autonomous Okrug is the only okrug which is not subordinate to an oblast. The other three are Arkhangelsk Oblast's Nenets Autonomous Okrug, Tyumen Oblast's Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, and Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug.

According to the constitution of the USSR, in case of a union republic voting on leaving the Soviet Union, autonomous republics, autonomous oblasts and autonomous okrugs had the right, by means of a referendum, to independently resolve whether they will stay in the USSR or leave with the seceding union republic, as well as to raise the issue of their state-legal status.[3]

History

Originally called national okrug, this type of administrative unit was created in the 1920s and widely implemented in the 1930s to provide autonomy to Indigenous peoples of the North, like the Karelian National Okrug for the Tver Karelians. The 1977 Soviet Constitution changed the term "national okrugs" to "autonomous okrugs" in order to emphasize that they were indeed autonomies and not simply another type of administrative and territorial division. While the 1977 Constitution stipulated that the autonomous okrugs were subordinated to the oblasts and krais, this clause was revised on December 15, 1990, when it was specified that autonomous okrugs were subordinated directly to the Russian SFSR, although they still could stay in the jurisdiction of a krai or an oblast to which they were subordinated before.

Current autonomous okrugs

Flag Map Name
Domestic names
Capital
Population (2010)[4]
Area
Formation
Flag of Chukotka
Map showing Chukotka in Russia
Chukotka Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Чукотский Автономный Округ (Chukotskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Chukot: Чукоткакэн Aвтономныкэн Округ (Chukotkaken Avtonomnyken Okrug)
Anadyr

Russian: Анадырь (Anadyr)

Chukot: Кагыргын (Kagyrgyn)
50,526 721,481 km2 (278,565 sq mi) 1930-12-10
Flag of Yugra
Map showing Yugra in Russia
Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Ханты-Мансийский Автономный Округ (Khanty-Mansiyskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Khanty: Хӑнты-Мансийской Aвтономной Округ (Ȟănty-Mansijskoj Avtonomnoj Okrug)

Mansi: Ханты-Мансийский Автономный Округ (Hanty-Mansijskij Avtonomnyj Okrug)
Khanty-Mansiysk

Russian: Ханты-Мансийск (Khanty-Mansiysk)

Khanty: Ёмвоҷ (Yomvoḉ)

Mansi: Абга (Abga)
1,532,243 534,801 km2 (206,488 sq mi) 1930-12-10
Flag of Nenetsia
Map showing Nenetsia in Russia
Nenets Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Ненецкий Автономный Округ (Nenetskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Nenets: Ненёцие Aвтономной Ӈокрук (Nenjocije Awtonomnoj Ŋokruk)
Naryan-Mar

Russian: Нарьян-Мар (Naryan-Mar)

Nenets: Няръянa Mарˮ (Nyar'yana Marq)
42,090 176,810 km2 (68,267 sq mi) 1929-07-15
Flag of Yamalo-Nenetsia
Map showing Yamalo-Nenetsia in Russia
Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Ямало-Ненецкий Автономный Округ (Yamalo-Nenetskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Nenets: Ямалы-Ненёцие Aвтономной Ӈокрук (Yamaly-Nenyotsiye Avtonomnoj Ŋokruk)
Salekhard

Russian: Салехард (Salekhard)

Nenets: Саляʼ Xарад (Salja’ Harad)
522,904 769,250 km2 (297,009 sq mi) 1930-12-10

Former autonomous okrugs

Flag Map Name
Domestic names
Capital
Population
Area
Years
Flag of Agin-Buryatia
Map showing Agin-Buryatia in Russia
Agin-Buryat Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Агинский Бурятский Автономный Округ (Aginskiy Buryatskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Buryat: Агын Буряадай Aвтономито Tойрог (Agyn Buryaaday Avtonomito Toyrog)
Aginskoye

Russian: Агинское (Aginskoye)

Buryat: Ага (Aga)
76,383 (2008) 19,592 km2 (7,565 sq mi) 1937–2008
Flag of Evenkia
Map showing Evenkia in Russia
Evenk Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Эвенкийский Автономный Округ (Evenkiyskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Evenki: Эведы Автомоды Округ (Ēvēde Avtōmōde Okrug)
Tura

Russian: Тура (Tura)

Evenki: Typy (Turu)
16,979 (2007) 763,197 km2 (294,672 sq mi) 1930–2007
Flag of Komi-Permyakia
Map showing Komi-Permyakia in Russia
Komi-Permyak Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Коми-Пермяцкий Автономный Округ (Komi-Permyatskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Komi-Permyak: Коми-Пермяцкöй Aвтономнöй Округ (Komi-Permjacköj Avtonomnöj Okrug)
Kudymkar

Russian: Кудымкар (Kudymkar)

Komi-Permyak: Кудымкöр (Kudymkör)
132,824 (2005) 32,770 km2 (12,653 sq mi) 1930–2005
Flag of Koryakia
Map showing Koryakia in Russia
Koryak Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Корякский Автономный Округ (Koryakskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Koryak: Чав’чываокруг (Čav’čyvaokrug)
Palana

Russian: Палана (Palana)

Koryak: Пылылъын (Pylylʺyn)
22,580 (2007) 292,600 km2 (112,973 sq mi) 1930–2007
Flag of Taymyria
Map showing Taymyria in Russia
Taymyr Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Таймырский Автономный Округ (Taymyrskiy Avtonomny Okrug) Dudinka

Russian: Дудинка (Dudinka)
38,372 (2007) 879,929 km2 (339,742 sq mi) 1930–2007
Flag of Ust-Orda Buryatia
Map showing Ust-Orda Buryatia in Russia
Ust-Orda Buryat Autonomous Okrug

Russian: Усть-Ордынский Бурятский Автономный Округ (Ust’-Ordynskiy Avtonomny Okrug)

Buryat: Усть-Ордын Буряадай Aвтономито Tойрог (Ust’-Ordyn Buryaaday Avtonomito Toyrog)
Ust-Ordynsky

Russian: Усть-Ордынский (Ust-Ordynsky)

Buryat: Ордын Адаг (Ordyn Adag)
134,320 (2008) 22,400 km2 (8,649 sq mi) 1937–2008

Recent developments

In 1990, ten autonomous okrugs existed within the RSFSR. Between 2005 and 2008, the three autonomous okrugs in which the titular nationality constituted more than 30% of the population were abolished. Since then, three more have been abolished, leaving four. On 13 May 2020, the governors of Arkhangelsk Oblast and Nenets Autonomous Okrug announced their plan to merge following the collapse of oil prices stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.[5][6] The process was subsequently scrapped on July 2 following public outcry to the merger.[7]

The ten autonomous okrugs in 1990 were:

Entity in 1990 Status in August 2008
Agin-Buryat Autonomous Okrug now Agin-Buryat Okrug of Zabaykalsky Krai
Chukotka Autonomous Okrug within Magadan Oblast no longer subordinated to Magadan Oblast
Evenk Autonomous Okrug within Krasnoyarsk Krai now Evenkiysky District of Krasnoyarsk Krai
Khanty–Mansi Autonomous Okrug within Tyumen Oblast (no change)
Komi-Permyak Autonomous Okrug now Komi-Permyak Okrug of Perm Krai
Koryak Autonomous Okrug within Kamchatka Oblast now Koryak Okrug of Kamchatka Krai
Nenets Autonomous Okrug within Arkhangelsk Oblast (no change)
Taymyr Autonomous Okrug within Krasnoyarsk Krai now Taymyrsky Dolgano-Nenetsky District of Krasnoyarsk Krai
Ust-Orda Buryat Autonomous Okrug within Irkutsk Oblast now Ust-Orda Buryat Okrug of Irkutsk Oblast
Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug within Tyumen Oblast (no change)

Ethnic composition of autonomous okrugs

The table below also includes autonomous okrugs which have since changed status.

Autonomous Okrug titular nation Russians other[8]
year 1979 1989 2002 2010 1979 1989 2002 2010 1979 1989 2002 2010
Agin-Buryat Autonomous Okrug[9] 52,2 54,9 62,5 65,1 42 40,8 35,1 32,5
Komi-Permyak Autonomous Okrug[9] 61,6 60,2 59 34,9 36,1 38,1
Koryak Autonomous Okrug (all Indigenous)[9] 16,3 16,45 26,6 30,3 62,9 62 50,5 46,2 24,9 40,5 46,5
Nenets Autonomous Okrug (Komi) 12,8 11,9 18,6 Steady18,6 66 65,8 62,4 66,1 11,1 9,5 10,8 9
Taymyr Autonomous Okrug (Dolgan and Nenets)[9] 9,6 8,9 13,8 15,7 68,9 67,1 58,6 50,0 5 4,4 7,6 10,1
Ust-Orda Buryat Autonomous Okrug[9] 34,1 36,3 39,6 39,8 58,3 56,5 54,4 54,2
Khanty–Mansi Autonomous Okrug 1,9 0,9 1,2 1,3 74,3 66,3 66 68,1 1,1 0,5 0,7 0,8
Chukotka Autonomous Okrug (all Indigenous) 8,1 7,3 23,4 26,7 68,6 66,1 51,8 52,5 9,6 30,8 35,3
Evenk Autonomous Okrug[9] 20 14,1 21,5 22,0 62,5 67,5 61,9 59,4
Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug (Nenets) 10,7 4,2 5,2 5,9 59,1 59,2 58,8 61,7 1,5 1,7 1,9

Notes

  1. ^ If including the Russian-occupied territories of Ukraine, it would be 89 federal subjects.[1][2]

References

  1. ^ Heaney, Dominic, ed. (2023). "The Government of the Russian Federation". The Territories of the Russian Federation 2023 (24th ed.). Abingdon: Routledge. pp. 43–51. ISBN 9781032469744. Including the two territories in Crimea, the 85 territories comprise 22 republics, nine krais (provinces), 46 oblasts (regions), three cities of federal status (Moscow, St Petersburg and Sevastopol), one autonomous oblast and four autonomous okrugs.
  2. ^ Dickson, Janice (September 30, 2022). "Putin signs documents to illegally annex four Ukrainian regions, in drastic escalation of Russia's war". The Globe and Mail. Archived from the original on October 1, 2022. Retrieved October 1, 2022. Mr. Putin's claim to more than 15 per cent of Ukraine's territory is the largest annexation in Europe since the Second World War.
  3. ^ "СОЮЗ СОВЕТСКИХ СОЦИАЛИСТИЧЕСКИХ РЕСПУБЛИК. ЗАКОН О порядке решения вопросов, связанных с выходом союзной республики из СССР" (in Russian). Archived from the original on September 12, 2016. Retrieved June 13, 2022.
  4. ^ "2010 All-Russian Population Census" (PDF). All-Russian Population Census (in Russian). December 22, 2011. Retrieved May 12, 2019.
  5. ^ Quinn, Eilís (May 14, 2020). ""Catastrophic" economic situation prompts merger talks for Nenets AO and Arkhangelsk Oblast". The Barents Observer. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
  6. ^ "Russian Regions to Become Single Federal Subject in Decade-First". The Moscow Times. May 13, 2020. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
  7. ^ Antonova, Elizaveta (July 2, 2020). "The head of the Nenets Autonomous District declared refusal to unite with the Arkhangelsk region". RBC (in Russian). Retrieved July 6, 2020.
  8. ^ Are the people who are in parentheses next to the autonomous regions and the second-largest two-part Indigenous autonomous regions.
  9. ^ a b c d e f liquidated Autonomous okrug.

See also