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Ukraine: Information on the Gagauz

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada
Publication Date 1 July 1994
Citation / Document Symbol UKR17939.E
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Ukraine: Information on the Gagauz, 1 July 1994, UKR17939.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/3ae6ad2d18.html [accessed 24 July 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

 

The Gagauz are described as an Orthodox Christian, "Turkic people" whose precise ethnic origin is uncertain (BHHRG 3 Mar. 1992, 7; Kozlov 1988, 230; Kubijovy 1988; Country Reports 1993 1994, 979; Caratini 1990, 77).

In 1989 the Gagauz population of the Soviet Union was about 198,000 (RFE/RL 7 Sept. 1990, 8; Specialist on Gagauz affairs 22 July 1994). Of the 32,000 that resided in Ukraine, about 27,500 lived in the Odessa oblast (ibid.; BBC Summary 5 Oct. 1991). According to the 1979 Soviet census, the 27,000 Gagauz in Ukraine were concentrated in the Bolgrad raion of the Odessa oblast (RFE/RL 7 Sept. 1990, 8).

With respect to language, one 1988 report indicates that the Gagauz are "Turkic-speaking" while another states that they "have retained Gagauz as their mother tongue" (Kozlov, 230; Kubijovy ). Referring to the Gagauz in Moldova, recent human rights reports indicate that the vast majority of Gagauz in that republic speak Russian as their first language and little or no Gagauz (Country Reports 1993 1994, 979; BHHRG 3 Mar. 1992, 7). There is no information currently available to the DIRB on whether or not this is the case with respect to the Gagauz of Ukraine.

References

BBC Summary of World Reports. 5 October 1991. "Danger of Ukainians Being Drawn into Dnestr Conflict." (NEXIS)

British Helsinki Human Rights Group (BHHRG). 3 March 1992. "An Interim Report on the Situation in the Republic of Moldova."

Caratini, Roger. 1990. Dictionnaire des nationalités et des minorités en U.R.S.S. Paris: Larousse.

Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 1993. 1994. United States Department of State. Washington DC: United States Department of State.

Kozlov, Viktor. 1988. The Peoples of the Soviet Union. Bloomington, Ind.: Indiana University Press.

Kubijovy , Volodymyr. 1988. Encyclopedia of Ukraine. "Gagauzy." Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL). 7 September 1990. Report on the USSR [Munich]. Vol. 2, No. 36. Vladimir Socor. "Gagauz in Moldavia Demand Separate Republic."

Specialist on Gagauz affairs, Ottawa. 22 July 1994. Telephone interview.

Attachments

Caratini, Roger. 1990. Dictionnaire des nationalités et des minorités en U.R.S.S. Paris: Larousse.

Kubijovy , Volodymyr. 1988. Encyclopedia of Ukraine. "Gagauzy." Toronto: University of Toronto Press, pp. 77-79.

Copyright notice: This document is published with the permission of the copyright holder and producer Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). The original version of this document may be found on the offical website of the IRB at http://www.irb-cisr.gc.ca/en/. Documents earlier than 2003 may be found only on Refworld.

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