Arctic Network for the Support of the Indigenous Peoples of the Russian Arctic (ansipra) Сеть Арктических Организаций в Поддержку Коренных Народов Российского Севера




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НазваниеArctic Network for the Support of the Indigenous Peoples of the Russian Arctic (ansipra) Сеть Арктических Организаций в Поддержку Коренных Народов Российского Севера
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ANSIPRA BULLETIN

Arctic Network for the Support of the Indigenous Peoples of the Russian Arctic (ANSIPRA)

Сеть Арктических Организаций в Поддержку Коренных Народов Российского Севера


No. 5B, July 2001 - English Language Edition


Secretariat: Norsk Polarinstitutt, Polarmiljøsenteret, N-9296 Tromsø E-mail: ANSIPRA@npolar.no

Norwegian Polar Institute, Polar Environmental Centre, Phone: +47 - 77 75 05 00

N-9296 Tromsø, Norway Fax: +47 - 77 75 05 01

Coordinator / Editor: Winfried K. Dallmann, Tromsø

Assistant Coordinator: Galina Diachkova (Дьячкова Галина), Moscow

Assistant Editor: Helle V. Goldman, Tromsø


ANSIPRA (formerly NNSIPRA) Bulletin is an information publication of the “Arctic Network for the Support of the Indigenous Peoples of the Russian Arctic”. The Bulletin is issued twice a year. Additional issues are produced as new information warrants it. The Bulletin is edited in English and Russian. ANSIPRA Bulletin is distributed to all registered network participants, as well as relevant state agencies and funding institutions. Distribution is free. All written contributions are appreciated.


ANSIPRA Bulletin is politically independent. A special part of the English language edition, however, presents translations of articles from the newsletter “Мир коренных народов” (Indigenous Peoples’ World), the official periodical of RAIPON (Russian Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North, Siberia and the Far East of the Russian Federation), selected in cooperation with RAIPON.

ANSIPRA (formerly NNSIPRA) is a communication network linking Russian Indigenous Peoples' Organisations (IPOs) with international institutions and organisations alarmed about the future of the indigenous peoples of the Russian North. ANSIPRA's main goal is to spread information, to mediate contacts, and to assist in project coordination and application for funding.


CONTENTS OF THIS EDITION:


This issue is an appendix of ANSIPRA Bulletin No. 5 (February 2001) and contains English translations of selected articles from the official periodical of RAIPON Мир коренных народов – живая арктика” (Indigenous Peoples’ World - Living Arctic) No. 5, 2001.


It is only distributed to recipients of the English language edition of ANSIPRA Bulletin.


From the editor 3

Coordination Council of the Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North, Siberia and Far East in Salekhard

S.N. Kharyuchi, President of RAIPON 4

Native American experience demonstrates that we ourselves should protect our rights

G.M. Volkova, President of RAIPON Branch of Khabarovskiy Kray 5

History and culture of the Bikin Udege

N. Pionka 6

The Nenets language yesterday and today

N.Ya. Barmich, Herzen Russian Humanities Educational University 8

A business trip to Vorkuta

Editorial office 9

Historic-demographic note on the Nenets in the Komi Republic

D.D. Bogoyavlenskiy, Institute of National Economic Forecasting, R.A.S. 11

How the animals brought old age to the Taiga

N. Koledneva; a tale told by Maria Spiridonova Kurbaltunova 1978 in Chapo-Ologo 13

Translations from Мир коренных народов – живая арктика” (Indigenous Peoples' World – Living Arctic)


According to an agreement between ANSIPRA and RAIPON (Russian Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North), we present translations of selected articles of the newsletter “Мир коренных народов” (Indigenous Peoples’ World), the official periodical of RAIPON. The following part of this issue presents translated articles from Indigenous Peoples’ World No. 5, 2001.


In addition to the articles below, the article On the Meeting of the Coordination Council of the Association of Indigenous Minorities of the North, Siberia and the Far East”, prepared by A. Mikhaylov, has been translated, but not edited for publication. Interested readers may request a copy by e-mail from the ANSIPRA Secretariat (e-mail: ansipra@npolar.no).


From the editor


Dear readers, we have entered a new age, a new millennium, and this sensation of novelty obliges us to take a fresh look at our problems.

Shortly after you receive this issue of the magazine, Moscow will host the 4th Congress of Indigenous Minorities of the North, Siberia and the Far East. Like ten years back, discussions of the critical and tragic situation of the Northerners will give rise to acrimonious debate. A variety problems and methods for their solution, further plans of our movement, the future of our organization and prospects for the development of indigenous peoples will be discussed heatedly.

Unfortunately, discussions of our issues fall into a usual groove: first we complain and then beg for or demand that President, Government, General Assembly, regional administrations, local administration bo­dies should do the impossible: find a solution to our pro­blems for us. Actually, we employ this approach when we write project proposals for administrative bodies and this is one of the reasons why our requirements and requests remain unanswered. We are not yet aware that that the time of complaints and requests is gone.

Hence, we call upon the future delegates of the Congress and their electors to think about the issues the Congress is to address. The Congress should not only be an accounting-elective meeting. The most important thing is progress in the awareness by all the regional public organizations of their goals and the objectives of our entire movement.

We must realize that the situation has changed now that indigenous peoples have federal and regional laws protecting their rights and at the same time they have strong opponents challenging or neglecting those rights. Hence, the strategy of our movement ought to change. We should not beg or complain, but rather learn to stand by our interests expertly and efficiently. Our magazine will supply some examples of this new attitude, but those are only some individual cases rather than an overarching strategy.

The Congress will address a program of action for ourselves, for the Association, and for other public organizations of indigenous minorities of the North. We must address our basic issues: allocation of traditional subsistence lands, development of self-admini­stration, and the protection of the natural environment and traditional economy of indigenous peoples of the North. The authorities do not resolve these problems for various reasons. We must develop our own approach to their solution, our own action plan, our strategy of relations with administrative bodies, and our response to their action or inaction when our rights are violated.

Still another problem is our legal ignorance, and, hence, vulnerability. We should learn to apply the relevant laws and to express articles of the law in the various regulatory documents to be issued by executive bodies.

And, finally, comes the problem of the implementation of the national program for socio-economic development of indigenous minorities of the North and the “Children of the North” program. To date, these programs have failed to ensure development and support of indigenous minorities of the North, but are instead used as stoppers for local budget holes. More­over, the ideology of those programs has a strong paternalist flavor. Those programs make indigenous people feel like inferior beggars, grateful to the state and to all those who distribute charity, while these same alms-givers plunder our natural resources and destroy the environment that supplied nourishment to numerous generations of our ancestors and provided food for our children. Violations of the law are implicated in these programs, which is neglected by the authorities. We regret that our reproaches are so bitter, and hope that authorities will understand us properly.

We indigenous people must come to the realization that the time for expert and well-judged actions has come. And the time cannot be lost, because the 21st century may become the last for many of our peoples.

We believe in the wisdom of indigenous minorities, and their natural stamina and we hope for cooperation on equal terms of indigenous minorities and their organizations. We believe that the 4th Congress of the Indigenous Minorities of the North, Siberia and Far East should become an important step in the progress of indigenous peoples to a worthy life in Russia, our common home.

Coordination Council of the Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North, Siberia and Far East in Salekhard


Sergey Kharyuchi, President of RAIPON / Chairman of the State Duma of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonom. Okrug


From 24 to 25 November 2000, Salekhard hosted the regular conference of the Coordination Council of the Russian Association of Indigenous Minorities of the North, Siberia and the Far East. In his interview for our magazine, S.N. Kharyuchi spoke about the significance of that Coordination Council.

“The most characteristic feature of the present Coordination Council lies in the fact that it was held for the first time in the region of residence of indigenous minorities. The holding of the Coordination Council in Salekhard marks a new initiative: Coordination Councils being held in the regions in which indigenous peoples are concentrated. Different northern regions have their specific situations, and every regional leader has a lot to say and to discuss with his colleagues regarding progress made.

Over the last years, the Yamalo-Nenets Auto­nom. Okrug has accumulated extensive experience solving the problems of indigenous minorities with respect to legislation and the practical problems of the organization of socio-economic life of indigenous peoples.

The members of the Coordination Council heard the presentations by E.L. Kerpelman (Deputy Chairman of the State Duma of the YaNAO) and V.S. Sondykov (Deputy Chairman of the Government of the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug) and could familiarize themselves with the attitude of legislative and executive bodies toward the problems of indigenous peoples of the regions concerned. Meetings with municipal leaders of those regions were organized. The Council members learned about the life of an ethnic fishing community in Gornoknyazevsk. The community leader Nikon Kuigin told about the experience of self-administration and self-support of the community and the village, about their methods of coping with unemployment. Hopefully, the meeting was of interest to everybody.

There are grounds to hope that the traditions of Coordination Councils being held in the regions will go on and be useful to all the leaders of regional associations.

Another feature of the November 2000 Coordination Council was its importance for the forthcoming Congress. The Coordination Council concerned addressed not only organizational problems, but also the Congress ideology. We have seen members of the Council become real politicians and are ready to conduct constructive discussions. It was nice to hear that members of the administration were surprised at the highly professional level of our meeting.

We don’t want the Congress to be associated with elective activities, which are also of great importance. The most important thing is that the Congress should take a step forward in the understanding by the regional associations of their new state. Today indigenous peoples have federal and regional legislation protecting their rights. Hence, their circumstances have changed. The time of complaining, begging, un­sub­stantiated claims and searches for the guilty is gone. The associations should not only document their problems but also try to find the ways for their solution under the new legal conditions.

In the present-day socio-economic state of the country, the indigenous minorities of the North – being its citizens – must elaborate a new concept of the development of indigenous peoples and their associations, a new strategy for joint actions. That is what I would like to call to the attention of the members of the Coordination Council in Salekhard. That is what the Coordination Council should discuss.

It is important that the issues of training of young specialists should be addressed as well as assistance to our students, the issues of legal education so needed by indigenous peoples in order to expertly defend their rights, and the also problems of environmental protection. Everything depends on ourselves, on the work of regional associations.

Where the regional associations work efficiently, they achieve success. For instance, two years ago Gazprom had a drilling rig constructed in the mouth of the Tazovskaya Guba – without land allotment authorization and without ecological impact assessment. The regional association “Yamal to Descendants” launched an active campaign against the rig and made sure that the rig was removed.

But there are also some other examples. Not all the regional association presidents attended the Coordination Council despite the fact that the central office managed to obtain the funds so that everybody could come. This demonstrates that some regional leaders are not aware of their roles and duty. In fact, the Congress does not only consist of the report of the President and his office. In addition, we are involved in the elaboration of federal legislation and development of international projects thanks to which we sent a number of people for internship, to seminars and conferences and our own magazine is published. Every president of the regional association is to report to the Congress. Hence, only through a balanced work were everybody contributes, can we constructively discuss the concept of the development of indigenous minorities of the North, Siberia and the Far East and develop a joint strategy for cooperating with the legal and executive powers of the Russian Federation and the regions, international organizations and our regional organizations. This is necessary for the successful solution to the problems of indigenous minorities of the North in future. ”

Native American experience demonstrates that we ourselves should protect our rights


G.M. Volkova, President of the RAIPON Branch of the Khabarovskiy Kray


During December 2000, five representatives of Russian indigenous peoples visited the United States. The initiative was that of the Association of Indigenous peoples of the North of the Khabarovskiy Kray and David Gordon, Associate Director of the Pacific Environment and Resources Center (PERC) and it was discussed in February, 2000.

From 1 to 28 December 2000, the Pacific Environment and Resources Center organized a trip for five representatives of indigenous minorities of the North of Russia – from the Kamchatka Region, the Krasnoyarsk, Khabarovsk and Primorye territories (Lyudmila Ognatenko, Arkadiy Kaza, Nadezhda Novik, Ekaterina Semkevich; Galina Volkova) – to the states of Washington and Oregon. The aim was for Native Americans and representatives of indigenous peoples of the Far East of Russia to exchange experiences with regard to protection of our rights to land and natural resources.

For me, the word “reservation” has always been associated with something humiliating. But after I visited reservations during this trip I concluded that this is an appropriate solution to indigenous peoples’ problems in America. We visited eight reservations and found out that 550 Indian tribes have been recognized to date, and about 200 of these have been struggling for their rights. They gained rights to lands and natural resources on the basis of agreements (the first was concluded in 1850 as a result of the Bolt trial) on the basis of the US Constitution.

A reservation is a state within a state. It has a constitution of its own, its administrative body (the Council) and executive bodies. The reservation has lands administered by indigenous people themselves – they decide how many fish are to be caught and where, how much forest is to be felled, and where the forest is to be replanted without detriment to the environment. These matters are determined by the environmental protection department of each reservation’s council. Federal lands and those belonging to private owners are co-managed. The main directions of their activity are fishing, fish farming, lumbering, forest regeneration, and cultural development.

In addition to profits earned from fish, timber and casinos, funds are annually allocated from the federal budget for economic, social and cultural programs.

In Seattle (Washington) and Portland (Oregon) we met lawyers who repeatedly won cases in favor of Native Americans. The majority of Native Americans won their cases in court.

Despite the articles of the Russian Constitution, federal and regional laws, we indigenous peoples have no real rights to land and natural resources in Russia. For instance, in the 1990s in the Khabarovskiy Kray traditional subsistence areas of indigenous minorities of the North were defined by the decision of the head of the administration of the Territory. But we are not masters there since the forest, wildlife, and water resources are on federal property. We attempted, jointly with the Duma, to modify regional laws regarding traditional subsistence areas and the Forest Code of the Territory in favor of the indigenous peoples. Instead, the regional law “On the Indigenous Peoples' Community of the Khabarovskiy Kray” was repealed. The representatives of indigenous minorities of the North living in cities and villages were deprived of their rights when the regional law on “Traditional Subsistence Areas of the Khabarovskiy Kray” was reconciled to the federal law “On Guarantees of Indigenous Minorities of Russia”. This is a violation of Article 69 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation. Any attempt to amend bylaws at the regional level fails.

The national policy of the President, the Government and the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation does not envisage any positive changes in relation to the indigenous minorities of the North. We should base our actions on the Canadian experience and file a charge against the state. If we rely on state bodies for miracles, our peoples will become extinct.


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