Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point
On Air
Low Graphics

Sunday, August 2, 1998 Published at 01:01 GMT 02:01 UK

World: Europe

Circassians flee Kosovo conflict

The Circassians arrive in southern Russia from Kosovo

Seventy-six members of an ancient ethnic minority group have fled the Kosovo conflict and arrived in southern Russia.

The Adygs, better known as Circassians, flew in from the Kosovo region of Yugoslavia to their historic homeland in southern Russia on Saturday.

Forty-two families whose ancestors settled in Kosovo during the 19th century, when it was part of the Ottoman Empire, had been living in two villages outside the Kosovar capital, Pristina.

Ethnic Albanians who are in the majority in Kosovo consider the Circassians, although fellow Muslims, too supportive of the Serbs.

The ethnic Albanian Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), which is fighting for independence from Yugoslavia, is thought to have threatened the Adygs.

The Adygs say they have been "sitting on their suitcases" since the Kosovo conflict began in 1997.

A second group of Adygs is due to arrive in Russia later this month having travelled through Bulgaria and across the Black Sea.

Aslan Karashev, a minister in the tiny Adyg republic in the north Caucasus, says: "Adygeya is ready to receive its compatriots from Kosovo."

The Adygs are being brought over by Russia's Ministry of Emergency Situations and will be housed in a former kindergarten. Mr Karashev said they would eventually be given land to cultivate.

Circassians hail from the north Caucasus, but during the 19th century they were displaced by Russia's imperial conquests and were scattered around Europe and the Middle East.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©

Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia

Relevant Stories

01 Aug 98 | Europe
UN aid to Kosovo refugees

Internet Links

Circassians home page

Adiga Web (Circassians in Jordan)

Adigha Khabza

Profile of Circassians

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

In this section

Violence greets Clinton visit

Russian forces pound Grozny

EU fraud: a billion dollar bill

Next steps for peace

Cardinal may face loan-shark charges

From Business
Vodafone takeover battle heats up

Trans-Turkish pipeline deal signed

French party seeks new leader

Jube tube debut

Athens riots for Clinton visit

UN envoy discusses Chechnya in Moscow

Solana new Western European Union chief

Moldova's PM-designate withdraws

Chechen government welcomes summit

In pictures: Clinton's violent welcome

Georgia protests over Russian 'attack'

UN chief: No Chechen 'catastrophe'

New arms control treaty for Europe

From Business
Mannesmann fights back

EU fraud -- a billion-dollar bill

New moves in Spain's terror scandal

EU allows labelling of British beef

UN seeks more security in Chechnya

Athens riots for Clinton visit

Russia's media war over Chechnya

Homeless suffer as quake toll rises

Analysis: East-West relations must shift