|• Altai||Алтай Республика|
|• Kazakh||Алтай Республикасы|
|Anthem: National Anthem of the Altai Republic |
|Economic region||West Siberian|
|Established||July 1, 1922|
|• Body||State Assembly—El Kurultai|
|• Head||Oleg Khorokhordin|
|• Total||92,600 km2 (35,800 sq mi)|
|• Estimate||218,063 (+5.8%)|
|• Density||2.2/km2 (5.8/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+6 (MSK+3 )|
|ISO 3166 code||RU-AL|
|Official languages||Russian; Altay, Kazakh|
The Altai Republic ( // ; Russian : Респу́блика Алта́й, romanized: Respúblika Altáy, pronounced [rʲɪˈspublʲɪkə ɐlˈtaj] ; Altai: Алтай Республика, Altay Respublika, also known as Gorno-Altai Republic) is a republic of Russia located in southern Siberia. It is part of the Siberian Federal District, and covers an area of 92,600 square kilometers (35,800 sq mi); with a population of 200 thousand residents. It is the least-populous republic of Russia and federal subject in the Siberian Federal District. Gorno-Altaysk is the capital and the largest town of the republic.
The Altai Republic is one of Russia's ethnic republics, primarily representing the indigenous Altay people, a Turkic ethnic group that form 35% of the Republic's population, while ethnic Russians form a majority at 57%, and with minority populations of Kazakhs, other Central Asian ethnicities, and Germans. The official languages of the Altai Republic are Russian, Altay and Kazakh.
Caucasoid settlements in the region date back to the Bronze and Iron Ages. Around the fifth century BC, Mongoloids began to appear in the Altai and mixed with the prior populations.
The Xiongnu Empire (209 BC- AD 93) governed the territory of the modern Altai Republic. The area was part of the First Turkic Khaganate, the Uyghur Empire, and the Yeniseian Kyrgyzs. It was during this time that the local population became fully Turkicized culturally and linguistically.
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The Altai Republic is situated in the Altai Mountains in the very center of Asia at the junction of the Siberian taiga, the steppes of Kazakhstan and the semi-deserts of Mongolia. Forests cover about 25% of the republic's territory.
More than 20,000 tributaries sprawl throughout the mountainous Republic, making for a total of more than 60,000 kilometers (37,000 mi) worth of waterways. The republic's largest rivers are the Katun and the Biya, both of which originate in the mountains and flow northwards. The junction of the two rivers eventually forms the Ob River, one of the longest rivers in Siberia, which flows northward to the Arctic Ocean.
The source of the black Biya River is Lake Teletskoye, the region's largest lake located in an isolated area far south in the mountains. The emerald-colored Katun River has its source at the Gebler glacier, which is situated on the Republic's highest point, Mount Belukha. The Katun River, in particular, holds a religious significance for native Altaians, as well as for many Russians who live in the area, as Mount Belukha is known in Altai folklore to be the gateway to the mystical kingdom of Shambhala.
The hydrographic network of the Republic also includes approximately 7,000 lakes, adding up to a total area of more than 700 km2 (270 sq mi). The largest lake is Lake Teletskoye, which is 80 km (50 mi) long and 5 kilometers (3.1 mi) wide, has an area of 230.8 square kilometers (89.1 sq mi), and has a maximum depth of 325 meters (1,066 ft). The mountain lakes of Altai contain enormous freshwater reserves of a very pure quality as a result of their distance from civilization. Lake Teletskoye alone contains more than 40 cubic kilometers (9.6 cu mi) of very clear water.
Potential groundwater storage is evaluated at 22 million m³ per day, while the present use constitutes about 44,000 m³ per day.
The most striking geographical aspect of the Republic of Altai is its mountainous terrain. The Republic is situated within the Russian part of the Altai Mountains system, which covers a large part of the Republic and continues into neighboring Kazakhstan, Mongolia and China. The region continues to experience periodic notable seismic activity, which is visually made apparent through the mountains' characteristically high and rugged mountain ridges, separated by narrow and deep river valleys. The Republic's highest peak, Mount Belukha (4,506 m), is the highest point in Siberia.
Various bodies of water are among the most important natural resources of the Republic. Mineral and hot springs are popular destinations for tourists and locals, sought for their therapeutic effects. Additionally, Altai glaciers contain a great amount of fresh water. The general volume of ice for registered Altai glaciers comes to a total of 57 km³, 52 km³ of which is water. The total water stock of the glaciers exceeds the average annual effluence of all Altai rivers, which are equal to 43 km³ per year. The largest glaciers are Bolshoy Taldurinsky (35 km2), Mensu (21 km2), Sofiysky (17 km2), and Bolshoy Maashey (16 km2).
Mineral resources in the region primarily include gold, silver, iron ores, and lithium, in addition to other smaller amounts of minerals. The large city of Barnaul in neighboring Altai Krai was founded as a processing center for minerals from the Altai region, although the mineral extraction industry today is much smaller than in the past.
The republic has a temperate continental climate with relatively short and mild summers (June–August); and long, cold, and often quite frosty winters (November–March).
In general, the republic's climate of the southeastern areas, such as the (Ulagansky and Kosh-Agachsky Districts), is harsher than the climate of the less elevated northern areas.
The Altai Republic is administratively divided into ten districts and Gorno-Altaysk Urban Okrug. The districts are further subdivided into ninety-two rural settlements.
Population: 206,168 (2010 Census); 202,947 (2002 Census); 191,649 (1989 Census).
|Average population (× 1000)||Live births||Deaths||Natural change||Crude birth rate (per 1000)||Crude death rate (per 1000)||Natural change (per 1000)||Fertility rates|
As per the 2010 Census,ethnic Russians make up 56.6% of the republic's population, with the indigenous Altai people making up 34.5%. Other groups include people of Kazakh (6.2%), and German (700 or 0.3%) ethnicity, together with smaller groups, each accounting for less than 0.5% of the total population.
|1926 Census||1939 Census||1959 Census||1970 Census||1979 Census||1989 Census||2002 Census||2010 Census4|
The head of government in the Altai Republic is the Head of the Republic, popularly elected for a four-year term. As of 2019 [update] , the Head of the Republic is Oleg Khorokhordin, who succeeded Alexander Berdnikov in this post. The supreme legislative body of the republic is the State Assembly—El Kurultai, with 41 deputies popularly elected every four years. Igor Yaimov is the current Chairman of the State Assembly-El Kurultai from January 2002.
The Republic's Constitution was adopted on June 7, 1997.
The Altai Republic is a highly agricultural region. However, it does have some industry which includes foodstuffs, non-ferrous metallurgy, chemicals, gold mining, footwear, dairying, and timber. Tourism has also begun to make its mark on the economy, and a large number of new hotels and resorts catering towards "New Russians" have begun to appear.
The Altai Republic is one of the few Russian political divisions without rail access. The main paved road is the Chuysky Tract, which spans the republic from the capital Gorno-Altaisk in the north to the Mongolian border in the south. The republic's main paved road threads its way through the rugged Altai Mountains. A system of taxis and buses transports people between settlements. Within the settlements, people generally walk or ride horses.
Helicopters are used for emergency transportation, to supply remote government outposts, and by wealthy tourists. In 2012, runway capacity at the Gorno-Altaysk Airport near the republic’s capital, was doubled. In June that same year, S7 Airlines started direct flights from Moscow. Prior to this, passengers used to fly through Barnaul in Altai Krai or Novosibirsk.
With the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the Altai Republic's tourism industry has greatly expanded. Although wealthy Russians from neighboring Russian regions are the most common sort of tourist in Altai, foreign interest has also grown in the area, especially due to the area's spiritual significance to New Age believers and others.
Popular tourist destinations tend to be concentrated in the north, where the roads are more accessible. They are also almost entirely located along the Chuiskiy highway, which is the main road from the north into the mountains (although it is currently only two lanes wide). The north is also significantly warmer than the elevated southern areas, which tend to be chilly even in the summer.
Some of the more well-known tourist spots in the Altai Republic include Lake Aiya (a popular bathing spot), and the picturesque Chemal region. More adventurous travelers may wish to visit the more remote Lake Teletskoye or Mount Belukha in the south.
There is one university (Gorno-Altaisk State University), twelve colleges, and 205 secondary schools in the republic.
Different religions are present in Altai. According to a 2012 survey,27.6% of the population adheres to the Russian Orthodox Church. The second most popular religions are ethnic and nature religions, namely Rodnovery (Slavic native faith), Tengrism (Central Asians' native faith) and Burkhanism, constituting altogether 13% of the population. 6% of the population follows Islam, 2% Hinduism (including Slavic-Vedic, Krishnaite, and Tantric movements), 1% are Old Believers and 1% Protestants. 25% of the population is "spiritual but not religious", 14% is atheist and 7.4% follows other religions or did not answer the question.
The traditional religion of the native Altaians is Tengrist shamanism, revived by modern Tengrist movements and Burkhanism. Ethnic Russians primarily practice Russian Orthodox Christianity and Rodnovery (Slavic native faith), while Kazakhs are traditionally Muslims. Tibetan Buddhism has also recently begun making some inroads by way of neighboring Mongolia and Tuva.
It is unknown when Buddhism came into Altai but however, in various periods of history, the territory of the Altai and its population found themselves in full or partial subjection to neighboring states, where Buddhism was the official or one of the official religions: the state of the Khitans (tenth-twelfth centuries), the Mongol Empire (thirteenth-fourteenth centuries), and the Dzhungar Khanate (seventeenth-eighteenth centuries).
From 1904 until the 1930s, a new religious movement called Burkhanism (or Ak Jang, the "white faith") was popularized among native Altaians. The religion originated in Altai and emphasized the "white" aspect of shamanistic practice. Burkhanism remains an important component of Altai national consciousness and is currently being revived in several forms along with indigenous Altai culture in general.
Russian Pagan followers often go on pilgrimages to Mount Belukha, which is considered to be the location of Shambhala both by some Pagans and locals of Altai. One can often find manifestations of shamanistic spirituality in the region; for example, at points along the Katun River, local believers in shamanic religions are known to tie white ribbons to nearby trees and leave offerings of coins or food to the spirits.Although shamanism is much less widely practiced today, it is regaining popularity as a result of new religious freedom following the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The indigenous Altai culture holds the lands of Altai to be sacred. The indigenous (Turkic) languages are focused on the stewardship of the lands. The Altai oral history is transmitted by throat-singers. The Altai culture was repressed during Soviet times and has been rebounding since then. The clans of all ten regions gather in the village of Yelo for a biennial cultural celebration.
There is also a large contingent of "Old Believers" who fled to Altai when they split from the Russian Orthodox Church over 300 years ago. They were taken in by the Altai people, and are now integrated into the fabric of Altai culture.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site "Golden Mountains" protects the Ukok Plateau, on which there are many standing stones and kurgans. Although archaeologists consider kurgans to be burial sites, the indigenous people believe that they are highly refined magnetic instruments for directing the flow of cosmic energy into the Earth.[ citation needed ] Thus, there is great local indignation about the excavation and removal of the Siberian Ice Maiden, an extraordinary 2,500-year-old mummy that had been preserved in permafrost.
Gorno-Altaisk is the location of the National Museum of the Altai Republic, which houses the mummy "Altai Princess", the National Library of the Republic of Altai, the National Theatre of the Republic of Altai and the Municipal House of Culture.
Regularly held national holiday Maslenitsa, Nowruz, Chaga – Bayram, received in February 2013 with the official status of the Republican celebration.
In 2013, the Altai Republic participated in the Turkvision Song Contest. The Altai Republic's entry was the song "Altayym Menin" performed by Artur Marlujokov. The Altai Republic won the fifth place in the contest.
Bandy is played in the Altai Republic.
Altai Krai is a federal subject of Russia. It borders clockwise from the west, Kazakhstan, Novosibirsk and Kemerovo Oblasts, and the Altai Republic. The krai's administrative center is the city of Barnaul. As of the 2010 Census, the population of the krai was 2,419,755.
Gorno-Altaysk is the capital town of the Altai Republic, Russia.
The Altai are a Turkic people living in the Siberian Altai Republic and Altai Krai, Russia. A small number of Altaians also live in Mongolia and Northern Xinjiang, China but are not officially recognized as a distinct group. For alternative ethnonyms see also Teleut, Tele, Telengit, Black Tatar and Oirats. During the Northern Yuan Dynasty of Mongolia, they were ruled in the administrative area known as Telengid Province.
Onguday is a rural locality and the administrative center of Ongudaysky District in the Altai Republic, Russia, located on the Ursul River, 210 kilometers (130 mi) from Gorno-Altaysk, the capital of the republic. As of the 2010 Census, its population was 5,655, consisting mainly of the Altai people and Russians.
Ongudaysky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the center of the republic. The area of the district is 11,744 square kilometers (4,534 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Onguday. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 15,046, with the population of Onguday accounting for 37.6% of that number.
Chemalsky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the northwest of the republic. The area of the district is 3,016 square kilometers (1,164 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Chemal. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 9,441, with the population of Chemal accounting for 38.2% of that number.
Kosh-Agachsky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the south and southeast of the republic. The area of the district is 19,845 square kilometers (7,662 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Kosh-Agach. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 18,263, with the population of Kosh-Agach accounting for 43.3% of that number.
Mayminsky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the northwest of the republic. The area of the district is 1,285 square kilometers (496 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Mayma. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 28,642, with the population of Mayma accounting for 56.5% of that number.
Shebalinsky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the northwest of the republic. The area of the district is 3,794 square kilometers (1,465 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Shebalino. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 13,596, with the population of Shebalino accounting for 36.2% of that number.
Turochaksky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the north of the republic. The area of the district is 11,015 square kilometers (4,253 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Turochak. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 12,484, with the population of Turochak accounting for 44.7% of that number.
Ulagansky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the east of the republic. The area of the district is 18,367 square kilometers (7,092 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Ulagan. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 11,388, with the population of Ulagan accounting for 28.3% of that number.
Ust-Kansky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the west of the republic. The area of the district is 6,244 square kilometers (2,411 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Ust-Kan. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 15,007, with the population of Ust-Kan accounting for 27.5% of that number.
Ust-Koksinsky District is an administrative and municipal district (raion), one of the ten in the Altai Republic, Russia. It is located in the west and southwest of the republic. The area of the district is 12,960 square kilometers (5,000 sq mi). Its administrative center is the rural locality of Ust-Koksa. As of the 2010 Census, the total population of the district was 17,020, with the population of Ust-Koksa accounting for 25.7% of that number.
Kosh-Agach is a rural locality and the administrative center of Kosh-Agachsky District of the Altai Republic, Russia. Population: 7,900 (2010 Census); 5,701 (2002 Census); 3,501 (1989 Census).
Turochak is a rural locality and the administrative center of Turochaksky District of the Altai Republic, Russia. Population: 5,582 (2010 Census); 5,484 (2002 Census); 5,080 (1989 Census).
Ust-Koksa is a rural locality and the administrative center of Ust-Koksinsky District of the Altai Republic, Russia. Population: 4,373 (2010 Census); 3,986 (2002 Census); 3,526 (1989 Census).
Ust-Kan is a rural locality and the administrative center of Ust-Kansky District of the Altai Republic, Russia. Population: 4,123 (2010 Census); 3,528 (2002 Census); 3,022 (1989 Census).
Chemal is a rural locality and the administrative center of Chemalsky District of the Altai Republic, Russia. Population: 3,602 (2010 Census); 3,266 (2002 Census);
Shebalino is a rural locality and the administrative center of Shebalinsky District of the Altai Republic, Russia. Population: 4,924 (2010 Census); 4,912 (2002 Census); 4,974 (1989 Census).
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