Arctic Yearbook 2015 - Page 165

165 Arctic Yearbook 2015 that the increased reliance on traditional subsistence activities, necessary for survival, led to increased cultural awareness (Kertulla 2000). Indigenous self-determination in Chukotka Against the backdrop of this socio-economic crisis, there were also some significant political and legislative changes that impacted indigenous peoples in Chukotka. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, new local and regional associations began to appear in Chukotka. In 1990, federal legislation entitled Unhindered Ethnic Development of Citizens of the USSR who live Outside their Ethnic Areas or Have no Such Areas Within the Territory of the USSR allowed for the creation of political associations based on nationality (Kryazhkov, 2013). The ‘Yupik Eskimo Society of Chukotka’ (YESC) and the ‘Association of Indigenous Peoples of Chukotka’5 formed to promote indigenous rights and self-determination for Chukotka’s indigenous peoples. These new local indigenous institutions were supported by the Russian Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North, Siberia, and the Far East (RAIPON), a larger national association with members from 35 regional organizations and 41 indigenous groups (Gray, 2007). RAIPON’s goals include greater self-determination for indigenous peoples through selfgovernment, human rights protection, and the legal protection of indigenous social, economic and environmental interests (Arctic Council 2011). The above mentioned collapse of central authority throughout the country reinforced the de facto autonomy of the regional government throughout much of the 1990s. In Chukotka, the Nazarov administration began to secure the region from outside influence. Indigenous organizations seeking political legitimacy were harassed and often co-opted by the regional authorities (Thompson 2008). Newly enacted federal legislation, such as the law On Guarantees of the Rights of Small-Numbered Indigenous Peoples was at odds with regional legislation, and enforcement by the federal authorities was problematic (Pelaudeix 2012), a reflection of the weakness of the federal government. While the indigenous rights movement in Chukotka gained some momentum in the late Soviet and early postSoviet periods, the regional bureaucracy opposed and interfered with local attempts at indigenous selfdetermination (Krupnik & Vakhtin 2002). Indigenous peoples’ organizations sought the status of ‘political organizations’ in order to be taken seriously by regional authorities (Diatchkova 2010). By the end of the 1990s, the Nazarov administration had successfully marginalized Chukotka’s indigenous movement by framing Russia’s new democratic principles of equality in opposition to ‘indigenous’ self-determination (Tennberg 2010). Funding for indigenous political organizations was limited, and dispersed at the discretion of the regional authorities. In 1999, the Arbitration Court of the Chukchi Autonomous Okrug ordered the offices of YESC to be closed and its assets liquidated (Ainana, Zelensky & Bychkov 2001). The rights of indigenous peoples are guaranteed by the Russian Federation’s Constitution (1993). Article 69: “guarantees the rights of indigenous peoples in compliance with the universally recognized principles and norms of international law and treaties concluded with the Russian Federation.” Article 69 is legally implemented with the formal adoption of three federal statutes: On Guarantees of the Rights of Small-Numbered Indigenous Peoples (1999), On the General Principles for the Organization of Obshchiny (2001) and On the Territories of Traditional Nature Use [TTNUs] (2001). At the okrug level, the Charter of the Wilson & Kormos