Along the Crimea's northeast shore are a series of shallow, stagnant, but mineral-rich lagoons, known collectively as the Sivash or Putrid Sea, which are linked to the Sea of Azov by the Arabatskaya Strelka. The northern part of the Crimea is a semiarid steppe, drained by a few streams; this region supports fine wheat, corn, and barley crops. In the south rises the Crimean or Yaila Range (Yaltinskaya Yaila), with its extensive meadows and forests. The tallest peak rises to c.5,000 ft (1,520 m). In the Crimean Range is a major astronomical observatory. Protected by steep mountain slopes, the Black Sea littoral, once called the "Soviet Riviera," has a subtropical climate and numerous resorts, notably at Yalta and Sochi. During the years of Soviet rule, the resorts and dachas of the Crimean coast served as the prime perquisites of the politically loyal. In this region are vineyards and fruit orchards; fishing, mining, and the production of essential oils are also important. Heavy industry in the Crimea includes plants producing machinery, chemicals, and building materials.
Ethnic Russians constitute more than half of the Crimea's population; Ukrainians more than a quarter. Since 1989 there has been a movement back to the area of native Tatars who had been exiled to Central Asia in the Stalin era, and they now form more than a sixth of the population. There are also smaller minorities of ethnic Armenians, Greeks, Bulgarians, and Germans.
Known in ancient times as Tauris, the peninsula was the home of the Cimmerian people, called the Tauri. Expelled from the steppe by the Scythians in the 7th cent. B.C., they founded (5th cent. B.C.) the kingdom of Cimmerian Bosporus, which later came under Greek influence. Ionian and Dorian Greeks began to colonize the coast in the 6th cent., and the peninsula became the major source of wheat for ancient Greece. In the 1st cent. B.C., the kingdom of Pontus began to rule the Greek part of the peninsula, which became a Roman protectorate in the 1st cent. A.D. During the next millennium the area was overrun by Ostrogoths, Huns, Khazars, Cumans, and in 1239, by the Mongols of the Golden Horde. Meanwhile, the southern shore was mostly under Byzantine control from the 6th to the 12th cent.
Trade relations were established (11th-13th cent.) with Kievan Rus, and in the 13th cent. Genoa founded prosperous coastal commercial settlements. After Timur's destruction of the Golden Horde, the Tatars established (1475) an independent khanate in N and central Crimea. In the late 15th cent. both the khanate and the southern coastal towns were conquered by the Ottoman Empire; the Turks called the peninsula Crimea. Although they became Turkish vassals, the Crimean Tatars were powerful rulers who became the scourge of Ukraine and Poland, exacted tribute from the Russian czars, and raided Moscow as late as 1572.
Russian armies first invaded the Crimea in 1736. Empress Catherine II forced Turkey to recognize the khanate's independence in 1774, and in 1783 she annexed it outright; the annexation was confirmed by the Treaty of Jassy (1792). Many Tatars, with their Muslim religion and Turkic language, emigrated to Turkey, while Russians, Ukrainians, Bulgarians, Germans, Armenians, and Greeks settled in the Crimea. During the Crimean War (1853-56), parts of the remaining Tatar population were resettled in the interior of Russia.
After the Bolshevik Revolution (1917) an independent Crimean republic was proclaimed; but the region was soon occupied by German forces and then became a refuge for the White Army. In 1921 a Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was created; Tatars then constituted about 25% of the population. During World War II, German invaders took the Crimea after an eight-month siege. Accused by the Soviet government of collaborating with the Germans, the Crimean Tatars were forcibly removed from their homeland after the war and resettled in distant parts of the Asian USSR. The republic itself was dissolved (1945) and made into a region of the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic; in 1954 it was transferred to Ukraine. In 1989, Tatars began to return from their exile in Siberia and Central Asia.
In 1991, President Mikhail Gorbachev was vacationing in Crimea at the time of the August Coup. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, Russia and Ukraine engaged in negotiations over the possession of Crimea and the disposition of the former Soviet fleet based in the Black Sea. In 1992 there was an abortive attempt by the Russian-dominated Crimean government to declare independence. Elected Crimea's first president in 1994, Yuri Meshkov called for the rejoining of the Crimea with Russia. In 1995, Crimea's government was placed under national control and Meshkov was ousted, but its assembly was retained. An accord the same year between Ukraine and Russia called for the division of the Black Sea fleet, and in 1997 it was agreed that Russia would be allowed to base its portion of the fleet there for 20 years. Tensions between Crimea's ethnic Russians and the Ukrainian national government continue to mark Crimean and Ukrainian politics; another source of tension have been demands by repatriated Tatars for land.
Autonomous republic (pop., 2001: 2,033,700), southern Ukraine. It is coextensive with the Crimean Peninsula, which extends into the Black Sea. It covers 10,077 sq mi (26,100 sq km); its capital is Simferopol. Early inhabitants were Cimmerians, though the area later was settled by Greeks in the 6th century BC and was ruled by the kingdom of the Cimmerian Bosporus from the 5th century BC. It became subject to Rome, and part of it later belonged to the Byzantine Empire. Russia annexed Crimea in 1783. It was the scene of the Crimean War (1853–56). In 1921 it became an autonomous republic of the U.S.S.R. During World War II, Nazi armies overran it in 1941; it was retaken by the Soviets in 1944. The area became an oblast of the Ukrainian S.S.R. in 1954. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, Crimea obtained partial autonomy from Ukraine.
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Crimea or the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (Крим, Автономна Республіка Крим, Avtonomna Respublika Krym; Крым, Автономная Республика Крым; ) is an autonomous republic of Ukraine located on the northern coast of the Black Sea, occupying a peninsula of the same name.
The territory of Crimea was conquered and controlled many times throughout its history. The Cimmerians, Greeks, Persians (Iranians), Goths, Huns, Bulgars, Khazars, the state of Kievan Rus', Byzantine Greeks, Kipchaks, and the Mongols all controlled Crimea in its early history. In the 13th century it was partly controlled by the Venetians and by the Genoese; these were followed by the Crimean Khanate and Ottoman Empire in the 15th–18th centuries, the Russian Empire in the 18th–20th centuries, the Russian SFSR and later Ukrainian SSR within Soviet Union in the rest of 20th century, Germany in World War II, and now, the independent Ukrainian state.
Crimea is a parliamentary republic which is governed by the Constitution of Crimea in accordance with the laws of Ukraine. The capital and administrative seat of the republic's government is the city of Simferopol, located in the center of the peninsula. Crimea's total area is . As of 2007, Crimea has a population of 1,973,185 inhabitants.
Crimea is the homeland for the Crimean Tatars, an ethnic minority who now make up about 13% of the population. The Crimean Tatars were forcibly expelled to Central Asia by Joseph Stalin's government, but have begun returning to their homeland in recent years.
The name Crimea takes its origin in the name of a city of Qırım (today's Stary Krym) which served as a capital of the Crimean province of the Golden Horde. Qırım is Crimean Tatar for "my hill" (qır – hill, -ım – my). However, there are other versions of the etymology of Qırım. Russian Krym is a Russified form of Qırım. The ancient Greeks called Crimea Tauris (later Taurica), after its inhabitants, the Tauri. The Greek historian Herodotus mentions that Hercules plowed that land using a huge ox ("Taurus"), hence the name of the land.
In English, Crimea is sometimes referred to with the definite article, the Crimea, as in the Netherlands, the Gambia, etc. However, usage without the article has become more frequent in journalism since the years of the Soviet Union.
The earliest inhabitants of whom we have any authentic traces were the Cimmerians, who were expelled by the Scythians (Iranians) during the 7th century BC. The remaining Cimmerians that took refuge in the mountains later became known as the Tauri. According to other historians, the Tauri were known for their savage rituals and piracy, and were also the earliest indigenous peoples of the peninsula. In 5th century BC, Greek colonists began to settle along the Black Sea coast, among those were the Dorians from Heraclea who founded a sea port of Chersonesos outside Sevastopol, and the Ionians from Miletus who landed at Feodosiya and Panticapaeum (also called Bosporus).
Two centuries later (438 BC), the Archon (ruler) of the latter settlers assumed the title of the Kings of Cimmerian Bosporus, a state that maintained close relations with Athens, supplying the city with wheat, honey and other commodities. The last of that line of kings, Paerisades V, being hard-pressed by the Scythians, put himself under the protection of Mithridates VI, the king of Pontus, in 114 BC. After the death of this sovereign, his son, Pharnaces II, was invested by Pompey with the kingdom of Bosporus in 63 BC as a reward for the assistance rendered to the Romans in their war against his father. In 15 BC, it was once again restored to the king of Pontus, but since ranked as a tributary state of Rome.
Throughout the later centuries, Crimea was invaded or occupied successively by the Goths (AD 250), the Huns (376), the Bulgars 4th-8th century), the Khazars (8th century), the state of Kievan Rus' (10th–11th centuries), the Byzantine Empire (1016), the Kipchaks (the Kumans) (1050), and the Mongols (1237).
In the mid-10th century, the eastern area of Crimea was conquered by Prince Sviatoslav I of Kiev and became part of the Kievan Rus' principality of Tmutarakan. In 988, Prince Vladimir I of Kiev also captured the Byzantine town of Chersones (presently part of Sevastopol) where he later converted to Christianity. An impressive Russian Orthodox cathedral marks the location of this historic event.
In the 13th century, the Republic of Genoa seized the settlements which their rivals, the Venetians, had built along the Crimean coast and established themselves at Cembalo, Soldaia, Cherco and Caffa, gaining control of the Crimean economy and the Black Sea commerce for two centuries.
A number of Turkic peoples, now collectively known as the Crimean Tatars, have been inhabiting the peninsula since the early Middle Ages. The ethnicity of the Crimean Tatars is quite complex as it absorbed both nomadic Turkic and European components (in the first place, the Goths and the Genoese) which is still reflected in their appearance and language differences. A small enclave of the Karaims, possibly of Khazar (i.e. Turkic) descent but members of a Jewish sect, was founded in the 8th century. It existed among the Muslim Crimean Tatars, primarily in the mountainous Çufut Qale area.
After the destruction of the Golden Horde by Timur in 1441, the Crimean Tatars founded an independent Crimean Khanate under Hacı I Giray, a descendant of Genghis Khan. He and his successors reigned first at Qırq Yer, and from the beginning of the 15th century, at Bakhchisaray.
The Crimean Tatars controlled the steppes that stretched from the Kuban and to the Dniester River, however, they were unable to take control over commercial Genoese towns. After the Crimean Tatars asked for help from the Ottomans, an Ottoman invasion of the Genoese towns led by Gedik Ahmed Pasha in 1475 brought Kaffa and the other trading towns under their control.
After the capture of Genoese towns, the Ottoman Sultan held Meñli I Giray captive, later releasing him in return for accepting Ottoman sovereignty above the Crimean Khans and allowing them rule as tributary princes of the Ottoman Empire. However, the Crimean Khans still had a large amount of autonomy from the Ottoman Empire, particularly, followed the rules they thought were best for them: Crimean Tatars introduced raids into Ukrainian lands, which were used to get slaves to be sold on markets. In 1553–1554, Cossack Hetman Dmytro Vyshnevetsky gathered together groups of Cossacks, and constructed a fort designed to obstruct Tatar raids into Ukraine. With this action, he founded the Zaporozhian Sich, with which he would launch a series of attacks on the Crimea peninsula and the Ottoman Turks. In 1774, The Crimean Khans fell under Russian influence with the Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca. In 1783, the entire Crimea was annexed by the Russian Empire.
The Crimean War (1853–1856) devastated much of the economic and social infrastructure of Crimea. The Crimean Tatars had to flee from their homeland en masse, forced by the conditions created by the war, persecution and land expropriations. Those who survived the trip, famine and disease, resettled in Dobruja, Anatolia, and other parts of the Ottoman Empire. Finally, the Russian government decided to stop the process, as the agriculture began to suffer due to the unattended fertile farmland.
During the Russian Civil War, Crimea was a stronghold of the anti-Bolshevik White Army, including the Crimean People's Republic. It was in Crimea that the White Russians led by General Wrangel made their last stand against Nestor Makhno and the Red Army in 1920. After the resistance was crushed, many of the anti-Communist fighters and civilians had to board the ships and escape to Istanbul.
On October 18, 1921, the Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was created as part of the Russian SFSR. However, this did not protect the Crimean Tatars, who constituted about 25% of the Crimean population, from Joseph Stalin's repressions of the 1930s. The Greeks were another cultural group that suffered. Their lands were lost during the process of collectivisation, in which farmers were not compensated with wages. Schools which taught Greek were closed and Greek literature was destroyed, because the Soviets considered the Greeks as "counter-revolutionary" with their links to capitalist state Greece, and their independent culture.
During World War II, Crimea was a scene of some of the bloodiest battles. The leaders of the Third Reich were anxious to conquer and colonize the fertile and beautiful peninsula as part of their policy of resettling the Germans in Eastern Europe at the expense of the Slavs. The Germans suffered heavy casualties in the summer of 1941 as they tried to advance through the narrow Isthmus of Perekop linking Crimea to the Soviet mainland. Once the German army broke through (Operation Trappenjagd), they occupied most of Crimea, with the exception of the city of Sevastopol, which was later awarded the honorary title of Hero City after the war.
Sevastopol held out from October 1941 until July 4, 1942 when the Germans finally captured the city. From September 1, 1942, the peninsula was administered as the Generalbezirk Krim (general district of Crimea) und Teilbezirk (and sub-district) Taurien by the Nazi Generalkommissar Alfred Eduard Frauenfeld (1898–1977), under the authority of the three consecutive Reichskommissare for the entire Ukraine. In spite of heavy-handed tactics by the Nazis and the assistance of the Romanian and Italian troops, the Crimean mountains remained an unconquered stronghold of the native resistance (the partisans) until the day when the peninsula was freed from the occupying force.
In 1944, Sevastopol came under the control of troops from the Soviet Union. The so-called "City of Russian Glory" once known for its beautiful architecture was entirely destroyed and had to be rebuilt stone by stone. Due to its enormous historical and symbolic meaning for the Russians, it became a priority for Stalin and the Soviet government to have it restored to its former glory within the shortest time possible.
On May 18, 1944, the entire population of the Crimean Tatars were forcibly deported in the "Sürgün" (Crimean Tatar for exile) to Central Asia by Stalin's Soviet government as a form of collective punishment on the grounds that they had collaborated with the Nazi occupation forces. An estimated 46% of the deportees died from hunger and disease. On June 26 of the same year Armenian, Bulgar and Greek population was also deported to Central Asia. By the end of summer 1944, the ethnic cleansing of Crimea was complete. In 1967, the Crimean Tatars were rehabilitated, but they were banned from legally returning to their homeland until the last days of the Soviet Union.
The Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was abolished in June 30, 1945 and transformed into the Crimean Oblast (province) of the Russian SFSR. On February 19, 1954, the oblast was transferred from the Russian SFSR to the Ukrainian SSR. As it stated in the Supreme Soviet Decree, the transfer was caused by close (1) geographic, (2) economic, and (3) cultural ties to the Ukrainian SSR.
In post-war years, Crimea thrived as a prime tourist destination, built with new attractions and sanatoriums for tourists. Tourists came from all around the Soviet Union and neighbouring countries, particularly from the German Democratic Republic. Also, Crimea's infrastructure and manufacturing also developed, particularly around the sea ports at Kerch and Sevastopol and in the oblast's landlocked capital, Simferopol. Populations of Ukrainians and Russians alike doubled, with more than 1.6 million Russians and 626,000 Ukrainians living on the peninsula by 1989.
With the collapse of the Soviet Union, Crimea became part of the newly independent Ukraine, a situation largely unexpected by its population that was ethnically and culturally Russian for the most part. This led to tensions between Russia and Ukraine. With the Black Sea Fleet based on the peninsula, worries of armed skirmishes were occasionally raised.
After the All-Crimean Referendum was conducted on January 20, 1991, the Crimean Oblast was transformed into the Crimean ASSR as part of the Ukrainian SSR and the city of Sevastopol was granted special government status in the UkSSR. In the Ukrainian referendum on independence on December 1, 1991, 54.19% of residents from Crimea and 57.07% from Sevastopol city voted in favor of Ukrainian independence.
Based on the resolution of the Verkhovna Rada, the Crimean parliament, on February 26, 1992, the Crimean ASSR was renamed into the Republic of Crimea. Crimea proclaimed self-government on May 5, 1992 and on the next day passed the first Crimean constitution.
On May 19, Crimea agreed to remain as part of Ukraine and annulled their proclamation of self-government. By June 30, Crimean Communists forced the Kiev government to expand on the already extensive autonomous status of Crimea. In the same period, Russian president Boris Yeltsin and Ukraine's Leonid Kravchuk agreed to divide the former Soviet Black Sea Fleet between Russia and the newly-formed Ukrainian Navy.
On October 14, 1993, the Crimea established the post of President of Crimea. On January 30, 1994, the pro-Russian Yuriy Meshkov was elected to the new post but quickly ran into conflicts with parliament. On September 7, the Crimean parliament annulled the President's rights, to which Meshov responded by disbanding parliament and announcing his control over Crimea on four days later. Amendments to the constitution eased the conflict, but on March 17, 1995, the parliament of Ukraine intervened, scrapping the Crimean Constitution and removing Meshkov along with his office. After a interim constitution lasting from April 4, 1996 to December 23, 1998, the currently existing constitution was put into effect, changing the territory's name to the Autonomous Republic of Crimea.
Following the ratification of the May 1997 Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation, and Partnership on friendship and division of the Black Sea Fleet, international tensions slowly eased off. With the treaty, Moscow recognized Ukraine's borders and territorial integrity, and accepted Ukraine's sovereignty over Crimea and Sevastopol. In a separate agreement, Russia was to receive 80% of the Black Sea Fleet and use of the military facilities in Sevastopol on a 20-year lease.
However, other controversies between Ukraine and Russia still remain, including the ownership of a lighthouse on Cape Sarych. Because the Russian Navy controlled 77 geographical objects on the south Crimean Shore, the Sevastopol Government Court ordered the vacation of the objects, which the Russian military did not carry out. Since August 3, 2005, the lighthouse is controlled by the Russian Army. Through the years, there have been various attempts of returning Cape Sarych to Ukrainian territory, all of which were unsuccessful.
In 2006, protests broke out on the peninsula after U.S. Marines arrived to the Crimean city of Feodosiya to take part in the Sea Breeze 2006 Ukraine-NATO military exercise. Protesters greeted the marines with barricades and slogans bearing "Occupiers go home!", and a couple days later, the Crimean parliament declared Crimea a "NATO-free territory". After several days of protest, the U.S. Marines withdrew from the peninsula.
In September 2008, the Ukrainian Foreign Minister Volodymyr Ohryzko accused Russia of giving out Russian passports to the population in the Crimea and described it as a "real problem" given Russia's declared policy of military intervention abroad to protect Russian citizens.
Another centre of conflict on the peninsula is regarding land ownership. Since the Crimean Tatars were forcibly deported from their homeland in May 1944, other people, particularly Russians, settled the peninsula and took control of the lands formerly belonging to the Crimean Tatars. After the fall of the Soviet Union, Crimean Tatars were allowed to return to Crimea, but conflict arose when they demanded the return of land seized after their deportation.
The executive power is represented by the Council of Ministers, headed by a Prime Minister who is appointed and dismissed by the Verkhovna Rada, with the consent of the President of Ukraine. The authority and operation of the Verkhovna Rada and the Council of Ministers of Crimea are determined by the Constitution of Ukraine and other the laws of Ukraine, as well as by regular decisions carried out by the Verkhovna Rada of Crimea.
Justice is administered by courts that belong to the Judicial system of Ukraine.
While not an official body controlling Crimea, the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People is a representative body of the Crimean Tatars, which could address grievances to the Ukrainian central government, the Crimean government, and international bodies.
During the 2004 presidential elections, Crimea largely voted for the presidential candidate Viktor Yanukovych. In both the 2006 Ukrainian parliamentary elections and the 2007 Ukrainian parliamentary elections, the Yanukovych-led Party of Regions also won most of the votes from the region.
Following the Crimean parliamentary election, 2006, the following political parties are represented in the Verkhovna Rada bloc: "Za Yanukovycha!" (Party of Regions and the Russian Bloc): 32.55% (44 mandates); party "Soiuz": 7.63% (10 mandates); Kunytsyna Electoral Bloc: 7.63% (10 mandates); Communist Party of Ukraine: 6.55% (9 mandates); People's Movement of Ukraine: 6.26% (8 mandates); Yulia Tymoshenko Electoral Bloc: 6.03% (8 mandates); People's Opposition Bloc of Natalia Vitrenko: 4.97% (7 mandates); Opposition Bloc "Ne Tak": 3.09% (4 mandates).
Crimea is subdivided into 25 regions: 14 raions (districts) and 11 city municipalities, officially known as "territories governed by city councils". While the City of Sevastopol is located on the Crimean peninsula, it is administratively separate from the rest of Crimea and is one of two special municipalities of Ukraine.
Crimea is located on the northern coast of the Black Sea and on the western coast of the Sea of Azov, bordering Kherson Oblast from the North. Although located in southwestern part of the Crimean peninsula, the city of Sevastopol has a special but separate municipality status within Ukraine. Crimea's total land area is 26,100 km² (10,038 sq mi).
Crimea is connected to the mainland by the 5–7 kilometre (3–4 mile) wide Isthmus of Perekop. At the eastern tip is the Kerch Peninsula, which is directly opposite the Taman Peninsula on the Russian mainland. Between the Kerch and Taman peninsulas, lies the 3–13 km (2–9 mi) wide Strait of Kerch, which connects the waters of the Black Sea with the Sea of Azov.
The Crimean coastline is broken by several bays and harbors. These harbors lie west of the Isthmus of Perekop by the Bay of Karkinit; on the southwest by the open Bay of Kalamita, with the ports of Eupatoria and Sevastopol; on the north by the Bay of Arabat of the Isthmus of Yenikale or Kerch; and on the south by the Bay of Caffa or Feodosiya, with the port of Feodosiya.
The southeast coast is flanked at a distance of 8–12 km (5–8 mi) from the sea by a parallel range of mountains, the Crimean Mountains. These mountains are backed by secondary parallel ranges. Seventy-five percent of the remaining area of Crimea consists of semiarid prairie lands, a southward continuation of the Pontic steppes, which slope gently to the northwest from the foot of the Crimean Mountains. The main range of these mountains shoots up with extraordinary abruptness from the deep floor of the Black Sea to an altitude of 600–750 metres (2,000–2,500 feet), beginning at the southwest point of the peninsula, called Cape Fiolente. It was believed that this cape was supposedly crowned with the temple of Artemis, where Iphigeneia is said to have officiated as priestess.
The terrain that lies beyond the sheltering Crimean Mountain range is of an altogether different character. Here, the narrow strip of coast and the slopes of the mountains are smothered with greenery. This "riviera" stretches along the southeast coast from Cape Sarych, in the extreme south, to Feodosiya, and is studded with summer sea-bathing resorts such as Alupka, Yalta, Gurzuf, Alushta, Sudak, and Feodosiya. During the years of Soviet rule, the resorts and dachas of this coast served as the prime perquisites of the politically loyal. In addition, vineyards and fruit orchards are located in the region. Fishing, mining, and the production of essential oils are also important. Numerous Crimean Tatar villages, mosques, monasteries, and palaces of the Russian imperial family and nobles are found here, as well as picturesque ancient Greek and medieval castles.
Most of Crimea has a temperate continental climate, except for the south coast where it experiences a humid subtropical climate, due to warm influences from the Black Sea. Summers can be hot (28°C Jul average) and winters are cool (-0.3°C Jan average) in the interior, on the south coast winters are milder (4°C Jan average) and temperatures much below freezing are exceptional. Precipitation in the interior is low with only 400mm a year. On the south coast precipitation is more than double of that, Yalta annually receives about 1050mm. Because of its climate, the southern Crimean coast is a popular beach and sun resort for Ukrainian and Russian tourists.
The main branches of the Crimean economy are tourism and agriculture. Industrial plants are situated for the most part in the northern regions of the republic. Important industrial cities include Dzhankoy, housing a major railway connection, and Krasnoperekopsk, among others.
The most important industries in Crimea include food production, chemical fields, mechanical engineering and metal working, and fuel production industries. Sixty percent of the industry market belongs to food production. There are a total of 291 large industrial enterprises and 1002 small business enterprises.
The main branches of vegetation production in the region include cereals, vegetable-growing, gardening, and wine-making, particularly in the Yalta and Massandra regions. Other agricultural forms include cattle breeding, poultry keeping, and sheep breeding. Other products produced on the Crimea Peninsula include salt, porphyry, limestone, and ironstone (found around Kerch).
Almost every settlement in Crimea is connected with another settlement with bus lines. Crimea contains the longest (96 km or 59 mi) trolleybus route in the world, stretching from Simferopol to Yalta. The trolleybus line starts in near Simferopol's Railway Station through the mountains to Alushta and on to Yalta.
The cities of Yalta, Feodosiya, Kerch, Sevastopol, Chornomorske, and Eupatoria are connected to one another by sea routes. In the cities of Eupatoria and nearby townlet Molochnoye are tram systems. Railroad lines running through Crimea include Armyansk—Kerch (with a link to Feodosiya), and Melitopol—Sevastopol (with a link to Eupatoria), connecting Crimea to the Ukrainian mainland.
From 1989 to 2001, Crimea's population declined by 396,795 people, representing 16.33% of the 1989 population, despite the return of displaced groups such as Crimean Tatars. From 2001-2005 the population declined by another 39,400 people, representing a decline from 2001 of another 2%.
According to 2001 Ukrainian Census, the population of Crimea was 2,033,700. The ethnic makeup was comprised the following self-reported groups: Russians: 52.32%; Ukrainians: 24.32%; Crimean Tatars: 18.1%; Belarusians: 1.44%; Tatars: 0.54%; Armenians: 0.43%; and Jews: 0.22%.
Ukrainian language is the single official state language countrywide, and is the sole language of government in Ukraine. In Crimea government business is still carried out mainly in Russian. Attempts to expand the usage of Ukrainian in education and government affairs has been less successful in Crimea than in other areas of the nation. Another language widely spoken is Crimean Tatar. According to the census mentioned, 77% of Crimean inhabitants named Russian as their native language; 11.4% – Crimean Tatar; and 10.1% – Ukrainian.
Currently 2/3 of the migrants into Crimea are from Ukraine, every 5th is from the former Soviet Union and every 40th from outside of the former Soviet Union. 3/4 of those leaving Crimea move to other areas in Ukraine. Every 20th migrates to the West.
The population of the Crimean peninsula has been consistеntly falling at a rate of 0.4% per year. This is particularly apparent in both the Russian and Ukrainian ethnic populations, whose growth rate has been falling at the rate of 0.6% and 0.12% annually respectively. In comparison, the overall growth rate of the ethnic Crimean Tatar population has been growing at the rate of 0.9% per annum.
The growing trend in the Crimean Tatar population has been explained by the continual Crimean Tatar repatriation (mainly Uzbekistan), the high birth rate amongst the resettlers, and the low death rate as few senior citizens have resettled back into their ancestral home.
Ukraine's Troubles in Crimea Take New Turn; Reconciliation of Russian Separatists Advances, but Now Returning Tatars Make Demands
Dec 04, 1995; Eight months after the Ukrainian government defused a Russian secessionist movement here in the Crimean peninsula, it...