1991 Crimean sovereignty referendum
A referendum on sovereignty was held in the Crimean Oblast of the Ukrainian SSR on 20 January 1991 two months before the 1991 All-Union referendum. Voters were asked whether they wanted to re-establish the Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, which had been abolished in 1945. The proposal was approved by 94% of voters.
|Referendum on the State and Legal Status of Crimea,|
20 January 1991
|Do you support re-establishing the Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic as a subject of the Union SSR and a participant of the Union Treaty?|
The Crimean ASSR was originally created in 1921, as part of the Russian SFSR in the Soviet Union. Crimea was invaded by Nazi Germany during World War II, and when the region was reclaimed by the USSR in 1944, the Crimean Tatars, Armenians, Bulgarians and Greeks were deported to Central Asia under the pretext of alleged collaboration with the German occupiers. The ASSR was abolished and Crimea became an oblast. On 5 February 1954 it was transferred to the Ukrainian SSR.
The key difference between being an Oblast and an Autonomous Republic that suggested the referendum lies in republics being parties of New Union Treaty and according to the contemporary laws on quitting from the USSR could decide on their own whether to remain within the leaving Soviet Republic or remain in the USSR. The Crimean ASSR implemented that right later in 1994 and 2014.
|Source: KIA News|
Following the referendum, the Supreme Soviet of the Ukrainian SSR passed the law "On Restoration of the Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialistic Republic" on 12 February 1991. By this law it became an autonomous republic within Ukraine although it is not clear that Ukraine had the standing to legislate Crimea's state status.
- Crimean Tatars: Reflections On “Autonomy” Day UNPO
- Sergei Lavrov defends Russia's position on Ukraine Euronews, 3 March 2014
- Online Encyclopedia of Mass Violence. "Sürgün: The Crimean Tatars' deportation and exile - Online Encyclopedia of Mass Violence". Massviolence.org. Retrieved 2014-02-27.
- To understand Crimea, take a look back at its complicated history The Washington Post, 27 February 2014
- Maria Drohobycky (1995) Crimea: Dynamics, Challenges and Prospects, Rowman & Littlefield, p40