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The Idel-Ural State was a short-lived Tatar republic with its centre in Kazan that united Tatars, Bashkirs and the Chuvash in the turmoil of the Russian Civil War. Often viewed as an attempt to recreate the Khanate of Kazan, the republic was proclaimed on December 12, 1917, by a Congress of Muslims from Russia's interior and Siberia. "Idel-Ural" means "Volga-Ural" in the Tatar language.
1918 flag of Idel-Ural State
At first the Muslim Bashkirs declined to participate, but later in 1917 they and the Volga Germans joined the League of Idel-Ural.
The republic, which in reality included only parts of Kazan, was defeated by the Red Army on 28 March 1918.
The president of Idel-Ural, Sadrí Maqsudí Arsal, escaped to Finland in 1918. He was well received by the Finnish foreign minister, who remembered his valiant defence of the national self-determination and constitutional rights of Finland in the Russian Duma. The president-in-exile also met officials from Estonia before continuing in 1919 to Sweden, Germany and France, in a quest for Western support. Idel-Ural was listed among the "Captive Nations" in the Cold War-era public law (1959) of the United States.
Present-day Tatar nationalists rely on the historic precedent of an independent Idel-Ural to justify the re-establishment of a Turkic state independent of the Russian Federation.