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Issue № 74. June 2019

Equality of Federal Russian Subjects in Discussions of Constituent Assembly

Igor V. Osipov

Postgraduate student, School of Public Administration, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russian Federation.

The article gives an analysis of the searching process for a federal structure model at the final stage of drafting the Constitution of the Russian Federation in 1993. It is noted that for the Constituent Assembly of Russia, convened to prepare the final draft, the “stumbling-block” was the federal structure. By 1993, there was an asymmetric Federation in which national republics had significantly greater independence than other subjects did. Krais and oblasts of Russia actively defended the position of expanding their independence and increasing their powers. The national republics were primarily concerned with protecting their status and level of autonomy from the Federal center. One of the brightest events reflecting the high degree of regional activity was the demarche of the Tatarstan Republic delegation, which left the Constitutional meeting, as well as the raising of the Sverdlovsk region status and the proclamation of the Ural Republic. The discussion about the Russian federalism future was particularly acute against the background of the major state crisis that took place at the same time, amid growing contradictions between the President and the Supreme Council of the Russian Federation. Following the forceful conflict resolution in early October 1993, the presidential team decisively accelerated the process of the constitutional project preparing and, in fact, within a month, a structurally updated Constituent Assembly agreed on the final project version with the ongoing discussions on the Federal structure. Under the conditions when one part of the regions sought to improve their constitutional and legal status, and the other one defended the position of preserving the current situation, the models proposed by the Constituent Assembly did not solve the problem of federal subjects’ equality.


The Constituent Assembly of Russia, equality of Federation entity, separatism, the Ural Republic, federalism.

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