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Sunday, 10 August 2014


The name of Crimea comes from the city of Qirim, which was the capital of the Golden Horde province of the Mongol Empire in the 13th century.

The ancient Greeks called Crimea ‘Tauris’, after a legend that Heracles ploughed the area with a huge ox (Taurus was Latin for ‘bull’).

In the middle ages, Crimea was dominated by Tartar tribes from western Asia.

Crimea became an independent state in 1441 under Haci Giray, a descendant of Genghis Khan.

Until the 18th century, Crimea was a centre for the slave trade to the Ottoman Empire.  Crimean Tatar raids into Russia and Ukraine are thought to have brought two million into slavery.

In 1921, Crimea became an autonomous (self-governing) republic of the Soviet Union.

At the start of the Second World War, Crimea sided with Nazi Germany. As punishment, Stalin forcibly exiled all Crimean Tatars to central Asia.

In 1954, Crimea became part of Ukraine, which became independent in 1991, but 77 per cent of Crimeans still have Russian as their first language.

The flag of Crimea has been in use since 1992 and was officially adopted on April 21, 1999.

The Autonomous Ukrainian Republic of Crimea held a controversial referendum on March 16, 2014 where voters overwhelmingly chose to join Russia as a federal subject.

Source Daily Express 

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