13 February 1992
MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION
on population movements between the republics
of the former USSR
presented by Mr BÖHM and others
1. According to information provided by humanitarian non-governmental organisations, on the territory of the former USSR, there are today about two million persons displaced by changes in the political structures of the republics or by conflicts of ethnic origin.
2. Among them there are about 100,000 people who fled from Armenia and Azerbaidzan in 1990 and sought refuge in Russia where their legal status is not always clearly defined.
3. The Russian authorities, in co-operation with non-governmental organisations, are trying to provide assistance to the displaced population.
4. About 25 million Russians live today outside Russia on the territory of the other republics of the former USSR. Many of them feel themselves to be foreigners in the new independent states and are considering the possibility of emigrating to Russia.
5. The return of Russians, many of them highly qualified professionals, to their republic of origin could help the country to overcome current difficulties.
6. However, Russia and the other independent states are not in a position to face the consequences of massive population movements.
7. Therefore, the Assembly invites the governments of member states:
i. to assist the newly independent states of the former USSR, especially Russia, in providing these displaced persons with adequate assistance and by facilitating their resettlement;
ii. to consider ways in which they could use the Council of Europe Social Development Fund as well as other appropriate European instruments to finance projects which will help meet the needs of the displaced population, particularly those of Russians returning to their republic of origin;
iii. to encourage co-operation between humanitarian aid organisations in their countries and those newly created in the republics of the former USSR.
Signed: BÖHM, GRENDELMEIER, SCHIEDER, RUFFY, BÜCHEL, SEITLINGER, TARSCHYS, SÄRKIJÄRVI, MARTINEZ, WILLOCH, PFUHL, ATKINSON, FUHRMANN.