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The Fourth Deportation of Abaza – Adyghe (Circassian-Tscherkessisch) Refugees from Syria: In Abkhazia & Turkey







The webinar took place on June 18, 2021: 10.00-17.30 (GMT+2, Berlin)

This interdisciplinary webinar will discuss the fourth deportation of the descendants of Abaza-Adyghe (Circassian) refugees from Syria after the war in 2011 and their resettlement in Turkey and Abkhazia. It will follow a historical perspective starting from their first exile from the Caucasus (homelands) after the Russian-Caucasian War in 1864 and till the last one after the War in Syria.

Turkey received over 3.6 million refugees since the beginning of the conflict and war in Syria (2011). At first, the refugees were accepted as ‘guests’ and provided temporary protection because of Turkey’s reservation to the 1951 Refugee Convention and its protocol in 1967. In 2013, the Directorate General of Migration Management was founded, and the ‘Law on Foreigners and International Protection (6458)’ was issued. Later on, the Refugee Deal aimed to limit the entrance of refugees to Europe signed in 2016.

In the morning, two scholars presented the current situation of the refugees from Syria in Turkey and Abkhazia. One of the researchers discussed how Circassian organizations and volunteers are involved in the resettlement process of Syrian Abaza-Adyghe refugees in Turkey and their repatriation to homelands, Kabardino-Balkaria or Adygea, in the Russian Federation. Moreover, how Abkhazian authorities coordinated the repatriation of Abaza-Adyghe people to Abkhazia from Syria was explained.

The afternoon session started with a documentary film screening on ‘The Adyghe: Circassian’, which tells ‘The Forgotten Story of Circassian Exile' from the Caucasus after 1864. It was followed by a discussion with the film director, which is about ‘the return trip’ of Prince of Jordan and his colleagues from the Middle East to Turkey and the Caucasus. It was followed by a presentation and discussion of a journalist, writer and columnist specializing in the Middle East, the Caucasus and Abkhazia. The webinar ended with a forum and debate that also search for further collaborations.

The program can be downloaded here.

The webinar was recorded and can be seen on Youtube.

Morning session (English): https://youtu.be/MgzQcunoLzw

Afternoon session (Turkish): https://youtu.be/vtkZveHbG7k

Organized by: Dr. Ergün Özgür 

Einstein Guest Researcher, FU Berlin, Institute for Media and Communication Studies / Affiliated Researcher, Leibniz - Zentrum Moderner Orient.