Krasnodar, 15 October – Yug Times. Ataman of the Kuban Cossack Host Nikolai Doluda speaks about the role of Cossack volunteers in the elimination of the flood in Krymsk and accession of Crimea to the Russian Federation.
Q.: October 14 is popularly known as the Day of Kuban Cossacks. What is the story behind it?
A.: It is one of the most significant holidays for the Cossacks, and it is very important that in 2006 a law was adopted that determined October 14 as the day of foundation of the Kuban Cossack Host.
Such document has appeared only in the Krasnodar region, one of the 11 Russian regions where registered Cossack Hosts are deployed. It was on October 14, 1990 that the Kuban Cossack Host got its second birth, when the All-Kuban Constituent Congress elected Ataman and approved the symbols of the Host: the flag, the anthem and the Host emblem. It is symbolic that this day coincided with a great Orthodox Feast of the Protection of the Virgin.
Q.: What are the landmarks of the contemporary history of the Cossack Host?
A.: The contemporary Kuban Cossack Host is a worthy continuer of the glorious traditions of its ancestors.
Kuban Cossacks performed a genuine feat when they came to the rescue of the inhabitants of the city of Krymsk suffering from a disastrous flood. It was no accident that Russian President Vladimir Putin twice personally thanked them for the rescue of the people. The first thing Patriarch Kirill did when he came to Krymsk was he summoned the Cossacks and rewarded them with orders of the Russian Orthodox Church. The Kuban Cossack Host pays special attention to annihilation of consequences of emergency situations and natural disasters. We have twelve duly equipped emergency rescue teams that work on voluntary basis in the areas exposed to natural cataclysms.
Q.: What was the Cossacks’ role in Crimea’s accession to Russia?
A.: The Republic of Crimea was facing terrible threats when it proclaimed independence from Ukraine. Crimean [Cossack] Atamans approached me asking for recourse. So we took a decision to go to Crimea to defend our Slav brothers from nationalist outrage. We could not remain indifferent [to their fate], and 8,000 Cossacks took up the call within three days.