OPTATION PROCESSES IN THE MYKOLAIV REGION IN 1920 – 1922 AS A REFLECTION OF THE PROBLEMS OF THE FORMATION OF DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS OF THE UKRAINIAN SSR (based on the materials of State Archive of the Mykolaiv region)
The article is devoted to consideration of the peculiarities of the processes of acquisition of foreign citizenship by residents of Southern Ukraine, in partic ular Mykolaiv region (Mykolaiv province), during the first years of the seizure of power by the Soviet authorities in the formed Ukrainian Socialist Soviet Republic (USSR). The article makes extensive use of archival materials of the State Archive of the Mykolaiv Region, in particular the funds that were declas sified in 1991. The number of probable foreign nationals in the studied region, the mechanism of obtaining foreign citizenship and the dependence of the final result of the opting on the central authorities, in particular the People’s Commissariat of Internal Affairs, were monitored. It was emphasized that the main basis for obtaining or returning foreign citizenship was, of course, the documentary affiliation of a person to another state either by origin or by former place of residence in another country. The problem of recognition of foreign nationals and their receipt of relevant documents had a deep founda tion, because it appeared as a result of significant geopolitical changes in the region and the world. It was analyzed that the reasons for opting for citizen ship were the consequences of the First World War, taking into account the for mation of new states and the redistribution of new territories between them, as well as the problem of prisoners of war who remained in the former territory of the Russian Empire and the South of Ukraine, in particular. Also, the arrival of the Soviet government after the defeat of the Ukrainian state prompted individual optant citizens to emigrate. It was noted that it was extremely dif ficult for Poles living in Galicia to obtain citizenship, and obtaining foreign citizenship for Baltic optants was also canceled; but optants from Finland and from the former Kingdom of Poland had the right to obtain the corresponding citizenship. It was also observed that in the case of proving the grounds for citizenship within the specified time and without obstacles, it was granted to the applicants of the following countries: Austria, England, Argentina, Bel gium, Bulgaria, Greece, Holland, Denmark, Italy, Romania, Serbia, USA, Persia, France, Sweden, Turkey. In general, the process of acquiring foreign citizen ship, obtaining passports and leaving the Ukrainian SSR abroad for permanent residence in the Mykolaiv province during 1920-1922 was fully subordinated and controlled by the central authorities, in particular the People’s Commissar iat of Internal Affairs, however, the identification of optants and initial con firmation of the grounds to acquire the status of a foreign citizen remained in the field of activity of local authorities and the relevant foreign departments within them. The total share of citizens of the province who applied for foreign citizenship varied within 3,000 people, a third of them received the status of foreign citizens and emigrated. Optation processes took place with compli cations due to the limited activity of the consulates of other states, most of which did not recognize Soviet power at the initial stage of establishment.
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