Image of the Gagauz Flag
Gagauzia (or Gagauz-Yeri) is an autonomous region within Moldova, located along the border with Ukraine, inhabited by the Gagauz, a Turkic people who are ethnically and culturally distinct from other Moldovans. The population is approximately 175,000, of which about 90 percent are ethnic Gagauz. Comrat is the largest city, with over 40 percent of the region's total population (approx. 75,000).
Key points in Gagauz history
- 1812 The Gagauz settled in southern Bessarabia after Russianīs annexation of Bessarabia.
- 1856 Territorial changes in the region put Gagauzia under Moldovan/Romanian administration.
- W.W.II The territory of Gagauzia was divided between the Moldovian SSR and the Ukraine.
- 1980 The Gagauz campaign for self-determination began.
- 1989 A Law on Languages was enacted in Moldova, which was perceived as discriminatory by the Gagauz.
- 1990 An independent Republic of Gagauzia was proclaimed in several southern districts of Moldovo.
- 1994 The status of Region of Gagauzia was recognised as an autonomous region within Moldovo. Gaguzia became member of the UNPO.
- 1995 The elections for the National Assembly of the Region of Gagauzia were conducted. An end to the five-year conflict between Moldova and Gagauzia was officially declared.