Kaliningrad Oblast

Kaliningrad Region History and Politics


Kaliningrad Region: Political System

The Russian Federation has been a presidential republic since 1991. It consists of 89 federal subjects, these are: 21 republics, six regional districts, 49 territories, two cities of federal importance, one autonomous region and ten autonomous districts. Each territorial unit has its own executive branch, headed by a president or a governor and an elected body, depending on the regional constitution.

The Kaliningrad Oblast is an autonomous district and is administered by a governor.

At the head of the Russian Federation is a president who is also the commander in chief of the armed forces. It is directly elected by the people every four years and exercises particularly strong executive power. Re-election is only possible one more time. Since January 1, 2000, Vladimir Putin (born 1952) has been the Russian head of state.

The Russian parliament (federal assembly) is a bicameral system. It consists of two houses: the (State) Duma (lower house) and the Federation Council (upper house). The Russian Federation Council (Upper House) consists of 178 members. Each of the 89 federal subjects sends two representatives, who are appointed by the regional executive and the local parliament for 4 years. The 450 members of the Duma are elected every four years. A good 50% of the MPs are determined directly, and the rest via the party lists.

The official name of the area is:

Kaliningrad Oblast

National anthem

The anthem of the Kaliningrad region is the anthem of Russia. The hymn composed by Alexander Alexandrov and written by Sergej Mikhalkov was introduced in 2000/2001 and replaced the hymn of the Soviet Union that had been valid until then.
In the German translation

Russia, our holy land
Russia, our beloved land
Mighty will and great glory
Will be yours for all timeRefrain
glory to you fatherland, our free one!
Ancient alliance of fraternal peoples
Wisdom handed down by our forefathers
Glory to you country, we are proud of you!Our fields and forests stretch from the southern seas to the polar circle.
You are unique in the world, so unique
that God will protect you, homelandRefrain
A wide space for dreams and for life
Will open up to us in the future
Faithfulness to our fatherland gives us strength
It was like that, it is like that, and it will always be like thatrefrain

National flag

The official flag of Kaliningrad Oblast is that of Russia.

Kaliningrad region: history

Before the year 1000

Archaeological finds show that the region was inhabited as early as the Stone Age. From the 2nd and 3rd centuries, the Goths inhabited the western part of what was later to be East Prussia and thus also today’s Kaliningrad region (Kaliningrad Oblast).

From the year 1000 to the 17th century

After the Goths were ousted from the east by the Baltic Pruzzen, who also settled the later urban area of ​​Königsberg and Kaliningrad around the year 1000, Duke Konrad of Mazovia called on the Teutonic Order for help in 1225. This conquered the country and then initiated the immigration of numerous German settlers. Instead of the destroyed Prussian Tuwangste Castle, the knights of the order had the Königsberg Castle built in the middle of the 13th century. The city of the same name joined the German Hanseatic League in 1339, followed by the neighboring villages of Löbenicht and Kneiphof.
In 1525, during the Reformation, Grand Master Margrave Albrecht von Brandenburg-Ansbach, who ruled a large part of the former Christian religious state, founded the secular Duchy of Prussia.

In the 18th and 19th centuries

In 1701 Frederick I was crowned in Königsberg. After Frederick the Great acquired what was previously the Polish western half of the former monastic state in 1772, he was the first to call himself “King of Prussia”. The term “Royal Prussian States” thus prevailed for the territories ruled by the Brandenburg Elector and King of Prussia. Prussia in the sense of the Prussian state as a whole emerged from Brandenburg and owes its name to East Prussia. After the unification of East and West Prussia in 1829, Königsberg became the capital of Prussia, but in 1878 the two provinces were again divided.

In the 20th and 21st centuries

The Versailles peace treaty after the First World War led to the separation of East Prussia from the rest of the Reich, which brought economic disadvantages.

During the Second World War, the city of Koenigsberg was badly destroyed by British bomber units in 1944 and taken by Soviet troops at the end of January 1945. As a result of the Potsdam Conference, northern East Prussia, i.e. today’s Kaliningrad region, came under the administration of the Soviet Union. After its annexation to the Russian Soviet Republic, Königsberg was renamed Kaliningrad in 1946 after the Soviet politician Mikhail Ivanovich Kalinin (1875-1916), who actually had no connection with the city. The approximately 100,000 German civilians still in the region, mostly women, children and the elderly, were detained by the occupying forces and used as forced laborers. Only about 20,000 people survived.

Until 1969, the Kaliningrad region was a restricted military area, into which even Soviet citizens could only enter with a special permit. The government had it repopulated by former residents of the various Soviet republics, mostly Russians. The Federal Republic of Germany, which had previously considered the area “under Soviet administration”, waived all claims east of the Oder-Neisse line until 1990, thereby recognizing the Kaliningrad area as part of the Soviet Union. In the course of perestroika, the borders were then also opened to foreign visitors. However, the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the independence of the Baltic states.

Kaliningrad Oblast