Provisional Priamurye Government

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The Provisional Priamurye Government (or Provisional Priamur Government) existed in the Siberian region of Priamurye, Russia, between May 27, 1921 and October 25, 1922. It was the last White Army enclave during the Russian Civil War.

History[edit]

The government had its origin in a White Army coup in Vladivostok and its environs whose aim was to break away from the Far Eastern Republic, surviving behind a cordon sanitaire of Japanese troops involved in the Siberian Intervention. The coup was started on May 23 by the Kappelevtsy, the remnants of Vladimir Kappel's army.

The government was headed by the Merkulov brothers: Spiridon Dionisovich Merkulov, former functionary of the Ministry of Agriculture and head of the Priamurye government; and Nikolai Merkulov, a merchant. Both were deputies of the Russian Provisional Government. Somewhat later, the Cossack ataman Grigory Semyonov attempted to take power, but, without backing from the Japanese, he eventually withdrew. Kappelevtsy and Semyonovtsy despised each other.[citation needed]

Gradually the enclave was expanded to Khabarovsk and then Spassk, 125 miles north of Vladivostok.[1] The Merkulovs were deposed in June 1922 and replaced by one of Kolchak's generals, Mikhail Diterikhs.

In July 1922, a Zemsky Sobor (Приамурский Земский Собор) was convened in the territory. This sobor called all Russian people to repent for the overthrow of the Tsar and proclaimed a new Tsar, Grand Duke Nikolai Nikolayevich Romanov. Patriarch Tikhon was named as the honorary chairman of the sobor. Neither the Grand Duke nor the Patriarch were present. The territory was renamed Priamursky Zemsky Krai and Diterikhs styled himself voyevoda. The army was renamed the Zemskaya Rat' (rat' is an archaic Slavic term meaning "military force").

When the Japanese withdrew, the Soviet army of the Far Eastern Republic retook the territory. The Civil War was officially declared over, although the Ayano-Maysky District was still controlled by Anatoly Pepelyayev at that time.

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Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ HAROLD VAN VECHTEN FAY: WITNESS TO JAPAN'S APRIL 1920 OFFENSIVE IN THE RUSSIAN FAR EAST. Reports by Capt Fay are used in the chapter "Ataman's exile and White Russia's last spasms 9 October 1920-November 1922)" of Jamie Bisher's book White Terror: Cossack Warlords of the Trans-Siberian, 2005, ISBN 0-7146-5690-9.

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