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The Kamchadals (Russian: камчадалы) are native people of Kamchatka, Russia. The name Kamchadal was applied to the descendants of the local Siberians and aboriginal peoples (the Itelmens, Ainu, Koryaks and Chuvans), who assimilated with the Russians. These descendants of the mix-blooded Russian settlers in 18th-19th century are called Kamchadals these days. The Kamchadals speak Russian with a touch of local dialects of the aboriginal languages of Kamchatka. The Kamchadals are engaged in fur trading, fishing, market gardening and dairy farming, and are of the Russian Orthodox faith.
As a result of the Treaty of Saint Petersburg (1875), the Kuril Islands were handed over to Japan, along with its Ainu subjects. A total of 83 North Kuril Ainu arrived in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky on September 18, 1877 after they decided to remain under Russian rule. They refused the offer by Russian officials to move to new reservations in the Commander Islands. Finally a deal was reached in 1881 and the Ainu decided to settle in the village of Yavin.[where?] In March 1881 the group left Petropavlovsk and started the journey towards Yavin by foot. Four months later, they arrived at their new homes. Another village, Golygino was founded later. Under Soviet rule, both the villages were forced to disband and residents were moved to the Russian dominated Zaporozhye rural settlement in Ust-Bolsheretsky Raion. As a result of intermarriage, the three ethnic groups assimilated to form the Kamchadal community.
According to Alexei Nakamura, Kurile Kamchadals along with Ainu living in Russia are fighting for official recognition. Since the Ainu are not recognized in the official list of the peoples living in Russia, some of them are counted as ethnic Kamchadals.
- Russian Census 2010: Population by ethnicity Archived 2012-04-24 at the Wayback Machine. (in Russian)
- "Камчадальские айны добиваются признания". vostokmediaTV. 21 March 2011 – via YouTube.
- "Алексей Накамура". nazaccent.ru.
- "Айны – борцы с самураями - Сегодня.ру". www.segodnia.ru.
- "Представители малочисленного народа айну хотят узаконить свой статус". 3 April 2008.