The Democratic Republic of Kilhosz (proposed)
Population: 102,000 (2015)
Largest City: Kewakri
Official Languages: Nič̣o, Russian, Adyghe, and Circassian
National Language: Nič̣o
- President: Epi Qalaphanskəloħ (I)
- Prime Minister: Məwaḳə Karašvil (DS)
Legislature: Upasaćəs Sinat
Majority: Demokrati Kwalicon (DS+Z)
Minority opposition: Libəral Kwalicon (AR+L)
Establishment: from Russia
Independence (de facto): July 10, 2005
Area: 1452 mile˛
GDP (nominal): $0.6 billion (183rd)
GDP (nominal) per capita: $5,882 (88th; just above Suriname and below Serbia)
Human Development Index (2017: 0.816 (for Russia; no official statistics for Kilhosz only)
Currency: Russian rouble
Time Zone: MSK (Moscow Time) UTC+3
Drives on the: right
Calling code: +7 (Russia)
Internet TLD: .ru (active), .kl (proposed)
Ḳiłoş, K'ilhosh, or Kilhosz (Nič̣o: კელჾოშჾ ḳel'oš' ḳiłoş [kʼe.ɬo̘ç̺̘], English: /ˈkɪləs/, /-o-/, /-ʃ/2) is a very small disputed territory in the North Caucasus located south of the Russian province of Adygea, west of Karachay-Cherkess, and northeast of the disputed territory of Abkhazia. It is internationally recognized as part of Russia; however, Kosovo, Venezuela, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and several international provinces/subjects have recognized it to be independent. Its proposed capital is Kewakri (Nič̣o: ქჽჳაქრე kćwakre kewakri [kawɶ̈kre], English: /kɪˈwɑːkɹiː/), and the total population is about 102,000 at the last census.
The territory has been disputed since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, when Kilhosz was incorporated into Russia despite representatives of the Nič̣o ethnic group (the majority of the population) arguing that it should be incorporated into Georgia like Abkhazia3. They were denied this option by the Russian government, causing what are known as the 1992 January Marches -- a series of protests which became increasingly violent, and eventually resulted in the flight of most ethnic Russians from Kilhosz (many going to Abkhazia, which was friendlier, or moving northwest to Moscow). The demographic changes that resulted from this were not as massive as those occurring in South Ossetia and Abkhazia when Georgians fled due to ethnic cleansing, but they were still notable.
The Russian government's response to these protests was to silence the primary organizers, Shəmay Məwstafa Ḳəlar and Haqwa Łif̣4. Ḳəlar was a Muslim anti-communist activist who was jailed in 1985 because he set fire to a portrait of Vladimir Lenin and stomped on the Soviet flag, while Łif̣ was a Nič̣o separatist and pagan who was involved in anti-Russian and anti-Soviet activities before the territorial dispute even started. The Soviet government had never been fond of them, of course, and both were given jail time -- Ḳəlar 10 years and Łif̣ 23 (for previous crimes that went unpunished).
The imprisonment of these activists was the last straw for the Nič̣o. In 1993, an attempt on the Russian president's life was made by Xwemey Zwali (ხჿჽმჽი ზჿალე), although it failed. At the same time, the Nič̣o military patrolled the borders of Ḳiłoş, letting no-one inside (some allowed Nič̣o, Abkhazians, Georgians, Circassians, etc., but the main thread tying them together was to not allow Russians within). This escalated to the point where the economy of Kilhosz crashed because imports and returning exporters were blocked by gunfire and even cannons. Kilhosz experienced an extreme period of economic depression for several months while Russian forces planned their attack on the militiamen.
Of course, a few thousand Nič̣o with guns were no match for the sheer might of the Russian army. After two weeks of conflict, the borders were almost entirely reopened, and the militia surrendered, promising to withdraw remaining fighters. The then-leader of the de facto junta, Hilasḳw Məax (ჰელასკჿ მჷახ), signed a peace treaty with Russia, which marked the end of the conflict. As residents of Kilhosz saw the terrible effects on their economy that this extreme isolationism resulted in, and as the "cultural brother" Abkhazians were shown to be upset about their presence within Georgia, the tide of public opinion started to be less fervently pro-secessionist. The primary change was between supporting Georgian unification and independence rather than necessarily whether to be anti-Russian: polling in early 1993 showed 40% in favor of Georgian unification, 35% in favor of independence, 10% in favor of Russian unification, 8% unsure, 5% in favor of uniting with Abkhazia into an independent state, and 2% other, with 70% of pro-independence respondents saying they felt very strongly. One month after the treaty was signed, 22% were in favor of Georgian unification, 47% in favor of independence, 17% in favor of Russian unification, 7% unsure, 4% in favor of Abkhazian unification, and 3% other, and only 34% of pro-independence respondents felt very strongly.
The still-large support for unification with Georgia may be surprising to those familiar with Abkhazian sentiment towards Georgians and the country in general. But although Abkhazians and Nič̣o share many similarities, there are also some key differences. The Nič̣o, as a subject of Georgia for quite a long time, experienced a large amount of Georgian cultural transmission, and this factored into their very strong ethnic and cultural identity. Kilhosz has always been resistant towards Russification. For example, the Soviet Union attempted to introduce the Cyrillic script to the Nič̣o language, but this was met with public outcry because of how historically and culturally significant the Georgian script is to Nič̣o people. This is in stark contrast with Abkhazian, which very easily adapted to the Cyrillic script. Continuing on that same thread, Russian is widely spoken in Abkhazia while Abkhaz is rather unpopular, and in Kilhosz the vast majority of people speak Nič̣o as their first language. English is the most common second language, not Russian (which is 4th in line after Georgian).
Another factor into the decreasing support for Georgian unification is the surprisingly lukewarm reception Georgia gave to the idea of Kilhosz unifying with them. Although Georgia provided some humanitarian aid after the war with Russia and Shevardnadze provided a statement of support, it did not fight on behalf of Kilhosz.
Məax was then ousted in a popular uprising, and the population of Kilhosz democratically elected a new, more diplomacy-focused leader by the name of მეხა ზჷჳრაბეშველ Mixa Zəwrabišvil aka Mikha Zeurabishvil (whose father was half-Georgian, hence the name). He was the leader of the People's Revolution (ადამეანჷს რევოლჷჳცეონ - adamianəs rivoləwcion/AR) political party, a populist, nationalist, centre-right political party; and he won the election with 77.8% of the popular vote. Zəwrabišvil took office on January 12, 1994, three months after being elected to allow for reconstruction of the government building, which was heavily damaged in an arsonist attack (in the meantime, the federal government was shut down).
Zəwrabišvil's administration made many large strides forward with establishing the independence of Kilhosz, democratizing the de facto political system, and improving relations with Russia in order to make the environment more favorable to allowing Kilhosz to secede. Here are some of the main actions that set Zəwrabišvil and the AR's administration apart from that of Məax and caused changes in the system:
With the support of referenda, created a proportional parliamentary representation system instead of the regional representative system set up before
Met with Boris Yeltsin, Eduard Shevardnadze, and their prime ministers to explain the feelings of Kilhoszians on why they should become independent or part of Georgia
Started a parliamentary process that led to the establishment of a prime minister for Kilhosz
Effectively fended off rogue Russian forces (not from the country, but from the citizens) with the Kilhoszian military when they tried to take over the government building
Decriminalized homosexuality, which had remained an offense under Məax's government despite its decriminalization in Russia at large
Greatly increased freedom of speech and the press by discarding junta-era laws prohibiting criticism of the government
Established a new constitution with term limits for the president, prime minister, and parliamentarians
Convinced Georgia to recognize Kilhosz's independence, with Turkey and Azerbaijan following its lead
Managed to reduce the inflation that occurred as a result of the Russo-Kilhoszian War from 400% a month afterwards to merely 200% in 1997
Decreased unemployment from 17% to 9%
Decreased the number of people under the poverty threshold from 33% to 16%
When Zəwrabišvil left office in 2000 after two consecutive terms, Kilhosz was far closer to becoming independent and was certainly a much better place to live. His approval rating at the end of his presidency was 78%, and the AR continued to succeed in parliamentary and local elections because of Zəwrabišvil's leadership. Today, 83% of Kilhoszians believe Zəwrabišvil's administration was good for the territory.
The next person to take the office of president was Havar Dəykaʒ̇ (usually known in English as Havar Dikaj) or ჰავარ დჷიქაჟჾ, also from the AR party. At this time, Vladimir Putin was about to become president of Russia, and his administration was much less willing to try to figure out a solution with Kilhosz than Yeltsin's was. Russia cracked down on the region, installing a new regional government building for Krasnodar Krai in Kewakri, and banning shows of support for AR candidates or any non-Russian political party. Police confiscated political signs for local elections, guards blocked entrance to the Kilhosz government building, and Dəykaʒ̇ was imprisoned for treason. Although the population was generally peaceful and optimistic during the time of Zəwrabišvil, anti-Russian sentiment reached levels comparable to those right after the dissolution of the Soviet Union and riots became frequent once again.
But unbeknownst to the Russians, three rogues had been planning an assault on their forces. In the middle of the night on July 14th, 2002, they picked the lock on the Russian government center and planted bombs all throughout the air conditioning system, which contained variously chloroform, chloramine, and carbon monoxide (though mixing all of these chemicals is haphazard and dangerous -- the operatives were not chemists); they then boarded up most means of ventilation. The bombs were detonated at 2:00 PM two days later, causing several dozen deaths and over 200 injuries. The people who performed this attack were arrested by Russian authorities and given life sentences, or in the case of the ringleader a death sentence. Dəykaʒ̇ condemned the attack from prison, but this was not enough to stop the resulting torrent of attacks.
Inspired by the people performing the July 14th attack, several new violent gangs formed -- the Nič̣o Saviors (მეშჲაე ნეჭო miśai nič̣o), Kelelsai (ქჽლჽლსაე), and Kilhosz Death (სეკვდელ კელჾოშჾ - siḳvdil ḳiłoş) -- feuding with each other but primarily with the Russians. It is estimated that over one thousand people died as a result of gang conflict during the next three years. On February 2nd, 2005, Russia officially gave Kilhosz autonomy unparalleled by any other region, mostly appeasing these gangs. Havar Dəykaʒ̇ was finally released from captivity, and he reinstated the Nič̣o police force immediately and cracked down extremely heavily on gangs -- membership in any of the aforementioned would result in a sentence of at least 20 years.
Government and politics
Countries and territories in italics are not internationally recognized.
If not shown, assumed to view Kilhosz as part of Russia.
Recognization of Kilhosz
---; Dissolved in 2000
New York City, United States
Western Sahara (SADR)
Kilhosz is organized into 12 provinces and 1 autonomous city (Kewakri), with each one having an elected Governor and Vice-Governor. The following table contains information about each of these regions:
Kewakri / ქჽჳაქრე
Mayor is Paša Ingšaʒ (DS) since 2009
None for Kewakri
Sapan / საფან
Gwyorg Axmeca (PNK) since 2017
Abkhazistan / აფხაზჷსსთან
Armin Temzaryan (L) since 2015
Pycapistan / ფჷცაფაჷსსთან
David Nikolayif (AR) since 2019
Karachaystan / ქარაჩაიჷსსთან
Emid Oyldaġəwr (DS) since 2019
Baġ Təmlai (2,400)
Myshwynduqa / მჷშჿჷნდჿჷყა
Maryam Balaxaʒi (PNK) since 2007
North Kilhosz / კელჾოშჾ ფჾრა
Amar Gasəwl (Z) since 2019
Ustu / ჷჳსთჷჳ
Śing Ywi (Ind.) since 2005
Gwərgaəs Gwaġa (16,000)
Yerusala / იჽრჷჳსალა
Ana Kinćisto (AR) since 2015
Gwaġa Yerusala (2,000)
Baghdada / ბაღდადა
Anatoliy Sərpskiy (PNK) since 2013
Esenchia / ესენჩჲია
Cenəpha Nikolayif (AR) since 2001
Zomakia / ზჿამაკია
Nikita Swansa (DS) since 2019
Nikolasia / ნჷქოლასია
Saša Anatolyif (Ind.) since 2015
Nikolas Mazəynə (4,000)
There are a total of 47 municipalities with a population greater than 100 in Kilhosz. The top 10 are:
The south of Kilhosz contains part of the Greater Caucasus Mountains, and it is thus very mountainous. The rest of Kilhosz is quite hilly, but not mountainous, per se. The general climate of Kilhosz is humid subtropical (Cfa) or oceanic (Cfb). A few parts are temperate continental (Dfb), and summits of the highest peaks may be cooler and drier.
Generally, Kilhosz is a good environment for growing crops and raising livestock, and this serves as a significant proportion of the economy.
1Based on this image by Jeroenscommons. The borders of Russian provinces are modified inside Kilhoszian territory, and Kilhoszian interior borders have been superimposed. No other changes were made.
2Nič̣o (Kilhoszian) translations are listed in the order [Translation] [Direct equivalent in Latin script] [Transliteration] [[Nič̣o pron.]] /[Engl. pron. (where needed)]/. Information on the script and transliteration can be found in the factbook about the Nič̣o language.
3Abkhazians were at the time viewed as allies to the Nič̣o, as the two are both Northwest Caucasian peoples who spoke a similar language and had similar cultures.
4შჷმაი მჷჳსთაჶა ქჷლარ and ჰაჴჿა ლჾეჶ in Nič̣o.