Soviet of Nationalities

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Soviet of Nationalities


one of the two chambers of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, elected by universal, equal, direct, and secret suffrage.

The Soviet of Nationalities is organized on the basis of equal representation, with 32 deputies from each Union republic, 11 from each autonomous republic, five from each autonomous oblast, and one from each autonomous okrug. Since the Supreme Soviet of the USSR—the highest body of state power—combines in itself representation of the entire population of the USSR and specific representation of the Union republics, autonomous republics, autonomous oblasts, and autonomous okrugs, it can, when considering problems affecting the USSR as a whole, take into account the special interests of the republics, oblasts, and okrugs with regard to the national features of their economies, cultures, and ways of life.

Both the Soviet of Nationalities and the Soviet of the Union enroll equal numbers of deputies and enjoy full equality. The Soviet of Nationalities elects a chairman, who presides over its sessions and supervises its internal procedure. It also elects four deputy chairmen and several permanent commissions: a mandate commission, a commission on draft legislation, a planning and budget commission, a foreign affairs commission, and a commission on women’s work and welfare and mother and child care. The other permanent commissions are commissions on youth, on industry, on transportation and communication, on construction and the building-materials industry, on agriculture, on consumer goods, on public health and social security, on environmental protection, on public education, science, and culture, and on trade, personal services, and municipal services (seeBICAMERAL SYSTEM).

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Rather, he stressed that Central Asia mattered primarily because it demonstrated the superiority of "Soviet democracy." SIB had to showcase how "these colonial slaves of yesterday"--Uzbeks, Tajiks, Turkmen, and so on--participated in the Soviet of the Union and the Soviet of Nationalities. In doing so, it could show how "our representatives are baked from a different dough than the overwhelming majority of representatives of the bourgeoisie of capitalist countries, besides a small group of Communists who represent the future of each of these capitalist countries." (23) Lozovskii pointed out that efforts by the US Senate or the British House of Lords (themselves expressly undemocratic institutions in capitalist countries) to appease their colonial populations were doomed to failure.
The Congress would meet every year for a few days, and its main task would be to elect from its members the standing parliament, the Supreme Soviet, composed of two equal chambers, the Soviet of the Union and the Soviet of Nationalities, each of 271 members.
This elected a Supreme Soviet of 252 members, composed of two equal chambers, the Soviet of the Republic and the Soviet of Nationalities. Unlike the USSR Congress, there was no provision for the representation of official organizations.