As we reported earlier, last year the Crimean Natural Reserve was transferred to the ownership of the Presidential Administration of Russia as a private hunting site.i The next victim of the annexation became Karadag reserve. Assets of the reserve were transferred from ownership of the Crimea to federal ownership of the Russian Federation.
The corresponding decree was adopted at a meeting of the so-called government of the peninsular that is controlled by Moscow. Besides real estate, Russia got ownership of “movable and especially valuable movable property that is on the balance of the state budget scientific and nature protecting institution of the Republic of Crimea “Karadag Nature Reserve “and two dolphins Yana and Yasha with total value of a little less than two million rubles”.ii The decision was adopted under the new management of the reserve. In October 2015, the reserve director and his deputy were laid off following the submission of the Russian Prosecutor’s Office of the Crimea.
In 2015, the so-called Council of Ministers of the self-announced Republic of Crimea amended the list of reserves that are transferred to the Russian Forest Committee. These are Opuk reserve, Kazantyp reserve, Yalta reserve and Karadag reserve as budget institutions and the national natural park “Tarkhunkutskyi”iiiMoreover, the Russian Forest Committee announced [art of natural reserves of all categories as “recreational objects” and set a differentiated fee for entering their territory.iv. Commercial tourism in nature reserves is actively promoted by Crimean media.v Such initiatives are caused by lack of funding for protected areas in the Crimea in the budget of self-announced government. Because of this, in July 2015 the Ministry of Environment of the self-announced Republic of the Crimea renewed negotiations with the Ministry of Environment of the Russian Federation regarding transfer of the nature reserves under authority of Moscow with relevant funding of administrations of the reservesvi.
The first became Karadag reserve because it has excursion routes and a dolphinarium and according to the Russian Forest Committee can bring funding to the state budget. Among all rates for recreational services in Crimean nature reserves, Karadag reserve has the highest rates.vii.
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