Sunday, 20 June 2010

Kem, Karelia, Russia

This card arrived from a tag from Tatyana in Russia. It's SUCH a beautiful view, but sadly, the area it depicts is a little controversial.

This card shows a little church in Kem, a historic town in the Republic of Karelia, Russia, located on the railroad leading from Petrozavodsk to Murmansk. The town is located on the shores of the White Sea, where the Kem River enters it.

Karelia (Karelian and Finnish Karjala), the land of the Karelian peoples, is an area in Northern Europe of historical significance for Finland, Russia, and Sweden. It is currently divided between the Russian Republic of Karelia, the Russian Leningrad Oblast, and Finland (the regions of South Karelia (where I'm from) and North Karelia).

Various subdivisions may be called Karelia. Finnish Karelia was a historical province of Finland, now divided between Finland and Russia, often called just Karjala in Finnish. The eastern part of this chiefly Lutheran area was ceded to Russia after the Winter War of 1939-40. This area is the "Karelia" of the Karelian question in Finnish politics (and still a sensitive topic to many people, although personally I can't be bothered about the issue, I don't really care).

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