Presidium of the Supreme Soviet
The Presidium of the Supreme Soviet was a Soviet governmental institution
Government of the Soviet Union
The Council of Ministers of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was the de jure government comprising the highest executive and administrative body of the Soviet Union from 1946 until 1991....

 – a permanent body of the Supreme Soviet
Supreme Soviet
The Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union was the Supreme Soviet in the Soviet Union and the only one with the power to pass constitutional amendments...

s (parliaments). This body was of the all-Union level (Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union), as well as in all Soviet republic
Republics of the Soviet Union
The Republics of the Soviet Union or the Union Republics of the Soviet Union were ethnically-based administrative units that were subordinated directly to the Government of the Soviet Union...

s (e.g., Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Byelorussian SSR
Byelorussian SSR
The Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic was one of fifteen constituent republics of the Soviet Union. It was one of the four original founding members of the Soviet Union in 1922, together with the Ukrainian SSR, the Transcaucasian SFSR and the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic...

) and autonomous republic
Autonomous republics of the Soviet Union
Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republics of the Soviet Union were administrative units created for certain nations. The ASSRs had a status lower than the union republics of the Soviet Union, but higher than the autonomous oblasts and the autonomous okrugs....

s. Structure and functions of the presidiums in these republics were virtually identical. The presidiums were elected by the Supreme Soviet to act on its behalf while the soviet was not in session. The chairman of the presidium was the de jure
De jure
De jure is an expression that means "concerning law", as contrasted with de facto, which means "concerning fact".De jure = 'Legally', De facto = 'In fact'....

head of state. However, both the Supreme Soviet and its Presidium lacked actual power, which was in the hands of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
Communist Party of the Soviet Union
The Communist Party of the Soviet Union was the only legal, ruling political party in the Soviet Union and one of the largest communist organizations in the world...


USSR Supreme Soviet

Its building was situated inside the Moscow Kremlin
Moscow Kremlin
The Moscow Kremlin , sometimes referred to as simply The Kremlin, is a historic fortified complex at the heart of Moscow, overlooking the Moskva River , Saint Basil's Cathedral and Red Square and the Alexander Garden...


The Presidium of the Supreme Soviet was elected by the Supreme Soviet of the USSR at a joint session of both chambers at the first session of each following convocation
A Convocation is a group of people formally assembled for a special purpose.- University use :....

. The deputies of the Presidium were appointed for the duration of the term of office of the Supreme Soviet. The Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR consisted of a chairman, his 15 deputies (one from each republic
A republic is a form of government in which the people, or some significant portion of them, have supreme control over the government and where offices of state are elected or chosen by elected people. In modern times, a common simplified definition of a republic is a government where the head of...

 of the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

), a secretary, and 20 members. The Presidium was accountable to the Supreme Soviet of the USSR for all its activities.

According to the Constitution of the USSR, the basic powers of Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR were:
  • promulgation
    Promulgation is the act of formally proclaiming or declaring a new statutory or administrative law after its enactment. In some jurisdictions this additional step is necessary before the law can take effect....

     of decree
    A decree is a rule of law issued by a head of state , according to certain procedures . It has the force of law...

  • interpretation
    Judicial interpretation
    Judicial interpretation is a theory or mode of thought that explains how the judiciary should interpret the law, particularly constitutional documents and legislation...

     of current Soviet law
    Law is a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior, wherever possible. It shapes politics, economics and society in numerous ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people. Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus...

  • dissolution of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR on the basis of Article 47 of the Constitution of the USSR and setting new elections: carrying out a national referendum
    A referendum is a direct vote in which an entire electorate is asked to either accept or reject a particular proposal. This may result in the adoption of a new constitution, a constitutional amendment, a law, the recall of an elected official or simply a specific government policy. It is a form of...

     on its own initiative or at the request of one of the republics of the Union;
  • abrogation of decrees, issued by the Council of Ministers and Council of Ministers of the republics of the Union in case there is a discrepancy with the law;
  • relieving Chairman
    Premier of the Soviet Union
    The office of Premier of the Soviet Union was synonymous with head of government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics . Twelve individuals have been premier...

     of the Council of Ministers of his post and appointing Ministers of the USSR (between sessions of the Supreme Soviet) with the subsequent submittal for the Supreme Soviet’s approval;
  • establishment of order
    Order (decoration)
    An order or order of merit is a visible honour, awarded by a government, dynastic house or international organization to an individual, usually in recognition of distinguished service to a nation or to humanity. The distinction between orders and decorations is somewhat vague, except that most...

    s and medal
    A medal, or medallion, is generally a circular object that has been sculpted, molded, cast, struck, stamped, or some way rendered with an insignia, portrait, or other artistic rendering. A medal may be awarded to a person or organization as a form of recognition for athletic, military, scientific,...

    s of the USSR and carrying out the awarding procedures;
  • establishment of honorary title
    A title is a prefix or suffix added to someone's name to signify either veneration, an official position or a professional or academic qualification. In some languages, titles may even be inserted between a first and last name...

    s of the USSR and their assignment;
  • realization of the right to pardon
    Clemency means the forgiveness of a crime or the cancellation of the penalty associated with it. It is a general concept that encompasses several related procedures: pardoning, commutation, remission and reprieves...

  • appointment and dismissal of the highest command of the Soviet Armed Forces
    Soviet Armed Forces
    The Soviet Armed Forces, also called the Armed Forces of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and Armed Forces of the Soviet Union refers to the armed forces of the Russian SFSR , and Soviet Union from their beginnings in the...

  • establishment of military
    Military rank
    Military rank is a system of hierarchical relationships in armed forces or civil institutions organized along military lines. Usually, uniforms denote the bearer's rank by particular insignia affixed to the uniforms...

     and diplomatic rank
    Diplomatic rank
    Diplomatic rank is the system of professional and social rank used in the world of diplomacy and international relations. Over time it has been formalized on an international basis.-Ranks:...

    s and other special ranks;
  • declaration of the general and partial mobilization
    Mobilization is the act of assembling and making both troops and supplies ready for war. The word mobilization was first used, in a military context, in order to describe the preparation of the Prussian army during the 1850s and 1860s. Mobilization theories and techniques have continuously changed...

  • declaration of war
    Declaration of war
    A declaration of war is a formal act by which one nation goes to war against another. The declaration is a performative speech act by an authorized party of a national government in order to create a state of war between two or more states.The legality of who is competent to declare war varies...

     in case of an attack on the USSR or in case when it was necessary to implement obligation
    An obligation is a requirement to take some course of action, whether legal or moral. There are also obligations in other normative contexts, such as obligations of etiquette, social obligations, and possibly...

    s of international mutual defense treaties;
  • ratification
    Ratification is a principal's approval of an act of its agent where the agent lacked authority to legally bind the principal. The term applies to private contract law, international treaties, and constitutionals in federations such as the United States and Canada.- Private law :In contract law, the...

     and denunciation
    Denunciation or abrogation refers to the announcement of a treaty's termination. Some treaties contain a termination clause that specifies that the treaty will terminate if a certain number of nations denounce the treaty...

     of international treaties, signed by the USSR;
  • representation of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR (between its sessions) in its relations with parliament
    A parliament is a legislature, especially in those countries whose system of government is based on the Westminster system modeled after that of the United Kingdom. The name is derived from the French , the action of parler : a parlement is a discussion. The term came to mean a meeting at which...

    s of foreign countries;
  • appointment and dismissal of Soviet plenipotentiaries
    The word plenipotentiary has two meanings. As a noun, it refers to a person who has "full powers." In particular, the term commonly refers to a diplomat fully authorized to represent his government as a prerogative...

     in foreign countries;
  • receiving of Letters of Credence and Letters of Recall from foreign diplomatic representatives, accredited in the USSR;
  • declaration of the martial law
    Martial law
    Martial law is the imposition of military rule by military authorities over designated regions on an emergency basis— only temporary—when the civilian government or civilian authorities fail to function effectively , when there are extensive riots and protests, or when the disobedience of the law...

     in a given region or across the USSR in the interest of defending the USSR or preserving public order and state security.

The presidium also dealt with questions regarding the acquisition of the Soviet citizenship
Citizenship is the state of being a citizen of a particular social, political, national, or human resource community. Citizenship status, under social contract theory, carries with it both rights and responsibilities...

, its forfeiting or voluntary rejection.

See also

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