Klochurak, Stepan

Klochurak, Stepan [Клочурак, Степан; Kločurak], b 27 February 1895 in Yasinia, Maramureş region, Transcarpathia, d 8 February 1980 in Prague. Political activist and journalist. In 1918–19 he organized local Ukrainian national councils and a Hutsul army, with which he defended the short-lived Hutsul Republic from the Hungarians. After the First World War he helped found the Subcarpathian Social Democratic party, and edited its newspapers Narod (Uzhhorod) (1920–1) and Vpered (Uzhhorod) (1922–34). Joining the Ukrainian branch of the pro-government Czechoslovak Agrarian party in 1934, he edited its organ Zemlia i volia (Mukachevo) (1934–8). He sat on the presidium of the Prosvita society and organized rural branches of the society. In the autonomous Subcarpathian Ruthenia within Czechoslovakia, Klochurak served as secretary to the prime minister and delegate to the Vienna Arbitration. In the independent republic of Carpatho-Ukraine, he briefly held the office of defense minister (15 March 1939). In 1945 he was arrested by Soviet authorities in Prague; he returned there after serving 11 years in prison. His memoirs Do voli (To Freedom, 1978) were published in the West.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 2 (1988).]

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