The Council on Cossack Affairs is an advisory and consultative agency for the President of Russia.
The Council’s key aims are to prepare suggestions to the president in regard to government policies that relate to Russian Cossacks, to participate in preparing draft legislative acts relating to Cossacks, and to assure cooperation between government bodies at various levels with Cossack non-governmental organizations.
The Council includes representatives from the Presidential Executive Office, Government, public authorities, Cossack non-governmental organizations and other non-governmental and scientific organizations.
Cossacks are known to have inhabited Russia since the 14th century (they were free people, working mainly in various trades, as well as individuals who had done military duty on the outskirts of the country). Beginning in the 18th century, Cossacks developed as a military class.