Ulaanbaatar’s central square, currently known as Chinggis Square, is returning to its original name, Sukhbaatar Square, following the final ruling of the Administrative Cases Court of Mongolia.
The square was originally named in honor of the Mongolian revolutionary hero D.Sukhbaatar shortly after his death in 1923. The Ulaanbaaatar City Council made an abrupt decision on July 15, 2013, to rename the square after Chinggis Khaan, the founder of the Great Mongol Empire. This decision was strongly opposed by the Mongolian People’s Party (MPP), as well as the descendants of D.Sukhbaatar. The issue went to court in 2014, under an alleged violation of Article 8.1 in the Law on Administrative and Territorial Units of Mongolia and Their Control.
The controversy subsided over time, and local residents got used to calling the square by its new name. However, the Administrative Cases Court made a final ruling to overturn the 2013 resolution to rename the square Chinggis Square shortly after the MPP rose to political power.
Yesterday, a descendant of D.Sukhbaatar who appealed to the court on the 2013 resolution wrote on Facebook, “The Administrative Court has put an end to the case on Sukhbaatar Square’s name. The square’s name will remain Sukhbaatar Square. On behalf of our family, I’d like to express my deepest gratitude to all the lawyers who worked on this case. I guess it’s become a tradition to change the names of streets and squares when a new political party rises to power.”