Friday, April 29, 2016

Russian Authorities Are Preparing For Mass Protests

Riot police stand guard during a march to commemorate Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov, who was shot dead in central Moscow on March 1, 2015. (Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters)

Washington Post: This is how the Russian police say they will put down mass protests

MOSCOW — It has been years since Russia's protest movement showed much moxie, sending tens of thousands onto the streets of Moscow for raucous demonstrations against electoral fraud and Vladimir Putin's third term as president. But with the economy now mired in its longest recession in 20 years and parliamentary elections set for this September, Russia's police are drilling for a new rise in discontent.

Earlier this month, Putin announced the formation of a new, national guard, whose commander (a former head bodyguard for Putin) would answer directly to the Kremlin (as opposed to the Ministry of Internal Affairs) and which may be given the right to fire into crowds with live ammunition, Russian lawmakers have suggested. Officially, the National Guard will fight terrorism, weapons trafficking, and organized crime, along with public unrest. Informally, the agency, called Rosgvardia, has been panned as Putin's "praetorian guard."

Read more ....

WNU Editor: Are people in Russia unhappy and worried about the future .... the answer is yes. Are they unhappy and mad enough to riot .... no. Will they be unhappy enough to protest and riot next year .... maybe .... but that is why the Kremlin is now running scared. My analysis is that the Kremlin is in the dark on what is going to happen, and they certainly do not have any confidence in reading the public's mood and sentiment .... and that in itself speaks volumes on how insecure they feel right now.

1 comment:

Daniel said...

There's also the view that Rosgvardia was created to centralise the internal forces, i.e. rather than have MVD units responsible to various regional authorities just have one group answering to the centre, against fears of possible decline of central control over the regions to 90s levels in the near future.