[Marxism] Riot Police Try to Stop Far-Right Protest in Moscow
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Dbachmozart at aol.com
Sat Nov 4 06:33:37 MST 2006
N Y Times
Riot Police Try to Stop Far-Right Protest in Moscow
Published: November 4, 2006
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Riot police detained dozens of protesters in central
Moscow on Saturday as they tried to stop Russian nationalists from holding a
banned march against immigrants.
Around 2,000 far-right demonstrators gathered at a Moscow park for an
officially sanctioned meeting on Russia's National Unity Day holiday under the gaze
of police in full body armor.
The nationalists waved old Tsarist flags and chanted ``Glory to Russia'' as a
police helicopter buzzed overhead. Similar protests were held in cities
across the country, from Vladivostok on the Pacific coast to St Petersburg in the
Police bundled dozens of the Moscow demonstrators into vans and drove them
away, alleging provocative behavior, Reuters reporters at the scene said.
A police spokesman denied that any arrests had been made but Russian news
agency Interfax reported 37 detentions.
The far right had originally planned big marches through the center of major
Russian cities to mark the November 4 holiday.
But Moscow and St Petersburg authorities banned any marches to prevent a
repeat of last year's events, when neo-Nazis paraded through central Moscow
chanting racist slogans.
They allowed only small groups of nationalists to gather in fixed locations
away from the city center.
``I am for Russia and I want Russian people to walk with their head held
high,'' Moscow demonstrator Olga Voitenko, 49, told Reuters.
She said Russians had their rights taken away from them. Other protesters
complained a wave of illegal immigrants, mainly from the southern Caucasus
region and from Central Asia, were taking jobs away from Russians and corrupting
Non-governmental organizations have long reported that racist violence is
growing in Russia, fueled by poverty and joblessness in poorer regions and
resentment at the loss of Russian power after the breakup of the Soviet Union.
Anti-Semitic slogans were also evident at the Moscow rally, including one
poster of a woman holding a dead child next to a Jewish man clutching another
child's head. ``Russian, help your fellow Russians or you will be next,'' it
In St Petersburg, police used tear gas to break up a fight between
nationalists and left-wing demonstrators. About 20 people were arrested but there were
no immediate reports of injuries.
In Russia's eastern port of Vladivostok, a group of far-right extremists
raised their arms in Nazi salutes as they posed for photographs at a parade
ground. Around 200 protesters marched through the city, waving banners saying
``No Integration, Just Deportation.''
Their posters included an armored Russian medieval knight swinging a large
sword above the legend ``Russian Club.''
Skinheads also marched in the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk in central Russia
waving banners. Most covered their faces to prevent identification.
The Kremlin introduced the National Unity Day holiday last year to replace
the traditional November 7 anniversary of the Bolshevik revolution in 1917. It
marks the 1612 defeat of Polish troops by Russian irregulars.
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