world

Russia carries out mass raids on Kremlin critic's supporters

15 Comments
By Andrew Osborn and Maria Tsvetkova

Russian law enforcement authorities on Thursday carried out mass raids on the homes and offices of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny's supporters, as part of an investigation into money-laundering.

Searches took place in 39 towns and cities, four days after the ruling United Russia party, which supports President Vladimir Putin, lost a third of its seats in the Moscow city assembly while easily retaining its dominant nationwide position.

Navalny had urged his supporters to vote tactically in last weekend's local and regional elections to try to reduce the chances of Kremlin-backed candidates, a strategy that appears to have had some success in the capital.

"Putin is very angry," Navalny wrote on social media after the raids. "This is a case where the actions of the police are no different from those of burglars."

Authorities told activists that the searches were related to a money-laundering investigation into Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation, an organisation that has published embarrassing investigations into what it says is the wrongdoing of corrupt officials.

State investigators last month opened a criminal investigation into the alleged laundering of 1 billion rubles ($15 million) by the foundation itself. It also froze a slew of bank accounts linked to the foundation, a move Navalny's allies said was a trumped-up attempt to cripple his political movement.

Kira Yarmysh, Navalny's spokeswoman, said on Thursday that the scale and nature of the latest raids was unprecedented.

Leonid Volkov, another senior Navalny ally, published a list of towns and cities where activists had been targeted.

"The overall number of searches is over 150 and no less than 1,000 Russian law enforcement employees are involved (in the raids)," Volkov wrote on social media.

He linked the searches to Navalny's tactical voting strategy and said the homes of activists, their relatives and the regional headquarters of Navalny's movement were being targeted.

Activists were being taken in for questioning, he added, saying technical hardware was being confiscated.

"The state has two tasks - to frighten and steal," wrote Volkov. "It's obvious that the aim of this operation is to destroy our headquarters structure and to obstruct the work of our (regional) headquarters."

Golos, a non-governmental organisation that monitors Russian elections, said on Thursday that the homes of its activists were also being raided by the authorities.

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2019.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

15 Comments
Login to comment

Don Putin is losing control.

His biggest fear, apparently..

14 ( +16 / -2 )

Modern Russia is one of the best current examples of this political/economic system:

a political philosophy, movement, or regime that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition

Ironic that so many Russians fought against a similar political/economic system 80 years ago. But then they were living under their own totalitarian system, similar in many ways to the one they fought against.

The global spread of authoritarian, far right movements led by despots and their chosen oligarchs shows that many have not learnt from history.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Putin knee jerk reaction to his massive loss?

9 ( +11 / -2 )

I know someone else that would love to be able to do this.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

R.I.P. Russia's short-lived democracy. Putin is an autocrat and capitalist crook. Welcome to modern Russian, the worst of both worlds: State autocracy and capitalist exploitation.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Uh-oh, Donnie will no doubt try to copy his Master.....expect Biden, Bernie, Warren and the rest being led off in cuffs before the debate begins tomorrow.....

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Where are the Pro-Putin comments?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Stalin his smiling in hell.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The very personality of Navalny - a convicted con artist, now under investigation for money laundering, a confirmed CIA asset - speaks volumes about how desperate the U.S.Embassy is with local human resources. To portray such a lowlife crook as "democratic leader" is a very daunting task indeed.

@PTownsend

Russians fought against a similar political/economic system 80 years ago. But then they were living under their own totalitarian system, similar in many ways to the one they fought against

80 years ago Europe was very much more close to Hitler then present day Western leaders like to admit. Apart from Germany and Italy openly fascist/ultranationalist regimes were In Poland, Finland, Hungary, Rumania, Spain, Portugal, all three Baltic republics. And in May 1945 Nazi troops were desperate to surrender not to the Soviets, but to the Western allies. Birds of a feather.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Russian car does 0 to 60 downhill.

Has heated rear window so when you have to push in cold weather.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Russia and Israel spying and manipulating the US. Quelle surprise!

But not really.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@PTownsend

"Modern Russia is one of the best current examples of this political/economic system:"

"a regime that exalts nation and often race above the individual"

It's an arguable statement.

Russia has a very atomized society no fascio as you're trying to allude to.

If someone wants to find the places where "nation (ethnicity) above the individual" look at Balt states or Ukraine.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

sdf_crew_memberToday  03:18 am JST

If someone wants to find the places where "nation (ethnicity) above the individual" look at Balt states or Ukraine.

Hardly. The Baltic states, Ukraine and Georgia were all "Russified" during the Soviet era in order to dilute their historic ethnicity and weaken their resistance to Moscow. This legacy has damaged the fabrics of their societies.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

MSM: Elections in Russia are rigged, only Putin is allowed to run.

MSM: Opposition makes huge gains in the election, Putin angry.

Right... Got it.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Russia & the Assadists have attacked 40 hospitals in Syria in the last few months.

Do not trust the regime or its supporters.

That said, Navalny is no angel. He's been associated with some far right pals in the past.

He also supported Russia in its war against Georgia in August 2008, using a derogatory term for Georgians in some of his blog posts and calling for all Georgians to be expelled from Russia

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2013/07/is-aleksei-navalny-a-liberal-or-a-nationalist/278186/

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites