Thousands arrested after race riots in Moscow over ‘migrant’ murder

14/10/2013 23:53

Source: VOR

A car containing a large amount of money, knives, and firearms has been found in a vegetable warehouse in Moscow's Western Biryulyovo district, said the press service for the Interior Ministry's Main Department for Moscow.

Check out VoR's live report on Sunday clashes investigation: Moscow's Western Biryulyovo district riots: investigation underway. Live updates 

"A car containing several million rubles, two pistols, two knives, and a baseball bat was found in a vegetable warehouse in Western Biryulyovo," the press service said.

Moscow also police said Monday they had detained 1,200 people in an anti-migrant raid on a produce market where a riot took place over the weekend after the killing of an ethnic Russian.

"About 1,200 people have been taken to the police in the course of a raid on a produce market in Biryulyovo to check their criminal connections," said the press service of the Moscow police.

The riots followed a murder of a Russian citizen by a man believed to be from the Caucasus. The arrested will be interrogated in a criminal case on hooliganism.

Meanwhile instigators behind the recent Moscow riots were calling on authorities to close the local migrant-employing vegetable market and tighten immigration policy. Mikhail Remezov, the president of the Moscow-based Institute of National Strategy, urged in an interview to the Voice of Russia to distance ourselves from the problem of illegal migration.

“It’s not only about migrants’ status. I’m against the migrant focus per se. Were we to give them all legal status, it would not change a thing. There are inner migrants among them, and they account to a portion of criminal problems.”

Russian human rights ombudsman Vladimir Lukin has suggested opening a parliamentary investigation into the recent riots in Moscow's Biryulyovo district.

"A parliamentary investigation that would involve representatives of the parties not represented in the State Duma, public organizations, and authoritative people of our country," said Lukin on Monday.

"This investigation should help determine the causes of what has occurred. However, the main thing is to work out proposals on how to tackle this difficult and objective national problem and the problem of corruption, which is associated with it," the ombudsman said.

The 25-year-old local resident died Wednesday night in the Western Biryulyovo district in southern Moscow.

Photo: RIA

Investigators say that the young man and his girlfriend were returning home when an unfamiliar man approached them at the entrance of their house and stabbed Shcherbakov after a verbal exchange. The young man died instantly and the suspect fled the scene.

Based on recordings of security cameras some media reported that the murderer may have come from Central Asia or the Caucasus.

Some 40 people gathered outside of the Western Biryulyovo police precinct on Saturday evening demanding the identification and detention of Shcherbakov's murderer. They also called for tightening migration laws and closing the nearby vegetable warehouse where they thought the murderer was hiding. After deputy police chief of the Moscow Southern Administrative District addressed them, they dispersed.

A so-called popular assembly was organized in the area on Sunday afternoon demanding that the murderer be found. The assembly evolved into a riot and clashes with the police. Several hundred people were detained and several police officers were injured.

Rioting in Moscow partly fuelled by inaction of local officials - Investigative Committee

The investigation is determined to give a strong assessment of the attitude of officials from the Moscow Western Biryulyovo district administration whose inaction encouraged the recent unrest in the district, official spokesman for the Investigative Committee of Russia Vladimir Markin has said.

"In the framework of this criminal case the Moscow Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee of Russia will give a tough legal evaluation of the stance of officials from the Western Biryulyovo district administration and other district authorities whose inaction partially provoked the growth of public knowledge of the breaches of the law related to the operations of Novye Cheryomushki vegetable warehouse where immigrants from former Soviet republics are working," he said on Monday.

He said the investigation also intends to check whether the recent unrest in Biryulyovo could be qualified as massive rioting (Article 212 of the Russian Criminal Code).

Investigators are taking every step to track and detain the murderer of Yegor Shcherbakov, whose death sparked off rioting in Moscow's Western Biryulyovo district, official spokesman for the Investigative Committee Vladimir Markin has said.

"The investigation is applying all the powers given to it by law to speedily solve this crime and to detain the suspect," Markin said.

More than 70 charged over Moscow neighborhood riot

"Over 70 people have been charged with a misdemeanor for disturbing public peace yesterday in Biryulyovo-Zapadnoye and are to stand trial," the spokesman said.

Two of the rioting youths were held in a detention center for 48 hours, with the rest set free after investigation checked their identities and had a "precaution talk" with them.

At least 400 people were seized during massive rioting in Moscow’s neighborhood of Biryulyovo after a crowd of residents demanded more police action over the stabbing of Yegor Shcherbakov, a 25-year-old Russian-born who was reportedly killed by a migrant from the Northern Caucasus while walking home with his girlfriend on Thursday night.

The Russian sanitation authority has announced that the vegetable warehouse in the Biryulyovo district of Moscow, which became a target of rioting, has been closed down. Local residents believe migrant workers live at the warehouse.

"Shortcomings have been identified there. The facility has been closed down in order to restore order," said Russian chief sanitation doctor Gennady Onishchenko.

In the wake of the rioting on Sunday night, 23 people, including eight police officers, sought medical assistance, journalists were told at the Health Ministry.

"Out of those who sought medical assistance eight were hospitalized, two of them policemen," a ministry spokesman said.

He said the main reasons for seeking medical assistance were cuts caused by broken glass, stress and minor injuries.

He said ten ambulance teams and five teams of the Disaster Medicine center worked at the scene.

Russia's Minister of Internal Affairs against talks with initiators of riot in Moscow

Russia's Minister of Internal Affairs Vladimir Kolokoltsev has demanded that all the initiators and participants of the recent unrest in Moscow's south must be brought to justice. The Minister was speaking at a meeting of the Moscow's Main Interior Department, which was convoked on the occasion.

The unrest started after a street fight between two young men in Moscow, in which one of them was killed. Supposedly, the killer is somewhere from the Caucasus or one of former Soviet states in Middle Asia. The rallies' participants demanded to find and punish the killer.

Photo: RIA

Mr. Kolokoltsev called on the police to more closely cooperate with the Federal Migration Service, helping the latter to find out illegal migrants.

“Some people are saying that the police should start talks with initiators of this unrest,” Vladimir Kolokoltsev said. “But I believe that we must not encourage pogroms or make any concessions to their initiators. The only talks that we should hold with them is to put them under justice and interrogate them, persuading them to repent and to cooperate with the investigation.”

As of 23:38 Moscow time, police in the Russian capital confirmed that 380 people had been detained in the city’s southern district, and that five policemen had been injured in the operation.
Speaking on Sunday, Kolokoltsev said that, from Monday, checking that all food markets were operating in accordance with Russian law would be a priority, and stressed that this work would create a “healthier environment in the city.”

He warned those present that “all these provocateurs and extremists will use any opportunity to get the young people out onto the barricades,” if the authorities do not act.

Police detain 380 people after anti-migrant riot in southern Moscow

Moscow police said they detained some 380 people during the mass rioting in a southern district of the city. A mixed crowd of nationalists and locals attacked a warehouse run by natives of the Caucasus, blaming a migrant for the fatal stabbing of a local.

Moscow police said they were putting into effect an emergency plan, codenamed “Volcano,” involving sending scores of riot police to the scene of the clashes, and placing the police officers across the city on high alert.

A crowd of people on Sunday broke into a vegetable warehouse in the southern district of Biryulyovo, hurling rocks, smashing up stalls and vending machines. While the police estimated the crowd at about 350 people, witnesses at the scene suggested the number of rioters could be as many as 1,000.
Some of the most aggressive participants of the unrest clashed with riot police and attempted to block the street after several people were detained and forced into police vans.

Riot police, who were about 200 strong at the time, failed to block part of the crowd from rushing in the direction of the warehouse.

Photo: RIA

Fourteen young men with gas spary cans have been taken off from an electric train at the Biryulyovo railway freight station early Monday on suspicion of an intent to commit unlawful acts, said an official in the press service of the Moscow city police department of the Russian Interior Ministry.

The violent scenes came after a similar rampage took place at a nearby shopping center, where the rioters had originally gathered. The outraged crowd demanded that the police find the killer of a 25-year-old Russian, who was stabbed to death on Thursday allegedly by a man from the Caucasus or Central Asia.

The locals also lashed at the the authorities, accusing them of covering the wave of migrant crime and the illegal immigration in the area.

Chief of Moscow central board of Ministry of Internal Affairs takes investigation into murder in Moscow under his control

Antoly Yakunin personally supervises the investigation into Shcherbakov murder in Biryulevo. The murder case of 25 -year-old young man Egor Shcherbkov who stood up for his girlfriend has now been taken over by the Investigative Committee of the Russian leadership, reports the official website of the department.
Investigators have already interviewed witnesses to the crime. More than 90 people were questioned at the moment of publication.

The Chairman of the Investigative Committee Alexander Bastrykin and Prosecutor General Yuri Chaika have inquired into the murder case.

Factional leader of the parliamentary group for cooperation with civil society groups and law enforcement intelligence agencies and a member of the Central Headquarters of the All-Russia Peoples Front Michael Starshinov has also requested an inquest into the young man’s death.

Photo: RIA

Starshinov noted that the brutal murder of a Muscovite and the subsequent riots are largely a result of inaction of local authorities and police. He said the incident "demonstrates how much progress was achieved through a widely publicized campaign to restore order in Moscow markets and other similar facilities".

According to ITAR -TASS, Starshinov prepared parliamentary inquiries for Attorney General of the Russian Federation and the Chairman of the Investigative Committee with a request to "examine the causes that led to such consequences." He is convinced that "they are the same as in the previous resonant cases."

"All this raises questions about whether it is time to discuss the establishment of a municipal police force", said Starshinov.

Biryulyovo makes it into top Twitter trends

The word “Biryulyovo” in Russian Cyrillic made it into the top Twitter trends of the day late Sunday as tweets kept pouring in great numbers in about unrest in the Biryulyovo district in the south of Moscow.

If a word is mentioned in 10,000-20,000 tweets per hour, it ranks among the most-discussed topics on Twitter. “Biryulyovo” was trending globally on Twitter for 30 minutes. The hashtag #Бирюлево (Biryulyovo) topped the Twitter trends in Russia, and the hashtag #Москва (Moscow) also ranked among the ten top trending topics related to the events in Biryulyovo.

On the night of October 9, an unidentified assailant stabbed to death Yegor Sherbakov in front of his girlfriend in the Biryulyovo district in Moscow. The assailant escaped.

Outraged Biryulyovo residents took to the streets on Saturday and Sunday to demand that the murderer be found.

On Sunday evening, one policeman was injured when a crowd began smashing windows in the Biryuzha shopping center.

Police intervened and contained the riot.

Photo: Reuters

Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev ordered the Moscow police to be put on higher alert in the wake of the unrest.

The previous Twitter trends in Cyrillic included the name of Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov ahead of the presidential election, #метеорит (meteorite) after the fall of a meteorite in the Chelyabinsk region, and #дождь (rain) during the abnormal heatwave in Moscow in 2010.


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