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21 Feb, 2022 13:52

Deport ‘extremist’ migrants immediately – Putin

Non-citizens who respect the country’s values, culture, and laws are still welcome, the Russian president has said
Deport ‘extremist’ migrants immediately – Putin

Foreigners in Russia who support terrorist or extremist causes should be immediately booted out of the country, President Vladimir Putin has said after Moscow hinted that it was considering the possibility of giving citizens found guilty of serious violations deportation orders.

Speaking on Thursday at the board of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Russian leader set out his stance on how people who have immigrated to his country should be penalized for grave crimes.

According to Putin, everyone who comes to Russia to live, study, and work, while respecting the law of the land, its culture, and traditions, is welcome. “These foreign citizens, and especially our compatriots coming from abroad, should be able to freely and, without bureaucratic delays, arrange all necessary documents,” he explained.

“However, illegal migration, the activities of criminal gangs that build their business on this, the toughest measures should be drawn up against these people,” he explained.

Putin went on, insisting that “any demonstrations of extremism, violations of law and order, and illegal labor operations [should] serve as grounds for prompt decisions for their deportation from Russia and ban them from entering our country in the future.”

Last month, Moscow’s Ministry of Internal Affairs said that it was looking into the possibility of kicking out foreigners if they commit severe administrative breaches, including violations of public order.

Tensions have flared between Russians and a new generation of workers from Central Asia in recent years. Last summer, more than 100 people were arrested in the Kuzminki area of the Russian capital after a massive brawl between two groups, mainly migrants, erupted on the streets.

Russia draws a large number of skilled and unskilled workers from former Soviet Republics, such as Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, notably in the service and construction sectors. In December 2020, the Ministry of Internal Affairs estimated that almost half of all migrants living in Russia had left during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In 2016, the high-profile case of an Uzbek nanny, who beheaded a four-year-old girl in her care and paraded the child’s severed head on a street in Moscow, shocked the Russian public. Videos of the woman, Gyulchekhra Bobokulova, purported to show her shouting “I am a terrorist.” She claimed that the grisly attack was revenge for Russian military operations in Syria. She is said to have been suffering from serious mental health problems and was later deported from the country.