Moscow, Oct 15: Nearly 1,200 people have been detained in Moscow after protests over a murder turned violent, authorities said Monday, adding that the Russian parliament is considering a probe into the unrest.
“During a preventative raid on a vegetable warehouse in the Biryulyovo district, about 1,200 people were taken to police precincts to be checked for involvement in criminal activity,” Xinhua reported citing a police statement.
Some 1,000 people took to the streets Sunday, demanding arrests after Wednesday’s fatal stabbing of Yegor Shcherbakov, a 25-year-old local, in front of his girlfriend.
The demonstrators were later joined by football fans and politicised nationalists. Traffic was halted for several hours in nearby districts and several bus routes were cancelled.
The rioters attributed the murder to a migrant worker after police released a security photograph of the suspect, reportedly of non-Slavic appearance.
Furious young men stormed a vegetable warehouse where migrant workers are often employed and looted an immigrant-owned mall before riot police dispersed the crowd.
Authorities also cordoned off Manezhnaya Square near the Kremlin complex as a precautionary measure.
The police, who remained on high alert Monday, seized a car containing non-lethal arms and a large sum of money during the raid at the warehouse.
“We’ve got information that the suspect is not a Russian citizen,” head of Moscow city police Anatoly Yakunin said.
Moscow mayor Sergei Sobyanin has ordered a thorough investigation of the murder, and said those responsible for the unrest would be held to account.
The Russian Investigation Committee Monday accused local officials of “inaction”, partially provoking the situation, and is to decide whether the incident could be “qualified as massive rioting”.
Russian human rights ombudsman Vladimir Lukin suggested Monday that parliament probe into the unrest.
“Its main task is to work out proposals on how to solve the complicated national problem and eliminate corruption which is associated with it,” Interfax quoted him as saying.
Lukin also proposed a visa regime with the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) member states as a way to fight illegal immigration.
State Duma speaker Sergei Naryshkin said Monday the Russian legislative body has invited heads of the interior ministry, the federal migration service and Moscow authorities to a plenary session Oct 22.
“We will make a decision on our analysis of the situation as to whether a parliamentary probe into the unrest is necessary,” said Naryshkin.