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PHOTOS: Anti-Migrant Protests Turn To Riots In Moscow

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"PHOTOS: Anti-Migrant Protests Turn To Riots In Moscow"

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Russian protestors ap 6

CREDIT: Mikhail Listopadov/ AP

After a migrant was blamed for the stabbing death of a Russia nationalist, thousands of Russian rioters destroyed store windows and vandalized locations known for employing migrants in southern Moscow on Sunday. Nearly 1,200 people were detained in one of the worst recent clashes between ethnic Russians and mostly Muslim migrants in the area.

As the crowd of young Russian nationalists surged through the streets chanting “Russia forward” and “White power,” they left smashed windows and overturned cars in their wake. Some of the vigilantes carried a picture taken from security cameras of the migrant who allegedly killed the Russian nationalist. Moscow police chief Anatoliy Yakunin called the attackers “extremists” who “were drunk.”

In total, 380 migrants were detained as a “preventative” measure, according to police, “for involvement in criminal activity.” They were joined in detention by a slew of anti-migrant protestors, bringing the total arrests to 1,200.

Here are some photos of Sunday’s attack which destroyed many properties, sent 23 people to the hospital, and injured some police officers:

Russian protestors ap 4

CREDIT: Mikhail Listopadov/ AP

Russian protestors ap 5

CREDIT: Mikhail Listopadov/ AP

Russian protestors overturn an oil barrel to use as a police barricade

Russian protestors overturn an oil barrel to use as a police barricade

CREDIT: Screen grab via youtube.com

By Monday, Russian police detained more than 1,200 people including migrant employees.

By Monday, Russian police detained more than 1,200 people including migrant employees.

CREDIT: Denis Tyrin/ AP

Ethnic tensions and attacks on migrants aren’t new in Russia. The Sova Center, a group that monitors xenophobia and ethnic violence, found that by October 2013, there had been racial attacks in more than 28 regions of the country that resulted in 17 deaths and 115 injuries.

But while Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev called for police not to encourage nationalist sentiments, the Russian government has also been complicit in building up anti-migrant sentiments in the past. Moscow’s growing economy has created a market for cheap labor, especially in areas like construction. After migrant workers worked on the Olympic construction sites, Alexander Tkachev, the governor of the Krasnodar Region, called for “raid brigades,” or mass immigration raids on workplaces, homes, and public spaces. Hundreds of people were detained because of their “non-Slavic appearance” and charged with immigration and employment violations.

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