New friends of the police
Institute of problems of enforcement at the European University in St. Petersburg upon request of the Center for strategic research (CSR) has published the analytical report “Local initiatives for the protection of public order in Russia: from national teams to the municipal police”. The author of the work (report available), CSR expert and researcher of the Institute Ekaterina Khodzhaeva studied 22 regional initiatives for the protection of public order — from the Cossacks and vigilantes to paramilitia and “Officers of Russia”.
The report describes how the emergent structure of protection of a public order of the Ministry of interior to replace the administrative control of law, and how effective the new police assistants, consisting of retired employees.
Monitoring of the opposition and videoslike
Khodjaev highlights several significant examples of private policing, acting on the initiative of the authorities. First, it is a “Municipal guard” in Belgorod. Most of the employees of the company, operating since 1999, he worked as an inspector for the protection of public order. According to the local regional Committee of the Communist party, “Guardian” sponsored from the city budget.
Main tasks — individually and jointly with the staff patrolling, guarding mass events, the administrative prosecution of violations of environmental regulations, work with local police and inspectors on Affairs of minors. “The guard” actively works with students and Cossacks, especially among the employees themselves, many of the Cossacks — they carry out mounted patrols in the Park and at public events.
A second example: the Centre of public security in Ufa started in 2012. He’s focused on crime prevention, including among minors. The center has its own operational team of five people, who are engaged in monitoring the political discontent of the citizens and socio-political agenda street protests. At the centre there is a Department responsible for surveillance.
The center seeks to recreate the Soviet model of social stigmatization and coercion, the report says. For example, each administrative area established preventive and social centers where the meetings are held with the involvement of activists of housing, schools and police.
The expert also highlights the Tatarstan Republic, one of the few regions of the country, where the government is actively involved in supporting the initiatives of the Republican interior Ministry to bring to public protection police retirees.
“In the region in 2015 was launched an unprecedented initiative of the President of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov for organization of the departments of the public security in each municipality of the Republic at the expense of the Republican budget”, — draws the attention of the street.
From may 2016, in the state of municipalities was introduced at the expense of the Republican budget assistants precinct.
In other 19 similar initiatives to law enforcement studied by expert, regional authorities are not involved.
After the transition to Federal funding in 2012, the police lacks both the precinct and patrol. Problems adds and overload employees reporting. Due to the lack of resources of the Ministry of interior was forced to abandon control over the observance of the administrative legislation. For this task, in the regions began to form paramilitaries structure.
The main interest of local authorities in the creation and promotion of paramilitia, the researcher says, is control over observance of legislation and rules of improvement and, therefore, the collection of fines. Often workers are endowed with non-core functions: work with couriers, administrative commissions or busy collecting statistics for Federal reporting. In turn, claims the author of the report, congestion and growth objectives statements give rise to the growth of the administrative apparatus.
Rejection older brother
The guide and almost the entire grassroots structure of paramilitia are recruited from former police officers. On the one hand, it benefits in the work, as in paramilitaries structures have people who understand and know what the protection of public order. However, it also brings with it risks, the main of which is the reproduction of “cane system.”
Experience of paramilitia shows the fragility and instability of these organizations, primarily because of the lack of legal framework. “Instability of such initiatives makes them a guide to flexible strategies and reaction to change course of the Federal and regional authorities”, — says street.
Management continually monitors the actions of the Ministry of internal Affairs as the main institutional “players” in the field of public order protection. Wanting to be useful, they agree on the coordination of the national teams or strengthening work in the area of anti-terrorist activities. Initially, such activity is not supposed to — these tasks were launched on the local level from the Federal level.
New paramilitaries structure at the municipal level throughout the beginning of its work face a crisis of legitimacy.
From the grassroots police officers often heard criticism of the vigilantes. Their assistance is perceived as an inefficient additional burden. Work with the warriors turns to the police for more paper routine. On the other hand, the use of vigilantes as a form of discipline grassroots staff, annoying the latter.
“Not all employees are willing to work with the warriors, because they can see the facts of police corruption and the abandonment of effective work. Three combatant for one employee — not all survive such a control, — said the head of the Moscow police trade Union Mikhail Pashkin. About anyone ever see vigilantes on the streets except at the meetings? If they were in large numbers, went with the district, it would be something to talk about”.
According to him, due to the additional witnesses-the vigilantes, the police would have been less conflict with citizens. Pashkin believes that the warriors need to return benefits to free travel and extra leave days. “In this case, we’d have a lot of candidates [to the terrorists],” says the source .
The Cossack phenomenon
In 2012, the Krasnodar Governor Alexander Tkachev announced the establishment of Cossack patrols, designed to carry out the protection order at the expense of the region. The formation of the movement in a single centralized initiatives occurred in 2008 after the election of the new ataman of the Kuban Cossack army (KKV). Then a contract was signed between the regional administration and RAC, as well as the agreement between the army and the representatives of Federal and regional agencies of the Ministry of interior, border guards, coast guard FSB, the regional departments of emergency situations and state ecological control, forest management.
Was formed structure of the 44 Cossack detachments (1.5 thousand), and about 1 thousand people worked for free. In 2008, the army received 35 million rubles, then this amount is increased. In 2012 the regional budget transferred KKV about 650 million rubles.
The researcher notes that when the public movement “Officers of Russia”, the Center for prevention of offences, which is entered in the register of the national teams of the police Department for the city of Moscow. “Officers” was the center for the prevention of offenses and crimes, which received in 2016 the contract of the Central suburban passenger company more than 100 million rubles for assistance to controllers in the struggle with “hares”.
With the work of the vigilantes associated with many scandals. Steel resonance cases involving activists from law enforcement organizations to put pressure on the opposition: in the presence of the police, the Cossacks in February 2014, attacked a group of Pussy Riot, in may 2016, attacked the head of the Fund of struggle against corruption Alexei Navalny and his team. “Officers of Russia” in September of this year, participated in the closing of the photo exhibition in the Center of photography Lumiere brothers in Moscow.
Ekaterina Khodzhaeva predicts that the interior Ministry will increasingly involve regional and local authorities to policing. She is confident that the Ministry of internal Affairs wants to take control of paramilitaries structure, as seen in the example of the Ministry of interior submitted to the Duma in 2014, the law “On organization of activities of the municipal police”.