Medvedev pledges to punish rioters
Tue, 14 Dec 2010 07:44:27 GMT
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has pledged that he will identify and punish those responsible for the weekend's violent protest that erupted near Moscow's Red Square.
“It's dangerous that some people are stirring up racial and religious hatred and hostility. Such activities are threatening the stability of the country,” Medvedev said on Monday.
“The rioting should be qualified as a crime, and the people who committed it should be punished,” he added, promising that the government would firmly deal with those behind the riots.
The Russian president also warned that any future unrest would be put down by the riot police, who would use “all powers and methods.”
On Saturday, thousands of people rallied for hours outside the Kremlin walls in memory of a football fan who was killed one week ago.
The protesters chanted “Russia for Russians” and made insulting remarks against the people from Russia's Caucasus region.
The rallies turned violent when the protesters began scuffling with the police. More than thirty people were injured and 65 were arrested at the demonstration.
The football supporter had been shot dead with rubber bullets during a fight at a bus stop. The murder was blamed on the Caucasus ethnic groups.
Several suspects, believed to be from the Caucasus region, have been detained over the murder case. A Russian court has also ordered the arrest of two other suspects, both from the Caucasus.