Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

83 New Detention Centers for Illegal Immigrants Planned

The Federal Migration Service has drafted a bill to set up 83 new detention centers for illegal immigrants across the country as Moscow's three holding facilities ran out of space following a week of raids on the city's markets.

The drive to fight illegal migration was triggered by a brawl at the Matveyevsky market on July 27 between the police and the relatives of rape suspect Magomed Magomedov. One police officer was hospitalized with a fractured skull as a result of the fight.

Last Monday police began combing Moscow's markets for illegal immigrants, even though the people who attacked the police officer had Russian citizenship.

The shortage of detention facilities forced Moscow police to open a temporary tented camp for several hundred detained immigrants, most of whom are Vietnamese, although nationals of Egypt, Syria and Afghanistan are also present.

The camp held over 500 people on Sunday afternoon, the police said, but rights activists said buses with more detainees had been arriving all day. Diplomats have also weighed in with their objections to the camp, in which conditions are said to be cramped and dirty.

"Putting 40 people in a 50-meter-tent — these are simply inhumane conditions," the head of the Vietnamese consulate in Russia said.

Questions about the camp's legality have also been raised.

The camp does not have any judicial status and, therefore, violates the current legislation, said Svetlana Gannushkin, the head of Civic Assistance, a foundation specializing in the protection of refugees' rights.

Referring to the need to clarify the legal position of the camp, an Interior Ministry spokesman said the "the legal department is currently working on it" and suggested opening an official inquiry.

There are currently 21 detention centers in Russia for holding illegal immigrants. The Federal Migration Service estimated that the new camps would require 4,661 new employees to operate them. It will take over the running of the detention centers from the Interior Ministry on Jan. 1, 2014.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more