A woman in the Moscow region told police that a band of "gypsies" had kidnapped her 17-year-old daughter for the purpose of a forced marriage, Interfax reported Wednesday, citing a source in law enforcement.
A woman appealed to police saying a group of so-called "gypsies" had attacked and then abducted her daughter on Tuesday night, Interfax reported.
The woman said she believed her daughter had fallen victim to bride kidnapping, a phenomenon where men snatch their intended bride without her consent, ultimately forcing her to walk down the aisle.
It was unclear whether the woman had been acquainted with the suspects prior to the alleged kidnapping. She told police the suspects were likely going to take the girl to Lipetsk, about 370 kilometers from Moscow, to hold the wedding.
Police are presently looking into the incident, Interfax reported.
In 2013, the Russian government adopted a comprehensive, long-term program to improve the image of the Roma ethnic minority among the population and integrate them into society, Izvestia reported at the time.
According the latest available census, released in 2010, there are an estimated 220,000 Roma residing in Russia. During the Soviet era, the Roma population faced forced resettlement. After that practice was abolished in the early 1990s, the group became more marginalized.