The mayor of the western Russian city of Kaliningrad has blamed an outbreak of car torchings on local sinfulness and called on people to go to church more often, according to local media reports.
“Of course, this question … is one of belief. We need people from Kaliningrad to go to church more often and read the Gospels. Then there will not only be fewer arsons, but fewer other wrongdoings,” Kaliningrad Mayor Alexander Yaroshuk said Wednesday, local news site New Kaliningrad reported.
The capital of Russia's western exclave of Kaliningrad experiences almost nightly car torchings, which are apparently a preferred local tactic in business and personal disputes.
Car arson has been a persistent problem in the Kaliningrad region in recent years, with a reported 336 burnings in 2013 and a 33 percent rise in cases in 2014.
Last year, local police set up a special division to deal with such attacks.
Mayor Yaroshuk said Wednesday that the installation of more CCTV cameras could help reduce the number of arson incidents, according to New Kaliningrad.