Support The Moscow Times!

Russian Police Stop Tank Column With Nazi Insignia Near St. Petersburg

Vladimir Gerdo / TASS

Russian police reportedly stopped a convoy of tanks marked with swastikas traveling down a highway outside of St. Petersburg this week.

Changes to Russian law in 2014 made it a criminal offense to display any form of Nazi symbol, regardless of intent. The decision has seen prosecutions soar from 480 cases in 2013 to 1,800 in 2016, according to Russia’s Supreme Court data collated by rights groups.

About half a dozen armored vehicles, tanks and low-bed semi-trailers were stopped on approach to the island town of Kronstadt, where heavy vehicles are banned, the news website reported Friday.

The equipment was due to take part in a re-enactment of the Battle of Stalingrad on Sunday, but traffic police said they were not notified on time, pointed to missing paperwork and criticized the tanks for ‘moving chaotically through the city.‘

The incident took place a month after a Russian opposition activist was fined for publishing a picture with Nazi symbols from a history textbook cover that depicted the Soviet victory parade on Red Square in 1945.

This week, opposition leader Alexei Navalny called on his supporters to repost the same photo in the wake of the fine in what he termed an ’anti-idiocy" campaign.

… 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.


Read more