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Russia to Re-Educate ‘Brainwashed’ Youth in Patriotic Camps

Sergei Vedyashkin / Moskva News Agency

Russia plans to send delinquent youngsters to military-patriotic re-education camps and to install special software blocking banned websites in schools, the head of Russia’s Security Council has said.

President Vladimir Putin created a patriotic directorate inside the Russian army last summer, evoking memories of a Soviet practice that once taught soldiers the tenets of Marxism. Observers noted that Putin's move could signal the start of a wider renaissance in ideological education that would spread to schools and colleges.

“Juveniles prone to committing offenses will be sent to military-patriotic camps in 2019,” Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev was quoted as saying by the state-run TASS news agency on Tuesday.

Speaking at a conference in the republic of Udmurtia, Patrushev linked youth crimes with “mind games through social networks.”

He said special software that blocks banned websites had been installed across Russian schools. The combined measures helped reduce juvenile crime by nearly 18 percent, Patrushev said.

The security chief has in the past advocated for the creation of volunteer “internet brigades” of popular Russian bloggers to instill patriotism and spiritual values among Russian youth. Last year, Patrushev warned about the bad influence of satanists, opposition politicians and non-traditional religious organizations on the country’s youth.

Russia criminalized the recruitment of underage protesters late last year.

Reuters contributed reporting to this article.

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