The Functions Of Russia’s Newly Announced National Guard

This could be seen a Vladimir solidifying his hold on Russia, or that he’s in trouble and is facing threats of removal. This is also surely going to be used against political opposition. Either way, Putin’s private army is born.

 

On April 5, 2016, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced the decision to establish a National Guard for the country, that will be “formed on the basis of”the state’s Interior Ministry Troops. Putin also announced that Russia’s Federal Drug Control Service and Federal Migration Service would be incorporated into the Interior Ministry. 

The same day, Putin signed an executive order appointing Viktor Zolotov director of the Federal Service of National Guard Troops and commander of the National Guard Troops, and relieved him of his position as Interior Ministry Troops commander.[3]

The following are excerpts from an article detailing the functions of the new National Guard, as published on the website of the Russian media outlet Rbc.ru:[4] Continue reading

Watch What Putin Does to His Top Prosecutor

The ubiquitous corruption and lack of accountability in Vladimir Putin’s Russia were, until recently, easy to sweep under the rug. But the relentless decline in oil prices is making the president’s political bets unsafe. Now the country’s problems are beginning to fester in plain view, giving the regime a tough choice: Start liberalizing or go for harsh repression.

The case of Prosecutor General Yuri Chaika will be a weather vane of what’s to come. He was justice minister when Putin became president in 2000, running, among other things, Russia’s vast prison system. In 2006, Putin made him prosecutor general. Apart from prosecuting cases on the state’s behalf, the prosecutor general’s office exercises control over all criminal investigations and coordinates the activities of all law enforcement bodies, making the prosecutor general one of the country’s most influential people. Continue reading