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Russian Nationalists Protest Against Migrants

Migrant workers from Tajikistan in Russia (file photo) (RFE/RL) 27 October 2005 -- Young nationalists staged a noisy picket in central Moscow today to protest the influx of illegal migrants from ex-Soviet republics.

The protesters, estimated at two dozens, shouted slogan such as "Moscow for Muscovites!" Some of them, clad in Central Asian robes and skullcaps, staged a mock sale of a traditional Central Asian meat patty that had fake worms in it.

Viktor Volkov, a Moscow city legislator from the nationalist Rodina party, called for introducing strict work quotas for foreign workers to prevent them from taking away jobs from Russians.

The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 sent hundreds of thousands of migrants from poorer former Soviet republics seeking work in Russia.