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Moscow's Response To Racism 'Grossly Inadequate'

'Death to blacks' is what this graffiti in St. Petersburg reads (AFP) PRAGUE, May 4, 2006 (RFE/RL) -- In a report released today, human rights watchdog Amnesty International sharply criticizes the Russian authorities for their failure to prevent racially motivated attacks.

The report says attacks on asylum seekers, foreign students, and refugees are on the rise. Also on the increase are attacks on Chechens and other members of ethnic groups from the North Caucasus.

Amnesty says the Russian government's response to racist attacks has been "grossly inadequate." The watchdog says Russian authorities have failed to prevent attacks due to inadequate policing and have not effectively investigated or prosecuted the vast majority of attacks.

Amnesty's secretary-general, Irene Khan, says Russia's "record on racism is incompatible with the country's place on the international stage." Russia is currently the head of the G8 group of industrialized nations.

According to a Russian-based monitoring group, Sova, 28 people were murdered and 366 assaulted on racial grounds in Russia in 2005.

Epidemic Of Hate

Epidemic Of Hate

Yusuf Sultonov, whose 9-year-old daughter was beaten and stabbed to death in St. Petersburg on February 9, 2004 (TASS)

EXTREMISM ASCENDANT: More than half of Russians have xenophobic views, according to a report published in August 2005. In the report, rights groups say that -- despite progress in some areas -- racism, xenophobia, and anti-Semitism remain rife in Russia. But what worries watchdogs most are recent moves by nationalist-patriotic movements to form paramilitary groups....(more)


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Hate Crime Trial Highlights Mounting Racism

Minister Says Russia Can't Stop Xenophobia Alone

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